There are many things that make agriculture a unique industry, but serving a rural audience (you!) on rural internet speeds (boo!) is what Lee (developer!) and I (Rhett!) focus on. We spend a lot of time trying to make our site load faster. Especially on your phones, which ~65% of you are using right now.
Through the summer, Lee and I worked to rebuild our server infrastructure — we’re now load balancing our traffic on cloud servers across North America with several layers of caching, security and other performance enhancements so we can serve our stories to you as quickly as possible.
Today, I’m excited to announce a brand new mobile website that uses AMP or Accelerated Mobile Pages project, which is led by Google:
The AMP Project is an open-source initiative aiming to make the web better for all. The project enables the creation of websites and ads that are consistently fast, beautiful and high-performing across devices and distribution platforms.
We’re in good company with AMP users like The Washington Post, BBC, BuzzFeed, Vox and many more. Our little two-man (development) team is using the same infrastructure as the giants in mainstream media. Here’s a little video about AMP:
The additional benefit of AMP is that we get to leverage Google’s caching infrastructure to accelerate our website. In the city (and we tested as far away as Australia), we’re seeing load times under a second. I’m not sure whether you’ll see load times that good, but here’s what Kelvin said when I asked him to take a look:
It is faster, or I should say it actually loads, and cell signal is almost non-existent here. — Kelvin Heppner, somewhere near Altona, Manitoba
That’s about as high of praise as I can expect with rural internet (cell, satellite or otherwise). I can’t give you a better internet connection (I would if I could), but I can do everything to make it the best experience possible, which starts with a website that doesn’t take thirty seconds to load.
Since I started in agriculture media six years ago, I’ve believed that our community deserved a better experience online and today feels like a big step forward towards that goal.
If you have any questions, feedback or you see any bugs or issues, I’d be glad to hear and correct them. You can find me on Twitter @rhettsoveran, email [email protected] or you can give me a call: 306-262-0493.