Since the Google announced that they will include site speed in their ranking algorithm, the issue of website, especially, homepage performance, is now something you definitely have to consider. However, many websites already did a good job in the time before. About half a year ago I also did some research and experimentation on that topic.
After some time thinking about different solutions for a project, I was reminded of the “Apollo 13” movie. During the flight to the moon the space module is damaged and they have to shut some part of the spacecraft down. The main problem before going back is that they may not have enough energy remaining. So they need to figure out the best order to turn parts of the system on and not going over a specific limit. Doesn’t that sound similar? It’s almost the same thing you do when trying to make you page load faster.