WordPress is one of the most powerful CMS for building a website. But as with any tool, if you’re not careful, it can become a curse instead of a blessing. If you want to make sure that your website performs as well as possible, you have to take a little time to understand how your website is running. That’s where this guide comes in. We’ll take a look at a few things you need to know, and what you can do to speed up your site.
This guide contains some of the most popular techniques that can be used to speed up WordPress. These techniques are written in a way that is easy for anyone to understand.
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First things first!
Why fast websites win
Fast websites are more useful to their customers. They make it easy for them to navigate the website. Users like a fast website. As a result, these sites win the hearts of their customers and Google takes this seriously, as simple as that.
If a website is slow, customers may not be able to complete their tasks on the website quickly, making it difficult for the customer to get the information they need. Slow websites will lose customers and Google will take this into consideration when ranking websites. So, make sure you provide a good user experience by having fast websites.
Slow websites may have trouble keeping up with the competition. They may end up losing traffic to faster competitors. This means Google will give these slower websites a lower score.
Google ranking for speed
If a website is fast, users are more likely to stay on the website longer. Google ranks faster websites higher in search results.
How to measure website speed
A good website is always faster than a slow one. But how do you know which website is fast? That’s where speed tests come in. These are online tools that measure the speed of your website by measuring the time it takes for a web page to load. Some of these tests are paid, while others are free.
Webpages should load in 3 seconds or less. There are many different ways to measure the speed of a webpage. I recommend using a tool called PageSpeed Insights. It provides a detailed analysis of how well a webpage performs.
How to speed up WordPress
Below I listed a few easy ways: you can use to improve the performance and speed of your WordPress website.
Optimize images (size and dimensions)
In order to reduce the size of images for your WordPress website, try using tools like Photoshop or any other image editing software. If you’re using WordPress, you might also consider installing plugins that can help you optimize images. These can compress images for you so they don’t take up too much room on your site.
You can also use an image optimization plugin like Smush, Imagify, or EWWW Image Optimizer.
Update WordPress and all plugins
One of the best things you can do for your website is update WordPress and all plugins to their latest versions to prevent hacker attacks and increase website speed.
Use a fast WordPress theme (Astra)
A bad theme can cause a lot of issues, but with the right theme, you can speed up your site by as much as 30%.
There are many themes designed to simplify the process of developing and designing a website. However, they have high overhead and unnecessary features. You may want to choose a theme that’s optimized for speed and performance. One of our most popular WordPress themes is designed for speed, including the Editors’ Choice winner Astra.
Astra’s page speed result on GT Metrix is an A grade (98% Performance and 98% Structure). Astra has been optimized for the user’s experience and speed of loading pages.
Astra loads the entire website in under 1 second for WebPage.
Use a caching plugin
A cache is a copy of a web page that is stored somewhere else (like a server) so that it can be quickly returned if requested. This is useful for websites with lots of visitors. When a user visits a page, the browser looks in the cache first before actually requesting the page from the original server. WordPress Caching Plugins can help speed up sites by caching the pages that are frequently used. The plugins come with a lot of built-in settings that are easy to use.
Free Plugin: W3 Total Cache, All in One SEO
Premium Plugin: WP Rocket
Delete unused plugins
Some plugins are good and useful. Others, however, are just taking up space. If you’re not using a certain plugin, it’s best to delete it. You can do this from the WordPress dashboard. Simply go to Plugins → Installed Plugins, search for the plugin you want to delete, and then click Delete.
Note: Begin by disabling each plugin one at a time until you find the culprit. When testing, see which ones make a difference in speed. Now, Consider finding lightweight alternatives to these plugins.
Enable GZIP compression [Image]
There are many caching WP plugins that can enable GZIP on your website. Below quick steps is for W3 Total Cache.
In the WordPress Dashboard, Navigate to Performance from the left side then Browser Cache.
Select Enable HTTP (gzip) compression.
Click Save all Settings at the bottom.
Or, you can enable Gzip compression manually by adding the below mentioned code to your .htaccess file (Apache server):
Leverage browser caching
Leverage browser caching – a technique used to speed up the performance of a web application by storing responses to frequently requested resources on the client’s computer. The browser will then use those cached responses instead of downloading them again.
You can easily enable it by using the W3 Total Cache >> Performance >> General Settings >> Enable Browser Cache
Use a CDN
Another option to speed up your website, and reduce the time it takes to load, is to use a content delivery network. These are essentially storage sites where your site is stored and is distributed across several servers and therefore load faster.
The downside is that they charge a monthly fee, so it’s a cost you need to weigh up, but in return, you save a lot of bandwidth. You’d be surprised at how much you can save.
You can use StachPath or Cloudflare (free).
Minimize external scripts and HTTP requests
If your site loads very slowly, or it contains many small external scripts and HTTP requests, your website’s loading speed may be affected. This is because these requests cause extra traffic and time is spent waiting for the webserver to return with the response.
Use lazy loading [Images]
Lazy loading is a technique to load a part of the images on a page when the reader scrolls down the page. This technique makes the pages load faster.
Host video offsite
Instead of hosting videos on your website, embed them. This will help you to improve your website speed, and it’s a simple and easy thing to do.
YouTube is a popular video hosting service that provides easy access to videos hosted by other users. By embedding videos from YouTube, you are taking the hassle out of keeping videos up to date and accessible.
Optimize the WordPress database
If you’re using the default settings, WordPress keeps every single piece of data that’s ever been added to your website. This includes old comments and posts, which can take up a lot of disk space. You should also consider the fact that new posts and comments are also stored in the database.
To optimize your site, you need to find out how much disk space you’re using and delete old, unused data. There are a few ways to do this, but the easiest and fastest way is to use the WP-Optimize plugin.
Use a reliable host
There are many companies out there that offer web hosting services, but the majority of them aren’t reliable. There’s no point in choosing a web host that will let your site down.
Shared hosting is the cheapest option, and it’s the most common type of web hosting. It involves the sharing of one server among multiple sites. Because there are more websites sharing the same server, there are fewer resources available to each individual website. This means that your site will run slower than if it were hosted on a dedicated server.
Dedicated hosting is similar to shared hosting, but the host only allocates resources to your website. This means that your site gets its own set of servers, storage, and RAM. Your site is guaranteed resources, and there are no other sites competing for those resources. While it is the most expensive option, it also offers the best performance.
Virtual private servers (VPS) are the next step up from shared hosting. With VPS hosting, you get access to a server but you’re the only one using it. A VPS is like a dedicated server, except you can also have more control over your server. For instance, you could install additional software or applications.
Managed WordPress hosting is the most popular form of WordPress hosting today. With this type of hosting, your website is maintained by the host, which takes care of everything from security patches to backups. In addition to this, the host will provide support for the platform.
Best Shared Web Hosting: Bluehost
Best Managed WordPress Hosting: Rocket.net Hosting (This site is hosted on Rocket.net)
I wrote a detailed Rocket.net Hosting review here.
Alternatively, Nexcess-managed WordPress hosting provides all amazing features at an industry-low price starting at $9.5/month.
Features Included in All Nexcess WordPress Plans:
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- iThemes Security Pro
- Nexcess CDN Included
- Plugin Performance Monitor
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Limited Time Offer!
This Website (All Blog Ideas) Performance Tests and Tools I use
This site is built on WordPress and I use the best plugins for improving performance, the website load time is around under 1 sec. Also, I shared the theme, web hosting, and cache plugin that I use on this website.
Website test results
A Grade (100% performance and 100% Structure) on the GTmetrix test.
Good Performance Metrics.
First Paint 187ms and Fully loaded time is 744ms.
Google PageSpeed Insights Test
This site got a 100 performance score on both Mobile and Desktop.
Tools that I use on this website
Let’s discuss how I made this website fast and secure.
A theme is the most important thing when it comes to the speed and optimization of all devices. So, make sure you choose a theme that has high performance.
Hosting is the first and foremost thing when it comes to making your website fast. I have selected the hosting that has excellent performance and security.
Caching is one of the best ways to speed up your website and it will save bandwidth too. I noticed major changes all activating WP Rocketing on this website.
If you don’t speed up your WordPress site, you are wasting resources and visitors. Your visitors won’t be happy with your site, your bounce rate will be high, and it will look unprofessional. In this guide, you learned how to speed up your WordPress site so that you can attract more visitors and build more leads. You also learned how to avoid the mistakes that people make when they try to speed up their site.
I hope you found this article helpful on how to speed up a WordPress site. Let me know if you have any questions and I’ll do my best to answer them, comment below.