WordPress powers 41.5% of the web. We at Manaferra like to think of WordPress as one of the best things that ever happened to the web. Its simplicity and flexibility are the main reasons why WordPress is so popular nowadays.
WordPress it’s one of the most SEO-friendly Content Management Systems out there. But there is still some work to be done in some areas. Let’s take this case as an example:
You have this amazing, well-designed WordPress site with high-quality content and great user engagement, but while your website gets more visits day after day, a very common problem starts to appear, and that is “your page speed.” Judging it from a visitor’s perspective, that is irritating, and as a result, it sends your potential customers away from your site. Even SEO is affected by page speed.
Below, we present to you some tips on how to speed up your WordPress site.
First of all let’s see how fast is your site loading by using Pingdom.
The first thing that visitors notice when they come to your site is speed, and if your site is slow, they will go away. You may have the best website in the world, but if nobody sees it, what’s the point then. Google also is considering site speed as a ranking factor. Studies have shown that slower sites perform badly compared to the faster ones when it comes to buying stuff online or, putting it differently, e-commerce sites.
From the above screenshot, we can see that the load time is relativity good, but still, there is room for improvement. Let’s start with the basics.
WordPress plugins are wonderful, especially for us with limited coding skills (or not at all). One-click, and you’ll add almost any feature you want on your site. They also have a dark side. They make your site perform slower. If you go to Installed Plugins in WP Dashboard, I’m sure that you’ll find one or two active plugins that you don’t use. De-activate them and look for other plugins that you don’t need that much. Also, install P3 (Plugin Performance Profiler) and use it to see which are slowing down your site. After that, you can see what’s happening in the backside and try to find a solution to fix it.
Hosting is an essential part of your WordPress site. It’s a little bit tricky to find good hosts with affordable prices. However, it is important that the website’s speed can not be ignored. If you just have started your WP website, you might want to look at Bluehost, Dreamhost, or Hostgator. These hosting providers are a good solution if you have just started your website. Still, when its visits start to get significance increase, you might want to start thinking about switching to a VPS or Dedicated Servers like OVH, GoDaddy, HostNexus, GoDaddy, or others.
Another solution for WordPress hosting websites may also be WPEngine, a provider built and developed mostly for WP sites.
With caching, you’ll see dramatic improvements the moment you click the Save button. There are two popular caching plugins, WP Super Cache and W3 Total Cache. I prefer the second one. These plugins are amazing because they simplify the way WordPress works. After all, it makes it possible that the content you’re looking for to be served from the cache without being generated over and over again.
The picture below shows how installing and configuring W3 Total Cache helped our blog go down from 1.71s to only 964ms load time. Isn’t it great?
When you’re dealing with websites with many pictures, then image compression is a must. For WordPress, there is this amazing plugin called WP Smush.it which helps a lot. What this plugin does is that it automatically compresses every picture while you’re uploading them. You can also go back and compress (or “smush”) pictures that are already on the site, like logo or banners, to save in maximum.
Content Delivery Network
CDN stands for Content Delivery Network, and it’s a way of delivering your web objects like scripts, URLs, text and graphics from different locations across the globe. For example, when a visitor from Europe visits your blog, it will automatically look for the closest server that hosts these files to show you. This way, you’ll improve your site speed.
A faster website these days is a must. It’s not something you can ignore. Ignoring it will cause visitors to leave your website, bad user experience, dropping rankings in Google etc. Most of the tips in the article are simple and easy to execute; however, if you don’t understand or know how to do something, I would be happy to help you. If you have any other tip on improving WordPress speed, please share it with us through comments.
Are you now more familiar with speeding up your website speed? Share your challenges with the community using the below comments.