Simple Tips to Optimize WordPress Speed with Ease
Updated on July 15, 2022 | by Kamal
If you click a link to a site and the page takes a long time to load, you will most likely ditch the website and look for another that loads faster. This is one of the reasons why the speed of your WordPress site is so important. You do not want the users from the traffic you generate to leave the page even before seeing the content. Website speed is also a factor used in the ranking by search engines. Therefore, having a slow website will significantly hurt your site ranking and effectively reduce the traffic to your site. This is why you need a WordPress Speed Optimization Service to guide you. Here are some optimization tips:
Use a Content Delivery Network
A Content Delivery Network (CDN) helps minimize delay intervals in loading the content of a web page. It essentially does this by shortening the physical distance between the server and the user. CDNs are effective in increasing website speed and reducing latency.
After you configure CDN for your WordPress site, users will be able to get content much faster, irrespective of their location. Users will get to enjoy a quality web experience no matter the browser or device they use. There are many WordPress CDN services available to choose from. Some of the common ones are Cloudflare, StackPath, and MaxCDN.
Perform Image Optimization
Images are understandably important in keeping your visitors engaged. However, images are huge contributors to the size of a webpage. You need to optimize the images on your site by reducing the size without significantly reducing image quality. You can optimize images manually using Photoshop and other editing tools. The easier route will be to use plugins such as EWWW Image Optimizer, WP Smush, and Optimole.
Install a Caching Plugin
Having a caching plugin installed can improve WordPress site speed up to 5 times faster. In essence, a caching plugin creates a static version of the content on your site. This translates to faster loading time. You can choose from several free and premium caching plugins. Some popular and effective plugins you can use are:
- W3 Total Cache
- WP Rocket
- Hyper Cache
Switch to A Theme Optimized for Speed
Themes with many widgets, sliders, social icons, and dynamic elements are usually beautiful to look at. However, having more elements means more size and can slow down your site. Poor coding of themes can also be the cause of speed problems. You need to look for themes that are optimized for speed. It is better to go for more simple and lightweight themes. The default WordPress themes are a good option. Some WordPress theme shops, such as Themify, have themes that are optimized for speed.
Use the Latest Version of PHP
Using the latest version of PHP can significantly improve the speed of your site. PHP 7 is twice as fast as its predecessors. You can check if your site can switch to the latest PHP version using the PHP Compatibility Checker plugin.
Optimize WordPress Database
Your WordPress database stores content that sometimes you no longer need. You should consider doing away with unnecessary information to boost performance. Some plugins help you optimize your database by clearing useless things like unused tags, deleted plugins data, and trashed posts. You can use WP- Sweep or WP-Optimize plugin for this task.
Improving your WordPress performance can be achieved by doing something as easy as doing away with unused plugins. Deactivate and delete the plugins you do not use. You should run speed tests after installing a plugin to determine its impact on the site’s performance.
Enable Browser Caching
Caching is a method that allows browsers to store the contents of a webpage locally. This means that users who revisit the site would not have to re-download the data. Caching helps in reducing bandwidth consumption. More importantly, it shortens the loading time of the site improving user experience.
Pick the Right Hosting Plan
Your hosting server determines a lot when it comes to the performance of your site. The server will also dictate if your WordPress site can cope with high traffic. It may be that your server is slow by itself, or the plan you are on has some limits on speed and server resources. You will need to know how fast your server is by using a performance service such as GTMetrix.
Hosting on a slow server or being on a limited plan should be your first concern if you want to improve performance. All the other optimization techniques will not matter as much if you have a poor hosting plan.