Some Simple Tips To Speed Up a WordPress Site
Do you know that the page load time of a website can affect its ranking in search results? Have you ever tested the speed of your website? If no, do it right now. You can use Pingdom or GTMetrix for speed test. Perform the test for your competitor websites also, and compare their results with the speed of your website. Don’t worry if your website takes more time than others. You can follow some simple tips to lower the load time of your website. And, here you go!
1. Keep the Number of Plugins Minimum
Abundance of plugins is one of the super-specialties of the WordPress. Attracted towards easy installation and zero cost, many users unnecessarily install the plugins. Doing so, harms the load time. We don’t want to say that you should keep the plugins off from your website, rather, keep the ones utmost necessary for your website. Read here the kind of plugins considered essential for a WordPress website.
There is no definite minimum limit of plugins to use on a website. Having plugins on a website is the matter of needs. There is just one principle to be followed for deciding the number of plugins- less is better. Actually, the addition of a plugin increases either (sometimes both) of HTTP requests and database queries. That is why the rendering of page takes more time.
You may imagine that more the plugins, more rendering time. But, you should not afraid of using importantly required plugins because of increased HTTP requests and database queries. We will tell you the way to reduce HTTP requests and database queries further in this post.
2. Check the Performance of Your Plugins
Sometimes, it is not the number, but the quality of plugins breaking the website. To use an unreliable plugin may cause the website bogged down. Test the performance and reliability of a plugin when you install it. A poorly coded plugin may even cause security vulnerabilities. You would question us that how do I check the performance and reliability of my plugins?
Well, active installs and user rating together gives the idea about this. Moreover, you may check out our posts giving you comparison and suggestion on WordPress plugins of different types. P3 ( Plugin Performance Profiler) can also be helpful measuring the performance of WordPress plugins. This plugin will reveal the performance of plugins you are using, or want to use.
3. Use Optimized WordPress Theme for Your Site
Your WordPress theme also impacts the speed of your website. An optimized theme made as per WordPress codex standards will of course give you the advantage. A beautiful design with ugly code is of no use. Clean code should be the priority over a beautiful design. Choose such a design that pleases your eyes as well as pleases you with the quality of code.
You may check the performance of your theme with the help of Theme Check plugin. It will tell you the performance of your theme right on your WordPress back-end. Well, you can use our very own TemplateToaster for developing your WordPress theme.
It gives you the facility to craft a custom design for your theme and automatically generates the optimized code for your design. So, you can create a well optimized theme without touching the code. Owing to be generated optimally, the themes made with TemplateToaster don’t affect the load time of web pages.
4. Optimize Your Images
Images add elegance, but, also add the weight to the size of web pages. Increased weight of pages means increased page load time. Don’t let the images to impede the page rendering. But, leaving out the images is not the solution. Try to make image size as small as possible before uploading. It is the best practice for faster speed of a website. There are a lot of tools around to help you out in doing so. Both online and offline tools are available for compressing images such as Image Optimizer, JPEGMini, and Caesium. While optimizing the images, you should take care of the balance between the compression level and the visual quality of the image. Keep the compress level justifiable so that the visual quality of the image wouldn’t get diminished.
5. Apply CSS Sprite
Use of CSS sprites also plays a nice role in reducing the page load time. It decreases the page load time by reducing the number of HTTP requests made for small images (logos). Actually, a CSS sprite is a two dimensional image made up from combining multiple small images. Let us say, your page contains 10 small images of logos of browsers. At the time of loading, 10 HTTP requests will be generated to the server. If you combine all those images into a single sprite, only 1 request will have to be processed by the server; consequently, page load time decreases. There is a nice utility called SpriteMe for generating sprites and the code to use them.
6. Take Help of a WordPress Cache Plugin
Caching is a proven way to speed up a website. You can easily enable caching on your website with the help of a plugin. A cache plugin makes a static copy of your website. The static copy of the site is immediately served to the user, eventually the website loads at very fast speed.
The most advanced WordPress cache plugins are W3 Total Cache and WP Super Cache. Both the plugins do their job superbly. While the W3 Total Cache has more quantity of caching options, the WP Super cache is easy to configure. Some more plugins are also there worth consideration. See our article describing and comparing top 5 WordPress cache plugins to get the idea which cache plugin should be chosen by you.
The plugin will also help you do following things for accelerating the load speed of the web pages.
- Leverage browser caching–> important and strongly recommended for fast performance of web pages.
- Gzip Compression–> enabling compression is important for reducing the consumption of bandwidth and faster loading pages.
These were some very simple tips that you can implement without a hitch. Moreover, these tips will certainly help you speed up your website. You should detect the least important plugin of your WordPress website and delete them to get rid of the unnecessary burden on the website. Plus, you must use the optimized plugins and themes for your WordPress powered website. We have told you in the above points that how you can check if they are optimized.
If you have something to add in our tips, or you have any query related the topic, please chime in the comment section. We would love to hear from you.