You should be ready to do everything that requires to speed up your WordPress site because loading speed of your site can make or break your online business.
You can use tools like Pingdom or Gtmatrix to check the current loading speed of your site as these tools are considered to be most specific and corrent.
Now, imagine that you are looking for something and you find a few results through Google Search and you visit site “A” which shows page loading for long and then you click on site “B” which opens in a flash second. So, your preference is obvious.
When it comes to ranking in search engine like Google you must have a super quick website to attain good position in search results because loading time is one of the parameters in search algorithm.
Google gives so much of importance to loading speed because they want to serve only quality results to the users and speed of a site makes the first impression on a visitor, it’s extreamly important from users experience point of view.
When we talk about ideal loading time of a site, it should not exceed 4 seconds and if your site takes more than 10 seconds to load you need to look at it very seriously because you are about to lose your customers and readers.
But most important question is how to improve loading time of a WordPress site? Here, in this post we will discuss about some easy ways to speed up a WordPress site
How to Speed Up Your WordPress Site
When we take at the process to speed up a WordPress site, there are number of aspects to look at from the quality of the theme you are using to number of plugin. However, we will take a look at the most important elements which you must take care for better performance.
So, let’s look at the easy steps to make your WordPress site quick.
#1: Quality Hosting Provider
A quality hosting provider is probably the most important factor you need to consider to speed up your site because if your site is not hosted in a good server you will not get good results no matter how well you optimize your site.
The best part is there are number of top quality WordPress hosting provides who offers customized WordPress hosting packages for reasonable prices. And if you are really serious about your online business you must get hosting from a recommended hosting provider.
We have recently moved Sourcewp.com to Cluodways hosting from Hostgator, before migrating to Cloudways Sourcewp.com used to load in around 4 seconds and you can check the current loading time in the image below.
Now Sourcewp loads within 1 second and if you look at the homepage of the site, there are number of images and other parameters. Also, the number of post in the homepage is 12 which is more than usual 10 posts and there is the featured post carousel as well
So, a loading time below 1 second with so much data is remarkable.
#2: Get a Quality Theme
The WordPress Theme you use also can impact the loading speed to a huge extent, you need to make sure that you choose a well coded quality theme which is light weight and have a quick loading time.
Though there are number of quality free WordPress themes I would recommend you to go for a premium theme because you get quality support, frequent updates and premium features.
we have already published an article about SEO friendly WordPress themes and most of the themes mentioned in that list are super quick.
So, you can choose any theme from that list and start working on your site because along with speed all other parameters which can impact SEO of your site are also taken care by those themes quite well.
If you need quality and quick WordPress themes, I would strongly recommend you to go for Genesis themes or a theme from MyThemeShop.
#3: Use a Caching Plugin
There are number if quality WordPress plugins which can help you to improve overall quality of your site. When you start your site on WordPress platform there are some must have WordPress plugins which you should no ignore.
A good quality cache plugin is one of those must have plugins, because a cache plugin can improve the loading time of your site dramatically, you just need to make sure that the plugin is setup properly.
Now, when you find quality cache plugin you will come across two names more frequently W3 Total Cache andWP Super Cache. W3 total is slightly difficult to setup because of the number of options it provides, so you can select any one of these two which you thin comfortable with.
#4: Optimize Images
Images in your site takes long to load and if the images are not optimized properly they can be real pain for you. Now, there are number of things you need to look at while optimizing your images and retain the quality.
First of all, you need to understand the image dimension for the theme for you using. Different WordPress themes comes with different image dimension for features posts etc
You need to perfectly crop your images so that you don’t use extra big size which will increase the file size unnecessarily.
I would recommend you to use JPEG format because PNG files are higher in size generally and before you upload the images you can further optimize the images by using services like Jpeg-optimizer.com for JPEG files andTinypng.com for PNG files.
As far as WordPress tools are concerned you can use WP-SmushIt plugin to optimize your images automatically while you upload theme in the site.
#5: Optimize Database
Keeping your database clean and optimized another very important factor because as your site grows old it keeps on accumulating unnecessary files, drafts, comments which may eventually affect your site speed by increasing database size.
The best part if there is a very effective WordPress plugin called wp-optimize which can remove all such files in just a click. It’s a must have WordPress plugin for every site.
#6: Split Long Posts
If you post very long list kind of articles frequently, this method can be really useful for you. If you post a collection article of over 150 tools or products and have image for each product then it will take long to load 150 images each time a user visits that you.
So, splitting that page to more than one can help you to reduce the loading time to a large extent.
#7: Use limited Plugins
A get a plugin for any function you think of in WordPress, the possibilities are unlimited. Sometimes, it becomes really difficult to keep control on the number of plugins in WordPress plugins.
Specially the new WordPress users may get carried away with kind of plugins available for use. Though some WordPress plugins are extremely important, for example a SEO WordPress plugin is a must for every blog. But we need to keep a close look on the number of plugins used and how it is impacting the loading speed of your site.
You can use the P3 (Plugin Performance Profiler) plugin to check the impact of plugins on loading time of your site.
Some Bonus Tips To Speed Up Your WordPress Site
- Use a content delivery network, MAX CDN is by far the best option.
- Use a clean and well coded theme
- Optimize homepage to load quickly, keep lesser number of posts per page
- Clean up database frequently.
- Cut Down on HTTP Requests
- Remove Query Strings
- Use quality social media plugin
- Keep tight security
- Make your site mobile friendly
If you follow all the above mentioned steps, you will definately see improvements in loading speed of your site to a great extent. You should always try to keep your site’s loading time within 2 seconds then only you can compete with other quality sites out there.
I will stress again on getting a quality hosting provider for your site because it makes a huge different in loading time of your site. So, if you want to speed up your WordPress site pay a little more and get better returns.