The load time of a website is one of the most important factors that should be considered for better SEO and User experience optimization. It’s the total time a website takes to load into the browser.
Lesser the loading time, better will your site be scoring on searches and UX. Speed matters!
With WordPress, it’s quite easy to mess up with the load time of your site. Within the activation of 2 new plugins and 1 new theme, there are 70% chances that the load time of your WordPress site may increase. And you don’t even realize sometimes what went wrong.
But there are ways to fix it up quickly.
5 minutes to speed-up a WordPress site
Here is a to-do list that I always follow for speed optimization of my WordPress blogs. These are nothing but a few immediate actions you should perform to lower down the load time of your WordPress site. (Would hardly take 5 minutes)
- Switch to a light-weight theme: A light theme takes less time to load in the browser. Two things that you should consider while choosing a light theme are low number of graphics and less styles and scripts.
- Avoid unnecessary plugins: Plugins have been powering WordPress from the beginning and have their own importance, but using a lot may create more server requests which slows down the overall site. So you should pick the very important ones only and avoid stacking useless plugins.
- Use a Caching plugin: A WordPress caching plugin generates static HTML files from your dynamic WordPress blog on your web server and serves those files instead of processing the comparatively heavier and more expensive WordPress PHP scripts on further requests. You may try W3 Total Cache or WP Super Cache to make your WordPress blog Cache enabled.
- Minify Code: By Minify, we mean compressing files. Most of the caching plugins, especially the two I mentioned above, already provide the minify feature. but for those who haven’t planned to install a cache plugin but still want to minify their JS and CSS files, should use WP Minify.
- Update WordPress regularly: Every new version of WordPress comes with the new improved features and bug-fixes. If you are not updating your WordPress, you might be missing some new and improved features, which may help you make your website more fast and efficient. So, keep updating WordPress, plugins as well as the themes you use.
To make it blazing fast…
Further you should improve the technology behind your site for more improved load times. Below are some pin-points from my side:
- Choose a better Web hosting: Look for the Web host that provides servers with quick response times and gzip compression for files.
- Optimize your images: Images optimized for web are lighter and load faster. Make sure you optimize the images that you use in your blog posts or logo or widget areas.
- Use a CDN: A CDN provides different server nodes across the globe where it makes secured and synchronized copies of your WordPress blog. Now each time when your CDN powered website is requested, the content will be fetched from the nearest CDN node, not from the actual Server location. This will result in a fast loading website. This is a big level thing, so you have to decide whether you need a CDN right now or not.
On top of all that, you may hire a Web developer to optimize the code, remove the bloats, install and configure important plugins and CDN for you, but always avoid over-optimizing your sites. Hope you found this useful, good time :)