Your website is your online property and it’s your responsibility to make it blazing fast. A fast website really matters to get more sales and visitors. WordPress is a powerful and CMS which is powering 31% of the sites on the internet. So if you are using WordPress and your website is slow, this article will help you to make it faster by five times. For example, if your current load time is 8 seconds, which is very high, this article will help you to bring it down to 3 seconds or even low, keep reading.
Before reading this article, I would encourage you to read all the factors that slow down your website speed and then come back to read this article. You know, speed optimization knowledge is always good for you if you are serious about your carrier as a blogger.
Follow these methods to speed up your WordPress blog.
1. Use Less Plugins
Especially, avoid these kinds of WordPress plugins
- Shortcode plugins
- Social sharing plugins
- Page builder plugins
- Widget bar plugins
2. Server Scaled, Optimized Images
An image always increases page weight. For example, if you are uploading a picture of 1MB on your WordPress page, then a typical 3G user will take 5 seconds to download that. However, here we are talking about a total of 3 seconds load time. Accordingly, to achieve fast WordPress website speed, we need to server resized (scaled) and optimize the image.
If your article’s container size is 800 pixels, then there is no point in uploading a 1080 x 1920 pixel image. This extra size can cost you more load time. So it is imperative to serve the scaled images.
Luckily there is a free plugin Jetpack that does these four tasks very effectively.
- Serves scaled images
- Automatic image optimization
- Lazy load for images
- Free global image CDN
Install the Jetpack plugin and signing with your WordPress account and choose a free plan. Now go to Jetpack settings and disable everything except these settings.
- Enable “Serve images from our global CND.”
- Enable “Lazy loading for images.”
By using lazy loading for images, your WordPress page will not load all the images at the same time for your visitors. Instead, the image will load as visitors scroll down the screen.
3. Using W3 Total Cache
W3 Total Cache is one of the great plugins to decrease the direct load on your host hardware by creating temporary files in the disk. The W3 Total Cache can help you in
- Page cache
- Minifying CSS, JS and HTML
- Database cache
- Browser cache
- Gzip compression
Check these best W3 total cache settings to boost your site speed by times.
4. Use Free Cloudflare Global CDN
Cloudflare is really easy to use the CDN network for every kind of website. However, the main reason why I love Cloudflare is that it can speed up your WordPress site and also provide high-end threat security including DDoS protection.
Cloudflare is a handy tool that saves temporary files of your website in the 152 data centers around the world and serves them to the closest visitor. It makes your website response time faster. I have even seen one second response time using Cloudflare, thats insanely fast.
So overall, using Cloudflare you get these benefits
- File cache
- Global CDN
- Free SSL
- Threat shield
- DNS manager
Follow these steps to use Cloudflare
- Visit Cloudflare and signup for a new account
- Now add your domain name on Cloudflare
- Next, you need to select the free plan and confirm that
- Finally, Cloudflare will give you two Name Servers
To activate your domain, you must point your nameservers (DNS) to Cloudflare. To start receiving all the speed and security benefits of Cloudflare, you’ll need to change the nameservers configured at your domain registrar to the ones you see on your screen.
The DNS propagation will take a little time, and your website will not face any downtime during the propagation. After propagation, you need to follow these settings.
4 (a). Enable Auto Minify and Rocket Loader
To make your website load time faster, you need to minimize the file size and use the rocket loader of Cloudflare. To enable this, go to the Speed tab of Dashboard and tick it.
Also, do the same for Rocket Loader
4 (b). Change Cache Expiration Time
As per Google’s recommendation, you should change your Cache expiration time to one month or more.
4 (c). Create a Page Rule
Finally, head to the Page Rules tab and a new page rule.
In the URL section, you need to add your WordPress website URL like this
Make sure to change example.com with your domain name.
- Browser Cache TTL → A Month
- Create Cache Level → Cache Everything
- Edge Cache TTL → A Month
After using the above page rule, your website can accomplish maximum speed possible from Cloudflare.
5. Use Web Fonts
Web fonts are very lightweight and quick loading fonts. So use web fonts rather than using Google fonts. You may not find fancy font designs on Web fonts but you will definitely see improved WordPress blog speed if you use them.
6. Change Your Web Server
By web server, I don’t mean web hosting. A web server is a type of program that uses HTTP connection to web pages (including all files) to users, on their request, using your web host.
Now, first of all, you need to understand the webserver type. You see, if you have a web hosting service with “Cpanel” on it, it simply means that you are using Apache web server which is almost 5 times slower than the Nginx web server. Nginx is designed to utilize fewer server resources (RAM, CPU) so that it can deliver more page views request per second. Check this graph of Apache vs. Nginx speed.
As you can see, how Nginx works better than Apache on the same web hosting. If you are unsure, you can check your web server type from here. So it’s highly recommended to switch on Nginx to deliver your content faster. However, it requires a little bit of programming to work with Nginx but you can skip it because I have another alternative for you.
So these are the recommended methods to speed up your WordPress blog in a few minutes. Do ask me any kind of questions related to this post, I will be glad to answer your queries.