Why does your WordPress website need to load quickly? You know the answer. It’s to draw in a bigger crowd and encourage conversion.
With a faster website, you can interest the audience with the content they need. Right on the spot! No delays, no waiting. It removes any room for hesitation.
A quicker WordPress website makes smooth transactions happen more often. Your prospects benefit from this and so do you.
But how can you speed up your WordPress website? Isn’t tinkering with a custom web design more than enough?
Here are a couple of suggestions you can try:
Select a good host.
Shared hosting seems like a popular choice, doesn’t it? However, when you plan on publishing popular content, that might not be the solution you seek.
It can incur a slow site speed. Plus, it can result in frequent downtimes during high traffic periods, too.
If you don’t want trouble along the way, choose private hosting. This option will ensure that your WordPress website is always in good working order.
Plus, it comes with quality customer service, as well. There is always someone available and ready to help you out. Isn’t that a more cost-efficient option?
Choose a solid theme or framework.
What’s the current theme for your WordPress website? There’s nothing wrong with being a little extra with your design. But, you have to admit, it creases the loading speed of your page by a fraction.
If you want your site to load quicker, select a basic theme. There are many WordPress theme shops that render themes that are designed for speed. (You can find them in StudioPress, CSSIgniter, or Themify.)
As much as you can, avoid frameworks that are overly bloated with tons of features, which you won’t even use. Go for a minimalist custom web design.
We can help you get started with it! Besides, the minimalist design doesn’t necessarily translate to something boring. We’ll help you add a personal flair to it!
Install an efficient caching plugin.
You may have noticed that there are a lot of WordPress plugins available. Most of them fall under the purpose of caching. With a caching plugin in place, you can greatly improve loading speeds!
Thankfully, a lot of these plugins are available for FREE. One of the best you can try is a plugin called W3 Total Cache. It is easy to use and quick to install. Once you have it in place, it will boost your page elements in the cache and speed uploading speeds.
Start a content delivery network.
Are you into online marketing with the use of WordPress? Then a content delivery network (CDN) is something that you will need.
There are a lot of different CDNs available online. You can go through different client reviews to select one that is best for your needs.
Get a plugin to optimize images.
Of course, there are many ways in which you can optimize images. You can utilize online tools or Photoshop for that. But did you know that plugins can take care of the task for you?
Optimizing one image after the other can be a pain. Free yourself from that trouble by using a plugin called WP-SmushIt or Squash.
These plugins are available at no extra cost. Plus, they will optimize your images automatically! Your WordPress website will no longer struggle to load heavy files. Isn’t that great?
Do a bit of tweaking on the home page!
There are a LOT of easy ways in which you can tune up and increase your homepage loading speeds. (This is a very important factor since people will be landing on your home page.)
To increase the loading speed of your WordPress site, here are some tips you can try:
- Display excerpts rather than full posts.
- Cut the number of posts per page.
- Discard unneeded widgets.
- Remove extra and inactive plugins.
Keep in mind to leave your layout as minimal as possible. This will not only make your home page load a lot faster, but it helps your web visitors to focus on the content on your site, too!
Run a plugin to boost your WordPress database.
Do you manually take the time off of your day to optimize your website? That’s a fair share of work, but there is a way you can do the task much easier.
How? With the help of a couple of plugins, of course.
Plugins that you can use include the WP-Optimize plugin and the WP-DB Manager plugin. The former is capable of reducing the overhead for your database. The latter, on the other hand, schedules dates for your database optimization.
Gain better control of hotlinking.
Hotlinking is what you might consider as a form of theft towards your bandwidth.
It happens when other websites direct the link of images on their posts to your site. In effect, this significantly heightens the load on your server.
Over time, you might even notice that more and more people “leech” off of your posts, especially when the image becomes quite popular or when you make custom images of your own.
To disable the process of hotlinking, you need to make use of codes to make it work. Proweaver can bring you up to speed on this task.
Include an expires header.
How does this small addition help? It cuts down the loading time of your WordPress site. Obviously, this results in a much faster booting speed.
You can make use of codes to activate this feature or you can ask Proweaver for other similar options.
Use a limit on the post revisions stored.
How many drafts do you save when writing a post on WordPress? A little too many than you need to, right?
Once the post is published, there will be no need for you to hang on to those drafts. They will only take up unnecessary space and slow down your WordPress website.
The solution? Get started with a plugin called Revision Control. This will limit the number of drafts you keep on hand to at least 2-3 copies. This is enough to give you something to fall back on in case you do make a mistake.
Stop a couple of pingbacks and trackbacks.
Did you know that every time another blog mentions your brand, your website gets a notification, too? In turn, this updates the data on your post.
This happens to WordPress blogs that stay equipped with pingbacks and trackbacks. It may not sound that bad of a thing, but this feature can actually slow down the speed of your WordPress site.
Oh no, what should you do about it then? Not to worry as these functions can be easily disabled. And no, turning off these features will not destroy any backlinks that you have made so far. What it will only do is lessen the amount of work that your site has to perform.
Keep an eye on WordPress updates.
Has it been a long time since your last update? WordPress updates its resources frequently for a reason. Aside from offering new and improved features to users, it removes bugs and fixes any existing security issues. Of course, this leads to better performance.
Being the website owner, it is your responsibility to keep your whole site updated. (Don’t forget to check plugins and themes for updates too!)
Not complying with this will do more damage than only slowing down your site. It can leave your page vulnerable to online attacks and security threats as well.
Begin a habit to optimize background processes.
We’ve mentioned a lot of “optimization” for speeding things up. But really, that is the whole key in it. This also rings true for background processes.
What are the background processes? Simply put, they are scheduled tasks that run behind the scenes of your WordPress site. Examples of these include:
- WordPress Cron jobs for publishing scheduled posts and checking for updates
- Search engines need to fetch content
- WordPress plugin tasks
Cron jobs for posts and updates such as these bring minimal impact to your page’s loading speed.
However, background plugins are another story. Take note to run them only when there is low traffic on your site. This will prevent it from dragging down your loading speed.
It also helps you to check your Google Search console every now and then. This prevents frequent crawls from creating errors. Without errors, your website avoids lag better.
Add a separate page for comments.
Comments are a lot of fun to read. They give you a pulse of what the audience thinks about your content. The more content you have on your page, the more engaged your audience is.
This merits a celebration! Unfortunately, too many comments in one place can limit your site’s loading speeds. But, don’t feel down yet! WordPress has a built-in solution just for that.
Start with logging into your WordPress admin area. Head on over to “Settings.” Next, go to “Discussion.” After that, select the checkbox next to the option “Break comments into pages.”
From there, you can enter the number of comments you prefer on each page, as well as how you want to display them.
Once you’re done with making the selection, click “Save Changes.” This will finalize your decision. The way these comments appear will depend on your custom web design. If you need help with adjusting it, you can come to us.
Use a media hosting site.
Yes, you can directly add pictures, audios, and videos into WordPress. It will broadcast your content automatically on an HTML5 player. Seems pretty convenient, right? But you should NOT do that.
For one, hosting large files will cost you extra bandwidth. You can end up paying expensive overage fees! Another reason why you should try that is this. Uploading those files will grow your backup files significantly. This means it will be hard for you to load a WordPress backup if ever the need arises.
So, what should you do instead? Work with a media hosting site, of course! You can pick from:
These sites have a bigger bandwidth and can take care of all the work for you. To add the media back on your site, you can use the video embed feature WordPress has available. Isn’t that easier?
Speeding up your WordPress site can be a lot of work right from the beginning. But, over time, you will find it is worth all the effort you put into it. Tell us! Which of the suggestions listed above is your favorite?
Do you make use of other tactics to speed up your WordPress website?
Let us know if we have missed adding important advice on our list. We would be glad to append your suggestions!
If you need help with constructing a fast and reliable WordPress website, worry not! Proweaver is only one call away. (You can find the rest of our contact details down below.)
We have a team of expert web developers that can bring your ideal website into reality. What specifics did you have in mind? Discuss your requirements with one of our specialists now. We can even give you not one, but TWO FREE mock-ups for your business website.
Talk to us and we will help you.
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