Site speed is a key factor in the success of a WordPress site. The faster the site, the better the user experience, the more page views will increase, and visitors will be more likely to stay on the page.
In addition, speed is also one of the important indicators of a website’s ranking in Google SERPs. According to research by Amazon and Google Labs, a 1-second delay in page load time can result in a 7% decrease in conversion rates, an 11% decrease in page views, and a 16% decrease in visitor satisfaction.
What’s more, Google and other search engines will rank slow sites lower, which means that slow responding sites will generate less traffic from natural searches on search engines.
In this article, I will sort out and share the most practical WordPress speed optimization tips to help you save time and money and improve the performance of your website.
Test Your Website Speed With Online Speed Test Tool
Usually, the main factors that slow down a website are: too many requests for various Http resources, pages that are not compressed, long DNS query times, and so on. Sometimes there are too many large unoptimized images, which can also slow down the site significantly.
For each Suggestion, you can click on the small triangle on the right side and click on the description text to help you better understand why they affect the site page load speed.
In addition to Pingdom, GTMetrix will also test and give you suggestions for optimizing your website.
What Factors Slow Down Your Website Speed
Generally speaking, the loading speed of a website is determined by several components.
Web Hosting: When the web host or VPS you use is not high performance or the quality of maintenance of the server room is poor, it may affect the speed of your website.
WordPress is not configured with caching: If your WordPress website is not enabled with caching mechanism, then access needs to request the host or server every time, and the website will naturally slow down and crash easily when there are a lot of visits.
Faulty HTTP requests: Errors in your website page URLs that result in 403, 404, 500, 502 or other HTTP errors can significantly slow down the overall performance of your website. In Chrome, use F12 to call Developer Tools and then find the Networks tab, refresh the page with a new F5, and check the site for such links in the Networks tab; or use the GTmetrix “Waterfall “tab and “Response Codes” in “Pingdom” to see if there are any incorrect links.
Too many Redirects: Multiple redirects can further slow down the redirect wait time on your site.
Image optimization: usually the text on the page does not affect the speed very much, the elements on the page that load slowly are mainly images that need to be stored in multimedia resources. Images that are not optimized for web access can significantly slow down page loading.
Uncompressed pages: If a web page contains a lot of text and images, as well as a variety of other elements, then the page load speed may be slowed down. For example, a long novel, if not divided into pages to read, even a static HTML page, the file size is very large, may reach several MB. if you turn on page compression, the page file size will be reduced, the loading speed will also be significantly faster.
Database query load: If the database is always in a large number of concurrent and simultaneous query tasks, then the database query and read results will slow down, which in turn will show up as a slow website response. Sometimes the database will even crash, the process will get stuck, the site will not open, and an error will be displayed: Error establishing a database connection.
External resources/scripts: such as certain web fonts, or JS scripts that implement certain functions, can also have a significant impact on site performance. The most obvious is that sometimes too many WordPress plug-ins are installed, and the site will feel slowed down. Sometimes a plugin may call a JS file with problems, resulting in the site loading half a day can not open. These are all external resource scripts caused by.
Choose a Quality Web Host or VPS With Excellent Performance
This is an important factor that directly affects the speed of your website. Because your website files are stored on the web hosting provider’s server in their server room, if their hardware is outdated or low performance, it may affect the speed of your website.
For web hosting, I recommend SiteGround, which is really good in the process of using it.
Enable Cache Plugin
The role of caching is mainly to reduce the amount of data interaction transfer, reduce the number of data processing and reduce the number of accesses to disk files.
In short, a cache can create copies of some files to store them and return pages or results in response to a quick call with the following access or query. When a cached copy is invoked, it generates only a small amount of network traffic, which can effectively reduce bandwidth consumption.
Almost every successful WordPress site needs to use caching. After all, caching can make your WordPress site significantly faster by a factor of 2-4! Generally speaking, on the client side we more commonly see caching in the local computer browser.
Our browser will cache the pages that have visited the site, and when the URL web address is visited again, if the page is not updated, it will not download the page again, but directly use the page cached in the local browser. Only when the site clearly identifies that a resource has been updated will the browser download the page from the site again.
Optimize Images To Speed Up Page Loading
JPEG and PNG are usually the most common image formats on the Internet, with the PNG image format being uncompressed. Some information is lost when compressing an image, so an uncompressed image will have higher quality and more detail, with the disadvantage of a larger file size and therefore longer loading times. JPEG, on the other hand, is a compressed file format with slightly lower image quality, but it has a significantly smaller size.
So how should you decide which image format to choose when working with some product images? If the photo or image has a lot of different colors, then use JPEG. if the image is a relatively simple one with few colors or you need a transparent image, then it is more appropriate to use PNG.
This is basically a feature that all kinds of caching plugins are starting to have embedded in their image optimization. SiteGround’s SG Optimizer plugin above and the paid WordPress caching plugin WP Rocket both include this feature. With image optimization, the image size can be reduced by up to 5 times, which is still very useful.
Enable CDN Acceleration
For example, you can put all static files on a second-level domain, such as static.xyz.com or img.xyz.com, cache the static files, and enable CDN acceleration for the second-level domain.
Yahoo’s YSlow is a cookie-free domain, which uses a separate second-level domain to store static files.
Of course, there is no separation of static and dynamic, directly the whole site CDN acceleration. For us using web hosting site builders, static and dynamic separation in the web host is not very good, in fact, there is no need for static and dynamic separation of so many complex technical work, direct full-site CDN can be turned on.