10 Ways to Boost the Speed of Your WordPress Website – Beginners’ Guide
There is no need to dwell on the importance of the loading speed for any site on the Internet. People are not going to wait for your page to load. Recent studies have shown that users are not even ready to wait for more than two seconds.
Let's learn how to speed up a WordPress site. If you have noticed that the bounce rate of your website has become higher while the platform brings less conversion, it is time to pay attention to the loading speed. If you are running a platform on WP, we have prepared 10 recommendations for you.
You might be wondering what the reason for problems with site loading is. The process of technical website optimization should be carried out regularly. Hiring a WordPress website development team once for launching a site is not enough.
It is necessary to maintain the functionality of the site and adapt it to the ever-changing requirements and algorithms of search engines. So, you should hire a specialist (if you are dealing with running a business). Of course, the best-case scenario is to entrust the development of a site to the specialists that will keep testing and improving it after launching a project.
Before Improving the Speed
If you have suspected that the website speed might have decreased, start with carrying out the speed test. For this, you can use Page Speed Insights from Google or other available tools. Make a screenshot of the results you get. After you introduce the suggested changes, you will be able to compare results and find out if your assumptions were correct.
Next, make a backup copy of your website. If you are not experienced enough in optimisation on the database level, this step is a must.
Tips for Improving the Loading Speed
Here are the recommendations that will help you improve the loading speed of your WP site. We would also like to add an extra tip: carry out the speed test after every step you take to improve the speed. In this way, you will understand the problem that has made your platform slower.
Recommendation 1. Redesign your site theme
Re-evaluate the design of your site theme, check if there are unnecessary elements on the site, and remove them. It makes no sense to fill the side menu with a lot of information — the user is only interested in the content. Here are some of the items you can remove:
- Intricate sliding, animation, and effects; they can even be more annoying rather than interactive.
- Various widgets in the sidebar since too many widgets make the interface unclear to users, which might also negatively affect the UX.
- Advertising (if there are too many of them on the site); in some cases, you can earn more with fewer ads.
Recommendation 2. Get rid of unnecessary plugins
There are two main types of plugins for WordPress:
- The first type of plugin works with only the administration area,
- The second type allows you to add content to the site.
Look at the list of plugins and disable those that are no longer in use. If the plugin has not been updated for a long time, then you can look for alternative plugins that do not take so much space and can still do the job no less efficiently.
However, if you have never been related to coding, we do not recommend you a DIY approach. In this case, you should better resort to the services of professionals so as not to harm your site.
Recommendation 4. Optimise your images
As a rule, images make up the bulk of the files on the site, so it is crucial to optimise them and try to reduce the size of such files as much as possible. WP Smush.it is a plugin you can consider using for the sake of optimisation of the images on your platform when they are uploaded to your site.
Besides, this plugin will also come in handy for the optimisation of images that are already on your site.
Here is a list of ways you can also increase your website loading speed:
- Cache the site;
- Set browser cache;
- Switch to jQuery from Google;
- Use a CDN.
Negative emotions of users are only a small part of the big problem with the low speed of site loading. Such resources definitely bring losses. The algorithm is simple: the slower the site loads, the more noticeable the consequences on the relevance of pages, conversion rate, lower positions in search results when ranking. Search engines ignore such resources.
Therefore, even with equal positions, a faster site will always be higher in the search results than its slower counterpart.
The site loading speed depends on the power of the server on which the resource files are located, as well as on the browser since information is exchanged between them. Any problems on one side or the other will lead to a slow site:
- The server may be slow due to a lack of cores in the processor or RAM — like with a regular PC.
- The server is located at a great distance from the user.
- The pages contain too many files (styles, fonts, images, styles) — all this needs to be downloaded by the browser to display the page.
- Too many heavy files.
As for the latter two, we have already provided the possible solutions. Strive to make pages of your platform load within 1-2 seconds, which is a perfect result in 2022.
November 13, 2023
October 23, 2023