In this article, you will learn how to speed up WordPress blog because it matters when you want your blog to appear in Google search results. Read my article If you want to learn how to start a blog.
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Why it is important to speed up WordPress blog?
You probably won't overlink website speed when browsing the internet. If your internet connection is good enough, then you have only two conclusions about each site related to speed – whether the site is fast or not fast enough. And that's how many Internet users will see your WordPress website. Even if the blog doesn't load as fast as it would for a particular visitor, you will lose that visitor. That's for sure. And so you have to do everything in your power to make your WordPress site as fast as possible.
While there are numerous ways to speed up a site, some require technical knowledge, some require complete dedication from you, and some may be just as expensive.
As always, WordPress can help you with the problem. Not only WordPress is improving, but so are the plugins, themes and hosting companies. In this article, we show you how to speed up your WordPress website. Several factors affect site speed and depend on your site so you can speed it up in the next few minutes.
1. Use the caching plugin
By installing the caching plugin, you can instantly notice changes in the speed of your site. All websites have sections that do not change frequently.
Whether it's an image, a CSS or a JS file, the caching plugin can handle those files so they don't have to be downloaded from the server whenever a user opens your site. This will mainly help to return visitors who already have those files stored.
There are numerous WordPress caching plugins that will speed up WordPress blog, but only a few are popular. The good news is that these plugins are well coded, they will speed up your site instantly and they are completely free! The most popular plugin for the job is W3 Total Cache which has over 1 million active users. It's impressive!
2. Optimize the image
Whether it's just an image on your homepage or a whole gallery of photos you want to show off, unoptimized images can slow down your website. Let's say you're using a camera that can shoot high-resolution photos. Those photos may be more than 2MB, and they can easily cross the 4MB limit. Images from modern smartphones will also generate large files. Imagine the load on your site if you are not thinking about it and you have just uploaded a picture.
By simply adding an image that is 2MB or 4MB “heavy”, your users will need to download the image once they have opened your site. While users coming from broadband connections may not notice much difference, users with slow internet speeds will have to suffer. Not only that; Google will confuse even the slowest loading time so that your page rank can suffer in the long run.
This should not be a problem as you can optimize the image so easily. First of all, start by lowering the resolution if you are not displaying your latest work and you do not need to display the image in full resolution. For example, if your theme shows a maximum width of 800px, your image should not be wider than that. You can simply resize the image. Some many tools and apps can help you optimize pictures. If you want to use professional software like Photoshop that can do wonders on your images and make them especially suitable for the web or if you want to use a simple online tool you should optimize your images.
There are also many WordPress plugins like WP Smush – Image Optimization that can automatically optimize the image for you.
3. Optimize the homepage
Your homepage is an important page. Even if a person doesn't land on the homepage, they may need to visit your other posts and pages. And that's why the homepage needs to be optimized properly.
As mentioned earlier, take care of the images on your website and make sure they are optimized. Use short excerpts instead of large ones for your posts.
Do not show images on posts; Instead, leave the “read more” link before the first image in the post. Don't use too many sidebar and footer widgets that slow down your site.
4. Choose a fast WordPress Theme
Before you start working on your site, you should be careful when choosing a WordPress theme. At first glance, it seems that a particular theme will attract more visitors simply because of its layout and the gorgeous images it uses. But try to think further; Instead of choosing the most beautiful theme you can find, try several themes from different devices, in different browsers.
You will be amazed at how different the theme can be for the speed of the whole site. Not only can a large number of images suffocate the theme, but the code has a lot of hidden things that mean a lot. Although this is not always the case, premium themes need to be better coded and showcased better.
5. Upgrade to PHP 7
You should always try to work as little as possible to get maximum results. Optimizing is important to make your site faster. Why spend hours to increase the speed for a few milliseconds when you can click a few clicks and easily increase the site speed by 20%?
There is no magic in my method. It’s simple, straightforward and clear. Once you've implemented it, you'll be asking yourself, “Why didn't I do it earlier?”
Numerous tests show that PHP 7 is 20% faster than PHP 5 in a real-life production environment. On normal tests, it can be 200% faster. It is also more secure, has new useful features and is recommended by WordPress. So, how to upgrade?
If you use a decent hosting service if you are already on PHP 7 check your version before proceeding. Either get my WordPress Health Check plugin or upload a file with the phpinfo () function.
If you haven't upgraded already, you have a “good” reason for it.
I don't seem to understand much of the work and server-related content
Yes, it depends on the server, but if you know how to log in to cPanel you have all the necessary skills. This is enough to create a new email address in CPNel. Find the icon; Click Select New Version from the dropdown, Save and Done.
My hosting company does not support PHP7
That's a big problem! This fact may not be about yourself, but it has many other consequences. This means that you are using outdated server software and your hosting company is not doing its job easily. At the moment you are paying for a slow site but not maintaining the server soon so you will be dealing with severe downtime when everything starts to fall.
Email them and ask them to immediately migrate their account to a new server that supports PHP 7. If that doesn't work (for whatever reason), you need to find a good WordPress hosting company. Are you scared and don’t want to do it? It's okay to worry about migration, but you don't have to do it yourself.
Decent hosting companies will migrate for you. Seriously, this is not a marketing ploy. You give them your old cPanel password and that's it.
Conclusion: Always take care of your blog speed
If you make changes to just a few things on your site, they may benefit you. The steps we describe in this article are completely free, so there will be no harm in trying them. Still, don’t forget to take care of your site; Update WordPress, themes and plugins regularly and never neglect your blog.
Sometimes, even an optimized site won’t run fast. In that case, you may have to find another hosting company or consider paying extra for a managed or dedicated server.