The speed of the WordPress blog website is important to increase traffic from a search engine, to lower down bounce rate, and to engage users to generate leads. So, if your WordPress blog website is slow then consider the following methods to optimize your WordPress website for speed.
But before the start, let’s find out the common reasons for slower blog website:
- Lack of high-quality WordPress theme.
- Not using the best hosting plan or company.
- Too much display advertising
- Use of tables and large images in the post.
- Not using Caching plugins
So, let’s get started:
1. Find out the problems by testing your website in GTMetrix:
While Pingdom and google page speed tests also good and effective. But I consider GTMetrix for speed test due to its user interface and experience. It’s very easy to use and to test the speed of the website. It’s very focused on the user benefits and each feature is easy to use especially for no-non technical WordPress owners. And the biggest benefit is that you will get the knowledge about each problem that decreasing the speed of your WordPress website. And it can help you to identify the problem faster.
2. Use high-quality WordPress themes:
Commonly when we select themes we go for more attractive features, but it’s important to consider features by asking yourself “Does it help to increase the conversion rate or generate leads or sales?
The point here is that we’re not buying a WordPress theme to have a website, we’re buying for business. And if the theme is more focused on suggesting the hosting, social media tracking and there are no chances to edit the header and PHP code, functions easily then it’s not a good deal. It should be focused on our users, not on us.
Even the majority of WordPress theme that non-technical business owners purchase builds on the third-party plugins and later when they need to update then they charge money for it, they are just free for in current update. But for new updates, they have to be paid.
So, don’t buy a theme or even you have purchased it, then no problem keeps using it. But always consider the WordPress theme that required less plugin to operate and work.
Even there are many free WordPress themes that are faster and more effective than the premium themes. And they are providing almost all the features for free and you can also upgrade them.
Please find the best free WordPress themes here: Free responsive WordPress themes to create any type of blog website
So, my suggestion to buy a WordPress theme that is free to use as a trial version or demo. After if you’re satisfied with the speed, functionality, and support then purchase that theme without a second thought.
But never purchase a theme first hand without using its trial version especially if you’re a non-technical website owner.
3. Set proper size for images:
Resize images or use small size images such as for blog post featured images you can use width 600 px to 700px to height 3oopx to 400px height and for product images, you can use between width 700px to 800 px and height 500 px to 700px.
4. Paste the customized CSS code in Theme’s own custom CSS box or style.css file:
The customization of WordPress theme is important. No matter you’re using bestselling and highest rated WordPress theme. There will need to be edited as per the size, performance, and audience. It can be header background area, social icons resize, sidebar width, entry content alignments.
When you edit or customize the CSS code using custom CSS plugin such as site origin CSS then it’s an additional dialog that loads along with the website. It becomes part 2. So, if you want to speed up your website, copy the custom CSS code and paste it in additional CSS option in your WordPress theme. Go to appearance, customize, and at the end of customizing option you will get additional CSS box. Paste it here, save or publish and then deactivate the custom CSS plugin. It will dramatically improve the speed of your website.
5. Use less external loader in the theme header section:
A website is a group of HTML pages. That’s ok. But normally the small business owners or non- technical website owners can’t run the website in today’s time successfully without using third-party services, even you can say third party services are mandatory to use in the WordPress website.
But the problem is when these third-party services and code takes time to load. It can be tracking code, popup services, social media plugins, bootstrap, fonts, and many other things.
The disadvantages are that to load a website faster it’s also important that the services you’re using through plugins, code, header links are working and have 99.9% uptime.
You can see at the bottom left of any website, the services that are loading, and the services that decrease the load or loading slow.
So, try to use only those services that matter to you and your customers. And try to use less third-party services to load a page.
6. Use WP Fastest Cache Plugin:
While wp total cache, wp super cache are also very good caching plugins but I suggest you to use wp fastest cache and it’s free and also premium.
The best part of this plugin is that it’s very light-weight and it is very easy to set up and use. The features and options are very clear and it works to speed the WordPress website and minify many things on your website to load faster.
7. Don’t try to achieve all your goals in once when running WordPress Blog:
This is the most important thing for website owners in this post. That don’t’ try to achieve your all the goals in just once. Do it monthly basis or as per the situation and demands.
Commonly there are the following goals:
- More social media followers
- Lower bounce rate
- More pages view
- More traffic
- More conversion and leads
- More sales
- More profit
- Higher page speed
- and many others.
That’s great to have goals for your website. Even that’s the way to achieve whatever you want to achieve through the website. But can you get all of them in once on any website?
No, No one. If someone is achieving all the above goals in once, then he/she is a genius. And the majority of WordPress website owners are trying to do it. And they are failing.
The real genius doesn’t try to achieve all his goals once. Even they don’t think to be a genius. They just think for one goal and then achieve that, after that, they think about the next goal.
So, what is the way?
Set Priorities as per the current situation.
For example, if you’re a new website owner then this month your goal is not to build or increase your social media followers. Your goal is to get people from the search engine to your website. It means your focus has to be on writing and publishing instead of creating social media followers and spending time on the integration of social media plugins. Remember, if you’re beneficial to people, they will find you.
So, don’t use the follow button on the sidebar, popup, footer, and all the way. And use it in a single place and that can be in author profile.
Many people highlight the social media icons at the top header bar so that the visitor follows them.
But the problem people are not visiting your website to follow you. They will be looking for the things they want. So they will not care what you’re highlighting.
The problem is that the website has to load those social media icons, websites, and connections before the actual post/page. And in that loading, it reduces your speed.
So, try thinking in this way.
Take your visitor on-site towards the product/services and actual solution one by one.
And set priorities for each month.
8. Use AMP Plugin for Mobile Users:
While it’s not that important for all the websites. Many blog websites even with 100000+ monthly users load faster on mobile devices too without using AMP plugin. But if you really have a heavy website such as an eCommerce website with 100000+ monthly users then it’s very important to use.
9. Turn off some features and plugins when traffic is higher or select the best hosting plan:
You can say that this the time to make more profit. But in the same, it’s the time to build your WordPress website brand. Due to more traffic on a single page/post such as 30 visitors, now it affects other pages and users.
Now if you’re using shared hosting then if this happens with another website owner then your website also gets slower speed.
Shared hosting is like 20 floors building. In which have one or two ways and you’re running an office on 7th floors. But the lift is really busy it’s because there are many people who are also using the lift to visit other offices.
And that way, it’s creating the problem for your customers too. So, you have to be smart to choose your hosting plan. Most people prefer and search for the best hosting company and that’s ok. But I prefer more to use the best hosting plan and features once I know these top 5 hosting companies are best for my clients’ WordPress website.
So, the speed of your website also depends on your hosting plan that you’re using.
While each website needs a separate speed test and maintenance. Sometimes everything is perfect but the plugin is creating more problems. At other times, everything is perfect but server speed is slow.
So, whenever you get slow speed, don’t get panic. Test your website speed at different times, locations, and high traffic times. You will get many ideas on what to do or whatnot.
In the end, I think I have taken your too much time, but I think you got very valuable ideas to maintain the speed and quality of your WordPress website effectively.
If you want to learn more then please let me know.