How to increase the loading speed of a WordPress website, or how to increase the speed of a website in WordPress. Here in this article, I am going to walk you through on How to Increase speed of website in wordpress
It’s important to know that every business these days must have a website to function well online… It’s almost impossible to do business these days without having an online presence. and you need a website to accomplish that.
Having a website that is super fast matters a lot, most especially when it comes to SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
Why Website Speed Matters?
Before I explain further, let me ask you a question. How long do you wait for a website to load? How patience are you?
Well, to be honest, most users don’t have the patience to wait more than 5 seconds to view a website. having a slow website affects user experience, search engine ranking, and even sales and conversions.
It is also important to understand that buyers/customers/target audiences are always online. And they will always go through their desktop, laptop, tablet, or smartphone if they want to access information online.
Also, these digital consumers are also quite impatient. They do not give a second chance to websites that are not optimized for mobile devices or websites that take too long to load. If you want to make sure you don’t lose half your target market you must always make sure your website is optimized for speed.
Your website speed does not only matter to users, but you should also know that Google cares about their users and want the best service for them, so when you have a fast-loading website you have the advantage to rank the first page on Google Search Engine.
Google uses the speed of your website as a ranking signal. Your goal should be to enhance the user experience because you want those users to keep coming back to your website.
When a user visits your website for the first time, you can be sure that they will make a judgment about you, your website quality, and your business. if your website loading speed is slow and your website is difficult to navigate, that user is NOT coming back. So, make sure your website loads fast if you want to make a strong first impression.
A slow Website will drive customers away
If your website takes longer than 5 seconds to load, approximately 40% of users who visit your website will abandon your website and their mission on the website.
Users Expect Speed when visiting a website
The internet sets a high bar when it comes to website speed. We expect, and demand fast loading times.
Research shows your website speed has a major impact on the success of your website. Technology is evolving more rapidly every year and attention spans are getting shorter. The expectation and demand for speed is greater than ever.
As a website owner, you only have a few precious seconds to grab and retain your visitor’s attention and you shouldn’t waste those seconds on loading your content. It doesn’t matter if you sell goods, offer services, or have a simple blog.
If your website is slow, you will be losing traffic, visitors, and possibly money. Generally, if your website takes more than a second to load, it’s slow and needs optimizing.
Now let take a look on how to increase your website loading speed
How to Increase the speed of website in wordpress
Identify Issues on your website
The first thing you should do is to find out what could be affecting your website speed. The easiest way to do so is to run a benchmark test. using a free tool called GTmetrix
There are many other tools out there. But is the best tool I will advise you to use GTmetrix to check your website speed errors. It will give you a clear picture of how your website is performing in terms of speed.
Fix it when you find an issue
If the benchmark tests show you have an issue with your website speed, the next step is to identify the actual blockers.
Although every website is different and has its own set of speed issues, some problems are very common and it’s safe to start with them:
- Too many posts on the front page
- many social and sharing plugins and widgets
- Too many external fonts
- Bloated themes with too many features
- Large and unoptimized images
Fixing some of these problems may be time consuming, and will not result in major improvements in speed. There are two things that you should consider when prioritizing your fixes:
- How difficult will it be to fix the issue?
- What effect will resolving the issue have on your site?
You can use the answers to these questions in order to create a list of optimizations starting from those that will have the most significant impact on the time spent.
Optimized the contents on each page
Reduce the number of post shown on your homepage.
You can use a plugin like YITH Infinite Scrolling. It will dynamically show more posts when your users scroll down near the end of your page, similar to the way Facebook and Twitter show more posts when you’re scrolling.
Optimized your sliders if you have one on your website
Optimize image sizes
Make sure to optimize your images by reducing the file size without losing the quality. Bear in mind that if you have multiple
images on your website, optimizing all of them may take a lot of time and hosting resources.
Image optimization is important, however! Lowering the size of your images without damaging their quality and removing all the unnecessary data that your camera saves when you take a photograph adds to the overall performance of your site.
You can use a plugin called Wp Optimizer to optimize your images and increase your website speed.
Your fonts can affect your website speed
The fonts you use on your website can affect your website loading speed. Check your website and include only the font variation that you’re actually using. Use one font all through when designing your website.
Users comments on your website
If you get a lot of comments, this may be slowing down your website
Minify and combine js and css files, and enable Cache
When caching is enabled at the server level, the content gets saved not on the hard disk, but in the server RAM. This makes the site performance gains much greater since reading from the memory is faster than reading from the disc.
You can use a plugin called Litespeed Cache to minify and combine JS and CSS files, and also enable Cache
Theme & Plugins
Both themes and plugins are essential to the speed of your website since they are pieces of code that your site executes when it gets accessed. The theme and plugins you use on your website sometimes can affect your website loading speed.
When choosing a theme or plugins, look for one either in the WordPress repository, or if you’re after a premium theme and plugins, look for a reputable company that’s well known in the WordPress community. You have to take this part seriously
Functionalities such as carousels and sliders should not be part of your theme. You can always add them using a plugin later on when you want them to be loaded. So, pick a theme that has the main functionality you need without tons of additional features.
Read reviews for the themes and plugins, try getting some actual feedback from users, and check whether the company is
trusted in the WordPress community. Don’t trust a theme and plugin provided by an unknown designer that does not respond to his/her customers.
It’s important to have a well-written theme because the quality of the theme code affects every part of your site.
Don’t overlap functionality with plugins
If a plugin includes several functions, make sure you use most of them. Don’t install another plugin if one of your active plugins can already do the job.
For example, if you’re using the Yoast SEO plugin and you want to have a Google XML Sitemap, just enable this functionality in the plugin settings page instead of adding another plugin, even though there are dozens available in the plugin repository.
Always keep your theme and plugins up-to-date
Keeping your theme and plugins up-to-date will allow you to use more recent PHP versions including PHP7, which gives your site a huge performance boost.
Delete unused theme and plugins
If you’re not using a theme and plugins, delete them. There is no need to keep an inactive theme and plugins on your website. It’s good security practice and one less thing to slow down your back-end.
Use a CDN
CDN providers essentially clone your website amongst multiple host nodes. Then, when a visitor requests a URL, it gets served from the closest host node rather than from the central server.
SSL protects your visitors and customers by encrypting all the information traveling between browser and server, ensuring extra security for your users and their data. It is essential for eCommerce sites and those handling sensitive data, and strongly recommended for all websites following recent developments on the web.
Optimizing for speed is a continuous and important part of building and maintaining your WordPress site. Users consistently demand fast-loading sites, and the potential negative impact of site speed on conversions is well-proven at this stage.
Our practical advice for website owners is to start with as fast a web hosting stack as possible at the outset, and then immediately double down on content and connecting with other websites. After the traffic tap is on, it then makes sense to return to the subject of site speed optimization, once you have numbers where you can really measure its impact.
website speed is clearly a major concern for Google, and one of many factors they are actively monitoring at any given time.
Ongoing optimization is a lever you can constantly pull as a website owner, and a structured approach to doing so in terms of site speed will pay off handsomely for you and your users down the road.
Without optimization, you risk paying more, losing visitors and conversions, and even damaging your brand and reputation. With the rise of mobile showing no signs of slowing, this need for speed is going to remain.
With that in mind, sign up today for our free WordPress website speed course (below) for practical tips on doing so.