7 Tips on how to speed up WordPress [Bonus]

Ruan @ Webluno

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How to make WordPress Faster

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WordPress installation slow?

Did you know that having a slow loading website can negatively impact your website SEO score? That’s why It’s important to make sure that your website is fast so it can be more user friendly as well. In today’s digital world, everything is about speed and efficiency.
There are various tools available that could help identify problems on your website as well as testing it’s speed and performance. Here are a few that we’ve used:


Here are a few things you can do to make your WordPress website faster:

1. Keep your site updated


As said with our previous post on how to secure your WordPress website, keeping your WordPress installation updated could have a few benefits like security and performance upgrades.
Usually when a security vulnerability or performance issue becomes known it gets fixed in the new updates that is released by the WordPress community. Outdated versions are obviously no longer updated and won't receive any security or performance updates. We strongly recommend you keep your site PHP version up to date as well since this improves security and page performance.


2. Caching

Caching is in most cases the most effective way to speed up your WordPress website. Let’s say you own a blog with caching enabled. The first time someone visits your homepage they receive the page in the normal way: The request is received, processed on the server, and the resulting web page to be shown is turned into an HTML file and sent to the visitor’s web browser. (from winningwp.com, read more)

There are a few plugins that can help you achieve this:

At TeraHost our servers are Litespeed optimized so we recommend you use the Litespeed caching plugin, make sure to check if your hosting provider has this feature. You can also turn on page caching in your PHP settings. Take note that you will have to clear your WordPress cache each time you edit your website so the newly edited content can be displayed to your visitors. Luckily this is a very straightforward process, in fact, it's done by pressing a button.

3. Delete plugins

It is no doubt that plugins can cause severe performance issues. We highly recommend that you delete unused plugins from your WordPress installation to improve its overall performance.
You can also install a plugin that can identify the problem by tracking down the misbehaving plugins.
Documentation on how to use the plugin [querymonitor.com]

4. Database Cleanup

It’s always a good idea to clean up the junk that is no longer needed on your database such as spam comments, autosaves, revisions, unused plugins & themes.
Luckily there are a few plugins that can help you achieve this:

Before you do this we recommend that you make a backup of your website files. At TeraHost we automatically make Daily, Weekly, and Monthly backups of your entire account that can be easily restored at any time, and its 100% free. Check out TeraHost



5. Optimize Images

Images increase page size and will lead to slow loading websites, 70% of the time un-optimized images are the result of a slow website and large file sizes. There’s no need to upload a 4k image file to your WordPress website, we strongly recommend that you use 720p or 1080p.
You can manually optimize your images by scaling it down and compressing it with a website, we use Optimizilla since it’s free and easy to use. There are a few plugins that can automatically do this for you when you upload your image, here are a few:


6. Cronjobs

WordPress has a file called wp-cron.php that runs every time someone visits your website. This can severely impact your site performance. We recommend that you disable wp-cron in WordPress and enable it on your hosting panel such as cPanel. Here’s how you do it: disable cronjobs on WordPress

7. Last Resort

If you have done all of the following and have not seen any improvement on your WordPress website benchmark scores the final resort would be to completely reinstall WordPress. This will give a clear indication of whether you or your host is at fault. If your website loads fast with a new installation of WordPress you know that your site is to blame. Sometimes re-doing your entire website could make it a lot faster since its a clean installation of WordPress.


Bonus :eek:

Something that has helped us out in identifying why our website was loading slow was using a waterfall chart provided by gtmetrix.com

This shows a clear indication of what resources are loading when someone visits your website. We highly recommend that you disable unnecessary plugins since this will impact your loading times.

NB! GTMetrix does not have South African servers so page loading times might significantly be higher than it actually is. If your website is hosted locally switch GTMetrix location to London for a more accurate result.


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Fulcrum29

Honorary Master
Joined
Jun 25, 2010
Messages
35,986
I have had very positive results with LiteSpeed, I would hate to have WordPress without LiteSpeed.

I like using Site Kit (in regard to PageSpeed Insights).
 

Ruan @ Webluno

Webluno Representative
Company Rep
Joined
Jun 28, 2020
Messages
66
I have had very positive results with LiteSpeed, I would hate to have WordPress without LiteSpeed.

I like using Site Kit (in regard to PageSpeed Insights).
Pagespeed by Google has given me really weird results :ROFL:
 

Fulcrum29

Honorary Master
Joined
Jun 25, 2010
Messages
35,986
Pagespeed by Google has given me really weird results :ROFL:
It is strictly speaking still a work in progress. It doesn't even support multisite which is in my view a basic requirement today. Monsterinsights as an analytical tool still surpasses Site Kit by quite a margin within the commercial context.
 
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