Speed gives us a sense of thrill, be it driving fast on a highway or watching the F1 races.
Just like a website, it gives your users a sense of thrill and satisfaction when they can make their way through your website without having to wait.
Remove Your WordPress Plugins
Yes, remove. You’ve read that, all right.
This is one of the most common errors that WordPress users like to do. They will browse through the plugins directory and start installing plugins like there is no tomorrow.
Yes, it’s free but free things comes with a price too.
Before you start installing WordPress plugins on your site, have an idea what function you want your site to have first.
The key here is to get only what you need, not installing everything that you can get your hands on.
- Look through your plugins directory and remove the ones you do not use at all.
- For the ones you hardly use, consider removing them too.
- For the ones that you are using, do some research on these plugins and read reviews about them.
- If any these plugins cause your site to slow down, find alternative ones that provide the same function.
Use A Clean Coded WordPress Theme
A majority of the time, a WordPress theme can be the main cause of why a website can be so slow.
The more awesome looking a theme is, the more possible that it comes with a lot of functions (that you don’t need in the first place) and it is bloated with a lot of scripts.
If you bought the theme yourself, then you should what it is.
If your web designer/developer installed it for you, then you can check it under your WordPress dashboard under Appearance > Themes.
Here comes the tricky part, if you know what you are doing, then go ahead and switch the team.
However, if your website was built by anyone other than yourself, you better make a back up of your site first before you go switching themes because your whole website will look disfigured if it was not done correctly.
Here are 2 of the well-coded themes out there at the moment:
Resize Your Images
Imagine having 3 oversized guys versus 2 slim sexy ladies (or hunk if you prefer that) in your car, in which situation will your car go faster?
That’s right! The 2 slim sexy ladies, right?
Imagine again, your website is filled with oversized images, think about the time it needs to load all those images to your website visitor.
How would your visitors feel? Slow and overwhelmed. Your website will load faster if your images are in the right size.
There are a lot of free tools online that you can use to resize your images. Here are a few that you can use:
- PicResize – User-friendly with additional customizations. Gets the job done.
- ResizePixel – Also user-friendly with the crop, flip, convert and resize options.
- LunaPic – this is a great free tool if you want to edit and enhance your images apart from resizing.
If you want to work offline instead, you can use these:
- GIMP – Free and open-source image editor. More than enough to cover your basic needs.
- Inkspace – Another free flexible tool at your disposal but learning to use it is required.
And if you want a more advanced image editor and you have some cash to splurge, these:
- Adobe Photoshop – By far one of the best image editing software out there, with a subscription fee.
- Skylum Luminar – A strong contender to Adobe Photoshop with a one-time flat fee.
Use A Cache Plugin
Let’s use McDonald’s as an example. You are at the counter. There are 10 people right in front of you. 8 of them ordered combo meals while 2 ordered ala carte meals.
For the combo meals, it has a pre-set number of items. This reduces the workload of the cashier to key in the items one by one and also the kitchen can prepare the meals quicker since the orders are in a set pattern.
Imagine if there are no combo meals available. These 10 people order by ala carte. The amount of time taken to take the order and for the kitchen to prepare them will increase.
So caching here essential does the same thing. Visitors that are visiting your website, see the same things on the page or post all the time (unless you decide to change them every day, which is unlikely).
To speed things up, we cache (combo) them up. And that’s why caching is important to speed up your WordPress website!
The popular WordPress cache plugins are:
Install An SSL
This is by far the easiest to implement. There are quite many benefits to having an SSL installed into your website but one of them is to enable HTTP/2 for your website.
SSL is that little lock sign you see in your browser.
What is HTTP/2?
Imagine this. 100 cars going through a 1-lane tunnel. Then another 100 cars going through an 8-lane tunnel simultaneously.
Which is faster? That’s HTTP/2 for you. It allows more connections, so more things are loaded at the same time, speeding up the load process for your user.
All you need to do is to speak to your web hosting provider and get them to install it for you.
I find these 5 steps the easiest to implement.
How about you? What steps did you take to make your site go faster?
If you’ve got any tips that are easier to implement, let me know in the comments section below too.