Are you a fan of the waiting game? Well, I’m not, to be honest. And, I believe everyone will agree on this, they really hate it when they have to wait.
Things aren’t different for people on the internet too. If there is one thing that people do not like while being on the Internet, it is waiting around for a website to load. Statistics suggest that over 40% of people abandon a site that has a loading time of more than 3 seconds!
Slow loading time of web pages often has a crippling effect on eCommerce sites. As many as 80% of shoppers who are dissatisfied with the performance of an online store website are less likely to buy from them again and the delay of a single second can decrease customer satisfaction by as much as 16%.
The speed of a website is important to the extent that Google factors them in while giving website rankings. So if you have a website that loads too slowly, you can expect a drop in your Google rankings which in turn will reduce traffic to your site.
So what can be done to increase the speed of your WordPress website? Let us take a look at ten simple fixes that you can make the best use of for speeding up your website.
1. Choose an appropriate hosting site
As per a release from the WordPress.org website: “There are hundreds of thousands of hosting services out there. The vast majority of them meet the minimum WordPress requirements. So having to choose one from the crowd can prove to be a major task.” In order to make things easier for you, WordPress recommends working with three sites among the pack- Laughing Squid, DreamHost and BlueHost. My personal recommendation would lie with a fourth, HostGator. This is the one I usually use and has been recommended to me by a large number of bloggers. I have also been testing with a new beast in the making: web hosting hub. And I’m really impressed with their servers. I would definitely recommend this one if you are looking for something new and cheap
2. Type of Hosting service
On a number of sites, you will be able to get web hosting services for low rates. However, that almost certainly has to be a shared hosting service. While the price is quite low, the tradeoff is usually always speeding. If you want the website to perform faster a service like Turnkey Internet is what you need to consider. Among other things, you will get a complete guarantee of Network Up-Time and a bulletproof reliability.
3. Check the speed of your website
As always I’m a loyal Google user. hence, it’s my duty to check what the big G thinks of my site. So what I do is I go to: I go to Google Page Speed Testing tool. Then, I start to work with the process. At many times, this tool can be hard to understand. But hey, this is Google, right. Here are the other two services that you can make the best use of GTmetrix and Pingdom. Once you are aware of the speed of your website, you can put it to good use as a benchmark. After making the various changes that you find listed in a number of places, you can test the website yet again to see what changes have occurred to your site speed.
4. Browser caching
Another way of speeding up a WordPress website is the user of browser caching. W3 Total Cache is one such plugin that you will find extremely helpful. It also has recommendations coming in from a number of Hosting companies including the likes of HostGator.
5. Reduced size of images
This is one issue that can result in your blog site slowing down to a crawl, more so if you have a large number of images on your page. Generally, I recommend the use of PNG-8 or GIF for text and JPEG for photographic images. Compression is really important in this regard but a number of tradeoffs exist in this regard. Too much compression will result in a principle known as “artifacts” where portions of the image start to get clumped together.
The fastest way to find out the end-result is to use a program that offers a number of previews of your image at different levels of compression. Move around the image and see what effect the compression has on the image. You will be able to find out the settings that work best for you.
If you are working with a program such as PhotoShop, you won’t have any problem resizing the images.
6. Give a specification for the image size
When you are loading images into your WordPress site, it is important to set the height and width of the image. In case you fail to do that, the browser will need to wait until the image completely loads. By setting the height and width, you will also allow the browser to allocate a page box where you can keep the image.
7. Have updates for your WordPress installation
There are a number of reasons why it is important to keep WordPress updated and current. Updates allow bugs to be fixed from the previous versions and can also include options for performance enhancements.
8. Have a reduction in the number of plugins
One of the best things about WordPress is the number of plugins supports it has. However, if you have a large number of them installed it can result in software conflicts and can also result in the blog crashing. The solution is a very simple one. Use only the things that you think are necessary and have the rest deleted. Also, ensure that the plugins are kept up-to-date.
9. Work with a clean and simple theme
WordPress abounds with a number of theme options, both paid as well as free. If you want to ensure a theme that performs well make sure that it does not have a high reliance on images. Though the images look great, their limitless use leads to pages being slowed down. Another thing you need to look for is a theme having a CSS-based design. Finally, make use of the speed test tools to determine the performance of these themes on your site.
10. Make adjustments to your front page
Many people do not look to make changes to the default settings on their WordPress front page. As a result, the posts load one over the other and come up with an endlessly scrolling page.
Thus we have a quick round-up of ten simple measures you can put to use for speeding up your pages. Optimising your website can result in a big difference to your site speed, and encourage them to engage and stick around with your content.