Is WordPress Slow? Optimize Your Website With These Straightforward Fixes
In our previous post, we covered the basics of WordPress and how it isn’t always up to par right out of the box. Not only can it be further optimized for search engines, but it can also be optimized for speed. This dynamic not only impacts SEO, but can also influence user experience and how people perceive your brand online.
Some websites are naturally slow because of where they’re hosted. If your hosting provider isn’t an issue and you’re still having issues, however, then it may be worth considering what can be done to bolster the efficiency of your WordPress installation. As such, we’ll be looking at some straightforward fixes that can speed up the loading of your WordPress installation.
Choose a Better Theme
Ultimately, which themes are used on WordPress can have a major impact on speed. Bloated themes can take seconds longer to load properly, especially if they feature a massive number of elements or images. By pinging your website for exact page loading times, you can get an idea of how quickly a variety of different themes will load.
It’s also worth noting that themes not designed to be mobile-friendly can take longer due to generally less bandwidth for mobile users. Given how much traffic these days is from mobile devices, consider this carefully.
Invest in Caching
Proper caching can make a huge difference for visitors to your website, ensuring that pages load more quickly. While a certain amount of caching may occur in individual user browsers, the best course of action to maximize speed involves the use of a caching plugin.
Solutions such as W3 Total Cache includes many great features and makes it possible for those navigating multiple pages and/or returning to enjoy substantially faster speeds. By caching your website via such a plugin, you can take advantage of content delivery networks and the speed they can provide WordPress websites.
Optimize Your Images
Arguably one of the biggest contributing factors to page loading times for WordPress websites is images. In some cases, images can be massive and add several seconds to the full loading time for one or more pages. As such, optimizing these images and reducing their file sizes can give you a faster website.
Some plugins can be added to any WordPress installation that automatically optimize images whenever they are first uploaded. For images already on your website, you may need to individually re-upload them to gain these benefits. However, slow websites can be immensely improved through image optimization and it is usually worth the effort.
Improve Your WordPress Database
Every WordPress installation relies upon the use of a database to store all information. If this is setup with a one-click install or has been in use for a substantial period of time, the database can become less than efficient. This is where database management can be immensely helpful in improving site speed.
This can help purge excess data such as spam comments, drafts and other excess elements not needed. This will ensure that you (and everybody else) are pinging your website as quickly as possible.
Keep in mind these tips and tricks whenever your WordPress website isn’t running at peak efficiency. There are dozens of tips that can be utilized to improve speed, but these are the best to start with if sluggish site speed is a reality for your WordPress installation.