Why Is Speed So Important For Your WordPress Site?A study shows, from 2000 to 2016, the average human attention span decreased from 12 seconds to 7 seconds. What does this fact mean for website owners? This means you have very little time to show content to your users and convince them to stay on your website. A slow website means users have the potential to leave your website before the loading process is complete.
Based on a case study involving Amazon, Google, and several other large sites, a delay in loading time of just 1 second can trigger a conversion decrease of up to 7 percent, pageview 11 percent, and decrease customer satisfaction by as much as 16 percent.
In addition, Google and other search engines began to penalize slow websites by lowering their ranking in search results. This means a slow website will get low traffic. So if you want to get more traffic, subscribe, and income from websites, then you need to make sure your WordPress website is fast.
How to Know the Speed of Your WordPress SiteOften novice bloggers think that their website is okay because it's not slow on their computers. Apparently this is a big mistake. Because you often visit your own website, browsers like Chrome store your website in cache and prefetch automatically appears as soon as you start typing the website address. This makes your website load quickly.
But for ordinary visitors who visit your website for the first time may not experience the same thing.
In fact, users in different locations will have very different experiences. This is why we recommend that you test website speed with tools like Pingdom . Pingdom is a free online tool that helps you test website speed from different locations.
After doing a website speed test, you might want to know, what kind of website speed is considered good? A good page loading in under 2 seconds. The faster, the better.
Causes of WordPress Website Speed to be SlowThe report of the results of the speed test will refer to several recommendations for improvement. Most of the technical jargon that is difficult for beginners to understand. But understanding what makes a website slow is the key to improving site performance.
Some of the main causes of the speed of a WordPress website to be slow include:
- Web hosting. When the web hosting server has incorrect configuration, this can affect the speed of your website.
- WordPress Configuration. If your WordPress site does not provide cached pages, there will be an overload on the server that causes slow or corrupted websites.
- Page size. Especially for images that are not optimized for websites.
- Bad plugin. If you use bad plugin code, this can slow down the website.
- External script. External scripts such as advertisements, can also have a major impact on website performance.
The importance of good WordPress HostingYour WordPress hosting service has an important role in website performance. A good shared hosting provider has extra measurements to optimize website performance. But, on shared hosting, you share the source server with many other customers. This means that if other customer sites have a lot of traffic, the impact will be on the overall server performance which will eventually slow down your website.
Instead, using managed WordPress hosting services gives you the most optimized server configuration for running WordPress. The Managed WordPress hosting company also offers automatic backups, automatic WordPress updates, and better security configurations to protect your website. Please visit Dewaweb's website to find out more details about our services.
Increase WordPress Speed in a Simple WayWe know that making changes to website configuration can be a scary thing for beginners, especially if you are not tech-savvy. But don't worry, you are not alone. We will show you how you can increase the speed of your WordPress site with just a few clicks.
1. Install the WordPress Caching PluginWordPress pages are dynamic. This means that changes occur every time people visit a post or page on your website. To build your page, WordPress must go through the process of finding the information needed, putting it together, and then displaying it for your users.
This process requires many stages, and can greatly slow down your website when you have many visitors at the same time.
That's why you are recommended to install the caching plugin, which can make your WordPress site 2 to 5 times faster.
Here's how, rather than every time you always check the generation of whole page processes, the caching plugin will make a copy of the page after first loading, and then present the cached version for each subsequent user.
When a user visits your WordPress site, which is created using PHP, the server retrieves information from the MySQL database and PHP archive, then everything is put together in HTML content that is served to the user. It's a long process, but you can skip it when using caching plugins.
There are many caching plugins available for WordPress, but you can use the WP Super Cache plugin The settings are not difficult and users will feel the difference. If you use managed WordPress hosting, then you don't need a caching plugin because your hosting company will take care of it.
2. Image OptimizationResearchers find that the use of color visuals makes people 80 percent more likely to read your content. But if your images aren't optimized, this can damage the website's performance. Images that are not optimized become one of the speed problems found on the beginner's website.
Before uploading photos directly from a cellphone or camera, you should use photo editing software to optimize images for websites.
In its original format, a photo can have a large size. But based on the image file format and compression that you choose in the editing software, you can reduce the size of the image up to 5 times.
You can use two image formats, namely JPEG and PNG. Do you want to know the difference?
Image format with PNG is not compressed. When you compress an image it means that some information is missing, so an uncompressed image will have higher quality with more detail. The disadvantage is, large file size, making loading times longer. On the other hand, in JPEG, it is a compressed archive format with a slight decrease in quality, but its size is very small.
So, how do you decide which image format to use?
- If your photos or images have a lot of different colors, then use JPEG
- If the image is simple or the image is transparent, then use PNG.
Steps to Optimizing Website PerformanceAfter installing the caching plugin and optimizing images, you will see the site start loading much faster. But if you want the website to be even faster, you need to apply the following methods.
The following tips are not very technical so you don't need to learn any code to implement them, but using them will prevent problems that can slow down your website.
1. Always update your WordPress siteAs an open source project, WordPress often updates. Each update not only offers new features, but also fixes security problems and bugs. Your WordPress themes and plugins can have regular updates too.
As a website owner, it is your responsibility to maintain the site and update the plugin to the latest version. Not doing so makes your site slow and presents security problems.
Security is the most important reason why you need to update your WordPress website. WordPress is very popular as well as being a target for hackers and data theft.
Because WordPress is open source, anyone can learn the source code and learn to improve it. But this also means hackers can find ways to damage the website.
But there are also many good hackers. This means security experts around the world can learn the code and report security problems and fixes. Every time a security vulnerability is reported, the WordPress team will work and release an update to resolve this issue.
This means that if you don't use the latest version of WordPress, then you are using software that has security vulnerabilities. Hackers can look for websites that use old versions and you can become a victim of this hacker attack.
Not only WordPress, plugins can also be exploited by hackers. You need to make sure all WordPress plugins and themes are always updated.
2. Use excerpts (summaries) on the homepage and archivesBy default, WordPress displays full content for each article on the homepage and archives. This means that the homepage, category, tags, and other archive pages will load slower.
Another disadvantage of displaying a full article on a page is that the user does not feel the need to visit the actual article. This can reduce the pageview and time users spend on your site.
To speed up loading time on the archive page, you can set the site to display excerpts, not full content.
You can navigate to Settings >> Reading and select "For each article in feed, show: Summary" instead of "Full Text."
3. Divide comments into several pagesAre there many comments on your blog post? Congratulations, this is a good indicator for audience engagement.
But on the other hand, loading all comments can have an impact on the site's speed. WordPress has a solution for this problem. You can go to Settings >> Discussion and check the box next to the "Break comment into pages" option.
Remember how we mentioned above that users in different locations could experience different loading times on your website? This is because the location of your web hosting server has an impact on site speed. For example, say your web hosting company has a server in America. Visitors who are also in America will experience faster laoding times than visitors in India.
4. Use Content Delivery Network (CDN)
When using a CDN, each time a user visits the website, they will be presented with a static archive from any server closest to them. Your web hosting server will also be faster because the CDN does many of these tasks.
5. Don't upload videos directly to WordPressYou can directly upload videos to the WordPress site, and this automatically appears in the HTML5 player. But don't ever do this. This will affect your bandwidth. Instead, you can use video hosting services like YouTube, Vimeo, or DailyMotion, and let them do their job.
WordPress has an embed video feature, so you can copy and paste video URLs directly into your posts and embed them automatically.
WordPress has an advanced feature called auto-embed. This feature allows WordPress to automatically get video embed code from popular video hosting sites like YouTube, Vimeo, and so on.
All you need to do is paste the video URL into the post editor. Make sure the URL is in the right position and not hyperlinked. If you use a visual editor, WordPress will take the embed code and display the video in the post editor.
Now you can save the post and click the preview button to view the embed video in the blog post. Easy steps right?
WordPress can only auto-embed for some service providers. For other websites you need to get the embed code and paste it into your blog posts. Here is a list of auto embed service providers on WordPress:
- SoundCloudSpeaker Deck
- It's coming
- WordPress plugin directory
6. Use optimized themesWhen choosing a WordPress theme for your website, it's important to pay attention to its speed optimization. Some beautiful and impressive themes can actually slow down your site.
Usually it's better to use a simpler theme and use a quality plugin to get the features you need, rather than choosing a theme with a complicated layout, and features that don't really matter. Premium WordPress themes like StudioPress, Themify, and Array Themes offer themes that are well coded and optimized for web speed.
7. Use the faster gallery pluginIf you have a photography website, then you might need to use an image gallery plugin to display your photos. It is highly recommended that you use the WordPress gallery plugin that is optimized for speed.
You can use Envira Gallery , which is the best WordPress gallery plugin. Envira helps you create beautiful image galleries that load quickly. Testing the speed compared to some other popular gallery plugins shows that Envira gallery is twice as fast.
Hopefully this article can help you learn useful tricks to speed up and improve your WordPress performance. Please try some of the techniques we have explained above. Be sure to test the speed of the site before and after and then see the difference.