With the growing speed of internet and shrinking attention span, research has shown that your visitors expect your site to load faster then ever. Before we get started, you should head over to GTmetrix to find out if there are any issues with your site.
My 5 tips will help to resolve the most common issues that GTmetrix flags out, some of which I’ve listed below:
- Too many posts on the front page
- Too many plugins and widgets
- Too many external fonts
- Bloated themes with too many features
- Large unoptimized image
Tip 1 – Reduce number of posts shown on front page
You can do this either by
- decreasing the number under “Settings -> Reading Settings -> Blog pages show at most”. This is found in your WordPress administration panel on the left hand side of the screen.
- Use a plugin to load more posts like Facebook, you can make use of a plugin like YITH Infinite Scrolling. It dynamically show more posts when your users scroll down near the end of your page instead of loading all the posts at once.
Tip 2 – Reduce number of plugins and widgets
If a plugin includes several functions, make sure you use most of them. Don’t install another plugin if one of your active plugins can already do the job. For example, you do not need two different image compression plugins for GZIP and W3 Total Cache.
Choosing the plugins or widgets that is more suitable for you is the best way to go instead of making use of multiple plugins and widgets.
Tip 3 – Reduce number of external fonts
Instead of loading all the fonts from Google Free Fonts or other similar sources you think you require, check your website and include only the font variation that you’re actually using. Sometimes design and speed will have to compromise especially if you’re loading a font for a small piece of text somewhere on your site. It may be better to just use the same font as the rest of the site instead of loading extra fonts for that text.
Tip 4 – Don’t use bloated themes with too many features
When you’re looking for a theme for your website, you will find themes that claim they can be used for virtually any kind of website. When i see this, it just means they are full of features that I will never use and instead will slow down my site.
Always find the theme that serves what you need and nothing more. Additional features that you want to add in the future can be simply added using a plugin such as siteorigin or the other thousands of plugins available.
Tip 5 – Getting rid of large optimized images
This tip has two steps:
First, only use the correct size image. For example if you only require an image to be displayed at 300×300 pixels, don’t upload a 1024×1024 pixel image and then set it to be shown smaller with
HTML or CSS.
Secondly, make use of plugins like EWWW image optimizer to help ensure your image does not slow down your site.
Besides making sure your site is in tiptop condition, also make sure your hosting company enables server level caching and provides CDN which if a small hosting setup like mine does, they should not have any excuse for not doing so. My promise to my customers are that I will take care of your web hosting needs and ensure your site is always fast and available with cloudflare caching enabled.
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