When a reader lands on your site, you have only a few seconds to grab their attention. This article will show you how to improve WordPress website speed and performance.
According to the Microsoft Bing search team, 2 seconds delay in the page reduces readers by 3.8%. This issue can lead to the loss of revenue per user by 4.3 %, and clicks reduce by 4.3%.
If your site/blog takes more time to load, then there is a high chance of readers leaving your site. Google now checks site speed in its ranking algorithm. That indicates that your site affects SEO. So if the site is slow, you may lose visitors and reduce ranking in google.
Studies showcase that from 2000 to 2016, the average human attention span has reduced from 12 to 7 seconds.
Best Ways to Improve WordPress Website Speed and Performance
Website developers turn to market research to get better insights. Tools like PESTLE analysis and Porter’s Five Forces help developers determine the kind of keywords and design templates to use for their website.
Business students aspiring to venture into E-commerce can learn a thing or two from these market research tools. Here are some ways studying marketing helps you become a better entrepreneur:
- Market Research helps to get a clear idea of your targeted customers, including channels to reach out to them. Once you are clear on these, you can easily spot business opportunities.
- Market research reduces business risk. It provides insights into what your customers are looking for and meets their needs. Conducting market research helps you to know what is trending. Additionally, it allows people to connect with your business.
- To keep your audience engaged with your site, you can create promotional material. Here you make use of text, fliers, or social media platforms to reach out to more customers. As you already know what your customer’s needs are, you can easily engage them with your site.
- One of the common problems of small business sites is they have a limited budget. So it is essential to know where to invest in getting the best returns possible. The marketing research gives you an idea of which channels most audiences will see your message.
- Any business that knows their potential customers tend to be more successful. If you can stand out in the market and beat your competitors, then there is a high chance of a conversion.
Now that you have all the insights, let’s get started. Without further ado, here are some ways you can improve the speed and performance of your WordPress website.
Use Quality Hosting
One of the essential factors to increase website performance is to select good hosting for your site. There are excellent cheap offers available. But, remember hosting is an area where you get what you pay for. Since speed matters for a WordPress website, this is not the part to skip.
Avoid shared hosting. This eliminates the risk of having a low resource server that can reduce the speed of the website.
If you have a huge site to manage and run, take a look at having dedicated hosting. Or, the more cost-effective way may be to use a Virtual Private Server (VPS). This type of hosting serves to balance speed, comfort, and cost.
You can even look for managed WordPress hosting. Here your site runs on a server that is optimized for WordPress. Plus, you do not need to worry about any technical stuff of running your site. Prices for managing WordPress hosting are dropping. So keep in mind that the price for developing managed platforms by yourself is high.
Keep Your Technology up to Date
The next item is to keep core technology up to date. Updated versions of HTML, PHP, and other web technologies are updated for a reason. They have new features and improved speed. So it is vital to stay on-trend.
All sites should be running on the latest version of PHP offered by the hosting company. WordPress checks this and will alert you about your PHP version. But ensure you check the PHP configuration when you log in to your hosting backend.
Old PHP source code might not be compatible with the newest version of PHP. So when you are using old code, ensure you are using a staging area and have taken a backup. This way you won’t break the live site and can restore the website if something won’t work.
Use the Latest Version of WordPress and Plugins
How technology updates are essential is the same for WordPress. Periodically, WordPress will have a new version released. This may include bug fixes, security patches, feature improvements, etc. The new updates can improve WordPress website speed and performance.
Keeping an updated website not only counts for speed but also security issues. With trending versions of themes and essential WordPress plugins, security vulnerabilities are fixed.
It is better to have a spreadsheet with your plugins and what they do too. A free google sheet is best to keep things organized and track on your WordPress plugins.
Regularly Maintain Database
Just like the WordPress file system gets cluttered over time, the same happens with databases. Maintaining databases regularly is essential. Clean and optimize your WordPress database. There are many tools like WP-Optimize and WP-Sweep, that make the process easier to improve your WordPress website speed and performance.
If the WordPress database goes without maintenance, it can completely slow down your site. Advanced database cleaner is a useful plugin for this, but it’s not perfect, so ensure to take a backup first.
Invest in Monitoring Tools
People say what gets measured gets managed. This means if you know that there is an issue you can correct it.
It is recommended to either monitor manually, or use automatic monitoring tools like Pingdom. Pingdom provides email notifications or SMS if your site is too slow or is not responding. It is a paid service, but to improve the speed of your site, it is worth investing in.
GTmetrix is another recommended tool to track critical metrics like server response time, and visually render time, to pinpoint where the website isn’t performing.
Images often create issues in loading the page. That is natural as they need more space than text or CSS. So to speed up this use compressed images without losing the quality.
You can resize images using Photoshop with the “Save for the Web” option. But this can not compress images to the maximum.
TinyPNG is recommended to optimize images, but you may find better results using ShortPIxel. ShortPixel will automatically compress images when you add them to your WordPress site. It also offers a bulk optimize feature, which allows you to optimize existing images.
When you use images in content, it is vital to check that WordPress creates diverse sizes of them. It shows a preview of the image that will get uploaded.
Conclusion: How to Improve WordPress Website Speed and Performance
Speed is a vital factor in the success of a blog/site. It affects bounce rate, conversions, ranking, etc. Even second can make a great difference.
Thankfully there is a lot you can do to improve WordPress website speed and performance. The methods described above are an effective and easy process to speed up your site naturally yet virtually.