Google considers page speed to be one of the 200 ranking factor that influences a website’s position in organic search results, which also enriches user-experiences.
If your WordPress site does not load quickly, chances are that you will lose tons of visitors.
Did you know: 1 in 4 people will abandon a website if it takes longer than 4 seconds to load?
Why Page Load Time Matters?
Just consider these website page load time statistics (Mind Blowing):
- A 2-second delay in load time during a transaction results in abandonment rates up to 87%.
- 74% of users will abandon after waiting 5 seconds for a mobile site to load
- 46% of users will NOT return to a poorly performing website.
- You have 5 seconds to engage a customer before they leave your website
- For every 1 second speed improvement to Amazon website conversions increased by +2%
- Mozilla made their pages 2.2 seconds faster … 60 million more Firefox Downloads per Year
- A $250 million presidential fundraising site increase speed 60% … 14% increase in Donation Conversions
How to Reduce Page Load Time in WordPress – Step-by-Step Instructions:
It starts off with building a solid foundation for fast website loading.
1) Choose a great web hosting company
The best way, I found, to reduce page load time in WordPress is to sign up with a quality web host. There are tons of cheap offers available out there, but choosing best web hosting services will help you get what you want.
- Stay away from shared hosting. You never know what types of sites you will be sharing web resources with. It’s not worth the hassle.
- If you are running a small to medium-sized business, going for a dedicated server might be bit overkill.
- Go for VPS web hosting instead. It is cost effective, fast, and convenient than the other two.
2) Keep your technology up to date
Another major factor that slows down the speed of your WordPress site is the basic technology and software installed on your server.
Does your website run on the latest version of PHP and MySQL? If not, you should check that out now.
A quality web hosting provider, on the other hand, will take care of these issues themselves and let you know they are making changes to their architecture.
Warning: Updating your core technology to the latest version might create some problem. Just ensure you can reverse the changes if necessary.
3) Optimize images
Images consume a lot of bandwidth.
You need to optimize your images by scaling them properly.
Many webmaster use huge image for their blog posts and then scale them down using CSS. But they don’t realize that their browser still loads them in full size.
For example, if you are using a 1024x768px for your blog post, but you scaled it down to 100×100 pixels using CSS, your browser will have to load ten times more than required.
Scale your images down before posting them on your blog.
There are tools such as tinypng.com that can easily scale down image without losing its quality. Image size will reduce anywhere from 25% to 80%!
4) Use Proper WordPress Theme
There are themes out there that offer “all the features” you want for a fast loading website. They offer options to change every small thing about your website, such as changing the width of the drop shadow of the third footer widget.
For inexperienced user, it is nice thing to have, but you don’t realize how much code it involves to make all those changes. That code has to be loaded every time someone loads your site.
That is why you should always opt for lightweight or lean theme to keep your website speed fast.
5) Keep on Monitoring Your Site
Another thing to do in order to know why your WordPress site is loading slowly is to be aware that it is happening. It difficult to change what are you completely unaware about.
However, not everyone has time to constantly refresh their website after 5 minutes with a stopwatch on their hand (we definitely have better things to do than that).
A better idea would be to set up a service that monitors your website and sends you notifications automatically when it is slowing down. Try these three alternatives – Gtmetrix, Deez.io, and Pingdom – to get started with monitoring.
6) Enable Browser Caching
You do not have to make your visitors download the same thing every time they load a page.
Enable browser caching option so that you can temporarily store data on your visitor’s computer so that they don’t have to wait for it to load every time they access your site.
Here are resources to help you set up browser cache on your server:
Or, contact your favorite web hosting to set up browser caching.
7) Optimize your CSS files
Your CSS usually loads before people even see your site. The longer it takes to download, the longer your visitors have to wait.
Optimizing your CSS means that your files will download faster – giving faster access to your pages.
If you are not using all of your CSS code, get rid of it. Every little bit of unused code can add up until your snail-pace website speed loses away your visitors.
Also, minimize your CSS file. That means removing extra white space in stylesheets to ensure your file size is at its minimum.
How to minimize your CSS file?
First, check to see if your CSS is already minimized. By default, WordPress site does not minimize your CSS.
If there is no option to minimize your CSS file in your WordPress site, you can use online service such as csscompressor.com to minimize your CSS files. Just copy paste your CSS code and press “Compress” to get your newly minimized stylesheet.
As more visitors on your website demand better online experience, the page load time of your WordPress will continue to matter.
A little attention goes a long way – remember, by improving your website speed by 1 second can improve your conversion rate by +2%.
Over to you
What do you think? Do you use these tactics to reduce page load time in WordPress? How do you reduce page load time in WordPress? Please comment below!
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