As mentioned in some of our previous articles, the speed of your website is one of the crucial parts. It has a significant influence on the first impression the user (customer/reader) gets off the website. The website speed helps with further engagement into the website/eCommerce, bringing more customers into the business and potential purchases.
There are many opinions about what can be slowing the website down; we mentioned a few of them in our previous articles. In order to build the website speed, there are few musts that business/website owners need to look at. In this article, we will try to share the thing we know might help your WordPress website speed. Just remember each website differs and might need unique optimisation.
Hosting and Server
First thing first, let us start with the hosting of the website and the server you choose to be on. Before your website shows up to the end-user, it goes through the process of gathering the data and looks (layouts) by linking into the server.
To keep your site secured and available, you will need a good hosting plan. There are hosting companies that provide WordPress optimised hosting such as WP Engine and Kinsta. They also allow you to choose your server as they have many around the world. Your host network matters as well; most of the premium tire hosting companies base their systems on Google. When choosing your hosting site, be sure to check what network your host is using.
As for the server, there are many different locations for them. To have the benefits of the speed from the server, you will have to consider your target audience location. Just like with any business, you must select the best location to fit your needs. You probably will not want to have a server in the United States in your target audience is in the United Kingdom. This is an essential part, so be sure to let your host know about it.
Choosing the hosting company is, therefore, a necessary process as well as determination, where the target audience is to select the best server option. Those two factors can increase the website speed up to 50%.
This is one of the main parts of the speed optimisation for the website as it can help your website be 2x to 5x faster than what it is. Why is this?
The WordPress sites are linking to their servers to get the information needed to process and show the website to the user. This includes parts like header, images, menu, or blog. The server will have to process all the request; therefore, the process can be time-consuming as it involves many steps.
Caching is a term used to describe the sorting data in a temporary storage area, meaning it instructs the server to store some files to disk or RAM. This way, your website does not need to be processed from the server every time someone uses it. All of this reduces the amount of work and processes that need to be done to generate the page view to the client. With caching your website speed will increase significantly
WP Rocket is one of the best plugins for this purpose (based on our experience). It has the best functionality and optimisation for many hosting providers.
Image optimisation for the website is an absolute must! Images play a major role in your website speed. We will suggest not to panic and remove them all, especially if you have an eCommerce or are artists who promote their work through their website.
Images also play a crucial part when it comes to the website design and with its engagement of the end-users. Therefore optimisation of said images is not an optional step; every site must be doing it
Large images will slow down the website such as TIFF formats, RAW camera formats or BMP. It is best to use JPEG format whenever possible as those are compressed files that do not take much space or time to load. PNG formats are also fine; they are uncompressed file so will they a bit longer to load but allow you to have a higher quality with more detail (or illustrations without background). We always recommend our customers to compress their images to small sizes and use either JPEG or PNG formats. It is also best to keep the file sizes under 100kb; we understand that some things might require a higher quality, therefore bigger size and more space.
Themes and Plugins
Like others, this is another thing that plays an important role in website speed. The themes you use for your WordPress website have different speeds as well. They could be overloaded with unnecessary information that makes them slower. Therefore use themes that are optimised for speed, we did a little article about those already, and you can read it here.
As for the plugins, we did mention it in our article “The loading time and its importance”. In short, some of the plugins are helping your website speed through things like optimisation of the images or the cache. Others can overload your website and slow it down, therefore do a careful consideration of the plugins that you will and will not need.
Website speed is very important as you may already know from many of our articles. There are many things that can be slowing your website. We can support you in optimising your website and give you advice for the future. Message us with any questions. If you want to read more about the website speed and optimisation WPBegineer provides some useful information and so does the hosting provider Kinsta.