5 expert tips to improve your WordPress page speed
Oct 3, 2019 | Easy Weddings
Improving your websites’ page speed performance is a hot topic these days – and it isn’t getting any easier. Fortunately there are a number of tricks and tips you can use to boost your SEO rankings as well as improve user experience.
1. Choose a quality hosting provider
A large factor that influences your website speed is how we your hosting performs. When it comes to choosing your hosting provider it often helps to really look at what you are getting from them. Many will say ‘Unlimited Bandwidth’, ‘Unlimited Email Accounts’ etc, however what they don’t say is that your website will be hosted on a shared platform with other websites – all consuming resources. For some websites this is not a large issue, however for eCommerce websites that consume considerable hosting resources – this is not an ideal option. For example, at Easy Weddings we offer shared hosting as standard, however we also offer business hosting for websites who require additional resources.
2. Choose a well optimised page builder
When selecting your builder/theme/framework to build your website, it’s always a good idea to do a little research beforehand on what performs well. So many businesses look at getting a ready-made theme that may look aesthetically pleasing, however is not well optimised and provides slow loading time. At Easy Weddings we have tested numerous page builders over the years – all with their own positives and negatives.
Our favourite page builders for 2019 are:
- Beaver Builder
- Divi Builder
3. Reduce your image sizes and serve NextGen images
Uploading high resolution images to your website is a big ‘no no’. Always remember, what you put into your website, a user then has to load in their browser. Large image files can take a significant time to load. Fortunately there are a number of image compression plugins that you can install onto WordPress to reduce your image file sizes.
A few of these include
- Tiny PNG – Compress JPEG & PNG images
- EWWW Image Optimizer
- Smush Image Optimization
If you have ever tested your website through Google Pagespeed Insights you may have seen a notification about serving “NextGen Images’. These image formats are much smaller in size and Google loves them, however, caution is needed when using these file types. Images formats like WebP are not supported by all browsers including Internet Explorer, therefore it is important to serve the correct image type for these browsers. WebP Express is a plugin we use often. It serves WebP format images for all supported browsers, however for those that don’t support it yet, the browser loads the orignal image format eg jpeg, png etc.
4. Minify your JS and CSS files
If you run your website through Google PageSpeed Insights tool, you will probably see a notification directing you to reduce the size/number of your CSS and JS files. What this means is that by reducing the number of CSS and JS calls and the size of those files, you can improve your website page speed.
A few plugins that will achieve this include:
- AutoOptimize (free)
- Lightspeed Cache (free)
- WP Rocket (paid)
5. Deactivate any unnecessary plugins
Keeping unused plugins on your WordPress installation will add a huge amount of information to your websites database – information which isn’t needed. It is better to get rid of the plugins that you don’t use.
The greatest advantage to improving your website page speed is to the user. Faster websites mean less load time and less frustration for users – the end result being higher conversion rates.