Let’s make the WordPress faster
As many of you already know about 2 years ago Google lunched a project called “Let’s make the web faster”. Today we will talk about the same thing only for WordPress. The popular term “size does matter” is in full swing when it comes to WordPress site speed and to all other non-WordPress sites as well, however in this case we need to size-down quite a bit to achieve best possible performance.
Best (better) practices to increase WordPress site speed
It’s no secret that anything we need there will be a plugin for that right? Well true in most scenarios this is definitely way to go, I for one would almost always recommend a plugin -vs hand coding. There are few available plugins that will increase your site speed and sure you are always free to use any of them.
Speaking from my personal experience only and managing many WordPress sites for my clients on monthly basis I can say that plugins for this are one heck of a tool, but I needed more results and faster page speed. (yes even beyond that)
What I did not want was:
- No static content at any time
- No block to search engine crawlers
To explain. If you are running a business or just a Blog it doesn’t matter, you need things to be fast correct? Meaning that when visitor comes to your site everything needs to open fast and without any hesitations. At the same time you also need the search engine visibility too, not to mention much needed dynamic content that gets updated in real-time. Honestly, years ago I switched to WordPress just because it’s not static. Static pages can also delay crawlers, when crawlers are delayed our information is sent to search engines slower as well.
All right enough of this, show us how
Patients is a virtue my friend, Wait, No! That does not apply here, carry on. Little while ago I switched my hosting provider and I haven’t pushed all I had before, but it will be great start for you. First let me show you something, both image are the latest performance tests, one generate without modifications and another one with (minute difference between two reports).
And this was achieved without any plugins, nothing touched in codes, not even a slight PHP changes and still huge jump in above numbers and overall site performance. As you can see is that YSlow grades this site with 90% and clean A, while Page Speed is at 87% and B. See old report and here is the new report. Sure this can and it will be better once I find more spare time to play with and I will make updates too.
Simply open your .htaccess and paste this in.
Header unset Pragma
Header unset ETag
Header append Vary Accept-Encoding
ExpiresDefault "access plus 1 month"
ExpiresDefault "access plus 1 week"
AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE text/plain
AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE text/html
AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE text/xml
AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE text/css
AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE application/xml
AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE application/xhtml+xml
AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE application/rss+xml
# Or, compress certain file types by extension:
And also http://pastebin.com/7154etKR in case that above does not copy right.
Now the very last I did was minified the css, while keeping my original CSS in style-dev.css for easier management. So that my friends is how we can increase the speed of our WordPress sites. Below you will find more resources and great tools to improve your site performance as well. All you need is GTmetrix for the start and ask me anything you didn’t understand or that needs more explaining.
- Let’s make the web faster (articles/tutorials)
- WordPress Optimization/Caching
- Using site speed in web search ranking (older article from Webmaster Central Blog)
- Why Marketers Must Care About Site Speed (Search Engine Watch)