So, you want to know how to optimise WordPress and speed up your website? Well, it might actually be easier than you thought…

I’m going to give you some quick and easy steps which any WordPress website or blog owner can follow and you’ll have your website running super fast, in almost no time at all. An optimised WordPress website will not only improve your users’ browsing experience and keep them on your site longer, but it can also improve your sites search engine rank.

Here are 5 simple, easy to implement steps to improve your websites speed and keep Google and your website visitors happy…

#1 – Get a free speed report and check your websites speed

Before you start looking at optimising your WordPress website, you’ll firstly need to understand where it is being held back. In order to do this, you will need to get yourself a website speed report.

GT Metrix - Website Speed Analysis Report

GT Metrix – Website Speed Analysis

There are various websites which can give you a completely free speed report including Google PageSpeed Insights, GT Metrix, and Pingdom are among the best.

However, we personally recommend GT Metrix as this gives a much broader and detailed overview of your websites performance. GT Metrix analyses your site based on both Google PageSpeed and Yahoo YSlow metrics. It also gives you an indication of whether there are any issues with your web hosting server.

Most of the issues on the generated reports you can easily resolve on your own, but if you’re not comfortable with this, or for some of the more advanced recommendations, we can help you with our WordPress speed optimisation services.

We can also provide you with a free, no-obligation speed analysis report as a PDF and give you tailored, site-specific suggestions on what needs to be done to improve your sites speed.

So what do the speed analysis results mean?

Once you’ve got your websites speed analysis report, some of the recommendations can be a little overwhelming or too technical for blog owners to implement on their own. However, here’s an overview of some of the common recommendations that you should be able to, with a little help and guidance, do on your own:


#2 – Enable Caching on your WordPress website

Caching is the art of storing data for future re-use. WordPress websites display dynamic content – the page content is read from a database and then generated for display on the website. When a website gets multiple visitors, this results in multiple reads from the database and the web server has to repeatedly generate the pages for each visitor.

Enabling caching on your WordPress website effectively precompiles and saves your website’s content so that it doesn’t have to be read from the database or generated on each and every visitor or page view. This puts less load on your web server and speeds up your website considerably

There are various ways of enabling caching on your website. Depending on your web hosting, you may have caching enabled at the server level. If not, then you’ll need to consider installing one of the following caching plugins.

W3 Total Cache (Free)

W3 Total Cache is an incredibly powerful and extensive caching plugin for WordPress. It offers a huge range of features including, but not limited to, caching, minification and combining of your sites CSS and Javascript (don’t worry, we’ll cover this later), and integrations with the most popular CDN services (Content Delivery Networks).

Although W3 Total Cache is completely free and offers a multitude of useful features, it can be a little overwhelming and difficult to set up for the average user.

Download W3 Total Cache

WP Rocket (Premium)

WP Rocket is a premium/paid caching plugin which offers all of the features of W3 Total Cache and even more. Check out their feature comparison for more details.

The best thing about WP Rocket is that it’s much, much easier to set up for the average user – its settings screens are much friendlier on the eye and there are tips displayed throughout. Some of the notable extra features are database optimisation, Google Fonts optimisation and Lazy Loading of images and videos. Oh, and did I mention that we use WP Rocket for our own website?

Pricing for WP Rocket starts from just $39/£31/€33 for the plugin and 1 year of updates and support.

Purchase WP Rocket

#3 Optimise your website’s images

The most common recommendation for improving the speed of your website is optimising your website’s images. This is also one of the quickest and easiest ways to improve your WordPress websites speed, load times and overall PageSpeed/YSlow score. To put it simply, a smaller image file size results in a reduction in the time taken to download the image to your web browser and results in a faster load time.

So, what is image optimisation?


Matthew Bourne

Matthew Bourne

Specialist WordPress Developer

Hey, I'm Matthew. I've specialised in WordPress development for the last 8 years. With around 18 years experience in web development and it's associated technologies, I have a deep knowledge of WordPress, PHP, HTML, CSS and Javascript/jQuery. Apart from computers and the Internet, my hobbies include, but aren't limited to, gaming, mountain biking, cars, photography and astronomy.

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