If more and more traffic is coming into your site, it’s high time that you find ways to speed it up. How exactly do you do that? Well, you’ve come to the right place. In this post, we’re going to list seven ways you can get your WordPress website ready for new influxes of traffic and better for SEO. Let’s get to it.
Find an excellent web hosting provider.
Web hosts are a dime a dozen these days, and a lot of them are inexpensive. But of course, not all of them are as efficient as you want them to be. In a lot of cases, it’s better to pay premium rates for better services, so stay away from shared hosting even if they boast about having “unlimited” bandwidth. Try to look for dedicated cloud servers that are well-maintained.
Choose a well-optimized theme.
Building a WordPress site from the ground up always starts with a theme. You could go for a free theme, but often these don’t get updated for bug fixes and other optimizations. Premium themes get consistent support from their developers, and they’re kept very lightweight. You want a clear framework that’s uncluttered with unnecessary plugins, widgets, and sliders, etc. Putting many elements on a site slows down its loading speed.
Use a Content Delivery Network (CDN)
Websites get visitors from all the globe, and you want yours to load quickly for every user. You can ensure this by paying for a CDN service. CDNs are networks of servers, and users can use the one that’s closest to them. The result? Faster loading times. CDNs also help with caching, which is the process of temporarily storing info from your site. Vast amounts of data compromise the site’s speed, and a CDN can help with that immensely.
Manage your post revisions.
On WordPress, you’re given the option to save original posts when you revise them. If you’re in the habit of revising posts, the space for your original content adds up, thus making your site slow. Now, you also have the option to limit the number of post revisions you can make. At a certain point, you can decide whether or not you want to save past versions of a post. The optimal number of times is two or three.
Optimize your content.
Varying up your content with photos and videos is great for SEO, and we all know that they should be of high quality. But you can’t just load up your site with amazing visuals without compressing them first. For example, you could compress a 2MB image down to 800KB (ish) without compromising its quality.
As for videos, consider having them hosted by another site that’s better equipped for larger video files like YouTube. You could make your own YouTube channel and upload all your videos there. Not only will they be in the same place, but you can also always embed them on your site. Videos are proven to increase conversion rates, and you don’t have to burden your website with them.
Combine JS and CSS files.
CSS and JS files affect how quickly your website loads. It’s a smart move to combine or at least minimize them for faster loading speeds. If you’re unsure about the condition of these files, try the Google PageSpeed Insight tool to see what you’ve got under the hood. If all of this sounds like gibberish to you, Google has a simple tutorial on how to minimize these files by yourself. If you can’t be bothered to do it yourself, you could use a plugin that will automatically do it for you.
Don’t go overboard with external scripts.
External scripts are beneficial, especially when it comes to creating marketing strategies and having a healthy online community. But remember not to have too much. Keep only the essentials like tools for tracking (analytics) and maybe a simple commenting system. Otherwise, you run the risk of decreasing your site’s performance rating.
WordPress is an excellent platform for making websites, but it won’t optimize one for you. That, you have to do yourself (or pay a team to do it). Just remember that your site’s speed is a significant factor in your online reputation. The faster your website is, the more likely that people will want to stay on it.