Website Speed is one of the crucial ranking factors. It’s been the latest update that’s been required by Google’s latest update that’s been made to their algorithm. In this blog post, you’ll learn some easy tools and speed hacks to boost WordPress website Vitals Score.
There are so many factors that will help you boost your website speed thereby boosting your Website Vitals Score. So, are you ready to learn how to make your WordPress Website load faster?
If you learn how to speed up your website, you will improve the overall experience for all your website visitors, customers, etc. your website traffic will increase, your SEO rankings will also go way up.
So, let’s get started with our speed hacks that will help you with your website vitals score.
Why Should You Speed Up WordPress Website?
Most websites take a lot of time to load. What this does is, it affects the user experience there by it affects the ability to convert more visitors into customers. So, if your website loads faster, by faster I mean in a matter of few seconds, you’re good to go.
There have been studies that showed that just by a delay in a few seconds or even 1 second delay caused the conversion ratees to drop by 7%. About 53% of website visitors leave even if takes 3 seconds or more to load. That’s super critical for business.
Nowadays, a slow website is not good for business. It frustrates website visitors. People stop doing any activity on a slow website. They’ll not buy your products or services.
If your website speeds up with the techniques we give below, your search engine rankings will go up. Since it’s the most important ranking factor starting May 2021. You will be able to know how it’s going to affect your website visitors experience.
Now let me teach you how to figure out your WordPress website speed.
Check Your WordPress Website Speed.
There are many ways to check your website speed. But I want you to follow the easy way.. It is by using MonsterInsights, so if you install this plugin, you’ll be able to take the speed test and see a speed report right on your WordPress dashboard. You don’t have to go anywhere to do that.
MonsterInsights is the #1 premium and the best Google Analytics plugin for WordPress websites. You don’t have to do anything to get this to work. Just click and install and connect it your Google Analytics account, it then begins to track everything and give you more data than Google Analytics account could ever decode for you. You’ll be able to track features such as E-Commerce tracking, file downloads tracking, form conversion tracking and so much in just a few clicks.
Here is what is so best about the plugin:
Here’s how you can get started:
Go ahead, download and install MonsterInsights plugin on your WordPress website. Then you’ll have to connect it with your Google Analytics account. Follow the instructions and you’ll be set.
Now, to generate your page speed report to see how fast or slow your website is, head over to Insights >> Reports >> Site Speed. There you can click on Run Audit button and be able to generate your website speed report like the one below.
Now that the speed report has been generated, you’ll also be able to see what needs work like the one below. Follow them and fix your website speed.
Just by following the instructions that pages gives you, you’ll do fine.
Just incase you need to know the meanings of the terms. Here’s what they are:
First Contentful Paint – This measures the load time of things like images and other media objects on your website.
Time To Interactive – It’s actually the time it takes to first load and when it no longer starts loading. This time difference is the time to interactive.
Time Blocking Time – Time it takes for people to interact with your website.
Server Response Time – The amount of time it takes for the server to respond to any kind of request you send. It can be a data request or even data you need to load your website.
So if you’ve completed the speed test, you’ll know your website load speed. Fix them ASAP.
If you now want to improve the loading time, here’s what you need to know.
Speed Hacks To Speed Your WordPress Website.
In order to calculate your website speed, there are a lot of factors that come into play. It starts with your website hosting company and it’s plan that you’ve chosen, the plugins you’re using on your website, image loading speed because of the files sizes, the scripts that are running on your website, etc.
Let me show you some speed hacks that will help you dramatically improve your website speed.
1. Choosing The Right WordPress Hosting Company.
If your Website hosting is bad or if you’re not hosting in the right company, it greatly affect your website loading speed. Your hosting plan is where all your website files and content is stored. Slow hosting causes slow load times. You don’t want that.
Normally, most people choose shared hosting which means you’ll be using the same space that others use. You can opt for Managed WordPress hosting and you’ll have a dedicated hosting space. This means if there are any issues, they’ll handle your needs separately.
Here are some benefits of a dedicated WordPress hosting – Automatic Backups and Updates, Advanced Security Features, etc.
2. Install A Caching Plugin Improves Response Time.
A caching plugin drastically improves your website loading speed. This means it improves your response time. It means your load speed goes up – It means just by caching it, you improve your website load time.
Every time someone loads your website, it has to access the hosting and go through a process to acquiring all the resources to load it up. So if a lot of people are loading your website, it will slow it down. But that cache plugin will solve this problem.
Below is a picture that explains the process:
This plugin will be able to take the cached version and show it to user who load your website. Because you’re using this plugin, your website doesn’t have to go through a lot of steps to load every single file on your webpage or website.
There are free and premium plugins that can help you with caching your website:
Free Cache Plugins – WP Super Cache helps you with this issue.
Premium Cache Plugins – WP Rocket. It’s user-friendly because it will allow you to cache your website in a single click and it also has other features.
So if you’ve hosted your website with a different hosting company, they’ll recommend their own caching plugin as a solution. You can go with that as well. You should know that if you’re using the Managed hosting service, you will not have to install a plugin separately. It’s inbuilt with your plans.
3. Optimize Images With A Compression Tool.
If your website has images that load slowly, that’s mostly because your image file size is large. This affects your website load speed. Due to this, your visitor will not have a great experience. This can be improved if you use a compression tool or plugin.
Generally whenever you upload an image onto your website, it uploads as the large file size. The way to reduce the file size is to use image compression tools like TinyPNG. It’s a free tool or website that helps you compress both PNG and JPG image files.
It’s pretty easy to compress an image. Just upload that image file and it will compress the file size, meaning it will reduce the file size. You’ll also be able to see the compressed size there itself. Re-upload them to reduce the file size even further.
Below is an example for you.
You can also compress images with an photo editing software. If you change the dimensions and try to save them at 60% or less with the PNG or JPG file format, the file size drops.
4. Use CDN To Improve Website Load Time.
CDN is the content delivery network that helps you load your website. If you use it or it is in your plan, your website will load faster.
Regular hosting plans don’t have CDN, but if it does, you’re in luck.
Hosting plans with CDN service loads your website in an instant. It doesn’t matter the contents on the page. It has got a cache file that helps you show websites faster.
One cool thing about CDN is that no matter where you try to load your website from, CDN loads your website faster from the nearest server location.
Below is an image to help you understand.
5. Update Your WordPress Website To The Latest Update.
On the backend of your WordPress dashboard, you’ll be getting notifications of the latest updates. Updates help you improve that existing thing.
Make sure to update your WordPress website to the latest WordPress version. That you can find on the backend itself. Also, along with it, update the plugins and themes too.
With every update, you’ll see new features being added, bugs being fixed. It should improve your website speed and load time.
All your updates can be found under Dashboard >> Updates. If you find that there are updates, update them immediately.
Below is an example for you.
6. Use A Fast Loading Theme.
Another speed hack is to use a theme that is built to load faster and help your website perform faster. A website that’s built for style but not built for performance is something you should be careful of.
Website themes affect your load time because of all the codes and scripts that are running on the background. If they are minified, they’ll load faster. You should pick themes that are clean and simple for performance.
Themes that have a lot of animations, complex layouts, etc. are not the best use of website. Themes like that can slow your website speed if they’re not taken into consideration. You can use the Astra Theme because they’re good for performance and load times.
7. Stop Using Custom Fonts On Your Website.
Every single theme has fonts that help make it what it is. But most people start installing custom fonts, fonts that they upload manually to showcase a different styling. That’s not good. It delays your website load time, it may look good now because of the font style you like, but it hurts performance.
The advice here is to pick one font and use it throughout your website. One font is all you need. Most use two but too many affects the whole website. You don’t want it to slow down your website. Also, installing a custom font and not using the one that comes readily available with the theme is not a good choice.
Never mess with fonts as it delays everything.
8. Deactivate Plugins That You Don't Use.
Another speed hack comes from deactivating plugins that you don’t use. A lot of plugins installed on the backend, will affect your server load time and thereby affect your website speed.
If you remove them or deactivate them, you’ll be able to free up so much server space. Now your website will load faster, you’ll no longer worry about speed.
In order to deactivate plugins that you’re not using, go to Plugins on your WordPress website backend and find and deactivate them now.
Below is an image to help you out.
9. Install Only Fast Loading WordPress Plugins.
Now that you’ve removed the ones you’re not using, remove the inactive ones too and install only the fast loading ones.
The thing with plugins is that, they are all coded but it comes with huge file size or affects so much of your website performance. So, if you want your website performance to go up, you’ll have to find the fast loading ones. To find those kinds of plugins, you’ll have to do a speed check before and after installing the plugin and compare them.
Now with the data you have, you’ll instantly know what to do. But don’t forget to keep the most necessary ones.
This speed hack might take time, but it’s worth it for your website visitors.
Every WordPress plugin and Theme has files that loads your website. Now if these render blocking scripts are activated, your website doesn’t load. So, now you have to fix this issue.
11. Optimize Your Website's Database.
Another speed hack or technique would be to improve your website’s database.
What does that mean? You’ll be removing files or data that’s no longer useful. Remove all the unwanted data that you found isn’t serving any purpose. This will dramatically improve your website speed as some serve space has been cleared.
You can this plugin called WP-Sweep. It’s a free plugin and it will help you to clean up all the things on your website like tags, posts, drafts, etc.
Below is an example use of that plugin.
12. Video And Audio File Upload Hack.
We all want to upload all the videos and audio files on to our website directly, but that is not a good practice as it consumes a lot of space.
This affects load time and speed. It can take up a lot of space and bandwidth on your website. This will then cause it load slowly, increase the website backup space, then affect the website’s performance.
The solution here is to use the embed feature. You can embed all kinds of media files. You can embed YouTube videos, Images, etc. Every single one of these media files whether audio or video has an embed function. Copy that and use it.
Embedding a file is pretty easy now. Click on the embed block and you’ll be asked to paste the URL. Then click Embed button. Done.
This is how embedding things rather than uploading them can help improve your website speed.
13. Split Lengthy Articles Into Multiple Pages On Your Website.
Having lengthy articles is good for google rankings but it can negatively affect user experience and load times. So the best practice is to turn them into multiple pages.
Below is a demo example that shows a blog post split into multiple pages.
Like I told you earlier, long blog posts are great but try to break it up into multiple pages. Now that long post will have images, videos, etc. that affects website’s overall load speed.
If you break it down into smaller chunks, it will be super helpful to your readers and also offers a greater user experience.
To split up a blog post, head over to your blog post, click on page break block
This will split it up for you.
Most people still use the classic editor, so you can use this code to break down the article.
There’s also this shortcut keys if you want to use: Alt + Shift + P.
14. Take The Comments Section To Another Page.
Having a lot of comments on your posts shows social proof but having too much isn’t good at all.
Having too many can slow down your website speed. You can take the rest of the comments to another page so that there are multiple pages of them, and if someone wants to read them all, they can click on them to see it.
Here’s where you go to take the comments section to another page:
Settings >> Discussion. If you keep scrolling down to the Other comment Settings section, you’ll see a box that says Break Comments Into Pages. Check that box.
15. Start Using Excerpts On Your Homepage and Archives Page.
Blog posts and comments going to multiple pages will improve page speed. Now if your blog posts or home pages have a lot of content, then you must switch from full summary display mode to excerpt display mode.
Below is an example.
If you didn’t know, WordPress displays full length articles whether it’s on your Homepage or your archives page. If the full post or page loads, it will affect the load time.
Displaying full blog posts removes the mystery. Because of that, people will not go and click on that post to read it, this there will be no pageviews or time spent on that page or post.
If you switch to excerpt mode, you’ll be able to show excerpts and that is a great thing.
To turn on excerpt modes head over to Settings >> Reading.
For each post in a feed, include – change that setting to Summary.
Below is an image to help you.
16. Install and Run A Backup Plugin During Low Traffic Times.
If you’re building a website, you need to install the backup plugin. But backup plugin can create a lot of backups which means a lot of server space use. Thus the website performance is affected.
You don’t want to slow down our website, so where there is low traffic on your website, turn on the backup. Now, your website visitors won’t even feel the dip on the website load speeds, etc. Now your data also will be safe because of your backup.
You should schedule backups only when you know website visitor times will drop or will be low.
17. Install and Use the Lazy Load Plugin.
If you install the Lazy load plugin it will help your website tremendously. What this plugin does is, your website has a lot of media files like images, videos, galleries, comments, etc.
So instead of loading them all at one time, it will only load the ones that comes across your screen. So if a visitor scrolls to the bottom of the page, it will show only the things that are visible on that section where the visitors wants to see.
Basically, it will only display the files that are visible to the browsing screen.
If you install Lazy Load by WP Rocket, you can set this up. It’s free to use and within a few clicks you can configure them and get your website loading faster.
Now that you understood the importance of the new Website Vitals score and the speed hacks that can improve your website speed and load times, implement them.
If you have any questions, please let us know in the comments below.
Call to Action: Install MonsterInsights Plugin and Monitor your Website Speed.