The Ultimate Guide to Boost WordPress Speed & Performance

Want to accelerate WordPress? Fast loading pages improve user experience, pageviews, and WordPress SEO. This article will reveal the best WordPress speed optimization strategies to speed up your website.

WordPress performance optimization
This article covers WordPress performance improvement, unlike typical “X best WordPress caching plugin” lists or “X tips to speed up WordPress” tutorials.

We covered why speed is crucial, what slows down your WordPress site, and immediate solutions to speed up WordPress.

on simplify our definitive guide on speeding up your WordPress site, we built a table of articles.

Why WordPress Site Speed Matters?
From 2000 to 2016, the average human attention span declined from 12 seconds to 7 seconds, according to studies.

Webmasters, what does this mean?

Your material and persuasion time is limited.

Slow websites may lose visitors before they load.

A StrangeLoop case study of Amazon, Google, and other large companies found that a 1-second page load time delay can cost 7% in conversions, 11% in page views, and 16% in customer satisfaction.

Website speed.
Additionally, Google and other search engines have begun penalizing slower websites by ranking them lower in search results, resulting in fewer visitors.

To conclude, if you want more traffic, subscribers, and cash from your WordPress website, make it fast!

WordPress Website Speed Check?
Beginners often think their website is fine since it’s fast on their machine. That’s disastrous.

Modern browsers like Chrome cache your page and prefetch it when you start typing a URL since you visit it often. Your website loads quickly.

First-time visitors to your website may not have the same experience.

Users in different regions will have a varied experience.

We recommend testing your website speed using IsItWP’s WordPress speed test.

It tests website speed online for free.

IsItWP speed tester

What’s a good website speed after a speed test?

Page load times under 2 seconds are good.

However, making it speedier is better. Small modifications can save load time by 50% or more.

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What Slows WordPress?
Speed test reports usually contain several suggestions for improvement. Most of that is technical language, which novices find difficult.

Learning what slows your website is the key to increasing performance and making smarter long-term decisions.

WordPress slowdowns are caused by:

Website speed can be affected by poorly designed web hosting servers.
WordPress Configuration – Without cached pages, your WordPress site would overload your server and lag or crash.
Page Size—Mostly web-unoptimized photos.
Poorly written plugins might drastically down your website.
External scripts—Ads, font loaders, etc.—can also affect page performance.
Let’s speed up WordPress now that you know what slows it down.

Pro Tip: Want fewer plugins? Use WPCode, a sophisticated WordPress code snippet management plugin. It can reduce 5 plugins.

Quality WordPress Hosting
WordPress hosting affects website performance. Bluehost and Siteground optimize websites for performance.

Shared hosting clients share server resources. If your adjacent site gets a lot of traffic, it can slow down your website by affecting server performance.

Managed WordPress hosting, however, optimizes server configurations for WordPress. Managed WordPress hosting businesses provide automatic backups, WordPress upgrades, and enhanced security settings.

Managed WordPress hosting is best with WPEngine. They’re the industry’s most popular. WPEngine coupon.

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Easy WordPress Speedup (No Coding)
We know that changing your website settings can scare newcomers, especially non-techies.

Don’t worry—you’re not alone. We helped thousands of WordPress users increase performance.

No coding is needed to speed up your WordPress site.

Point-and-clickers can accomplish this!

WordPress Caching Plugin
WordPress pages are “dynamic,” meaning they’re created each time someone sees a post or page.

WordPress finds, organizes, and displays the necessary information to build your pages.

This procedure has many steps, which can slow down your website when many people visit it.

We recommend caching plugins for all WordPress sites. Caching can speed up WordPress by 2–5x.

Here’s how.

Your caching plugin copies the page after the initial load and offers it to subsequent users instead of regenerating it.

Page caching
As seen in the graphics above, your WordPress server receives data from a MySQL database and PHP files when a user visits. It then creates user-facing HTML content.

Caching speeds up a lengthy procedure.

We propose WP Rocket (paid) or WP Super Cache (free).

See our step-by-step guide to installing and configuring WP Super Cache on WordPress. Your guests will notice the difference.

WordPress hosting companies like Bluehost and SiteGround offer caching.

SiteGround Optimizer

SiteGround pre-installs SG Optimizer on WordPress sites. This plugin contains all the great capabilities of professional WordPress caching plugins like WP Rocket.

Cache SiteGround.
Best of all, it’s tailored for SiteGround Google Cloud servers for optimal performance.

Performance options include caching, database optimization, CSS minification, GZIP compression, WebP image conversion in WordPress, and more.

Dynamic caching speeds up eCommerce websites.

Bluehost Caching

Bluehost users can enable caching in My Sites » Performance.

Caching Bluehost
Caching is built-in and turned on by default with managed WordPress hosting.

Bonus: Use a web application firewall like CloudFlare or Sucuri with caching plugins for best speed.

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Accelerate Images
Accelerating images
Images make material more engaging. Colored images increase readability by 80%, according to research.

However, unoptimized photos may hurt more than assist. Non-optimized photos are a common speed issue on newbie websites.

Use photo editing software to optimize photos for the web before uploading them from your phone or camera.

These photographs can be big. Depending on the image file format and compression in your editing software, you can reduce image size by 5x.

WPBeginner only uses JPEG and PNG images.

What’s the difference?

PNG is uncompressed. Uncompressed images are higher-quality and more detailed. Its bigger file size makes it slower to load.

However, JPEG, a compressed file format, diminishes image quality but is much smaller.

Which image format should we choose?

JPEG is used for multicolored photos.
PNG is used for simpler or transparent images.
We mostly use JPEGs.

This chart shows the file sizes and compression tools we could have used for the StrangeLoop image above.

Speedometer image
As the figure shows, image format can greatly impact website performance.

See our step-by-step instruction on how to save web-optimized photos in Photoshop and other popular editing tools without sacrificing quality.

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WordPress Performance Optimization Tips
Your site will load faster after adding a caching plugin and optimizing images.

Use the following best practices to maintain your website as quick as feasible.

These tips don’t require code. But employing them will prevent common website slowdowns.

Update WordPress.
Update WordPress.
WordPress is regularly updated. Each update will add features and repair bugs and security issues. WordPress themes and plugins may be updated regularly.

Website owners must update WordPress, themes, and plugins. Not doing so may slow and insecure your site.

See our post on WordPress updates for more information.

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Optimize Background Tasks
Scheduled WordPress background operations run in the background. WordPress background tasks:

WordPress Backup tasks
WordPress scheduled post cron tasks
WordPress update cron tasks
Content-seeking spiders
Cron jobs for scheduled posts and updates barely affect website performance.

However, backup plugins and search engine crawling might slow a website.

WordPress backup plugins should only operate during low website traffic. Adjust backup frequency and data.

For instance, you should not create a full daily backup if you only publish new content twice a week.

To avoid server strain, use a SaaS solution for real-time backups.

In Google Search Console, monitor crawl reports. Error-prone crawls might slow or stop your website.

See our entire Google Search Console guide for beginners to modify crawl rate.

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Homepage and Archives Excerpts
Use excerpts
WordPress displays entire articles on your homepage and archives by default. This slows your homepage, categories, tags, and archive pages.

Showing entire articles on these pages discourages readers from visiting the article. This can lower pageviews and site time.

You can display excerpts on archive sites to speed up loading times.

Instead of “Full Text,” pick “For each article in a feed, show: Summary” in Settings » Reading.

WordPress runs faster with excerpts.
See our article on full post vs summary (excerpt) in WordPress archive pages for the pros and downsides of displaying summaries.

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Comment Pages
Page comments
Many blog comments? Congratulations! That shows audience engagement.

Loading all those comments can slow your site.

WordPress has that built-in. Check the “Break comments into pages” box under Settings » Discussion.

Page break comments
See our WordPress comment pagination guide for details.

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Use a CDN.
Remember how we said that site loading times may vary by location?

Web hosting server location affects site speed.

Say your web hosting firm has US servers. Americans load faster than Indians.

Your visitors can load faster with a Content Delivery Network (CDN).

Global servers form a CDN. Each server stores “static” website files.

Unlike WordPress pages, which are “dynamic,” static files include images, CSS, and JavaScript.

A CDN serves static files to visitors from the nearest server. The CDN makes your web hosting server speedier.

This infographic demonstrates.


Use Sucuri, Bunny CDN, or Cloudflare.

It enhances WordPress caching plugins for faster loading times.

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Don’t Upload Audio/Video to WordPress.
Upload videos to YouTube.
WordPress automatically displays audio and video files in an HTML5 player when uploaded.

Never do that!

Audio and video require bandwidth. Even with “unlimited” bandwidth, your web server may charge overage fees or shut down your site.

Hosting huge media files increases backup sizes and makes WordPress backup restoration difficult.

Instead, utilize a hosting provider like YouTube, Vimeo, DailyMotion, SoundCloud, etc. They have capacity!

WordPress automatically embeds videos when you paste their URLs into posts.

Our WordPress video embedding guide explains how.

For WordPress podcast website performance, we recommend Blubrry.

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Fast Theme
Select a fast theme.
Speed optimization is crucial while choosing a website theme. Some stunning themes are badly coded and delay your site.

A simple theme is better than one with complicated layouts, flashy animations, and other needless elements. Quality WordPress plugins can always add those functionalities.

StudioPress, Themify, CSSIgniter, and Astra sell well-coded, fast WordPress themes. Our WordPress theme selection guide can also help.

See our WordPress theme switching guide before activating your new theme.

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Faster Plug-ins
Choose quicker website plugins.
Poorly written WordPress plugins load unnecessary baggage. This slows your site and increases page load speed.

We share professional picks of the top WordPress plugins to help you choose. We prioritize performance, usability, and user experience.

Our top WordPress plugin categories are below.

WPForms—WordPress’s fastest and easiest contact form plugin.
All in One SEO – Powerful WordPress SEO plugin that prioritizes website performance to boost SEO rankings.
MonsterInsights – Best WordPress Google analytics plugin. Includes local gtag.js loading to boost Google Core Web Vitals score.
Shared Counts—Social media plugins load scripts poorly. Shared Counts is one of the fastest WordPress social media plugins.
SeedProd: drag-and-drop WordPress landing page plugin for speedy landing pages.
You can try independently of our suggestions. Run speed tests before and after plugin installation to compare performance.

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Advanced WordPress Speed Optimization
The WordPress optimization best practices and fundamental performance guidelines above should significantly speed up your site.

Every millisecond counts. Make more adjustments to reach the fastest speed.

Some of the following tips need PHP or site file editing. For safety, backup your site first.

Pages Long Posts
Page lengthy posts.
In-depth blog posts are popular with readers. Search engines rank longer content higher.

Long-form articles with many photographs may slow loading speeds.

Split lengthier entries into many pages.

WordPress has that built-in. Just add <!––nextpage––> tag to separate your article. Repeat that to split the article onto the next page.

See our post pagination tutorial for more details.

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Reduce External HTTP Requests
Reduce cross-domain HTTP requests
WordPress plugins and themes load many files from other websites. These files may contain scripts, stylesheets, and pictures from Google, Facebook, analytics services, etc.

Use some. It’s faster than hosting these files on your own website because they’re optimized for speed.

If your plugins make several of these requests, your website may slow down.

Disabling scripts and styles or consolidating them into one file reduces external HTTP requests. Disable plugin CSS and JavaScript with this tutorial.

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Lower Database Calls
Reduce database calls
This step requires PHP and WordPress template file familiarity.

Many WordPress themes are poorly coded. They flout WordPress best practices and make direct database calls or excessive database requests. Overworking your server can slow it down.

Even well-coded themes can make database calls to get your blog’s basics.

Whenever you see <?PHP starts a database call:

<html xmlns=”” dir=”<?php language_attributes();?>”>
Head profile=”″>
“Content-Type”=”<?php bloginfo(‘html_type’);?”
charset=”<?php bloginfo(‘charset’);?”
by WPCode

WordPress 1-click Use
Theme developers aren’t responsible. They can’t figure out your site’s language otherwise.

If you customize your site with a child theme, you can substitute these database calls with your own information to reduce database calls.

“xmlns=”” dir=”ltr”>
Head profile=”″>
“Content-Type”=”text/html; charset=UTF-8″/>
by WPCode

WordPress 1-click Use
Look for static information in your parent theme.

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Optimize WordPress Database
WordPress optimization
After a while, your WordPress database will have tons of data you don’t need. Optimizing your database by removing unneeded data improves performance.

WP-Sweep simplifies this. It deletes garbage posts, revisions, unneeded tags, etc. from your WordPress database. It optimizes database structure with a click.

See our WordPress database optimization guide.

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Limit Post-Revisions
Limit WordPress post modifications
WordPress stores post revisions. Users feel modifications can influence plugin database queries. If the plugin searches post revisions without exclusion, it may slow down your site.

Limit WordPress article modifications. Simply add this line to wp-config.php.

define(‘WP_POST_REVISIONS’, 4);
by WPCode

WordPress 1-click Use
This code restricts WordPress to saving only the last 4 revisions of each post or page and immediately deleting earlier revisions.

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Stop Hotlinking and Content Leaching
WordPress image protection
Quality WordPress material will likely be taken.

Other websites may serve your photographs from their URLs on your website instead of uploading them to their servers. They grab your web hosting bandwidth without providing any traffic.

Add this code to your.htaccess file to prevent WordPress image hotlinking.

#disable hotlinking of prohibited or modified pictures
RewriteEngine on
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER}!^$
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER}!^http(s)?://(www\.)? [NC]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER}!^http(s)?://(www\.)? [NC]
RewriteRule \.(jpg|jpeg|png|gif)$ [NC,F,L]
by WPCode

WordPress 1-click Use
Change to your domain.

See our article on four WordPress image theft prevention methods.

Some content scraping websites take your RSS feed and automatically upload it. Automated content theft can be prevented with our WordPress advice on blog content scraping.

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Lazy Load if Needed
Lazy load WordPress.
Lazy loading benefits blogs with many photos, video embeds, and photo galleries.

Lazy loading downloads only the images and videos the user will see. It replaces all images and videos with placeholders.

Your site loads images as a visitor scrolls down. Lazy load photos, videos, WordPress comments, and gravatars.

Lazy Load by WP Rocket works for pictures, iframes, and videos. See our WordPress sluggish load comments guide.

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DNS-Level Website Firewall
DNS-level firewall
WordPress firewall plugins block brute force, hacking, and malware. Firewall plugins vary.

Some run on your website, so attackers can reach your web server before being banned. This secures but slows.

Sucuri or Cloudflare DNS firewalls are recommended. These firewalls stop malicious queries from reaching your website.

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Fix HTTPS/SSL Errors Without Plugin
Fixing jumbled content with inspect tool
Mixed content issues may occur while switching to HTTPS/SSL.

Installing a plugin like Really Simple SSL fixes this, however it first catches all URLs and converts them to HTTPS before sending them to browsers.

This affects performance slightly. Manually correcting all URLs reduces this. See our WordPress SSL troubleshooting guide for information.

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Latest PHP Version
WordPress is mostly PHP-based. Server-side languages run on your hosting server.

WordPress hosting businesses employ the most stable PHP version. Your hosting business may use an older PHP version.

PHP 7 is twice as quick. Your website must take advantage of that enormous performance gain.

The Version Info plugin shows your site’s PHP version.

The plugin displays PHP version in WordPress admin dashboard footer after activation.

WordPress dashboard PHP.
Ask your hosting provider to update PHP versions below 7. If they cannot, switch WordPress hosting companies.

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That’s it! This article should help you speed up WordPress.

Try these methods. Test your website speed before and after applying these recommended practices. These WordPress performance improvements will surprise you.

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