How To Improve WordPress Site Speed

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Site load speed is an important factor that determines your visitors user experience (UX) and therefore a ranking factor in google.

As such if you want to improve the performance of your website in search engine rankings, you need to pay attention to your site load speed.

Site Load Speed Test

You can check your current site load speed by doing a site load speed test at tool.pingdom.com which you can do for free as seen on the screenshot below.

As seen above, the site load speed for my blog is 422 milliseconds, which is exceptionally fast. Anything under 1 second is exceptionally fast and provides a great user experience (UX).

How Did I Get My Site To Load So Fast

Well, for 1, I use a really good hosting service available through wealthy affiliate called siterubix. Siterubix is one of the most advanced website building and hosting platforms available and is available for free via wealthy affiliate.

As a premium member of wealthy affiliate you have access to SitePlus+, which has a built in feature to improve your site load speed. All you need to do is to turn is on.

You find it under site manager as seen below and then click on SitePlus+.

You will be taken to the page below after which you just turn on the feature.

Secondly I’m careful not to use too many plugins on my wordpress site. Siterubix recommends not using more than 5 plugins as a general rule as this can have a detrimental impact on your site load speed.

How Do You Determine Which Plugin Is Slowing Down Your Site Load Speed

You can either check your site load speed by doing a site load speed test at tool.pingdom.com before you install the plugin and then do another test after you install the plugin and see if there is a significant difference in the site load speed.

Alternatively you can use a plugin called P3 (Plugin Performance Profiler).

This is a free wordpress plugin which will enable you to profile your installed plugins to determine which plugins are having the most impact on your site load speed. You’ll find it by searching for it under WP plugins as seen below.

Once you’ve installed and activated the plugin you will find it under tools as seen below. You will then start the scan and select auto scan. The plugin will then run the test which should take a few seconds after which you will select view results.

The results will be displayed as seen above. The plugin gives you the total impact of your plugins on site load speed and a breakdown by plugin.

You will then be in a position to determine whether the plugins you’ve installed are worth keeping.

I hope you’ve found value in the content on this post.

I’d love to hear your thoughts about this post. Please share your comments on the comments section below.

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17 thoughts on “How To Improve WordPress Site Speed

  1. Wow Zola,

    Thanks so much for your help about how I can improve my website speed. You have really given me so much of information to work on.

    I did not know about the plugin you talked about. Which can help you know which of your website plugins is making your site slow down.

    Thanks so much for sharing. I really appreciate this information so much

    Stephen.

    1. Hi Stephen. I’m glad that you could get some benefit out of this post. Site load speed is something which I never paid attention to until recently when I realized how important it is to search engine ranking.

      Thanks
      Zola

  2. Hi Zola,

    Thank you for this posting with all the information on site speed. I love how pingdom sends me emails when my site is down. I just wish I knew why it goes down, for a few minutes at a time. How can I find out more about that?

  3. Thank you for the excllent information on this all important topic of site speed. Do you know if I download a plug in, when not in use can I deactivate it and then activate it when I want to run a test?

    1. Hi Tania. So long as a plugin is installed it will affect site speed as it uses up resources of the server. My advise is to uninstall the plugins that you don’t use.

  4. Wow. Great info here.

    I checked out my site and it’s currently at 1.08 seconds, which I think is still respectable, but I know it can go faster. I just need to find the way to make that happen.

    Does pingdom test for mobile speed, or just desktop?

    1. Hi Craig. 1.08 is very respectable indeed. Its only when it takes more than 3 secs to load that we should be concerned. That is a good question Craig and I don’t have the answer for you. It would be great if you take the challenge to find out and let me know via this comment thread so others may benefit. However google does vale a tool called page speed insights which measures both the mobile and desktop site load speed.

  5. Zola, you have just solved the proverbial dilemma of how my site will react! So many thanks for this very informative article. I will have to read this over several times before i can truly assimilate all this information. Great job! In peace and gratitude, ariel

    1. Hi Ariel. I’m glad I could offer some help in helping you solve the question of how your site load speed will react after installing a new plugin.

  6. Zola,

    It is such a nice tool to let us know our sites speed. Our sites speed is so important. We lose so many potential visitors if our websites don’t load speedily.

    It is a great idea to check it after we’ve installed a plugin. Very informative post.

    1. Hi Lisa. Thanks for taking the time to read this post and commenting. You are quiet right that poor site load speed may result in a loss of potential return visitors not to mention ranking penalties from search engines. I’m glad you found value in this post.

  7. Zola, this information was incredibly helpful to me. My site speed is now getting better but it takes work to figure out which plug-in(s) are hogging the most load times. I also downloaded P3 to see which plug-ins were the worst as far as speed ratings go. This article helped me immensely.

    Thank you, Zola.

  8. Hi Zola, It is a timely article for me. Some of my clients informed me that my website upload time is very long. Your article gives me part of explanation. I used the website you suggest and found that it took 4 min for the sites to upload. Next, we will follow your suggestion and check plugin (we have more than 10 plugin in my site!) one by one. I wish that by replacing the cloaked plugin, my site should upload normally.

    Thanks for sharing.

  9. Dear Zola,

    Thanks for the great insights and really very useful site you shared with us.

    Its very important for us to know our site speed. Whether the plugin loads in front or in the back helps to determine whether to use those plugins or not. Very useful and Thanks again!

    Your Friend,
    Paul

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