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Fix your slow WordPress

5+ years experience of speeding up slow WordPress sites.

Speeding up WordPress sites is my addiction! If there’s even a 50ms improvement anywhere to be had, I will tell you about it. Having managed various sites from hundreds to millions of visitors, I believe page speed is important for any website, especially businesses. Much better user experience (especially on mobile), decreased server loads, and more conversions/sales.

Speed Optimization

QUICK SPEED-UP PACKAGE

~1-2 second loads
15000
  • ~1-2 second loads
  • Cache plugin installation & configuration
  • Theme settings configuration
  • Speed-testing and diagnosis – check queries, find bottlenecks
  • Plugin audit – remove (or replace) unneeded plugins
  • Media – resize, compress, format unoptimized images

PRO SPEED-UP PACKAGE

~1 second loads
25000
  • ~1 second loads
  • Everything from QUICK PACKAGE and…
  • Plugin tweaks – optimize settings and asset loading
  • Database – clean autoloads, convert tables to InnoDB
  • Htaccess – cleanup and optimize redirects
  • Webhosting – tweaking php, mysql, configs, etc
  • CDN tweaks – for those with CloudFlare, etc

Why is your site so slow?

Loading webpages is like pushing a car uphill. Either you increase the engine power (better webserver) or lighten the car (decrease code). The problem with many sites is slow servers and bloated code. One common tactic is installing more plugins, adding more code in attempt to “lighten” existing code. But this often fails as you can only lighten the code by removing it, not by adding to it. Adding code increases the chance of conflicts…breaking your design or functionality.

My speed philosophy:

  1. 1.Decrease code, not add to it.
  2. 2.Optimize for users, not test scores.
  3. 3.Caching is last.
  4. 4.Page loads must be INSTANT, 1 second is too slow for me!4. 

My sites are record-breaking fast because I manually optimize the code instead of relying on plugins and hacks. I set up caching only after everything is manually-optimized. Using caching first is only a band-aid fix that only decreases page weight and database queries on the cached copy of your site instead of the site itself. Doing it right not only gives you the best speeds but far less design/functionality issues in the future.

 

Optimizing for users is still something that’s not understood. Many people don’t know any better, chasing that perfect A+ 100/100 Google score without understanding it’s implications. Those scores are simply guidelines, nothing more. Hacking your site to score high can in fact make your site load slower for users and only further defeat the purpose of using those test scores. Why should you ignore those page scores? It’s because their grading scale is outdated and doesn’t reflect the latest web-server technology.

 

I like instant page loads and nothing else. It needs to appear right away as if it was already on your computer. Any perceived “load” time is too long for me. It is truly magical and life-changing when your site is so fast like you never thought would be possible.