The loading speed of your website is probably the most important thing when it comes to the first impression that it makes on your audience. As we already know, you can never get a second chance to make a great first impression. Moreover, people online now officially have a shorter attention span than goldfish, which is quite alarming. On average, they expect your website to load within 2 seconds and after 4 seconds of failing to do so, a significant portion of them may leave never to return. Needless to say, this is a concept that a lot of Australian entrepreneurs need to take into consideration. So, is there anything you can do to make your WordPress website load faster? Of course, there is. Here are six ideas that might just work.
Install a caching plugin
The first thing you need to understand is the fact that you don’t have to have your entire website load immediately. The time before the site starts loading is just as important and the simplest way to improve it is to cache some data. Naturally, this will require a specialized plugin and there are a plethora of amazing options for you to choose from. Other than just loading faster, caching data is also associated with increased conversion rates and an improvement in search engine rankings. Overall, it’s a win-win scenario that you should take advantage of.
Find an adequate theme
The choice of theme is definitely something that has a great impact on the resources of your WordPress website. Always go for responsiveness before looks, even though the aesthetics of your website may make a difference. Fortunately, minimalist looks are all the rage nowadays, which is why you might not have to choose between the two, to begin with. There are so many free WordPress themes out there and you’re bound to find something that satisfies all of these criteria.
Choose your web host wisely
Another thing you need to understand is the fact that not all is up to you. A lot of your website’s responsiveness comes down to your choice of host. Therefore, the key to success in this field depends mostly on your ability to choose the best of your locally available hosting options. Fortunately, reputable Australian web hosting agencies usually have offers that are quite cost-effective and provide a series of great features. For instance, what you’re looking for is a great uptime (at least 99.9 percent) as well as quality and reliable customer support.
Automatically optimize images
The quality of images that you upload may make it harder for your website to fully load. For this reason, you need to get an image optimization tool up and running. There are a plethora of specialized tools for this task and automation of this kind is great for uniformity and the efficiency of your website maintenance. On the other hand, you can also try to pull this off on your own, in which case, you might have to invest a tad more effort to make it all work.
Reduce the number of HTTP requests
A minimalist website is much faster to load due to the fact that it has fewer HTTP requests. Other than this, you should also try to enable HTTP2, which is far superior to its traditional counterpart. The main advantage of HTTP2 is the fact that it has enabled multiplexing, which allows your website to handle multiple requests with a single TCP connection. Traditionally (with HTTP 1.1), for three separate requests, you would need three different connections, which can make your relationship with the server far more complex.
Remove all the plugins that you don’t need
The best thing about plugins is the fact that they allow you to completely alter the appearance and the function of your website at your own behest. The number and variety of plugins available is the main reason why WordPress is such a popular CMS. On the other hand, what you need to bear in mind is the fact that every single one of these plugins draws heavily on your resources. So, the urge to add more and more plugins to your website might be great but every single time you do so, you’ll additionally slow your website down. Choose wisely and start removing all the plugins that you don’t need as soon as possible.
As you can see, there are so many options for you to try out. In fact, there are so many honorable mentions like adding an expires header to static resources, disabling hotlinking and leeching of your content, as well as using a content delivery network (CDN). Doing a bit more is never really a bad idea but the above-listed six tips should be the bare minimum.