WordPress optimization & speed improvements

Here's our checklist of tasks to take care of when doing a wordpress optimization.

Why would I speed up my site?

Because business happens fast! Your visitors have a limited time to check every page of your website.

Slow load times can really hurt your seo despite all the work you put into it

This page from time.com says
“In fact, a stunning 55% spent fewer than 15 seconds actively on a page”

I don’t know if that’s counting load time, but it can’t help. We aim for about 2 seconds loading time for most sites, especially if you dont already have a strong authority. Most users wont wait more than than 2 seconds to load, so what’s the maximum time budget per user per page? 17-20 seconds or so?

Slow load times will drastically increase your bounce rate.

People are extremely impatient today, we must be to keep up with demanding trends and responsibilities.
The internet makes things so easy for the consumer. If their sink breaks, they get on google and search plumber near me, 45 seconds later a plumber is on the way. 10 to 20 seconds is unacceptable to load your page, they’re going to bounce and go to the website that loads fastest.

Nothing is more frustrating than dynamically shifting content

The last thing you want is to annoy your users. Images loading slowly will push text down the page, and break the attention of your readers.

Mobile is everything, and mobile is slow

https://www.cnbc.com/2019/05/17/smartphone-users-are-waiting-longer-before-upgrading-heres-why.html

While mobile viewers are gaining more and more share of the web, they’re also just as slow as they were 4-5 years ago for the most part.
On a 3g mobile data plan websites can take minutes to load, or they don’t at all. You can’t wait for them to get on WIFI just for you!

How do we speed up a site?

First thing we do is make a backup of the entire website and database to our local server.
We use duplicator for this in most cases, for older servers we do a manual migration.

Image Compression and resize

While it’s extremely important to have high quality images that are related to your subject matter, they’re extremely expensive to your bandwidth! We have a lot of tricks for optimizing images, and we take a lot of care with this step.

Plugins don’t cut it

If there are many uncompressed images, we’ll simply download your wp-content/uploads folder and run imagemagick to compress and resize all your images and strip any useless exif data (We keep the important stuff, or can add your copyright if you took the photos)

for the most important images that will be loaded first-thing, we use compress-or-die.com or squoosh.app to really fine tune the image, selecting higher quality in detailed areas, and lower quality where text or a contact form will cover it.

Unload unused code

We use wp-asset-cleanup to keep plugins from loading on pages they’re not needed. Depending on the plugin we may uninstall it completely and replace it with a better one, or just add a simple WordPress function to do whatever the plugin was doing.

Minify, defer render-blocking, preload, async, cache

plugins like litespeed and wp-rocket do all this for us. The critical css in litespeed can be finicky, but works really well when you get it working right. Otherwise wp-rocket is extremely effective and takes minutes to completely set-up.

Update all the things

We’re going to update everything we can to the most recommended versions, WordPress has a site-health tool just to show us what needs to be updated and if there are any glaring security issues.
If there are plugin conflicts from updating we’ll try our best to fix it, sometimes that means getting in touch with the plugin developers, or just re-creating something from scratch if we can.
It’s important to keep your php version up to date, and to make sure there are no errors or stray logs, useless functions and tasks running, as they can all add to your TTFB

Upgrade your server

The last thing we do is help you to upgrade your hosting to a more powerful server!
While we can achieve a perfectly acceptable 1-2 second load time with 90% of hosting providers, the only way to reliably get anything less than .5 seconds is to spend the money and upgrade to something more serious. We can walk you through this, or just send us access and we can help you migrate the site to new hosting with zero website/email downtime.

tl;dr

Reduce file size of everything, images first, then css and js, then html and reduce php functions if possible.
the sooner you can display content on your first screenview the better, critical css is great for this, you can have content displayed in under a second on almost any kind of hosting if you just do these things.

Here’s a list of tasks we take care of on a typical optimization

  • Detailed performance audit report
  • Review active plugins
  • Reduce server response time
  • Minimize redirects | request size
  • Minify | Inline CSS | CSS in doc head
  • Minify HTML
  • Minify | Inline JavaScript
  • Defer or async JavaScript
  • Convert your site to it’s secure, HTTPS version
  • Optimize for HTTP/2 (e.g. Server Push)
  • Full Page Caching
  • Memory Caching
  • Inline critical, above the fold CSS
  • Prioritize visible content
  • Optimize images | image dimensions
  • Optimize the order of styles and scripts
  • Avoid landing page redirects
  • Avoid bad requests
  • Leverage browser caching
  • Eliminate render-blocking JavaScript and CSS in above-the-fold content
  • Upgrade PHP
  • Resources are served from a consistent URL
  • Specify cache validator
  • Optimize pre-connecting and pre-loading
  • Enable Keep-Alive
  • Optimize order of styles and scripts
  • Remove query strings from static resources
  • Enable compression
  • Cloudflare setup
  • Remove bloat

FunkPD can help get your website up to speed, let us handle the page speed optimization and give you the advantage over your competition. It’s very important no matter what stage of development your website is in. It’s important to focus on content creation, design, SEO and outbound marketing, but if nobody can load your page, it’s all for naught!

Send us a message with any of the channels below to get in touch and discuss what’s best for your website.

Let's start a conversation!

quick optin

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.