Easy WordPress Speed Optimization Tips 2020 (Updated Guide)

wordpress speed optimization tips

Are you facing slow wordpress site speed?

You’re in the right place. As of today I’m going to share some great wordpress speed optimization tips which helped me to increase my blog speed and also helped me to see a reduction in bounce rate.

Why is WordPress so slow?

So there are many factors by which the wordpress is slow but I don’t want to waste your time on knowing about this. For now, I would like to proceed directly with the wordpress speed optimization tips.

I’ll be sharing everything by which I used to optimize my blog speed. I’m using WPX Hosting but don’t worry you can achieve the same speed as I’m getting. If you are a beginner and want good hosting on a budget. You can go with Siteground, A2Hosting, and GreenGeeks. So whoever is reading this can achieve very good speed for their blog.

We’ll be using different platforms to check the speed of the blog but we will only follow Gtmetrix to do all optimization. So let’s first start with this blog speed.

Speed Report :

My GTmetrix Results :

I always prefer GTmetrix for optimizing your website speed as it shows everything from image optimization to plugin minification.

It also shares problems with CDN and can use Waterfall to check why the speed is being slow.

gtmetrix report

My Pingdom Report :

Pingdom is correct in all details according to WP Rocket. I’m also getting a very good response in pingdom.

WordPress Speed Optimization Tips

Google Page Insights :

google pageinsights desktop speed report
google pageinsights mobile speed report

WordPress Speed Optimization Tips:

Web Hosting

I recommend using Siteground or A2Hosting as both are really great hosting compared to other hosting in that range. Also, both of the hostings are not under the EIG list.

Some Industry Experts also Use or Suggest Siteground:

Siteground yoast review
Siteground Wpbeginner

Siteground is also recommended by WordPress.org

Siteground is also recommended by WordPress.org 1

There are many more people in the industry who use Siteground web hosting and are very happy with it. Check out some poll answers from industry people.

which hosting is best 1
WordPress Speed Optimization Tips
Hosting polls
hosting polls 1
hosting polls 3
hosting polls 2

There are many more hostings which give awesome results like WPXHostingKinstaCloudways (these hostings are little pricey but they are awesome).

Use Cache Plugin

Your hosting and cache plugin are the main factors for increasing your blog speed.

There are many cache plugins out there but I recommend WP Rocket as I’ve been using it for too long and getting amazing results with it.

When I shifted to WP Rocket it automatically increased my blog speed a lot. WP Rocket costs $49/year and I think it is worth increasing your blog speed.

There are more cache plugins like WP Fastest Cache and W3 Total Cache but after using all of the cache plugins I found WP Rocket to be the best cache plugin. This is also recommended by WordPress experts.

WP rocket testimonial 1
WP rocket testimonial

Some of the more people from industry :

WP Rocket reviews 4
WP Rocket reviews 2
WP Rocket reviews 1
WP Rocket reviews 3

WP Rocket comes with a lot of built-in plugins that don’t require any other cache plugin to be used with. It has everything inside it from database optimization to CDN.

It provides the best and all features as compared to other cache plugins :

WP Rocket features

I feel that WP Rocket is easy to use as compared to all other cache plugins.

WP Rocket Settings

Since you must have WP Rocket with you, let’s get started with the WP Rocket settings.

Cache (Basic Cache Settings)

Enable cache for mobile devices as this is going to help you in increasing your mobile site. Also enable “separate cache for mobile devices” if your website has something different for mobile and tablet devices.

If your website is the same as on a desktop then you should not enable Separate cache files for mobile devices. Unticking it will help you increase mobile speed.

Cache WP Rocket settings

File Optimization (Optimize CSS & JS)

This will help you to modify all your blog css and javascripts to store it all in one place.

Minify HTML – This will minify all your html code on your website and will remove extra spaces from the code.

Optimize Google Fonts – As you must be using google fonts and some of you must be using different fonts. This will optimize them all and combine them.

Remove Query Strings – Removing query string is very important and it has been working for so long in the speed field. Just enable this to remove strings like “?ver=1.0” from the URL.

file optimization wp rocket settings 1

Minify CSS – This step will be the same as it did in minify html. It will minify all your css and remove spaces into it.

Combine CSS Files – Combining CSS files will combine all of your site css files into 1 file which will help the server to call only 1 file while opening the website. (Important : Only enable it if your site is not using HTTP/2)

Click here to check if your website is using HTTP/2

Exclude any CSS file if you don’t want to combine it with all.

Optimize CSS Delivery – It will render the CSS and add it in above the fold by which the browser will download the files which aren’t needed for the current page.

file optimization wp rocket settings 2

Remove jQuery – This will remove the jquery file from WordPress which will help you to increase the speed as now it is not required that much.

Minify Javascript Files – This will do the same process of minification as did in the above setting. It will remove all the blanks and reduce the file size.

Combine Javascript Files – It will combine all javascript files in 1 file which will increase load time as it only has to load 1 file. (Important : Only enable it if your site is not using HTTP/2)

Exclude any JF file if you don’t want to combine it with all.

Javascript Deferred – It will render the JS and add it in above the fold by which browser will download the files which aren’t needed for the current page.

file optimization wp rocket settings 3
file optimization wp rocket settings 4

Media Optimization

Here’s a bit of work for image optimization.

Enable LazyLoad for images if you want to improve the page speed.

Enable LazyLoad for iframes and videos as if you add any video it will slow up your speed. So to prevent your page from slowing down. Turn it on. Lazyload will do its best for the video to get the right speed.

Disable Emoji – As this adds a new link from WordPress which will impact your external resources. Also, a lot of people don’t even use emoji’s so it just makes your speed worse and nothing else.

Media Optimization 1

Disable WordPress Embeds – This will prevent others from embedding content from your site.

Enable WebP Caching – Only enable this if you’re not using any other WebP plugin.

Media Optimization 2

Preload

Activate Preloading – This will generate a cache of links on your site as specified in the sitemap.

preload wprocket settings

Prefetching DNS Requests

Add all your Reduce DNS lookup urls to this box. It can make all those files load faster.

prefetch dns wprocket settings

If you don’t know where to find these urls. You can easily analyze your website with GTmetrix and in YSlow score you’ll see Reduce DNS lookups. Example :

reduce dns lookups

CDN

Enable this if you’re using any CDN. I’m using WPX Hosting so I don’t need to use any other CDN as they provide WPX Cloud. If you’re using any other hosting that doesn’t provide CDN then I would recommend using StackPath or RocketCDN from WPRocket. Using CDN Url you can serve the Images, CSS & JS files with that url which will help to get rid of Cookie domain.

Note : Cloudflare never provided you with CDN CNAME Url.

CDN wprocket settings
WordPress Speed Optimization TipsWordPress Speed Optimization Tips

Setup Cloudflare

Heartbeat

You can enable this if you want to, I’ve also enabled this to control the resources to prevent high CPU usage.

heartbeat

Rocket Add-Ons

These are very good add-ons provided by WP Rocket. It helps to host some of the external scripts to host on your server.

I’ve enabled Google Tracking, Facebook Pixel, and Varnish. Google and Facebook scripts to load locally on your server and Varnish will clear all caches to make them up-to-date.

WordPress Speed Optimization Tips
WordPress Speed Optimization Tips

Remember : If you want to benefit from these add-ons. Add GA Code and Facebook Pixel code to the website head only. If you add in a Google Tag Manager. It will not show you any results.

You can download the WP Rocket settings configuration.

Update WordPress to Latest Version

Keep your WordPress updated to its latest version. This will help you to get the best speed for your blog. As the update only comes when there is a new feature or a bug in the older version.

Update WordPress to Latest Version

Also, keep your themes & plugins upto date. This will also help give you the best speed for your WordPress blog.

Use Latest PHP Version

Update the PHP version of your website as this helps a lot in speeding up the version. There are many hosts who have the latest versions of PHP but they do anything till you ask them to do.

So, first check your PHP version and check the latest PHP version is going on.

Remember: Check PHP Compatibility of all themes & plugins. This will not cause any technical issues. Do check it before upgrading your PHP version.

You can easily ask your Hosting support them to update the PHP version of your website as I told you hosting providers will not update it automatically.

If you want to check your PHP version, easily follow the steps below.

  1. Go to your WordPress Dashboard.
  2. Install Display PHP Version plugin to check the latest version running on your blog.
  3. Once you install the plugin, you’ll be able to see the latest PHP version of your blog at the home of the WordPress dashboard.
    Display PHP Version

If you’re a techy guy and you know very much about hosting cPanel then you can easily go to your hosting cPanel and then search for PHP Version Manager and you can easily update PHP version according to you.

Image Optimization

Optimize your blog images with ShortPixel or Imagify. Both have free plans with monthly limits.

These are both the best tools in image optimization I’ve used till now. There are many more plugins also but I’ve tried them also but never got the awesome results as I’ve got in these two.

I use Shortpixel on this blog so i would recommend you shortpixel more. It also gives an option for .webp images which will increase your website speed by 25% as this is the modern image format which provides super lossless access to your images.

  1. Sign up on Shortpixel.
  2. Install ShortPixel Image Optimizer WordPress plugin.
  3. Once you’re done with the installation, add your API key which you got after signup.
    ShortPixel API Key

Serve Scaled Images

Images are the ones which decrease the website speed and there are many different ways to scale it best. So here we are with Server scaled images for the blog.

You can see I’ve optimized them all on my blog :

serve scaled images

What Server Scaled Images means is that there are some images which are shown small but pick up the large image size to show.

Example: You have an image with size 600×300 pixels and that size image is showing in a box of 300×150 pixels. So a large image is stretched to a small size which will increase your blog speed.

serve scaled images

As you can see in the above screenshot, it is picking up a size of 640×360 but can fit in size of 370×210.

So there are many ways to do it. If you’re using any Drag & drop builder there must be a setting to which image it should pick. I’m sharing a code that you can add to your functions.php file.

add_image_size( 'custom-size', 370, 210, true ); // 370 pixels wide by 210
pixels tall, hard crop mode

You can change the image size according to your requirements. I’m using 370×210 for my featured images.

If you still have Serve scaled images issue comments below or post in our community.

Specify Image Dimensions

This is very easy to do but it also affects a lot on site speed.

So what you have to do is specify the width and height of every image on your blog. This mainly happens when you add custom code of your blog like in Widgets if you add any custom HTML code. The WordPress editor automatically takes care of this for the article images.

Specify Image Dimensions

If you’re confused which size you should use in the image to get the perfect one. Use GTmetrix, it will tell you the exact size.

Google Analytics

If you’re using WP Rocket then the above settings will take care of this. We’ve already done the settings for it in the WP Rocket Settings.

Google Tag Manager

I’m using Google Tag Manager to combine all small scripts which I’m using on my blog to call it all in 1 file.

You can also use this if you’re using different scripts, tags or codes on your website head. Like CrazyEgg, Hotjar, Pinterest tag, any theme script, etc.

Remember : Don’t use it if you’re using only 1 script.

It is very easy to setup and you don’t need any technical coding skills for it.

Steps to Add a Tag to Google Tag Manager :

  1. Once you have created your Google Tag Manager account, you will see the option to add a tag to your front screen.
    Google Tag Manager
  2. Click on add a new tag button and then tab on Tag configuration.
    Add a tag
  3. Once you’re there you’ll see a Search button where you can search for the tag you want to add and if you don’t have that tag option there you can add it in Custom HTML by searching it in the search box.
    Tags
  4. Once you have added all the tags, click on the Submit button in the right corner and Publish your changes.

Remove Unwanted Plugins & Themes

So, this is the easiest step. You don’t need any tech skills. Just go to your WordPress Dashboard and delete all your Unwanted plugins & themes.

Also, if you’re using any plugin just to add any single script or code that you can easily add manually, then use the steps above Google Tag Manager.

Add Expires Headers

Most cache plugins take care of these expiry headers. If you’re using WP Rocket then you don’t have to think about it.

If you still get that, your expiry headers score low. Add the below code in your .htaccess file. Add the code at the top of .htaccess file.

## EXPIRES CACHING ##
<IfModule mod_expires.c>
ExpiresActive On
ExpiresByType image/jpg "access 1 year"
ExpiresByType image/jpeg "access 1 year"
ExpiresByType image/gif "access 1 year"
ExpiresByType image/png "access 1 year"
ExpiresByType text/css "access 1 month"
ExpiresByType text/html "access 1 month"
ExpiresByType application/pdf "access 1 month"
ExpiresByType text/x-javascript "access 1 month"
ExpiresByType application/x-shockwave-flash "access 1 month"
ExpiresByType image/x-icon "access 1 year"
ExpiresDefault "access 1 month"
</IfModule>
## EXPIRES CACHING ##

Use Lightweight Theme

There are many WordPress themes out there which have a very good loading time. You can use those themes or you can easily use a Custom WordPress Theme made by me. I’m going to update it from time to time and will be adding more and more features to it soon.

Find Slow Pages by GA

We will find slow pages on Google Analytics. It’s very easy to find your slow pages and check them in GTmetrix and work on what they’re up to.

So, first open your GA account and then go to Behavior > Site Speed > Speed Suggestions. You can check the recommendations under PageSpeed Suggestions for different pages.

PageSpeed Suggestions

Hire Me For WordPress Speed Optimization

If you need any kind of WordPress speed optimization tips you can email me at aksshit@l0e.67d.myftpupload.com.

WordPress Speed Optimization Tips
Akshay Hallur from Bloggingx.com

Aksshit has been a really good help for me for optimizing my sites. His website speed optimization strategies and attention to detail is so good that I ended up ordering for my another site after the first one. If you are looking for a complete website speed optimization from a web developer who also happen to know the business side of things in blogging and affiliate marketing, look no further.

I hope you all enjoyed this article. I want to share something with you before ending it. I’ve shared all the wordpress speed optimization tips that I use to increase my blog speed. I want to share that this article is also getting 100% GTmetrix Score :

wordpress speed optimization tips

Share if you got any kind of help from this post or if you liked the post. If you’re still facing any speed issues comment below.

FAQs on WordPress Speed Optimization Tips

🚀 How can I Speed Up my WordPress Site?

I was also facing WordPress site speed problems but after trying and implementing I am able to make my site speed very fast and shared all my tips in this blog post. It will help you to speed up your WordPress site.

🚀 Why is WordPress Site so Slow?

WordPress site is badly affected by the bad hosting service provider and chooses the wrong cache plugin. So in this article, I’ve shared how I increase my blog speed using Siteground hosting and WP Rocket plugin.

🚀 How can I Optimize my Website Speed?

Use good quality hosting like siteground and the best cache plugin like WP Rocket It will optimize your website automatically.

🚀 How can I speed up my WordPress site without a plugin?

Without plugins you can achieve a good speed score by using high reputed hosting but once you start getting traffic you need something for cache. So using basic plugins is necessary to achieve the fast loading WordPress site.

🚀 How can I make WordPress load faster?

1. Use good quality hosting service (Siteground, WPX Hosting, A2Hosting, Kinsta)
2. Use cache plugins like WP Rocket
3. Use the Image Compression plugin
4. Use CDN on your site
5. Use Google Tag Manager.

🚀 Does Elementor slow down your website?

No, Elementor will never slow down your website. But the only thing is that the developer who is building website should know properly. How he is making a site through elementor. As he/she has to take care of the image ratio, fonts and many more things.

Easy WordPress Speed Optimization Tips 2020 (Updated Guide) via @aksshitwadhwa

12 Responses to “Easy WordPress Speed Optimization Tips 2020 (Updated Guide)”

  1. Amit Garg says:

    Hey Buddy

    Unbelievable post!

    Comprehensive post with some amazing tips to increase blog speed.

    Thanks
    Amit Garg

  2. Hey Aksshit
    This is a detailed guide about wordpress speed optimization. I loved the explanation of yours. Reducing the load time can help us a lot with our blog. Thanks for sharing your stratiggies with us .
    Regards
    Chayan

  3. Pronay says:

    Hi Akshit
    Great Article again, I have did setup same settings as you tutor in here, and great I got 94 on Googe and 98 on Gtmetrix.
    I have some queries about Google Tag Manager, how we use and how it’s work, in details. If you write an article about it that could be awesome.
    Thanks

  4. Mohit Rajora says:

    It is a very good article.

    I tried all the ways that are given above and my website become faster by 80%.
    Great strategies to adopt to speed up a site.

    Mohit

  5. […] thing first, you should have a web page that loads fast. No one has the patience to bare a slow website. Apart from that you will have to be active on […]

  6. debora says:

    Thanks for sharing this valuable information with us. Will try implementing these tips on our website. It is really a helpful article!

  7. […] website speed. Like pingdom, GTMetrix and many more. We have also prepared a very good guide on how to speed up the website, we have increased the speed of our website to 100/100 in the GT metrics […]

  8. […] it Works: This blog only talks about things related to WordPress. If anyone wants to learn tutorials of WordPress from basic to advanced level this website is for […]

  9. Thank you for sharing this useful information with us. I Will try to implement these tips on my blog.

  10. Alan Frank says:

    Thanks for this info. Of course, I did optimize my website, excellent result on gtmetrix but using Google’s own speed insight too, I get a bad score specifically on mobile and a bit above average on PC.

    Sometimes, I think Gtmetrix gives a better preference compared to the rest. What doyou think? I did optimize most I could.

    • Hi Alan,

      It’s great that you’re working on your website speed. Google Page Insights is also important as we’ve to make our website speed under 3secs and also there is a new feature of Core Web Vitals which gives impact on website ranking. Check what is missing from the Page Insights tool and improve it.

      Thanks –

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