Improve Your WordPress Site's Performance

If you frequent the Ananova blog, you know WordPress is the most popular CMS. It is simple to use, and makes even a beginner feel like an old pro! Improve Your WordPress Site's Performance

Businesses of all sizes and individuals alike rely on a cheap hosting WordPress site each and every day to bring information to the masses or sell their products. However, there are sites that perform poorly, losing users and ultimately, business. In fact, users probably won't ever return to visit your site if they have a poor first experience. That's if they can even find your site in the first place: Google uses the performance of a website to rank it for the search engine.

How can you make sure your site performs at its best, doing its job as a marketing tool for your business? here are seven easy things you can do to avoid dreaded performance problems.

7 Ways To Improve Your WordPress Site's Performance:

1. Step Away From The Plugins!

Yes, WordPress has thousands of plugins. That doesn't mean you should be installing every last one of them! Because of the sheer volume of plugins to do everything you can imagine, there are those that are written poorly, slowing your site down in the process of running. Things that can affect performance: the plugin relies on either excessive or unnecessary JavaScript in order to run; images are resized through HTML; an unnecessary JavaScript library is loaded; and loading JavaScript in the header instead of where it belongs, in the footer.

Before you install any plugin, consult the WordPress Plugin Directory. Look through reviews of that plugin, paying close attention to those who report problems. Search Google for similar information, and look at the code after you install it, seeking out any of the mistakes listed above. Above all else, think about the value this plugin is bringing to your site. Does it improve your site? If the answer is “no” or “maybe,” don't install it.

2. Update Plugins And WordPress

If you don't update WordPress or plugins when it is time, you are ignoring important performance enhancements and bug fixes. Don't ignore this!

3. Easy On The Share Buttons

Those cute social network sharing buttons require JavaScript to run properly, resulting in a slowdown. Use only those that you feel you must. As long as the big 2 are there (Facebook and Twitter), you should be good.

4. Assure Files Must Be Loaded On A Page

Why would you have your website call up a file that is in no way necessary to the functionality of that page? Assure unnecessary files aren't being called up by relying on conditional tags to see code to assure a file is only called when it needs to be!

5. WP SuperCache And WP Minify Plugins

WP SuperCache is a caching plugin that makes your site faster. It serves the majority of visitors' static HTML files, negating the need to process scripts and query the database each time a page loads.

Minification is another great way to speed things up: it removes unnecessary comments, spacing, characters, line breaks, etc. from JavaScript and CSS to cut down on file size. Oftentimes, it is a significant amount!

It should be noted that a site should not have more than one caching plugin installed.

6. jQuery Delivered By Google's Content Delivery Network

Chances are pretty high a visitor to your site has the jQuery library already on their machine. This is thanks to Google's CDN, used often to serve the jQuery library to websites all over the Internet. WordPress, by default, does not rely on the CDN, so include the following code into your functions.php file to ensure your users aren't loading up one additional, unnecessary file:

if( !is_admin()){
wp_deregister_script(‘jquery');
wp_register_script(‘jquery', (“https://ajax.googleapis.com/ajax/libs/jquery/1.6.4/jquery.min.js”), false,'1.6.4′);
wp_enqueue_script(‘jquery');
}

7. Add Code From The HTML5 Boilerplate .htaccess File

You can change up the .htaccess file that comes with WordPress in order to improve the performance of your site. You can: name an expiration date for common file types which makes it easier for the browser to cache files; enable gzip compression, making files smaller when sent to a browser; and force the latest IE engine.

Simply review the comments located in the .htaccess file to see what the file is doing. You should not replace your current .htaccess file with the Boilerplate .htaccess. The code contained within the .htaccess file in WordPress is required for WordPress to work properly. Instead, add the Boilerplate .htaccess file after the current contents of the .htaccess file in WordPress.

Do these tips help you? Is there any advice we can provide to improve your WordPress site? We'd love to help!

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