Speed Optimization Guide

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A complete and Comprehensive Guide On Making WordPress websites faster.

Don’t be overwhelmed by the table below; most optimizations can be easily achieved with an optimization plugin. I personally use the free Speed Optimization plugin that comes bundled with SiteGround’s Hosting plan. However, there are several other options, including W3 Total Cache (W3TC), WP Rocket, and FlyingPress.

Steps to optimizing your WordPress website :

1. Visit GTmetrix: Enter your website’s URL to begin the test. GTmetrix offers this tool for free and allows multiple tests to be performed every hour, at no charge.

2. Review the Report: GTmetrix will quickly generate a performance report, pinpointing each area that requires improvement.

3. Consult our table below to address the specific areas highlighted by GTmetrix. While GTmetrix often uses complex terminology, overcomplicates its instructions, and provides guidance for a broad spectrum of websites, we’ve streamlined and tailored their recommendations specifically for WordPress sites. With our clear and straightforward guidelines, you’ll find it much easier to understand and implement the necessary changes.

4. Re-test After Implementing Changes: After making a change, clear your website’s cache if it’s enabled. Re-test on GTmetrix to assess the impact of your adjustments. Using the new results, move on to the next suggested improvement and continue the process.

Difficulty Level in Implementing this Optimization =  Easy



Avoiding Multiple Page Redirects

Minimizing the use of multiple page redirects is crucial for optimization, as these redirects are the first thing your visitors encounter, even before your webpage loads.

URL redirects serve to establish a seamless connection between an old, possibly non-functional URL and a new, active one.

When a user tries to access the previous link, they are automatically redirected to the updated link, providing a seamless experience.

Although at times necessary, it is critical to restrict the use of redirects to enhance page load speed and improve overall page experience

How do multiple page redirects affect page performance?

How to correctly implement redirects

Redirects start before different parts of the page even begin to load. They lengthen the network time for the initial request, as every request requires a corresponding server response. Multiple page redirects lead to several request-response cycles, which can substantially slow down the commencement of your page loading process. The long redirect chain seen here means that the user sees nothing (blank) for 0.3 seconds. Multiple page redirects may also be detrimental to your site performance in the following ways:

Multiple page redirects can negatively impact your website’s performance in several ways:

  1. Slow Redirects: If your application is generally slow, it’s likely that your redirects will also be slow. This often leads to prolonged blank page display, causing users to grow impatient and possibly leave your page entirely.
  2. Ineffective Client-Side Redirects: Redirects that are based on JavaScript or meta-refreshes are inefficient because they require a portion of the initial page to load before the redirect kicks in. This can lengthen load times and detract from the overall user experience.
  3. Redirect Loops: There’s a risk of your website falling into redirect loops, which occur when too many or incorrect redirects are triggered. Occasionally, the chain might loop back to the first redirect, resulting in an infinite loop that fails to load the intended page.

Redirects are sometimes unavoidable

There are many cases where URL redirects are unavoidable, such as website migration, https redirect, www to non-www, etc. There are numerous scenarios in which URL redirects cannot be avoided, including instances like website migrations, directing http traffic to https, or changing from www to non-www, among others.

1. Choose  server-side redirects (either through the web-server or application) over client-side redirects (like HTML or JavaScript).

When implementing server-side redirects, it’s usually better to perform them via the web server configuration, as this is often quicker than configuring them at the application level. Server-side redirects happen immediately and help visitors reach their final destination sooner.

2. Avoid Client-Side Redirects:

As much as possible, steer clear of client-side redirects. They tend to be slower, cannot be cached, and may not come with default support in browsers.

3. Avoid landing page redirects/Minimize redirect chains

Wherever possible, avoid landing page redirects; especially, the practice of executing separate, individual redirects for reasons such as protocol change, adding www, mobile-specific page, geo-location, and subdomain.

Always redirect to the preferred version of the URL, especially, when redirects are dynamically generated. This helps eliminate unnecessary redirects. For example, if a website possesses both site.com and www.site.com, arrange the redirect to directly transfer from http://site.com to the preferred https version of the new URL (in this case https://www.site.com). This allows you to bypass an unnecessary step in the redirect chain.

As a broad guideline, strive to confine the number of redirects to a single one wherever feasible.

4. Periodically review your redirects

Review the redirects in place from time to time to ensure that old and irrelevant redirects are removed.

Implementing Server Side Redirects:

For Apache

To setup URL redirects, you’ll need to edit the .htaccess file as it allows overwriting of the central configuration at the directory level. We recommend that you create a backup of the original

For Nginx: Look at link