SEO ABC’s: How To Easily Speed Up WordPress For Free
There are a million suggestions on how to speed up your WordPress loading times. Most of them are technical, expensive, time consuming or all of the above. So I wanted to show you How to Easily Speed up WordPress for Free.
How Page Loading Speed Affects SEO:
First of all it is important to understand that Google’s Algorithm, or what factors it uses to determine who ranks the highest, is not a known fact. It is locked in the same vault as the formula for Coca Cola, the ingredients to special sauce at McDonald’s, and the Colenels secret recipe. So no matter what any SEO Company tells you, they do not know the secret.
That being said there are plently of A/B testing being done to try to figure out the secret and that along with what Google and Matt Cutts tells us… can get us pretty close.
What we do know is that your Page Loading Time can directly affect your Search Engine Rankings. How fast your website loads is a part of the algorithm that determines where your site ranks. You can read what Google says aobut Page Loading Speeds. You will not necessarily get higher rankings because your site loads fast, but you may suffer penalties because your site loads slow.
Additionally, your Page Loading Speed can indirectly affect your Search Engine Rankings. User experience. If people have a bad user experience they will not read your site, stay on your site, share your site, bookmark your site, link to your site, revisit your site…
How To Speed Up Your WordPress Site
1. Install and Configure the W3 Total Cache WordPress Plugin
W3 Total Cache is a Free Plugin that you can download by clicking the button below:
There are quite a few things that you have to complete to set up the W3 total Cache plugin and it can seem daunting at first, but it is really quite simple. I know my post says how to Easily… and at first you may say, this is not Easy! But in comparison to doing this all on your own, it is simple.
How My General Settings Are Configured:
|Preview Mode:|| |
Use preview mode to test configuration scenarios prior to releasing them (deploy) on the actual site.
Enable page caching to decrease the response time of your site.
|Page Cache:|| |
Caching pages will reduce the response time of your site and increase the scale of your web server.
|Page Cache Method:|| |
Reduce load time by decreasing the size and number of CSS and JS files. Automatically remove unncessary data from CSS, JS, feed, page and post HTML.
Minification can decrease file size of HTML, CSS, JS and feeds respectively by ~10% on average.
|Minify mode:|| |
Select manual mode to use fields on the minify settings tab to specify files to be minified, otherwise files will be minified automatically, but will not use the CDN.
|Minify Cache Method:|| |
|HTML minifier:|| |
|JS minifier:|| |
|CSS minifier:|| |
Enable database caching to reduce post, page and feed creation time.
|Database Cache:|| |
Caching database objects decreases the response time of your site. Best used if object caching is not possible.
|Database Cache Method:|| |
Enable object caching to further reduce execution time for common operations.
|Object Cache:|| |
Object caching greatly increases performance for highly dynamic sites (that use the Object Cache API).
|Object Cache Method:|| |
Reduce server load and decrease response time by using the cache available in site visitor’s web browser.
|Browser Cache:|| |
Enable HTTP compression and add headers to reduce server load and decrease file load time.
Host static files with your content delivery network provider to reduce page load time.
Theme files, media library attachments, CSS, JS files etc will appear to load instantly for site visitors.
|CDN Type:|| |
NetDNA / MaxCDN
Specify the IP addresses of your varnish instances above. Your VCL‘s ACL must allow this request.
Network Performance & Security powered by CloudFlare
CloudFlare protects and accelerates websites. Sign up now for free to get started, or if you have an account simply log in to obtain your API key from the account page to enter it below. Contact the CloudFlare support team with any questions.
(find it here)
|Security level:|| |
|Development mode:|| |
You will notice that I do not have CDN enabled I do have Cloudflare enabled. This is a bit redundant because Cloudflare is a CDN (Content Delivery Network). I found it to be less expensive and easier to use than the “Traditional” CDN’s.
Cloudflare CDN (Content Delivery Network)
Both Speeds Up your website and Adds an Extral Level of Security.
There is a FREE version that I used for quite a while. I currently pay for their PRO plan at $20 month. It adds more security features and more ways to cache and optimize your site. And gives you virtually “Real Time” Analytics that are more in depth and more accurate than most analytics.
How To Get and Configure Cloudflare:
1. Go to http://cloudflare.com and sign up. There really is no need to sign up for a paid account, unless you are interested in the extra features I mentioned above.
2. Enter your websites Domain Name. You can add more sites in the future as well.
At this point, it will show you a video which you must play in order to proceed. Shouldn’t take too long. About 50 seconds. Once it’s over, click continue to step 2.
3. Next you need to add your DNS information. In most cases, it will automatically detect your DNS info but in some, you will have to enter it manually.
If you normally redirect your website to a hostname, you would select ‘A (Hostname)’.
If you need any other types of records, they should be in the drop down list.
4. Click the next button at the bottom. You can always come back and edit it in the future.
5. This is where it is a bit tricky. They will give you some DNS records which you must use to update your domain name.
6. Log into your registar, the company that you used to buy your domain name (such as: Godaddy.com, NetworkSolutions.com, or 1&1.com) and open your DNS Settings.
7. Enter the DNS Settings that Cloudflare gave you into the corresponding boxes on your Registrar… copy and paste.
Then click the button at the bottom to continue.
Once your account is created and configured simply take the email address you used to create the account and the API key and enter it into the “Network Performance & Security powered by CloudFlare” section of the W3 Total Cache Plugin settings.
The combination of the W3 Total Cache WordPress Plugin and Cloudflare.com (CDN Service) will make your WordPress Website load faster and Safer.
What you will need to do:
1. Download and Install the W3 Total Cache Plugin
2. Sign Up for Cloudflare free CDN service
3. Log Into your Domain Name Registrar and point the servers to Cloudflare
4. Enter the Cloudflare credentials into the W3 Total Cache Plugin
Thats it! That is How to Easily Speed Up WordPress For FREE.
- FREE or $20 mo.
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