3 Ways to Increase Site Load Time

3 Ways to Increase Site Load Time

3 Ways to Increase Site Load Time

I previously posted that I discovered my site did not load very quickly – you can read that post here.

So, in the week I have been looking at what could potentially be slowing my site down.

There are a lot of things to consider, but for this post I am going to concentrate on 3 of them.

 Plugins

Plugins are a great addition to any WordPress website and I don’t know about you, but I like testing out new ones I hear about, just to see if they are any good.  What I sometimes do though, if I decide not to keep them, is just deactivate them and not delete them.  This is a big no no if you are trying to have your site load faster.

Deactivated plugins do not directly slow the site down, they just take up extra space, which could lead to the slowing down of your site.  Either way, deleting unwanted plugins, is a good habit to get into.

 Cache

 A cache plugin stores copies of your generated pages as flat html files. This means that, unless something changes (new post/ comment), subsequent visits do not need to touch the database, saving a lot of processing. So, when visitors visit your site they are seeing a stored version of your page.

 The two most popular plugins seem to be:

 W3 Total Cache and WP Super Cache

W3 Total Cache does all of the things that WP Super Cache does and then has some more advanced features.  For now, I am going with WP Super Cache, as I found it easier to set up.

 Web Trick Blogs has a great post to talk you through setting WP Super Cache onto your website.

 Similarly, WP Lift has a post to take you through the setup of W3 Total Cache.

 Images

Image size plays a massive part in the load speed of your site.  You can optimise images using any photo editing software you have on your computer, or another option is to use Yahoo Smush It. You can either upload the picture to the site or supply the image URL and it will ‘smush’ the image for you – optimising the image without losing any of the quality.  It gives you the results of how much it was able to ‘smush’ the image. You can then download the modified image to your computer.

There is also a WordPress plugin, by the same name, that images automatically get run through when they are uploaded to the site.  You can even ‘smush’ all of the images that are already on your website.  The best result I had was a 66% reduction in size of one of my images.

Let me know how you get on with trying these out on your own sites.

Write your comments below.

Thanks!!


Stacey Myers, getting started, wordpress training
Stacey is a coach, trainer and speaker who supports people getting started with an online presence through WordPress and Social Media training. Stacey's hands-on style, supportive nature and extensive knowledge make her the perfect go-to resource for new entrepreneurs, and small business owners, who need a one-on-one or small group approach. She will also help you to overcome your mindset barriers so you too, can feel the freedom of living your passion.
Plugins for your WordPress Site

Plugins for your WordPress Site

Plugins for your WordPress Site

Plugins for your WordPress Site

There are literally thousands of plugins out there and I am not going to overwhelm you with them all. I will share with you some of the ones that I personally use. It is enough to get you well and truly started. I previously wrote a blog post about plugins to use to share your content so I will not repeat those ones here.
So, what exactly are plugins?  WordPress.org says – Plugins can extend WordPress to do almost anything you can imagine. For me, plugins are to WordPress as apps are to phones.  They increase the functionality and/or apearance of your site.  Some plugins work in the background and some are visible on your site.
If you are not sure how to add plugins to your site, I have included a video at the end of this post.

Akismet – is one of the only plugins that comes already installed when you install WordPress. It is comment spam prevention for your blog– that basically means it mostly catches when people (or robots) are writing spam in the comment section of your website.

Contact Form 7 – Creates a simple form for your contact page – or any other page you want a contact form on. Very easy to use – if you use the default template it takes about 4 clicks.
Dean’s FCKEditor for WordPress – This plugin replaces the default WordPress editor. This gives you more ‘Word’ like editing functionality when creating pages and posts.
For the next 2 plugins you need to have set up a Google Analytics account.

Google Analytics Dashboard – gives you the ability to view your Google Analytics data in your WordPress dashboard.

This plugin does not provide the tracking code for Google Analytics. For that you will need to use a plugin like Google Analytics for WordPress (which is the next one on our list).
Google Analytics for WordPress – Track your WordPress site easily and with lots of metadata: views per author & category, automatic tracking of outbound clicks and page views.
Google XML Sitemaps – This plugin will generate a special XML sitemap which helps search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo and Ask.com to better index your blog. With such a sitemap, it's much easier for the crawlers to see the complete structure of your site and retrieve it more efficiently.
Scribe SEO – is a keyword research tool that you use to optimize your posts and pages. Once you have written your content Scribe analyses your writing and suggests keyword phrases that you may have missed. It gives your writing a percentage score out of 100. The score is made up of the top SEO best practices – it then offers suggestions of things you can do to increase your score. It also helps you create backlinks from other sites, crosslink the content with your own site and identify social media users who may want to share your content.
Tweet Old Post – Tweet Old Posts is a plugin designed to tweet your older posts to get more traffic. It randomly picks your older post and posts them out on Twitter, based on the intervals specified by you.

WordPress Database Backup – WordPress database backup creates backups of your core WordPress tables as well as other tables of your choice in the same database. You can set up the frequency of how often you want it to back up your site – it then emails it to you.
It only backups your database. It does not backup your plugins, uploaded files etc. If you want to have all of that backed up there is a service called VaultPress. The price for this service starts at $15 per month. They say – VaultPress keeps your site safe. Every post, picture, and page. Every comment, revision, and setting. Everything.
WPTouch – A simple, powerful and elegant mobile theme for your website. WPtouch automatically transforms your WordPress blog into a phone style theme. It turns the appearance of your website into one that is easy to use and read from any smart phone. There is a pro version of this plugin, called WPTouch Pro, which sells for $39 for one site. I am more than happy with the free version. It also allows people to switch between mobile view and the site’s regular view on their phones.
Here is the video to teach you how to install plugins into your WordPress site.

Stacey Myers, getting started, wordpress trainingStacey is a coach, trainer and speaker who supports people getting started with an online presence through WordPress and Social Media training. Stacey's hands-on style, supportive nature and extensive knowledge make her the perfect go-to resource for new entrepreneurs, and small business owners, who need a one-on-one or small group approach. She will also help you to overcome your mindset barriers so you too, can feel the freedom of living your passion.

I am always looking for great new plugins.  If you know of one, or more, please share them below.

Thanks!!

WordPress.com vs WordPress.org

WordPress.com vs WordPress.org

org v comWORDPRESS.COM v’s WORDPRESS.ORG

WordPress is a free to use web based software program which can be used by anyone on the internet to build and maintain their website. One of the buggest challenges facing a person new to the world of WordPress is the difficulty to understand various terms that are used frequently.  So, firstly, we will cover some of the most common terms.

•    Theme: A theme in WordPress is a combination of images and set of code that helps create the layout of a WordPress site. In other words a theme is what you will use to design your website and other people will see.
•    Plugin: A WordPress Plugin is a program that helps adds a specific set of features or services to a WordPress site (a bit like an app on your phone).
•    Posts: Posts are the entries or blog content that gets displayed on your website or blog.

Now that we are clear with the basic terminologies related to WordPress, let’s move on to the actual topic of differentiating between the two services, WordPress.com and WordPress.org.

WordPress.com is free blogging software that is hosted at WordPress.com. There are many themes to choose from but you cannot upload plugins.

WordPress.org is hosted with a hosting provider – so you need to purchase the domain and the hosting.

There are literally hundreds of themes and plugins to choose from (both paid and free). The website also offers installation instructions and setup documents which makes it easier to setup WordPress.

Which one to choose?

WordPress.com is the best available option for those who want to create a blog for sharing their thoughts and ideas. It is very easy to setup and manage your blog on wordpress.com and hosting service is provided free of cost. The only notable drawbacks are the limitation of not allowing you to post ads on your blog and non customizable themes which make your blog look very ordinary and similar to thousands of other blogs on the internet.

If your goal is to create a blog for monetary benefit or to create website for your business, then you would first need to purchase a domain name and hosting before proceeding to make use of the WordPress software available on WordPress.org to setup your blog/website. This approach gives you more control over the look of your website as you are free to use any theme you want and customize it as per your requirements.

So the bottom line is WordPress.com is a very powerful tool that can be used to run a full-sized, social media-rich business websites and at the same time is also a great way to start simple blogs related to your hobby or interests.