You've made the decision to use WordPress as your blogging platform of choice for one or more websites. Now comes the decision of which hosting service you are going to use for your new WordPress website. You have many choices to choose from, but once you make that choice, you will be ready to create your blog or site and publish content.
Once you start publishing content on your new site, your next step should be to make sure it loads fast and looks good. WordPress has many options for optimizing your site so it loads fast and looks great, however without proper optimization you may find that your site is slow to load and visitors may not return because it doesn't look as good as other sites they visit.
Here are some basic WordPress optimizations that will help improve the speed of your website or blog.
Optimize your images
One of the most common problems that causes slow load times is large images. If you use a theme on WordPress, it may have image resolution settings built in. However some themes don't and you will need to optimize any images before uploading them to your site. There are many free tools for this like smush.it or optipng.
After your images are optimized, you should upload them to WordPress. You can do this by either using the media manager plugin (included with WordPress), or by uploading via FTP (you will need access to your server files). If you don't know how to use FTP, then I suggest downloading the free Filezilla FTP software . It's very easy to use. Once you upload your images, WordPress will generate different sizes of your image for display on your blog or website.
Removing unnecessary plugins
After publishing a few posts with optimized images, you may notice that the amount of time it takes for your website or blog to load is now faster than before. But there are other optimizations in WordPress that can help make your site load faster.
There are many WordPress plugins that can be useful, but some not necessary for your site. If you find that a plugin is slowing how fast your page loads, then its time to remove it from your site. I suggest doing this sooner rather than later because if you don't know what the plugin does or if you need it later down the road, you may forget the name of it. To remove a plugin from your WordPress site, open your Dashboard and click on Plugins under the 'Settings' section. Once there, deactivate the plugins that you think you don't need or use anymore. You can always re-download them later if needed.
The plugin UpdraftPlus is a great WordPress plugin that can be used to back up your website or blog. It keeps multiple copies of the backup in case the current backup fails, so it's good for safety measures too. When you need to restore your site, just go into UpdraftPlus and choose the backup file that you want to use and it will take care of the rest.
There are some great plugins for this like Autoptimize Plugin . This plugin takes care of the optimization process while you work on other optimizations or focus on your content.
Optimize your database
Another great plugin for optimizing your WordPress site is WP-Optimize . This plugin helps remove the junk data in your WordPress database to keep it running smoothly. You can use this tool at anytime, but I suggest using it after you have completed all of the other optimizations so that you don't accidentally delete something important.
BONUS: Test your site speed
Now that you have completed all of the optimizations on your website or blog, go to a different browser and check how fast the site loads. Make sure to clear your cache before testing. You should also visit GTMetrix.com to get a full speed analysis of you site. This will be helpful in determining what optimizations need to be better or if there are still some problems with your website.
I hope this helps everyone out who wants to learn how to optimize their WordPress websites and blogs! Remember, optimizing your site isn't always about the technical stuff - it's also about user experience!
WordPress is a great platform and CMS to use when blogging or building a website, but there are some things that can slow down how fast your website or blog posts load to your audience, which is what you want to avoid. I hope this article gave you valuable information about optimizing your WordPress site and how you can improve the speed of your blog or website even more after following these steps!
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