Speed plays an important role in the performance of a website. If you want to create a successful site, you mustn't ignore this. We guest that every website owner and website master all have once in their life struggle to find ways to speed up their websites. Using plugins is considered one of the most effective solutions, yet finding the ideal one in the ocean of speed-up plugins is not that easy.
Knowing where this dilemma comes from, we collect and review the pros and cons of the best and the most well-known plugins to optimize your website speed. Our list is comprised of 6 most-used plugins:
- WP Rocket
- WP Super Cache Plugin
Autoptimize is among the most well-known speed-up plugins with 1 million+ active installations in WordPress.org. It works majorly on aggregating and minifying script files. Moreover, there are various elements that can be compressed, minimized, making your website much more lightweight.
We already wrote about how to use this plugin here.
- Optionally inline critical CSS and defer the aggregated full CSS
- Cache scripts and styles
- Optimize Google Fonts
- Optimize images (compressed by Shortpixel) and add Lazy Load image
- Include an extensive API to make Autoptimize fit every website's specific needs
- Easy to use: you just need to install the plugin and tick/untick the needed settings.
- Support CDN
Cons: Some extra options are just for advanced users so it's difficult to understand if you're not a tech-savvy.
- Include not only page caching but also cache preloading, sitemap preloading, browser caching --- the surpassing number of features compared to some other cache plugins.
- Easily add Lazy Load to images
- Highly customizable for developers as it has clean code and includes may hooks.
- Support CDN
- Heartbeat section to improve the dashboard functionality, for example, auto-saving the session management.
- It's a premium plugin without any free version
- If you're looking for a purely caching plugin, WP Rocket may be too much and overwhelming, particularly for a beginner
Hummingbird is developed by the WPMU DEV team. This plugin will help you have a good score in Google PageSpeed Insights and other speed checking tools by optimizing CSS, JS files, and page caching.
- Compress and minify code
- Defer unused CSS
- Lazy Load integration
- Easily include and exclude page to cache
- Smart and friendly user interface
Cons: If you buy the premium version, you have to buy a WPMU DEV membership that includes all of their plugins. That's a bit more expensive, but it's really worthwhile if you can make use of all plugins in the package.
WP-Optimize can speed up your website by cleaning the data, compressing code, and cache as well. The free version of this speed-optimization plugin now has 900.000+ active installations.
- Compress PNG, JPG, GIF, BMP, and TIF images which can be up to 5MG
- Restore the original image after compressing anytime
- Auto-compress image function
- Report the unused database before cleaning to give you full control
- Cache preloading, browser cache, and device-specific cache
Cons: Some unused data may not be found during the cleanup process so you have to manually find and delete them
Jetpack is a multifunctional plugin to add advanced features, manage site statistics, secure websites. However, it's also famous for optimizing site loading by compressing images and adding Lazy Load for images.
This is a comprehensive guide to use Jetpack for optimizing speed.
- Integrate Lazy Load to have a better mobile experience
- Compress image and upload to CDN
- Written by Automattic team so it has qualified and updated code
- The unused modules of Jetpack can be disabled in order not to slow down your page
- This plugin doesn't specialize in speeding up your website so you can find other plugins does it better than Jetpack
- You need a wordpress.com account and then connect to Jetpack to use it, that may be time-consuming for some users
This plugin is specialized in caching with many available rich features. WP Super Cache can generate static HTML files so that when you have a page request, static pages will be served instead of processing heavy PHP scripts. That way will help reduce loading time. It's another product from the Automattic team.
- Include page caching
- Three levels of methods to fit with different kinds of users (both beginners and experts) and purposes:
- Simple, Expert, and WP cache-caching or legacy caching
- Compress cache file only when being activated
- Clean up out-of-date cache files
Cons: No file minification and image compression
These plugins can be reputed for different optimization methods so it's possible to include more than one plugin. For example, you can install WP Super Cache because of its competency in caching and at the same time, own Jetpack to add Lazy Load to images and compress images. It's all up to you as long as your website can run at the fastest speed.
With a fast loading website, you can make better user experiences, reduce the bounce rate, increase website ranking, and so on. But don't just rely on plugins. There are many other ways to speed up your website so you should spend time learning and applying them to your website.
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The publication at GretaThemes.