12 Tools to Make Your Website Faster
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You don't have to be a thrill seeker or race car driver to have the need for speed. When buyers bounce from websites that take longer than 3 seconds to load, your company's revenue is directly tied how long people have to wait before they get what they came for.
No one likes waiting. When Microsoft came out with the original Xbox, they revolutionized the gaming industry by eliminating loading times. No more waiting around for graphics to render on the screen, we could get right into the game.
A successful blog isn't always about speed.Want to grow your blog in ? Then check out my free 30 Day Blog Transformation email course!
Even if you don't sell products directly from your site, making your website faster will be critical to your success. If you've ever tried to read a blog post or news article only to arrive on the site and have it not load quickly, you know what I'm talking about.
But there's good news! Most small businesses, bloggers, podcasters, and artists can give their site a speed boost without spending a penny. Over the past several years, I've tweaked and tested dozens of tools and techniques for making a website faster. I've found the best and came up with this list of…
12 Tools to Make Your Website Faster
I've written about the importance of images several times in the past. Pictures are great for SEO and us as humans, but they often slow our sites down when they're not optimized or formatted correctly. Use tools like Kraken.io to optimize each image before uploading it. If you need to optimize an image larger than 1mb, which should be rare, check out Compressor.io, which allows for larger images.
After you've found the perfect image for your post or page, you may want to edit its dimensions or overlay text. PicMonkey is a free tool that will let you do that all from your browser (which is great for Chromebook users). Then, once you've created the perfect picture, PicMonkey allows you to download your image in multiple sizes, one of which is perfect for websites. Be sure to run your new featured image through Kraken before uploading it!
Need help finding beautiful photos? Check out these 7 Top Stock Photo Sites You Can Use (I use them all the time!)
I've searched through lots of CDNs, or Content Delivery Networks. Every speed testing service out there suggests you use a CDN on your website. Using a CDN speeds up your site by hosting images and other files on extremely fast servers in strategic locations around the globe. After testing several different services, some free, others charging a monthly fee, I discovered KeyCDN. Click here or the Learn More button to get $10 in credits for free!
If you haven't set up your blog yet, click this link to start a new site in less than 10 minutes!
WordPress Plugin: WP Rocket
For the first two years of blogging, I used free WordPress templates. I didn't want to spend money, and I didn't see any advantage in using a free theme like the ones from StudioPress. I was wrong. Premium themes from StudioPress have incredibly efficient code which means they load faster, and that makes your website faster. Most StudioPress themes are mobile responsive which helps with search rankings.
Need beautiful landing pages, sales pages, and thank you page templates for your website? I use and recommend Thrive Landing Pages!
Using tools like GTMetrix and Pingdom are like sending your website for a quick trip to the doctor for a diagnostic. I like GTMetrix because it will not only test the speed of my site but it also tells you A:) what needs to be fixed, and B:) tells you how to fix it. Fix the things that are slowing your site down and boom, your website = faster.
In October of 2015, I finally upgraded my site from the most basic hosting plan to the Cloud Business Pro plan. When your web traffic gets to several thousand views per month, it may be time to get more power on the back-end. Choose a host that will give your site the speed it needs. I host almost all of my websites through GreenGeeks
WordPress Plugin: Page Speed Grader
Like GTMetrix and Pingdom, Page Speed Grader is an analysis tool. If you test your site with GTMetrix, and you're not sure what you're looking at, give Page Speed Grader a try. They're not as thorough as the other guys, but they're also easier to understand.
WordPress Plugin: Better Delete Revision by Galerio & Urda
From the plugin's description
Better Delete Revision not only deletes redundant revisions of posts from your WordPress Database, it also deletes other database content related to each revision such meta information, tags, relationships, and more. If you save a post or page multiple times, your number of revisions will greatly increase overtime. For example, if you have 100 posts and each post has 10 revisions you could be storing up to 1,000 copies of older data!”
If you're frequently saving your posts, this could be an excellent tool to delete the backup of all of those saves (once you've published the final version of course).
WordPress Plugin: P3 (Plugin Performance Profiler)
My general philosophy on WordPress is the fewer the plugins, the better. However, sometimes we need to install one to give us a new feature or added functionality. P3 is a tool created by the techs at GoDaddy to analyze the load speed of your website and show you which plugins are loading fast and which are slowing your site down. P3 will also show you how much of your website speed is WordPress, theme, or plugin related. One more reason to get a beautiful and fast theme from StudioPress!
WordPress Plugin: Use Google Libraries
WordPress Plugin: Google Pagespeed Insights
Another plugin for WordPress, Google Pagespeed Insights will show you the fastest and slowest pages on your site. Once you know which pages load the slowest, you can go in and make the necessary tweaks to improve loading time.