How to Speedup Your WordPress Blog without Any Caching Plugin

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Several bloggers often struggle to properly configure a caching plugin. After much tweaking they never get the expected results and end up dumping the plugin altogether. If you're facing the same situation, you can utilize several other methods to significantly improve the speed of your blog. These techniques may not make your blog a flyer, but it will definitely load much quicker than before. Before you try these optimization steps, make sure you've backed up your blog to deal with any kind of mishap. Some of these solutions can be combined with regular caching plugins. Remember, these solutions only contribute in reducing the loading latency of your blog. If you're experiencing heavy traffic with lot of resource consumption, you may consider implementing a professional caching solution for your blog.

Work On Reducing Database Requests

While designing our blog, we never pay attention on the number of database queries that are used to populate fixed content sections on a single post page. For example, it is quite common to include 'Recent Posts' section in the sidebar which fires a database query every time a new post page is requested by a new visitor. Quite similar to this, there are several other sections that add more database queries for a single page request.

Your goal should be to reduce these database queries to the minimum such that only the most critical data is pulled through DB queries. Additional queries contribute in increasing the page load time. Recent posts sections can be hard coded and so is the author box. This way you can reduce 3 to 4 database queries for each page request. If you're getting high traffic on your blog, this will save you thousands of additional database queries making your pages load much faster than before.

Disable Gravatars within Your Comments Section

If you're getting tons of comments on your blog, your posts may load slowly due to time spent in fetching countless Gravatar images. Although these images are fetched from an external source, but still they contribute in overall time spent in loading the requested web page. For better performance, you must disable Gravatars from within your WordPress settings.

This way, your post will load much quicker as no images will be fetched from external Gravatar server thus reducing the load times for posts containing large number of comments. If you're not comfortable with removing these avatars, you may consider using smaller sized images which can be configured easily within 'Discussion' option in your WordPress blog settings.

Compress Static Objects and Serve through A CDN

One of the best ways to improve load times is to compress all the important static objects residing on your web server. This includes CSS, JavaScript and common image or icon files that are used for every single page on your blog. There are several compression tools available on the web to correctly reduce the size of these files.

The second step is uploading these static files to a content delivery network for not only reducing the load on your web server, but also for quick delivery at the reader's end. This combination gives you very good results as all the important static content is delivered very quickly while a web page is loading within the browser.

Use a Sub domain for Images

Lot of websites and blogs use a sub domain to serve massive amount of images to their visitors. This is an excellent way to speed up page loading as sub domain forces a new concurrent connection instead of serving all objects from the same connection. There are several ways to setup image serving from a sub domain and it just takes few simple steps to configure it for a typical WordPress blog.

Here's an excellent guide about configuring a sub domain to deliver all your post images through a separate concurrent connection while the page is requested by the visitor. If you have large number of images already served on tons of posts, you must consult an expert before making the transition. The best way to implement it is to first test it on a sample installation and then making the necessary changes on a live blog.

Use WordPress Internal Caching Mechanism

Very few bloggers know that WordPress has a pretty good in-built caching mechanism that can be used to cache frequently requested data. This method is generally used by intermediate to advanced users who're comfortable with PHP coding and have fairly good understanding about the working of a typical web server. Internally, WordPress supports two types of caching methods and you can choose the best one that suits your requirements and gels with your web server configuration.

This excellent guide tells you how to implement your own caching code using one of the caching methods supported natively by WordPress. Make sure, you first use this methodology in a test environment before implementing on the actual blog. You must be familiar with PHP to effectively use this technique.

Prune Sluggish Plugins

This is yet another effective way to speed up your WordPress blog. I've always advocated about careful selection of plugins before you decide to use them on your blog. Several plugins are not well coded and introduce unnecessary delays and high resource consumption while the page is fetched by the visitor. For an average user, identifying such plugins is a difficult task.

Luckily, we have a simple solution to this problem. This excellent plugin is made specially to identify sluggish plugins that are slowing down your blog. It effectively analyzes each activated plugin activity and presents you with a detailed report about each one of them. This way, you can easily identify the culprits and can either remove them or can find a better alternative.


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