If your blog loads slowly in visitors' web browsers, you could be losing search traffic. Google and other search engines use your blog's page load speed in their search algorithms based on the assumption that a fast loading page offers a better user experience than a slow loading page. As a result, web pages that load quickly are ranked higher in search engine results than web pages that load slowly.
For technical experts and web developers, there is a long list of modifications that can be made to a website or blog to speed up page load speed. However, for beginner bloggers who don't have the technical knowledge nor the budget to make advanced changes to their sites, there are still some easy tricks you can implement to boost your blog's page load speed. Ten of those tricks are described below.
1. Monitor Your Blog's Page Load Speed
First, you need to test your blog's page load speed and then monitor it on an ongoing basis so you're aware of problems as they arise. Google offers two useful tools to do this through its Google Web Developers website. Use Google PageSpeed Insights
to get an overall PageSpeed Score and tips to speed page load up on your blog. Use Google Speed Tracer
to get a more detailed report filled with data about the performance of your blog. The Pingdom Website Speed Test
tool is another great option to identify processes on your blog that are running slowly.
2. Use a Fast Server
Your blog page load speed is only as fast as your web server. If you use a blogging platform like WordPress.org
and host your blog through a third party web host
, contact your web host's support team to better understand your server speed and to ensure that your blog has enough bandwith to handle peak traffic times.
3. Get a Caching Plugin
If you use WordPress.org as your blogging platform, then you can use a free caching
plugin like W3 Total Cache
or WP Super Cache
to reduce your blog's page load speed. Every time a page loads on your blog, your web host has to serve every element on that page to the visitor's web browser. Using a caching plugin, your web host doesn't have to retrieve some elements from the server every time a page is displayed. Instead, the host can store elements in a cache and call them from there, which speeds up page loads.
4. Optimize Images
If you're not resizing your images before you upload them to your blog or you're not using the best file formats for online images, then you're slowing down the page load speed for your blog. Always resize images to the actual size you need in your published blog post or page before you upload them to your blog. Large images are a resource drain and will not only take up valuable space in your hosting account but will also slow down your blog page load speed. Furthermore, make sure images that you use on your blog are saved in JPEG or PNG format. You can use a free image editing tool
to resize and reformat images. You can also use Smush.it
to reduce file sizes. If you use WordPress.org as your blogging application, you can use the WP Smush.it WordPress plugin
5. Reduce Plugins
If you use WordPress.org as your blogging application, how many plugins
are you using on your blog? Each plugin can slow down your blog's page load speed, particularly if some of those plugins are not well coded. Delete all unnecessary plugins and try to hard code as many features and functions as possible within your theme files.
6. Reduce Redirects
If a page on your blog redirects to another page intentionally or unintentionally (for example, a broken link redirects to an error page on your blog), then your blog's page load speed will be negatively affected. If your host can't find the information in the first place it looks, it needs to look again elsewhere. That takes time. Only use redirects when it's absolutely necessary and fix broken links on a consistent basis. You can use a tool like Broken Link Checker
to identify broken links on your blog, so you can easily fix them.
8. Make Sure Your Blogging Application, Theme, and Plugins are Up-to-Date
Don't get lazy about updating your blogging application, themes
, and plugins. Not only can old code in old versions of blogging applications, themes, and plugins open your blog up to security threats, but it can also have a direct impact on your blog's page load speed. Always upgrade!
9. Reduce HTTP Requests on Each PageFewer elements on a page mean faster page load speeds because there are fewer HTTP requests required. For example, every image, piece of text, ad, video, and so on that appears on a web page has to be served to visitors through HTTP requests. Delete elements that add more clutter than value to your pages, and your page load speed will improve. You can also consider combining elements. For example, a series of images could be combined and uploaded as a single, optimized image.
10. Omit Problematic Third-Party Add-ons and ElementsMessy ad code, widgets, embeds, and other add-ons provided by third parties that appear on your blog could cause problems with page load speed. Sometimes the code in third party elements is fine, but the code doesn't play nicely with your blog theme or other plugins or elements used on your blog. If you notice a particular third-party element consistently loads slowly on your blog, consider removing it to boost your page load speed.