Website traffic is hard enough to come by without having a slow website. A slow website not only runs off visitors but it also negatively affects your search engine ranking. There are several things that can slow down your website but these three are the most common.
High quality images make a website look beautiful – they really do. But, they can also make a website very slow. The larger and higher quality they are, the longer they take to load. It is best if you can find a high quality image and downsize it to the largest size you actually need. For example, if you need to fill an area that is 350×250 pixels then make your image that exact size and not a pixel more. That ensures that the image is not scaled down too small and will still be small enough to load fairly quick.
There are a few plugins that will optimize your images for you, however, I personally prefer resizing images outside of WordPress in a photo editor such as Photoshop or even Preview. However, if you do decide to go with a plugin that optimizing your images I would recommend going with WP Smush. You can get some really good results and faster loading images with this.
One of my favorite things about WordPress is its ability to grow using plugins. They let you customize and grow a website as much as you would like. While this is a great thing, it can also be a negative thing. It is easy to get caught up in installing a plugin for every function you need on your website and in return bogging down your website with too many plugins.
If your website is running slow, a good place to start would be to try deactivating some of your plugins and testing the site speed. You may find that only one plugin is causing your whole site to load slowly.
Keep in mind that a good rule of thumb is to have anywhere from five to ten plugins installed and activated on your website. Any number over that is testing the waters for a slower website.
You Hosting Provider
This is probably one of the most important decisions when deciding to create your own website – choosing where to host. Your website may be slow because your server is slow. This is not something that is in your control. Make sure you check with your hosting provider on site speed before deciding to go with them.