How to improve the speed and loading time OF wordpress website with free tools and plugins
In this article, we cover in detail why website speed optimization is important, as well as the key performance metrics to look for during website maintenance and speed improvement. All those important speed performance metrics are all designed to take inventory of the time it takes to display a particular page on a site from the initial request in the client’s browser to the last download on a desktop or mobile device to further improve and optimize it.
CONTENTS. SPEED OPTIMIZATION OF YOUR WEBSITE in 2022
- Importance for Speed Website Optimization
- Free Performance Evaluation tools
- How to speed up your website on WordPress
1. Importance for Speed Website Optimization
When it comes to web performance, page load time is the first web performance metric that shows how long it takes to load a website page on the client’s screen. It mesures in seconds or milliseconds.
Usually, Page load time (PLT) is different for mobile and desktop. Page load time refers to how long it takes for a web page to fully load and be rendered on user’s screen.
Let’s look at the influence of Page Load Time on four success factors for the client-oriented website:
- Traffic from search engines
We recommend analyzing site performance after every change to the site, especially after updates and installing new plugins.
Visibility and Traffic from Search engines (Preferences=Traffic)
Search engines give preferences in search results to fast websites that provide a high-quality user experience. A low-performing website provides a poor user experience and search engines degrade such websites in ranking.
Google describes its Core Web Vitals as a common set of performance signals critical to all web experiences.
The faster your page loads the higher conversion you can expect.
In practice, one second of delay equals a 7 percent reduction in conversion. With a delay of 7-8 seconds, it’s easy to be outside of today’s digital world altogether. Since December 2017, Google has added the presence and performance of mobile pages to site ranking factors. For most WordPress themes, there’s still a big difference in performance between the mobile and desktop versions, so the mobile version should always be considered when you’re benchmarking your site.
There’s no better way to improve your website usability than to make it faster, load quicker and more responsive to user requests. Building a great user experience can help you build a large customer base and a strong brand.
2. Free Performance Evaluation tools
Achieving high page speed is not easy, but if you optimize your site to an acceptable level, you will gain a significant advantage in ranking over your competitors. There are several performance evaluation tools that you can use. They evaluate any requested page on many performance metrics with clear recommendations and tips for improvement.
Performance Evaluation Tools
Performance Evaluation tools for Websites in 2022
- GTMetrix is one of the best tools for website speed performance testing and wide analysis with very clear visualization for top performance metrics. It provides tons of well-structured results for the site page with recommendations and helps on difficult topics. With a Free account, you can select the location for the test center (Canada, USA, Australia, Europe, etc) during your manual page speed testing and set up one daily monitored page for automatic performance reports.
- Pingdom Tools
GTMETRIX Pros and Cons
- Free version provides complete comprehensive analysis and structured reports
- The user interface is fantastic, intuitive and well documented
- GTMetrix uses many factors for the final score, which is reliable and authoritative
- Paid plans are expanded up with premium in-depth testing and monitoring features to fit any performance enthusiast or professional.
Performance Core Web Vitals metrics:
- First Contentful Paint (FCP)
- Largest Contentful Paint (LCP)
- First Input Delay (FID)
- First Contentful Paint (FCP) is a user-centric metric for measuring perceived load speed.
It marks the first time point on the page load timeline where any part of the page’s content is rendered on the user’s screen. Fast FCP (0-1.8sec) helps reassure the user that something is happening.
- Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) is a user-centric metric for measuring perceived load speed. It marks the time point in the page load timeline when the main content has likely loaded and shown.
- First Input Delay (FID) – helps measure your user’s first impression of your site’s interactivity and responsiveness. It marks the time from when a user interacts with a page to the time when the browser starts processing in response to this interaction. To provide a good user experience FID should be less 100 ms. on mobile and desktop devices.
3. How to speed up your website on WordPress
Extra. Understanding bounce rate in google analytics
There is a direct correlation between Page speed and Bounce rate.
Bounce rate is a fundamental metric per particular page.
Having a high bounce rate can mean the following three things:
- The visitor found the information he was looking for. This is a positive thing.
- The visitor, for whatever reason, didn’t find the information he was looking for, perhaps due to poor quality or irrelevant content. He also wasn’t interested in seeing other content on the site. It’s a bad sign.
- The Page loading was slow and the visitor canceled his request. It’s a very dangerous sign because the site doesn’t perform at all. Zero or miserable value Avg. Session Duration will confirm this problem.
What is Bounce rate?
According to Google Bounce rate is single-page sessions divided by all sessions or the percentage of all sessions on your site in which users viewed only a single page and triggered only a single request to the Analytics server.
In other words, the Analytic server collects information about all sessions where the visitor visited only one page (or at least requested to show him) and this number is divided by the number of all sessions.
To understand the difference between Exit Rate and Bounce Rate for a particular page, keep the following points in mind:
- For all pageviews to the page, the Exit Rate is the percentage that was the last in the session
- For all sessions that start with the page, Bounce Rate is the percentage that was the only one of the session
- Bounce Rate for a page is based only on sessions that start with that page.
How to evaluate and improve bounce rate
Bounce rate is the metric that depends on many factors. Sometimes a high bounce rate means that visitors are satisfied with the information provided from the first touch on your page. Often this is an event or promotional page, where a high bounce rate is actually the goal of the call-to-action, namely to go to another site. It’s needed to look at the source of traffic and evaluate the expectations of visitors, who visited the site via the particular channel. Are these targeted visitors for the page, and are they seeing targeted content? If a high bounce rate isn’t pleasing, then there are plenty of content marketing tasks involved in creating quickly available high-quality content that is relevant to the expectations of visitors and is related to the niche of the website.
GOOGLE ANALYTICS EXAMPLE 1 (Audience/Overview/Sessions)
In-Depth for starter Niche Website: 18 users made 30 sessions for an analysed period with an overall Bounce Rate of 66.67% or in other words, 20 sessions started and ended by viewing only this page (30*66.67%=20) and remain 10 sessions (30-20=10) made by “more than one-page” visitors.
GOOGLE ANALYTICS EXAMPLE 2 (Audience/Overview/BOUNCE RATE)
It’s important to know the reasons for any peak Bounce rate values in deep. Zero, miserable, and very high values are the first indicators for any healthy site to have a checkup. In most cases, it signs the unaccepted slowness on-site pages and overall site speed must be evaluated and fixed or it says that google analytics was installed on website incorrectly and need to be reinstalled.