WordPress Loading Slow

Your WordPress site is slow.

I get it, and I can help.  🙂

 

There are lots of places to start troubleshooting this sort of WordPress slowness.

One thing I often do to combat website slowdown headaches is utilize Cloudflare.

About Cloudflare

Cloudflare is basically a way to load your website off your server.  (FYI, your server is 9-times-out-of-10 the slowdown bottleneck).

With the basic Cloudflare configuration I share below, this very site your are looking at went from almost 2 seconds to load down to less than a second.  See screengrabs below.

WordPress Site Slow Before Cloudflare

WordPress Site Fast After Cloudflare

And if that isn’t enough, I took some further actions to reduce the load time of my homepage further (removed a big image and activated Cloudflare’s Rocket Loader). Now the site loads in its entirety in about half a second!

How To Speed Up Your WordPress Site

Here’s the basics of using Cloudflare to speed up your WordPress site:

  1. Install the Cloudflare plugin.  NOTE: If you skip this step, you’ll hate yourself in the morning.  😉
  2. Follow this Cloudflare WordPress how-to guide to speed up your site using Cloudflare.
  3. Enable HTTP/2 on your server via wp-config.php.
  4. Create a page rule to cache your site in Cloudflare to speed it up.
  5. Upgrade to paid plan on Cloudflare to enable WAF.
  6. If you have a shopping cart or membership site or a site that requires users to login, upgrade to a paid plan and enable the “Bypass Cache on Cookie” page rule.
  7. Activate Rocket Loader in Cloudflare.  NOTE: This option is experimental and can break things (test well and be cautious if your site takes payments).

That’s it!  Your site is no longer so darn slow!

There’s lots more that can be done to improve site-speed.

Cloudflare Security Improvements

Optional security improvements can speed up your site as well if you are on a VPS.  Here we go:

  1. Enable Cloudflare Rate Limiting to protect against brute force attacks.
  2. Enable Cloudflare WAF (paid plan).
  3. Increase security level to “High”.
  4. Install Blackhole for Bad Bots WordPress plugin.

E-Commerce Checkout Slow?

Buying/selling products on any website poses unique page speed problems.

The first step is to figure out if page speed is actually an issue for your business.

Next, take appropriate action to improve conversion rates, which might not include page speed improvements.

In fact, most small businesses don’t have a page speed problem.  They have a sales problem.

Need help speeding up your WordPress site?  Contact me.

Toby Cryns

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