Another possible cause of dropping PageRank – and even worse – potential loss of organic search traffic – is slow load time.
Most WordPress blogs are not loading nearly as quickly as they can and there ARE some great tools out there to assist us in speeding them up.
- NOTE: a page load time of 5.29s still garners an F grade so don’t panic when you run your site!
- Test your home page and some of your posts to identify issues that affect one and not the other.
This screen capture shows most of the first page of results. There are multiple tabs and much more to see so do run your own URLs. It doesn’t cost you anything but your time.
They recommend two very popular WordPress plugins: W3 Total Cache to set an expiration time and speed up browser caching and SmushIt to optimize images. (Many blogs are using images that are way too large and even I should optimize all the images here.)
WARNING: Be aware that caching plugins
are highly likely to conflict with other plugins
and WordPress or Theme upgrades or changes.
We need to identify bloggers who are particularly adept at optimizing caching plugins and make a list of those willing to assist and what they charge to help other bloggers. Any volunteers?
LOAD TIME TOOLS:
- Pingdom Web Page Load Time Tool
- WebsiteOptimization Web Page Analyzer ~ Free Web Page Speed Analysis
- Google Page Speed for Chrome Browser Addon – Special Thanks to Steve from New Customer Workshop who offers Local Business Internet Marketing.
PAGE LOAD TIME TIPS:
- Google Announces they will use Page Load Time in Google organic serp rankings
- David Kadavy: How to Reduce Page Load Time by 75%
- Page Load Time Affect on Conversion Rates
- 5 Popular WordPress Plugins You Need to Ditch Now (because too many plugins slows down your blog)
PAGE SPEED TIPS:
- Reduce the Number of Posts you display on your main page to speed up your blog! Go to WP admin under Settings and set how many posts will be displayed on the front page and going to 5 seems to be the best option, but this can vary from theme to theme as well, as some themes are much heavier than others causing slow speeds. Tip from JR whose Internet Marketing Blog is one to definitely be reading.
- JR also tells us that another issue with page speed is plugins like Similar Posts that drag down speed by calling the related posts for each page on the blog and can really affect page load times.
- Make sure your sharing buttons are ONLY on the post and NOT on your main page. They can really slow your blog down. Tip from Kristi Hines of the exceptional Social Media for Businesses Advice blog Kikolani.com. I make it a point to read what Kristi writes everywhere. Bloggers should seriously consider buying her inexpensive Blog Post Promotion Guide.
- I use WP-Optimize to delete post revisions and optimize databases. It is easy to run and hasn’t caused any problems. When I had the caching issue each time I published a new post I found that optimizing just before publishing DID make a difference.
- Ray from Dolphin Hosting recommends we keep an eye on is Google’s new page speed service and says another fairly decent test site that Google recommends is WebPageTest.org.
Do you have more resources, tips, or blog posts that belong here? Leave the links in the comments and I’ll move them up into the resources section of the post.