# Optimizing Site Loading Speed

In this mini article I want to highlight some basic yet important reasons that makes your website slow. Learning what slows down your website is the key to improving performance and making smarter long-term decisions.

The primary bottle necks for a slow WordPress website are:

❌ Slow web hosting
❌ Large unoptimized images
❌ Not configured server caching
❌ Too many separate CSS & JS assets to load
❌ Gzip text compression is turned off

# Pick Good Web Hosting

When a visitor opens your website, the page is being requested from a server. If that server:

  • Is shared virtually between many websites
  • Built upon poor non-peformant cheap hardware
  • Doesn't have a speedy connection
  • Has very limited resources allocation

... then your website will be slow no matter what else you will do. The solution is obvious here – don't buy cheap web hosting. Quality hosting provider is the first key for fast website.

# Compress Your Images

Unminifed images with abnormal resolution makes a huge impact to your website loading speed. I recommend you use images no more larger than 1920x1280 pixels. When it comes to optimization I strongly recommend to use TinyPNG (opens new window) free online tool which may drastically reduce your image size.

When I've been building the demo content of the theme, all the images were optimized with TinyPNG. You can optimize your images from browser (upload up to 20 at once for free) or use an official TinyPNG WordPress plugin (opens new window) which is more convenient and time saving way for optimization but it may cost you money if your site have lots of images.

# Generate Static HTML files

As you may know, WordPress is working on PHP language interpreter. Each time you visit your website, the parser is doing large amount work communicating with database and executing PHP code.

If your website is not being updated very often (for example, if you use your website just for portfolio presentation), than you may speed it up by generating static HTML files out of your pages.

I recommend to setup and use WP Super Cache (opens new window) plugin which is free and very flexible. Kinsey theme is tested and fully compatible with it. This includes AJAX transitions too.

# Optimize CSS & JS assets

Autoptimize (opens new window) plugin makes optimizing your site really easy. It can aggregate, minify and cache both scripts and styles.

The plugin itself is very simple to setup and use. Here are the recommended settings which you can find in admin panel in Settings → Autoptimize → JS, CSS & HTML

Recommended CSS & JS optimization options

WARNING

Please refrain from using HTML minifier in Autoptimize as it may produce issues when AJAX transitions are turned on. You can achieve better (and issues-free) results using gzip compression.

Recommended HTML optimization options

# Enable Gzip

Gzip (opens new window) compression may save up to 70% bandwidth when transfering text assets including CSS, JS, HTML. Here are some useful articles: