How to Improve Blog Loading Speed within 45 Minutes?

The first impression you give to your reader about your blog is through the blog loading time. If it takes a bit more time, people will click on the back button and go to the other search result. Am I right? This is what you do. This is what I do when a page takes bit longer time than usual. So, you loose a probable reader of your blog or you loose a sale from your blog. This is tragic. The possibility gets nipped in the bud!

Why to Improve Blog Loading Speed of Your Blog?

Important for Blog SEO:

Though you have super informative content, nice and lucrative blog design or some real good products on your blog, because of the blog loading time all your hard works will go in vain. Google page rank is dead but still Google gathers some inner signal from the pages and the page loading time is one of them. If Google bot finds your blog loading time is high, it will not include your page in in search result or it will not include it in the top position. So, your SEO gets affected because of the blog loading speed.

Higher Conversion Rate of Affiliate Products and Higher Adsense Income:

When your blog loads faster, more people visit your blog page and they also click on other related articles which converts the reader to a buyer. When a user gets a blog user friendly even with his low to moderate internet speed, he visits the blog again and again. If you are using Adsense, it will improve your revenue. More visits will also improve the rank in Alexa Rank.

How to Improve Blog Loading Speed?

I was really worried about my blog loading speed as it was loading really slow and I was loading visitors. I was so engaged with the article writing that I forgot to check the blog loading time for my blog. When I checked, it was horrible. So, I had to do a bit of research to improve the blog loading speed of my blog.

You can check the blog loading speed with some simple tricks like below:

  • If the blog loading takes below 1 second, your blog loading speed is perfect.
  • From 1-3 seconds = Higher side of the average but improvement can be done
  • From 4-7 seconds = average
  • 7+ seconds is very poor! You will have to work on it.

You can also check the score and other parameters related to page speed to improve your blog loading speed. The sites from where by getting suggestions you can improve your blog loading speed are written below:

  1. Google’s Page Speed Insight
  2. Varvy
  3. GTMetrix
  4. Pingdom

Please check your blog score two to three times to check whether the sites are giving you the accurate results or not. I personally suggest to use Varvy because you will also get some useful suggestion with the  blog speed score.

Google’s Page Speed Insight is also a great tool to check the score as it is from the search giant Google and also gives you the mobile and desktop blog loading speed with some important suggestion through which you can improve your blog loading speed.

I was Disappointed with My Blog Loading Speed:

I was really not happy with my blog loading speed as the score was only 56 (Cheked with Varvy) which is below average and all the site gave me suggestion to improve blog loading seep as soon as possible. I got the result before 24 hours from now (when I am reading the article) and I am happy to inform you that after a research of whole day, I have improved the blog loading speed.

I Started Searching About How to Improve Blog Loading Speed:

There are a huge number of articles addressing this issue but I had to do a good research to find exactly the effective ways to improve blog loading speed.

I am happy to inform you, my blog loading speed has now improved dramatically just within 24 hours. You can check the screen shot below which shows the score is now 84 !!

Improve_Blog_Loading_Speed_TechnTechie

What I have Done to Improve Blog Loading Speed?

Before writing the tricks I want to inform you the below tricks are suitable for WordPress website. If you are using blogger blog, you will not get all those facilities as most of the tricks are related to plugin which is available for WordPress only. If you want to have your own WordPess blog with your own hosting facility, you can buy a cheap shared hosting plan from HostGator which is an awesome hosting service and you can read why I am using HostGator for the last 4 years.

  1. Enable gzip in .htaccess file to Compress Your Files to Improve Blog Loading Speed: 

This is a very small trick but is really fruitful to improve blog loading speed. You do not need to have even beginner level coding skill to enable this gzip feature. What gzip does is compress your blog files and make the loading time faster. To enable gzip simply log in to your web hosting control panel and go to your file manager. Then you will have to insert the below code to your .htaccess file and then save it.

Caution: .htaccess file is a very important file of your blog. So, if you want to do any editing please download and back up the file before touching the file. If you mess up somehow, you can just use the back up. Please, please back up your .htaccess file before editing.

I use HostGator hosting. In my case I have logged in to my cPanel >> went to the Files  tab>> clicked on File Manager>> then click on “Go” like below image:

Improve_Blog_Loading_Speed_TechnTechie_1

After clicking on Go, you will get all the files for your blog. You will have to select and download the .htaccess file for backup. Then select the .htaccess file and click on EDIT to edit the file. You will have to insert the below code to enable gzip:

<ifModule mod_gzip.c>
mod_gzip_on Yes
mod_gzip_dechunk Yes
mod_gzip_item_include file .(html?|txt|css|js|php|pl)$
mod_gzip_item_include handler ^cgi-script$
mod_gzip_item_include mime ^text/.*
mod_gzip_item_include mime ^application/x-javascript.*
mod_gzip_item_exclude mime ^image/.*
mod_gzip_item_exclude rspheader ^Content-Encoding:.*gzip.*
</ifModule>

Then save the .htaccess file to enable gzip. To check whether the gzip is correctly enabled or not, you can check your website in this gzip Compression Checker Tool.

2.Disable Hotlinking of Images

Hotlinking images means when some one display image by linking to the other website rather copy and save it to the own website. This takes the bandwidth of that website where it is linked. So, if someone is linking to your website to show your image, they are using your bandwidth also which can slow down the blog loading speed. To prevent this, you can modify your .htaccess file a little bit. Just follow the steps in the above trick to open and edit the .htaccess file and insert the below code:

RewriteEngine on
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^$
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http(s)?://(www\.)?yourwebsiteaddress.com [NC]
RewriteRule \.(jpg|jpeg|png|gif)$ – [NC,F,L]

Caution! Please change the “yourwebstieaddress.com” with your own website address then save it and you are done!

3. Clean Up Your Database:

I am not sure whether you know or not but when you revise one article or when your comments are in the spam or if you have any draft article, it takes a lot of space in your file storage. If you can reduce the size of the unwanted files from your data base, you can improve blog loading speed dramatically. To do this there is an awesome plugin which is WP Optimize. Please go to your WordPress dashboard, go to Plugins and search with WP Optimize and then install the plugin. I have deleted almost 1300 spam and trash comments and some other unwanted files from my database which helped me to improve blog loading speed.

4. Compress Your WordPress Images:

Images to your blog post are really important to explain your blog post and attract readers. You will have to insert a good number of required images. But these images take a lot of storage and makes your blog slower.

You can read: How to Get Awesome Traffic Analysis from Hostgator cPanel?

WP Smush is an awesome plugin to compress your images of your blog and it makes your blog faster. I use a lot of images in my posts, so this plugin was really helpful for me. I have saved a lot of storage by using this plugin.

Caution! Always use jpeg format for your image. Not the GIF or PNG format which will increase the file size more than double. Bad for your blog loading speed.

5. Install a Caching Plugin:

When you first time load a web page in your web browser, it loads the necessary elements of the webpage. But when you go to another page of the blog, not everything needs to be downloaded, like the blog header image or an image in the sidebar or the messages in the footer because those are same for all the pages. So, if you somehow let the know the browser that the common things are already downloaded and you do not need to download those data, this is called browser caching. If you use a browser caching plugin, when some one browses your webpage, it automatically detects the common data second time and do not download those data, so the page loading time becomes faster. This is really important to have on caching plugin in your blog. I personally use W3 Total Cache. But you can use WP Super Cache also. This is really helpful to improve blog loading time.

My story of blogging :

6. Remove Header Image:

If you think there is no need of a header image in your blog, only the text format of your blog name is enough, then just remove the blog header image. I had a nice header image in my blog. I was using it. But the image size was big and from my point of view it was slowing the speed of my blog loading. So, I just removed the page header image and my blog loads faster than before.

A good read: How To Create HTML Banner for Free for Blog or Business?

7. Fix all Broken Links:

Broken link means those links which are not link of any valid webpage or the links are somehow incorrect or the webpage does not exist where the link directs. I know you are careful enough to check all your broken links. I used to do it in every month or after each 2 weeks. Broken links are really bad for SEO. You can check those broken links in many ways. Google webmaster tool is an absolute awesome tool to check the broken links. Go to the crawl erros tab and you will be able to find all the broken links.

8. Reduce the Number of Redirect URLs:

I know when you find a lot of 404 page not found URL, you try to redirect them to a valid page which is relevant to that URL. But this process makes your blog slower cause the redirection takes some time. So, if possible please try to reduce the number of redirect URLs and this will really improve your blog loading speed.

9. Always Define the Dimension of Your Image in The Blog or Blog Post:

When you do not define the image dimension (height and width) in a post or in your home page, the browser takes a little bit more time to decide which size to show to your visitor. If you define the image dimension, this is easy for the browser to determine the image size and it improve blog loading time.

<p style="text-align: justify;"><a href="http://www.techntechie.com/?attachment_id=134028" rel="attachment wp-att-134028"><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-134028" src="http://www.techntechie.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/Improve_Blog_Loading_Speed_TechnTechie.jpg" alt="Improve_Blog_Loading_Speed_TechnTechie" width="1119" height="538" /></a></p>

From the above code, you can see the image dimension is defined which is good to improve the blog loading speed.

Are you getting tired and dull, read How To Download Movie From Extratorrent? to watch a movie.

10. Please Delete the Unused Plugins:

In WordPress blogs plugins are the biggest reasons that slows down your site. If you do not use any plugin, just remove it from the dashboard. If you use it once or twice in a year, also remove it. Like I had one plugin which I used to import my blog data as Excel file. I have only used it twice and I will use it in future again after 6 months. So, I have planned to remove it from my site. Also, do not use two plugins for the same purpose. There is no point of doing it.

11. Compress Java Script and CSS Files:

There is an wonderful plugin to compress your Java Script and CSS files. The name of the WordPress plugin is WP Minify. Use it to compress the java script and CSS files. This will improve blog loading speed of your WordPress blog. I use it for my blog.

12. Use Lazy Load of Images:

Lazy loading means, it will only load the images to that part of the webpage which is visible to the screen. When you scroll down, it will load the rest of the images of the blog or webpage. Isn’t it a cool idea to improve blog loading speed? Sites with a lot of images, use this plugin. You can also use the Lazy Loading plugin for WordPress. I am sure it will improve blog loading speed!

Recommended: An Awesome Popular Post Plugin for Your WordPress Blog

13. Do Not Use the Header Image in Facebook Like Box:

If you have integrated the Facebook like box in your homepage, I am quite sure this is also showing the header image of the Facebook page. If you look at my Facebook like box, it does not show the header image. Which saves some bandwidth. You can also do it. While getting code for the Facebook like box just uncheck the Header image option and then copy and paste the code. You will be able to improve blog loading time by doing this. It was an issue before. Now, I do not have this issue and page is loading smoothly.

Do you know which one is the most searched article of this month? Any guess? Read here WordPress Vs Blogger, which Gives the Best Blogging Experience?

One Last Trick

This is very important for all irrespective of the type of blog you are running. Please use a WordPress theme which is responsive and already SEO optimized. Please try to use a premium theme. The cost of premium theme is not that high and the cost is one time cost. But you will get the benefit in every stage of your blogging. I am not telling you the free themes are not good at all. But you will have to SEO optimize the themes manually. Responsiveness is an important factor. Mobile traffic is a big factor now-a-days. Almost all the premium themes are mobile friendly which will make the SEO score of your website high. Also the premium themes load way faster than the free WordPress themes. If you are a blogger in WordPress, please consider the TruePixel WordPress theme which is already SEO optimized and loads really faster. Get the theme only for 47$. The actual price was 69$ but you can get it for only 47$. If your website is related to eCommerce, you can check the WooCart Premium Theme used by the top eCommerce websites which is awesome for your eCommerce website.

Last but not the least, please try to keep your blog homepage as clean as possible. If you want to use an image suppose for your promotional activities or for some other purpose, please use an image with a small size and define the dimension. I have used the above techniques and it helped me  a lot to improve blog loading speed from 56 to 84 within one day. I hope you will also get the results if you follow the above steps sincerely. If you face any problem or if you have any question, please let me know via comments. I will be more than happy to help you.

Himadri is a passionate blogger who writes for his technology tips & tricks related blog TechnTechie. He is also a PhD candidate at the University of Canterbury. Though it is hard to balance time in between research and blogging, he still manages time to work for his own blog and writes regularly. The dashboard of this WordPress is the only place where he does not feel tired!

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