“My WordPress website is loading very slow, How can I increase loading speed?”
If your WordPress website loading speed is killing your business, probably you have searched similar kinds of keywords on Google but never found the proper solution that worked.
I guarantee, after reading this article, you’ll be able to understand the exact reason for the slow loading of your websites. I am also going to provide you with the step-by-step process to speed up your WordPress website like a pro using the best hosting for WordPress speed optimization.
For a running website, you need an active domain name & web hosting, everybody knows that!
Let’s start with the process people generally follow while starting a new website or blog. Buying a domain name & hosting is the most initial requirement, that needs to be fulfilled.
To keep this article focused on the point, I am going to explain the hosting part in detail. To buy a domain name, you can read my article on how to buy the best domain name for SEO purposes.
There are many leading web hosting companies available in the market, claiming to be the best.
It’s very hard to identify the host that’s really best in terms of fast loading, & exactly fulfill your needs & matches your requirements.
They all claim to be the best. But as a user how can we know which hosting is best for our business? I’ll answer this question later in this article.
Hosting seeker’s first step starts with searching for a keyword like “Best web hosting companies” or something like that in Google.
On Google SERP (search engine result page), you can clearly notice some paid advertisements related to your keyword & after that, some listing sites & hosting review sites that recommend different types of the top web hosting companies. This is where a new web hosting seeker gets trapped.
Most of the review sites don’t list the hosting companies based on actual performance & goodness. They list only those companies that pay them for every referral. Its called affiliate marketing, One of the best ways to make money online.
Normally, users select a hosting company based on reviews on listing sites. Most of the review says its the fastest hosting for WordPress website. Unfortunately, all those hosting reviews are FAKE (in most of the cases).
But very few people know that almost all the review sites recommend web hosting companies based on the payment they are getting for those reviews. Yes, they are paid reviews & its a kind of marketing to increase sales. Different review sites list top hosting providers not based on true performance but they are marketed just to increase sales as they are being paid for that.
Worldwide, 90% of websites are hosted on shared servers because it’s cheap mostly people prefer to buy cheap hosting as they don’t know how badly it’s going to decrease the performance of websites in search engines.
On a shared server, Thousands of customer shares the same CPU & RAM with restrictions. Suppose if few customers on that shared server run a poorly written code or have malware that’s affecting CPU performance. Your site`s speed will be affected because all the customers are sharing the same resources.
WHO SHOULD USE SHARED HOST?
The answer is simple, It should be used by individuals or someone who just want to showcase any kind of portfolio where organic traffic is not a major concern. If you are serious about speed, traffic, performance & SEO, The shared host is not for you. A shared host can never help you in website speed optimization.
I would like to mention that VPS is also a kind of shared host where CPU & RAM are being virtually distributed by fewer customers sharing space and resources and the server is partitioned out into different virtualized server environments.
Of course, It gives more flexibility and better speed than a shared server. But it’s not the fastest hosting server you need for speed optimization & SEO.
HARD TRUTH: Over the 15 years, I have used almost all the leading web hosting companies. Believe me, Godaddy Hosting is the worst. Godaddy is best in DOMAIN selling but they are not good at HOSTING. I had many clients using Godaddy hosting, All of them were having problems now & then. Later they shifted to another host.
Godaddy invests so much money in the advertisement but they are not working hard in improving hosting infrastructure.
As explained earlier in this post, most of the new users buy shared hosting servers. I understand you upgraded the server to any next level package, thinking it’ll speed up your website. I guess, the upgrade was not related to processing speed (CPU) & RAM. It could be related to space & bandwidth.
Most of the hosting companies create different types of hosting plans where they increase the space, & bandwidth But the processor is being shared between thousands of other customers hosted on the server.
If its a dedicated server, important resources, like CPU & RAM is always dedicated to one customer. A dedicated host allows many important modules that can speed up the loading time like APC, eAccelator, XCache, Memcache, WinCache, etc. But on a shared host, these modules are not allowed because they are resource consuming. That’s why it’s available on dedicated servers only.
Its human nature to get emotionally attached to what they have. When someone invests time and money in anything they start liking it over time & it starts to look familiar to them.
The same thing applies to the existing business owners who own a website, hosted on the poor server. Initially, they purchased the hosting plan thinking its the fastest web hosting
Most of the time, when I start website speed optimization for new clients, I notice major performance issues.
My speed optimization process starts with cloning client’s websites on my development server (hosted on WP Engine or Cloudways hosting) to see the instant improvements.
In 90% of cases, I see the Google Pagespeed score improves drastically, Just by hosting my client’s website on a managed cloud server. Because the same site was performing better on my development server but on the client’s shared server result was very poor, I can easily figure out how much speed improvements I can promise to my clients if they shift to a faster web hosting server, I suggest.
Surprisingly, almost all of my clients simply reject my idea of moving to another host. I guess the reasons are as follows :
Clients are NOT WRONG at this point as they don’t even know what they are missing & why should they take such a major decision, believing a guy just started working with.
Being an SEO & speed optimization expert, It’s my responsibility to win the trust of my client & convince them to follow my suggestions for the faster loading speed of his website.
As explained initially, everybody does proper research before buying a web hosting plan. And when they buy it, they believe its the best, fastest web server.
Breaking someone’s belief is not easy. We need solid proof to make the owner understand he is using a poor slow server that’s affecting his business badly.
When a client hire me for website speed optimization, I feel myself as a army commander who has to prepare his army to win the war.
Yes, Being on top of Google search is not less than war. I’ll call it a digital war where everyone is fighting to win the race, to be on TOP. We can’t win a war with decades-old weapons. In this scenario, it’s my responsibility to make the client understand having the fastest web server is the most important factor to win the top position in Google Search.
The Process I follow to convince my clients to change host:
STEP 1: Cloning client’s website on my managed WordPress hosting server
STEP 3: Comparing page speed test data of the Client’s shared host with my development server, hosted on VPS or Managed cloud server
After these 3 step process, most of the business owners understand what they are missing with the current web hosting company.
In some cases, If you don’t see enough difference in loading speed, You can proceed with these few more steps that will definitely speed up your loading time:
STEP 4 : Activate CDN (Content Delivery Network)
STEP 6: Install & configure WP Smush Plugin. This plugin helps to quickly optimize images for faster loading of WordPress pages
Once you complete these steps, you’ll definitely see dramatic speed improvement in your website. You just have to prepare a report explaining how a faster server can speed up loading time of website & your client will TRUST you.
My recommendation is completely based on 15 years of my real-life experience as an SEO & speed optimization expert.
solution for serious business, where performance & SEO is important I suggest the following hosting options :
Performance-wise, Dedicated hosting is always the best option for large websites where you are getting huge traffic & you can easily afford the cost.
A dedicated server will cost your somewhere around $200/month (and a webmaster cost). There can be many hidden costs you need to be prepared for.
If you are running a medium-sized website with enough traffic, I strongly suggest managed WordPress hosting. These days this type of hosting is pretty affordable & result oriented.
Managed hosting recommendation
Virtual Private Server hosting gives you more flexibility than managed cloud hosting but its a little complex to handle as you’ll need to set up many server software & you need to configure many other things. Of Course, you’ll need the help of a webmaster that again increases cost.
If you ask a straight forward question, Which hosting is best for speed optimization, My answer will be WP Engine.
A Dedicated host is powerful & very flexible with unlimited possibilities but most of the cases, your site is not very large so investing $200/month (and a webmaster cost) on a dedicated host is a bad idea. I would strongly suggest you Managed WordPress hosting. In my opinion, the best-managed WordPress hosting is WP Engine.
Many successful websites (small/medium/large) are hosted on WP Engine. (Note: I am not associated with WP Engine. I am suggesting it only based on my experience & results I have seen for my clients)
I give you an example of a Miami, USA based web agency (Working with big clients like Nescafe) whose one of the client’s website was performing very badly on Hostgator (Desktop speed score 50 & mobile score was 30) & I suggested to shift hosting on WP Engine & Optimized the website load time. Now they are getting Desktop score: 99 & Mobile score 87+ in Google Page Speed Test
I have tried to explain everything in detail based on my experience. If you have any questions please comment below.
My name is Praveen Kumar. I am a software engineer having 15+ years of experience in web development, hosting, SEO & WordPress coding. I have managed many leading web hosting companies & provided technical support as a server admin. I run my own web hosting company also. I have helped many clients (worldwide) to increase website loading speed & rank well in the search engines.
I am in the process of creating a detailed post on SEO Strategy, to be published very soon.