How to Speed Up Your WordPress Site

Recently I finally took the step to update my WordPress theme to a mobile responsive one. While in the process, I decided the main criteria would  be loading speed, which explains why I ended up with this basic looking no-frills theme. Yep this is the stock standard WordPress “Twenty Nineteen” theme which is clean and no-nonsense. At the same time, I installed an SSL (using free cPanel SSL) and used the Really Simple SSL plugin which automatically detects and configures all my settings to run in https.

While doing this, I recalled a recent PHP Upgrade I did for a client from PHP version 5.4 to PHP version 7.1. It seemed to have worked well for his WordPress website so I thought I’d do the same for this website. After that I ran Optimize Website in cPanel (look for it under the Software section in cPanel).

The result is Google PageSpeed Insights has been astonishing. Checking it just now, I scored 98 points for both Desktop and Mobile View! If you find that hard to believe, so do I. In all my years doing website development, I’ve never ever come close to this score.

So hopefully these screenshots will convince you:

Now we all know that Google PageSpeed Score is not perfect. And it’s not the be-all-end-all in website speed testing. However just making these small tweaks make all the difference. Of course, you first need to have done some basic things like optimizing your images, signing up with a good web host in a good server, avoiding slider animation and CDN content delivery if possible.