12 best free WordPress plugins to make site faster

WordPress plugins

There are over 74.6 million sites depend on WordPress with over 29 thousand WordPress plugins. WordPress is easily the most popular CMS platform for blogging. It’s free, powerful, stable and easy to get to grips with.

According to studies, 83% of visitors expect a web page to load in 3 seconds or less.

How to analyze site speed?

GTmetrix is a very popular free service, which you can use to analyze the speed of any website. You can take a screenshot of the report or download the report as a PDF file.

Google PageSpeed Insights is another free service. Remember, site speed is one of the most important factors that Google uses to determine search engine rankings, both on desktop and on mobile.

Free Caching Plugins for WordPress

If your websites is powered by WordPress there are many free caching plugins available you have the opportunity to use  to serve static pages for faster page loads.

W3 Total Cache

W3 Total Cache is an advanced caching plugin to improve the user experience of your site. This free WordPress plugin can easily increase website speed via features like compression, minification, and content delivery network (CDN) integration.

There are still places where the internet is expensive and the bandwidth could cost you more and using tactics such as minify and HTTP compression of HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and feeds can reduce the use of that bandwidth.

WP Super Cache

WP Super Cache is another WordPress static caching plugin. The files that are served directly by Apache are HTML generated without processing comparatively heavy PHP scripts. By using this WordPress plugin you will speed up your WordPress blog significantly.

WP Fastest Cache

WP Fastest Cache is a WordPress cache plugin that includes almost everything a user can look for. This WordPress plugin is designed to accelerate the performance of your website. Creating and storing a static copy of your posts and pages helps to optimize page load times.

Free Image Optimization Plugins for WordPress

Compress JPEG & PNG image

With this free plugin, you can make your website faster by optimizing your JPEG and PNG images. Integrating with the popular image compression services TinyJPG and TinyPNG, this plugin automatically optimizes all your images. You can also use this plugin on WordPress multi-site network.

The way it works is when you upload an image to your site, each resized image is uploaded to services like TinyPNG and TinyJPG for optimization and then the compressed image is sent back to your site. Optimized images replace the original large images.

WP Smush

With 500,000+ active installs, this is one of the most popular image optimization plugins. You can also set a maximum width and height and large images will scale down as they are being compressed.

The free version of the plugin doesn’t require you to create an account to use their API key. The bulk optimization feature is limited to optimizing up to 50 images at the same time, and you can start the optimizer to compress more images.

EWWW Image Optimizer

Another great option for WordPress image compression plugin is EWWW Image Optimizer. The plugin is made to be easy to use and it is automated the process of optimizing images you are uploading. It can also be used to optimize and compress your already uploaded images.

Minify CSS and JavaScript on WordPress site

You can use these two free plugins to minify JavaScript and CSS files. Minification process removes all unnecessary characters from the source code without changing its functionality.

WP Super Minify

A very lightweight and free plugin to combine, minify and caches HTML, JavaScript, and CSS files.

JS & CSS Script Optimizer

Another free plugin that can be used to increase page speed is JavaScript and CSS files. This plugin also allows you to add CSS & JS via the WordPress admin panel.

Content Delivery Networks

You can also use Content Delivery Networks to improve page loading time. A Content Delivery Network can drastically reduce page loading time by storing static files on a network of fast loading servers. The purpose of this system of distributed content delivery network (CDN) is to deliver pages and other web content to a user, based on the geographic locations of the user.

A few free CDN services providers are MAX CDN, CloudFlare, Incapsula, CoralCDN, and Photon.

Cloudflare Plugin

You can install this free Plugin to enable all of Cloudflare’s performance and security benefits in a simple one-click install of recommended settings. Cloudflare is a content delivery network (CDN). A CDN is a globally distributed network of servers that provides a better and faster loading time for users visiting a web site based on their location.

JetPack Photon

This is a free editing service and image CDN for WordPress powered websites. If you are using Shared Hosting provider, A CDN can serve faster images to your readers.

Lazy Loading Plugins

Rocket Lazy Load

Rocket Lazy Load displays images on a page only when they are visible to the user. This helps improves the loading time and reduces the number of HTTP requests mechanisms. For example, instead of using a JavaScript library like jQuery Lazy Load by WP Rocket has a script weight is less than 10KB.

BJ Lazy Load

BJ Lazy Load plugin is one of the best WordPress plugins to enable to lazyload on your site. You can add lazyload to the images and iframes with this WordPress plugin. You can also add lazyload to selected images. The advanced setting of this plugin helps you to lazyload post thumbnails, images, iframes, and even gravatar images too.

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