Best Methods To Minify CSS JavaScript Files in WordPress – Website Speed Optimization Tutorial

What are the best methods to minify CSS JavaScript files in WordPress? If you've already explored the best ways to optimize your site

Best Methods To Minify CSS JavaScript Files in WordPress - Website Speed Optimization Tutorial

What are the best methods to minify CSS JavaScript files in WordPress? If you’ve already explored the best ways to optimize your site, you’ve probably come across minify or minify. The term minify refers to the methods used to reduce the size of files on your website. This is done with whitespace, lines, and guarantees removed from the source code.

Best Methods To Minify CSS JavaScript files in WordPress – Website Speed Optimization Tutorial

This article will explain what minification covers, its benefits, and some of the most popular minification solutions. So, you can decide how to handle performance and speed improvements for your site.

What is minification?

Server sites organized into localized folders are not many. These files contain that determine the look and feel of your website. To make your website light and fast loading, its code needs to be optimized-specifically, your JavaScript and CSS code. Minimizing your files is one way to do this if you have already tested your website speed using GTmetrix or PageSpeed.

When the code in the site files they are all written in a way that we intend to allow for an interpretation. So however, computers running this code don’t care if the files have blank comments, formatting, space, or newlines. At the same time, the website files are just what needs to be necessary.

This is when minification comes into play. This means it removes the surrogate characters, which are not a specification to run the code written. The depreciation of working and rewriting the code. This reduces the overall size of files and, by extension, the website’s length so that it can load itself faster in the user’s browser.

For example, suppose you have a stylesheet file that uses CSS code to style your website.

Stylesheet file intended for styling your website

Minimization takes place on the webserver before a response to a request from a client (web browser) is sent. After minification, the web server uses smaller, minimized, and much faster CSS and JavaScript files instead of the originals. This results in page refresh speed without loss of functionality.

How to shrink WordPress CSS and JavaScript files

Before you start to minimize your site files, you can either backup your entire site or just individual backup files. In addition, if you have a staging site or a local staging environment, we recommend shrinking the site files. And you can make sure everything is working before you go to the active site.

Also, you should check your site’s page speed before and after you minimize files. So, compare the results and see if the minimization is an improvement. Using GTmetrix, a handy testing tool that generates website optimization results, you can do this.

You can use a plugin or manually use a plugin with an online tool to minimize files. So, we will explain both methods in more detail in the sections below.

Minifying files using plugins

Using a WordPress plugin for minification is the easiest way to minify CSS and JavaScript files on your site. The most commonly used plugins are:

Minify CSS JavaScript Files in WordPress: Auto optimization plugin

Auto-Optimization is one of the most popular minification plugins you can find. It is straightforward and offers possibilities, and it is very accessible. This plugin can combine scripts, shrink and cache your code.

Download and install this plugin through the WordPress admin panel. When activating it, we find the Settings > automatic optimization option, and in the optimization, options check as boxes for CSS and JavaScript options.

You will not have additional options to optimize these files as well. However, you can enable them and customize file minimization. So, in the end, all you need to do is click on the Save changes and clear the cache button.

Reduced fast speed

Slow Fast is another popular, accessible, and convenient plugin. This works by shrinking and combining CSS and JavaScript files to reduce HTTP requests to the server. Merge the files into a group and try to use as little as possible. Additional optimization options are available, but most websites’ default settings will suffice.

Your website files will be automatically minimized and optimized when installing and activating this plugin.

You can use the Settings > Fast Speed ​​Reduction option in the admin panel to access the plugin settings and check all available options. On the Status tab, you can see a list of JavaScript and CSS files that Fast Velocity Minify has processed.

Minify CSS JavaScript Files in WordPress: Fast velocity minify option

You can use the Settings tab to customize how your files are optimized. For example, since CSS and JavaScript wrapping is enabled by default, you can use these settings to customize default options or disable the minification of certain code types after activating the plugin. You can even choose to optimize Google Fonts and Font Awesome icons.

WP Super Minify

WP Super Minify is a shrink plugin that allows you to shrink, combine, and cache CSS and JavaScript files for your website.

This plugin automatically compresses all inline JavaScript and CSS code when it is activated. As a result, the file size will be smaller, which will help your website load faster. The Settings > WP Super Minify option lets you choose whether you want to minify JavaScript and CSS or just one of these two file types.

Minify CSS JavaScript Files in WordPress: WP super minify settings

To verify that this plugin works, just check the source code of your website. And the easiest way to do this is to open the website in your browser and press Ctrl + U (for Windows) or Option + Command + U (for Mac). Moreover, if all goes well, you will see the following message at the end of the source code.

The message at the end of the source code

Ultimately, no matter which plugin you choose, all you have to do is select the file you want to minimize, and the plugin will do all the work for you in the background. All minification plugins on the market offer various features other than depreciation, so you should try different plugins and choose the one that works best.

Also, minification is a pretty standard feature of cache plugins like W3 Total Cache and WP Super Cache. So you can also try using them to minify your site’s CSS and JavaScript files.

Minifying files manually

Firstly, shrinking files manually doesn’t mean that you manually go through all the files on your site and remove the blanks or empty spaces. Manual minification involves using one of the popular online tools. One is Shrink Code, which we’ll use to show you the steps you need to take to minify your code. This tool has a friendly, simple, and user-friendly interface. And many online tools of this kind have similar or the same shrinking process.

So, if you choose to use the Minify Code tool, first, you need to select the tab you need. Then, depending on which code you want to minify, there is a tab for CSS Minifier and JavaScript Minifier. Once you’ve decided, paste your code into the available window and hit the Minify button.

After a while, you will see a minimized version of the code you entered. You can copy and paste it into the original file. Moreover, back up your files before overwriting the original code with a summary code.

A shortened version of the code

Manual minification is primarily helpful if you want to minify some files or code you’ve written. For example, if you’re customizing your site with child themes, CSS files containing custom code are good candidates for shrinking. So, in this case, you can make a backup copy of the original file, use online tools to flatten the code and replace it directly in the file.

So, if you decide to change something later, you can always do it in the saved backup file. Then, shrink it back down with the changes you made and replace the code in the file on the server. That way, you’ll always have a backup file ready that you can edit, and the minimized file will stay on the server, doing its part to optimize your site as much as possible.

Minify CSS JavaScript files: Final thoughts

Minifying your CSS and JavaScript files can go a long way to improve website performance and get faster page loads. Using the shredding tools available online, you can easily minify the code of your website. Plus, with WordPress sites, you can always install one of the many plugins and automatically minify your CSS and JavaScript files with just a few clicks. If you already use a caching plugin, you can check if it has any minification options in its settings and uses them instead of adding new plugins.

You can use several options to minify CSS and JavaScript files; you need to decide which one is best. And so, we hope that you found this article helpful and that by using our advice, your optimized website will soon rise in the rankings.