WordPress Caching Importance And Recommendations
Learn the WordPress caching importance, top recommendations, best practices, and how to enable it on your site for free
WordPress caching is the fastest way to improve performance and in this article, we’ll explain the importance of WordPress caching and the recommendations for its usage. Firstly, let us take a moment to familiarize ourselves with the process of caching in general. In simple terms, caching refers to the process of creating static versions of your content, and serving that to visitors. Static pages load generally quickly in browsers. This leads to faster performance of your website. In this article, you’ll learn the WordPress caching importance, top recommendations, best practices, and how to enable it on your site for free.
WordPress Caching Importance and top Recommendations
In WordPress, rendering or fetching a page (or post or custom post type) requires back and forth queries to be sent to and from the database. Now, more often than not, you will create a post or a page and then you won’t be updating it every day on how to enable WordPress caching and their recommendations.
Caching creates static copies of your post or page and serves that to visitors. This way, the back and forth queries to and from the database can be avoided, thereby reducing the server load.
The advantages of caching for a WordPress site include:
- Enhanced Speed and Performance: Caching improves website speed, leading to faster page load times. This results in a better user experience and can lead to lower bounce rates.
- Reduced Server Load: By serving cached pages, there’s less strain on the server. This means fewer resources are used, which can reduce hosting costs and ensure your website remains responsive even during traffic spikes.
- Improved SEO: Google has made it clear that page load time is a ranking factor. Faster websites are more likely to rank higher in search results, driving organic traffic to your sit
This technique allows the browser to check to see if files have changed, instead of simply requesting them. As a result, your web server can answer many more 304 responses, instead of 200 responses, which require the file delivery. Look into HTTP Cache-Control (specifically max-age) and Expires headers, as well as Entity Tags for more information on how to enable WordPress Caching.
Web server caching is more complex but is present in very high traffic sites. A wide range of options is available, beyond the scope of this article.
The simplest solutions start with the server caching locally while more complex and involved systems may use multiple caching servers (also known as reverse proxy servers) “in front” of web servers where the WordPress application is actually running. Adding an opcode cache like Opcache, or WinCache on IIS, to your server will improve PHP’s performance by many times.
Plugins For WordPress Caching Importance
It offers an extremely simple and easy to use interface. In other words, this plugin does what it is meant to do. Cache your content and serve static cached pages to visitors. Cache Enabler is probably meant for you if you need a simple cache solution.
This plugin does not involve heavy configuration or settings. It simply works out of the box. On the other hand, if you are ready to something that offers granular control over every aspect of caching, Cache Enabler might seem rather unimpressive to you.
Note that since Cache Enabler is a new plugin, it is way less popular than the other entries on this list (currently, it has over 6000 active installs). So, a good start on on how to enable WordPress Caching.
W3 Total Cache Plugin For WordPress Caching
W3 Total Cache is another extremely popular caching plugin for WordPress users, with over a million active sites.
Unlike other cache plugins, W3 Total Cache does more than just the generation of static pages. It can also help you minify and compress your scripts, and leverage various other tools to further speed up your site. In addition, W3 Total Cache is rather hard to use plugin with a slightly steeper learning curve. If you are relatively newer to WordPress caching plugins, this one might be overkill for you.
WP Super Cache
WP Super Cache is a free WordPress plugin with over a million active installations. It generates static HTML files for your WordPress site. This way, your website functions faster than a non-cached site. WP Super Cache is a simple plugin, but it offers good scope for customization as well. You can also make it work in sync with your CDN service.
WP Fastest Cache Plugin For WordPress Caching
WP Fastest Cache generates static HTML pages of your content to speed up page load times. In addition to WordPress caching, it also offers various performance optimization options, such as the ability to minify HTML and CSS and speed up JS scripts.
WP Fastest Cache also supports GZip compression to reduce the size of files from your server. This plugin is free but offers a premium version that comes with more features, such as the ability to integrate with CDN services.
Caching Best Practices
While caching is beneficial, it’s essential to follow best practices to ensure optimal performance:
- Regularly Purge Cache: While caching speeds up your website, serving outdated content can be a drawback. Set your cache to auto-purge at intervals or do it manually, especially after making significant site updates.
- Exclude Dynamic Pages: Pages like the cart or checkout in e-commerce sites are dynamic and should be excluded from caching.
- Combine Caching with CDN: Using a Content Delivery Network (CDN) alongside caching can supercharge your website speed. CDNs host your site’s static assets on multiple servers worldwide, ensuring faster content delivery.
- Test After Configuration: After setting up any caching solution, it’s crucial to test your website’s performance and functionality to ensure everything runs smoothly.
In the digital age, where every millisecond counts, caching isn’t just an option but a necessity for WordPress websites. By understanding its importance and implementing the right solutions, you can offer a blazing fast website that pleases both your visitors and search engines.