The speed of your website is paramount to your website’s success. Giving your visitors a slow browsing experience will frustrate your visitors. This can lead to reduced traffic and reduced sales. A slow website can also affect your ranking in search engine results
One of the most efficient ways of speeding up a WordPress website is to install a cache plugin. A caching plugin will make static HTML copies of all of your pages. They also implement other optimization techniques such as mininify to reduce the speed of your page loading time even further.
For many years, I used W3 Total Cache to cache files; however I recently run into a problem in which the plugin caused an 403 response error code. This resulted in Google removing my pages from their index and stopped them from tracking my traffic through Google Analytics.
After disabling W3 Total Cache, I tried a few cache plugins. The one that I finally used for my personal blog is WP Rocket.
WP Rocket is the first premium caching plugin that I have ever used, yet it is very affordable. It also includes many great features that are missing from other plugins.
WP Rocket Review
WP Rocket only takes a minute or two to configure. In the basic options page you can enable lazy loading so that images only load once an image is visible. This greatly reduces your initial page loading time.
The advanced options page allows you to exclude certain pages and files from caching and minification. You can also delete the cache of certain pages whenever you update a post.
The plugin also supports content delivery networks such as MaxCDN. This is something I plan on configuring over the next few weeks as it will reduce the speed of my website even more.
Whenever you make a change to your website, be it a template change or activation of a new plugin, you should delete the page cache. This ensures that new cache files are generated using your current configuration.
As you can see, WP Rocket offers a lot of features that other caching plugins do not, such as lazy loading of images, image optimization, and DNS prefetching.
Of course, comparison tables such as this are usually biased and make a point of showing what a product can do and not what it cannot. I am sure if WP Super Cache or W3 Total Cache were to compile a table such as this, it would highlight features that WP Rocket does not have.
That being said, I think it is important to note that WP Rocket offers features that the others do not, as it saves you from installing another plugin. When I used W3 Total Cache, I had to install a plugin to lazy load images. This additional plugin is not necessary with WP Rocket. I was actually able to uninstall several additional optimization plugins after installing WP Rocket.
As you can see from the GTmetrix report below, my blog loads in under a second and has an A A rating. I’d still love to reduce the speed of my website even more, though I am happy with the way it is currently performing.
All in all, I am impressed with what WP Rocket can do. It works directly out the box, therefore you do not have to spend time configuring the plugin. It just works.
A single license for WP Rocket retails at $39 and comes with one year of updates and support. It also comes with a 30 day money back guarantee. A license for three websites can be purchased for $99 and for an unlimited number of websites for $199.
I recommend checking them out if you are looking for a user-friendly cache plugin for your website.