Fast loading times are important. They reduce the abandonment rate, which increases retention time. This signals Google: Visitors have found what they were looking for. The site is of interest. As a result, it increases in rating and ranking. On the one hand, this sets your WordPress page apart from your competitors in the search engines through a better placement, on the other hand, they receive fewer visitors if interested parties stay on your website. Fast loading times therefore contribute to optimization in several ways. A tool will help you with this: the WP Rocket plug-in.
Significantly shorter loading times with WP Rocket
The shorter the loading times, the better the performance. This may not matter as much on a website with manageable static content. A versatile, dynamic WordPress installation, on the other hand, which, in addition to pages, also includes blog posts and news as well as external interfaces, possibly even an online shop or other complex extensions, requires a moment to load completely despite a reasonable configuration of the CMS and generates when called the content numerous queries. WP Rocket optimizes this by minimizing queries and significantly reducing loading times. This can be 50 percent or more, although the actual effectiveness varies in individual cases.
Installation and configuration
Some preliminary work is required for optimization with WP Rocket. However, these are manageable and do not require an expert to be commissioned if you have some knowledge of the background of WordPress. Now you can carry out the configuration. This applies, for example, to the use of the cache or the deactivation of certain functions.
The first thing to do is decide which version meets your needs and purchase the appropriate license. Then install the plug-in as usual via the administration area. Now carry out the configuration – no programming knowledge is required for this.
WP Rocket increases performance through several measures:
- Caching, browser and server cache management
- Compression of Java Script, CSS and HTML files
- Lazy loading, loading images only in the visible area, the portion of the page currently shown in the display
You may be familiar with loading images exclusively in the visible area – lazy loading – from Facebook and other well-known networks with high visitor frequency. It is basically irrelevant for the optimization which end device and which browser visitors use. This receives instructions via WP Rocket to store static content in the cache. To do this, the plug-in uses a bot that works unnoticed in the background as soon as changes are made on the page. In addition, a static HTML file is generated for your WordPress site. This eliminates the need for constant PHP requests to access content. Together with the other measures, this has a measurable effect on performance. You can use tools such as Pingdom or GT Metrix to measure success.
Optimizing performance with WP Rocket is only possible if you host WordPress yourself – free sites set up on wordpress.com do not allow the installation. Use on multisites is possible, but subject to the license terms: if the pages run on subdomains, you only need one, otherwise a separate license is required for each domain.
WP Rocket is also considered to be extension-friendly – using it in combination with WooCommerce, Easy Digital Downloads, bbPress, qTranslate and other additional installations is no problem thanks to the simple and flexible configuration options. For example, you can configure the shopping cart and the checkout page with just a few clicks Exclude WooCommerce from caching: Static retrieval from the cache is nonsensical here, because PHP and the database must be accessed in order to always display the current content to the customer.
Paid license with benefits
An annual license for WP Rocket is available from 39 euros. Use on multiple domains is regulated by graduated prices. The license always includes updates and support. Both will no longer be available at the end of the year, but the performance plug-in will continue to work. If you decide to renew your license, i.e. continue to use support and updates, you will receive a discount of up to 50 percent on the cost of the initial license.
Other benefits associated with the license include patch development should a WordPress update affect the functionality of WP-Rocket, and a 14-day money-back guarantee if there is legitimate dissatisfaction with the performance optimization. The provider accepts verification through tools such as Pingdom and GT Metrix for this purpose.
Companies that experience a significant increase in performance through optimization naturally hope for an associated improvement in findability, competitiveness and consequently sales. The profitability is calculated quite simply from the cost-benefit ratio. In addition to support from the provider, the uncomplicated setup must also be taken into account: the plug-in may still be cheaper than another extension that is actually free, since no professional needs to be hired for the configuration. Various published tests also report a much clearer increase in WordPress performance.