How to Speed Up WordPress

I was recently contacted by a gentleman who had a question about WordPress. He wanted to know how to speed up WordPress, as this is what his website ran and was wondering why it was using so much RAM. Looking at the site, I noticed that the RAM was high, and there were just about 20 plug-ins running, some of them known to cause issues. Taking a speed test of the site prompted no real alerts as it has a 90% green result. It did have a cache-ing plug-in and several security plug-ins. The cache-ing plug-in is what I believe was causing the issue. I recommended that he widdle down his plugin list and gave a screenshot of the current plugins running on my site. See my current plugin list:

He removed a majority of the plug-ins, and installed a new theme and was surprised to see the RAM memory usage cut by 1/3 what it was before. Why does this work? Most plug-ins that promised speed up your website are just simply slowing it down. Unfortunately, they want to monetize and sell you something, and end up messing up your website.

WordPress plug-in is like WordFence are notorious for doing some damage to your website, like editing the .htaccess file. When you remove this plug-in, it can be disastrous and cause many issues. It can be hard to track down what these plug-ins have done, as they get their fingers in everything. Better not to mess with these plug-ins and just run a clean (WordPress) ship.

Running updates regularly and making sure that you have a  regular backup of the website, as well as a antivirus product like Securi. Running the scans regularly is a good way to ensure that you don’t have any virus malware on your website. It’s impossible to prevent all types of hacks and any type of virus is a possibility with a database driven website, regardless of what it is. WordPress happens to be a very popular software and so there are a lot of viruses out there that target it. This doesn’t mean that it is unsafe at all, it really just means that you have to do your due diligence and be a steward of your website software properly and regularly. It is possible to prevent these type of attacks from happening or at least reduce the chance of it happening at all.

Need help speeding up your WordPress site? Drop a line:

Some other important things to think about regarding how to speed up WordPress site is making sure the images fit the correct size. The size of the image should be the size of the displayed image on the website, otherwise it requires processing power to make it fit. If processing power is being used to make the images a certain size, a different size then they actually are, then your website will be slower. The only way to truly fix this is to edit all the website images before hand in an image editor and re-upload them to the website. There are some plug-ins that can do an ok job and speed up this process of going through and replacing all your images on the website is WP crush.

Just getting started with WordPress? Check out my guide to Starting New WordPress

Written by: Jophiel Silvestrone

Jophiel Silvestrone has written 257 posts in the Tech Blog.

Jophiel grew up on a ranch in Paradise Valley, Montana near Chico Hot Springs. Working on the ranch instilled work ethic and self motivation. Filled with this drive, Jophiel started mowing the local school's yards twice a month throughout the summers, at the age of 12. He moved to Billings in 2004, where he has been deeply involved in the local business community ever since. A serial entrepreneur, Jophiel has ran multiple businesses in our local community. The first business, a janitorial and carpet cleaning company, founded in 2005, has employed over 50 locals. Moving on to the media industry, Jophiel and several partners founded Green Directory Montana in the spring of 2007. Green Directory's sustainability ranking software awarded points based on sustainable or "green" actions. These points counted towards a business's total "Green Score," which in turn ranked them against other businesses in their category and throughout the entire site. It also featured a limited edition print version distributed annually. A business acquisition allowed Jophiel to focus on new projects, and a few close business colleagues and Jophiel started Rocky Mountain Mr. & Ms. Magazine, a lifestyle publication for men and women in the Magic City. After a year and a half at the helm of RM3 Magazine, the business was purchased. He now runs a web development company SkyPoint Studios and fathers his son Jaoquin, who plays football, basketball, soccer, and is learning snowboarding from his dad. Recently, has expanded to locations in Havasu, Arizona & Vegas. SkyPoint Studios is a market leader in both Billings & Havasu and Jophiel is working on building that same level of market dominance in Vegas. Specialties: Extensive experience in online and offline business. Especially savvy at WordPress, and operate several sites, one example is the blog: Check out for the latest projects from SkyPoint Studios.