Whether you’re trying to blog full-time or are utilizing a blog as a marketing tactic for your business, you know one of the big keys to success is making sure your blog gives readers what they want, when they want it.
The more content you create, the more space your blog takes up on your hosting platform. I currently run my sites on GreenGeeks which has unlimited space for my accounts. But that doesn’t mean my blogs are hunky dory.
Despite having unlimited space and bandwidth, they’re still subjected to all of the issues that come along with hosting content on the Internet and that includes speed!
It’s absolutely crucial that your blog loads as fast as possible, especially in our “shiny object” filled world. Our attention spans keep decreasing and we’re quick to X out of a site that takes too long to load (I’m definitely guilty of that!).
So how can you make sure readers get to your site quickly and become loyal followers? Here are some ideas:
3 Ways To Speed Up Your Blog
1. Optimize your images
The less space your images take up, the better so try your best not to upload ginormous files. If you use Lightroom or Photoshop you can utilize presets that will help cut down on the size of your images both in terms of pixels and MBs. I’ve also used ShortPixel to help me scale down my images. Though you’ll have to make sure to toggle off the option that keeps the original files on your server (it takes up so much space!)
2. Offload your media
This one has been a game-changer for both this blog and Beige House. Send your images, videos, gifs, etc off to a dedicated server that does nothing but hosts your images. Most big companies use services like Amazon S3 but I use Publitio because they’re way more idiot-proof AND have a Wordpress plugin that helps you auto-offload media from your domain to theirs. One caveat: I’d recommend using a plugin like WP 301 Redirect once you offload images to make sure nothing weird happens with your old URLs.
3. Remove old or useless plugins
How many plugins does your site have that it doesn’t really need? I’ve been guilty of keeping things around because I thought they’d be cool to have, but have actually hindered my site speed! If your site is really lagging, look at your collection of plugins and see if there are things that are dragging your site down. A good rule of thumb is that anything that pulls something in from another place (so, like Instagram image footers, or latest pins on Pinterest plugins) will affect the loading time of your blog.
Side note: I know that #2 and #3 kinda contradict each other, but let me clarify: offloading media to servers that are solely dedicated for that use won’t affect your site speed in the way that relying on Instagram or Pinterest servers will. Their servers aren’t made for your site, they’re made to serve images on their own. Does that make sense?
There are also more advanced steps you can take like moving around java scripts and tweaking how things load on a page. But if you’re not confident working in PHP, I’d advise hiring a developer to handle that kinda stuff. In any case, these three things can be done by most bloggers on their own and won’t take a lot of effort, but will make HUGE changes in your site speed.
If you want to see how quickly your site loads, you can check places like Google PageSpeed or GT Metrix and keep track of how your speed changes as you go!