How To Create A Fast WordPress Web Site

The keys to creating a fast WordPress website are:

  • Choose a good CDN (content delivery network)
  • Choose a good web host
  • Choose a good WordPress Theme
  • Optimize images
  • Optimize Javascript and CSS
  • Use lightweight web statistics software

Then when creating content, use only basic HTML elements, WordPress Blocks, and compressed images (using the ShortPixel plugin, for example).

These are my recommended installs for creating a fast website that loads in under two seconds:

Web Site Set-Ups — Budget Options

WPX is an inexpensive shared WordPress host:

WPX (5 sites — $250 per year) + Twenty Twenty-Three Theme (free) + W3 Total Cache (free) + Autoptimize (free) + Plausible ($90 per year) — a total yearly cost of $340.

You can also add optimized search Algolia (cost is per search) or ShortPixel (image optimizer — cost is per compression).

You can also add a paid WordPress Theme and better caching:

WPX (5 sites — $250 per year) + Astra Theme ($47 per year) + FlyingPress ($120 per year) + Fathom Analytics  ($140 per year) + Shortpixel (cost varies) + Algolia (cost varies) — a total yearly cost of $507.

You can also add a free Cloudflare account to WPX — this is a global CDN (content delivery network) and acceleration network. See how Cloudflare can be combined with WPX in this article.

Website Set-Ups: Mid-Range Options

These are mid-range set-ups using Rocket.Net as a host:

Rocket.Net (1 site — $300 per year) + Astra Theme ($47 per year) + Fathom Analytics ($140 per year) + Algolia (cost varies) — a total yearly cost of $499. You can also include the search engine Algolia (cost is per search).

Rocket.Net is a WordPress host pre-configured with Cloudflare Enterprise — a global CDN that optimizes images and supports HTTP/3. The speed is impressive — Cloudflare Enterprise gets <100ms global TTFB (time to first byte).

Other Website Creation Tips

Plausible offers simple, uncluttered web statistics. If you want a Google Analytics experience but with data privacy, see Matomo (free self-hosted, $23 per month cloud-hosted).

Algolia offers a search feature that works well for mobile (forgives typos, etc.). The Algolia service is expensive, but it may be worth it for a mobile-focused site.

This is the best free SEO (search engine optimization) plugin: SEOPress.

The Anti-spam Reloaded plugin works well (despite a lack of updates).

See these articles: How To Fix Slow Website (Online Media Matters), WP Speed Matters, and WP Hosting Benchmarks.

Website Speed Testing Tools

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