Regarding optimizing your website, the role of caching in WordPress can never be underestimated. Quite a lot has been talked about caching on the internet in general. Yet, it remains a relatively less utilized feature among a large WordPress user base.
What exactly is caching all about? We know it can speed up our websites, but is there more to it? How should we employ caching to boost the performance of our WordPress websites? Are there any specific considerations to bear in mind?
The importance of caching in WordPress
What is caching?
To begin with, let us take a moment to familiarize ourselves with the process of caching in general.
Caching simply refers to creating static versions of your content and serving that to visitors. Static pages are generally rendered quickly in browsers. This will result in faster performance of your website.
In WordPress, rendering or fetching a page (or post or custom post type) requires back-and-forth queries to be sent to and from the database. Now, more often than not, you will create a post or a page, and then you won’t update it daily. Caching creates static copies of your post or page and serves that to visitors. This way, the back-and-forth queries to and from the database can be avoided, thereby reducing the server load.
The benefits of caching
There are various benefits of caching in WordPress:
- First, it enhances the speed and performance of your website. Static cached files load faster than dynamic database queries, leading to faster and better website performance.
- Caching can also help reduce the load on your hosting server. This can save server memory and I/O operations. As a result, caching is fast becoming a vital feature, especially for folks with limited hosting plans.
- Google has confirmed that it takes page speed into consideration. Faster websites do not just load fast but also get a favourable rank with search engines. This also depends heavily on other metrics, such as your content’s quality and SEO settings. But all other things being constant, a website that loads faster will get a better PageRank than a slower one.
But how do you enable caching in WordPress? The easiest way to do so is by using plugins. Several free and premium WordPress plugins help you enable caching on your website. We shall take a look at some of the key ones here:
Popular WordPress caching plugins
- WP Super Cache
- W3 Total Cache
- WP Fastest Cache
- WP Rocket
Caching in WordPress is like every other optimization and performance-related tweak. Having a good cache solution always helps. You will lose business and visitors if your site fails to load fast. As such, you should consider setting up a cache plugin on your site as soon as possible.
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