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Why is my WordPress Website so Slow?

by: Hostwinds Team  /  December 3, 2016

Welcome to Hostwind's first Straight Up Saturday! Each Saturday, we want to look at concerns or questions from customers or potential customers. If you have anything you'd like us to cover, please leave it in the comments for consideration.

Today's question revolves around a concern most of us have;

"Why is my site so slow?!!!"

One of the most common complaints or concerns customers contact us about is their site running slow. There could be a wide variety of reasons. But our very first question is… "Are you using WordPress?" Now don't get me wrong. There's nothing with WordPress. The problems start creeping in when the plugins and themes start piling up. Then it gets worse when they aren't kept up to date.

So the first thing we recommend is:

  1. Get rid of extra themes laying around in there that you've tried out and are no longer using.
  2. The same goes for plugins. If you aren't using them, toss them. If you are using them, do you need them? Limit plugins to the minimum you need.
  3. Ensure all plugins and themes are up to date
  4. Backup your site if it's not backed up
  5. Install and run WP-Sweep to get rid of clunky, useless data jamming up your site

Have you done all that? Great! Now let's try one more thing. Hopefully, you're already making backups, but if not, do a backup of your site then…

Install the WP-Sweep plugin (I know, adding more plugins… but you can get rid of it after we're done and get it again whenever you need to run it).

Once it's installed and you run it, you'll see a list of extra, useless data that's jamming up your site. How much you see depends on how big your site is and how long you've been running it. Could you get rid of it all?

You may have heard about WP-Optimize, a very popular plugin that does pretty much the same thing in a slightly different way. If you're interested in seeing a complete walkthrough on WP Sweep or why we're going with that vs. Optimize, check out this post on WP Beginner.

Pinpointing the problem with your WordPress site

There's a convenient plugin that will look through your site and potentially point out where the cause of your problems is. It's called P3 Profiler.

See if Google has any direct suggestions for your site, in particular using their tool, Insights.

And, of course, familiarize yourself with WordPress optimization.

If this doesn't help and you're a Hostwinds customer, don't hesitate to get in touch with us, and one of our experts will help you sort out what the problem is! If you're not and your hosting company isn't much help, consider switching to Hostwinds. We'll help you transfer your site (for free!) and help you get set up and running smoothly. We're available by live chat and phone 24/7/365 and would love to help.

Written by Hostwinds Team  /  December 3, 2016