Why is my WordPress Website so Slow?

Welcome to Hostwind’s first Straight Up Saturday! Each Saturday we want to take a look at a concern or question 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 on 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. Same goes for plugins. If you aren’t using them, toss them. If you are using them, do you really need them? Limit plugins to the minimum you really 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

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 just 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. 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 more 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 very handy plugin that will look through your site and point out potentially where the cause of your problems are. 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 setup and running smoothly. We’re available by live chat and phone 24/7/365 and would love to help.

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