If you’re a writer and want your own website to show your portfolio of books/drawings/poetry, you’ll find that maintaining a website could consume a lot of time which might affect your main goal. Here where WordPress.com shines. Just create an account, choose a theme, provide some information, and that is all. You won’t care much then about this post or similars regarding WordPress Performance Plugins.
I’ve been on WordPress.com for long time. Two years ago, I decided to move to WordPress.org. For that, I had to choose between two paths: One, upgrade to Business Plan on WordPress.com – Check WordPress Plans. Or, two, self-hosting (WordPress.org). I explained earlier in simple way the difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org. Both paths offers freedom in controlling the components of my site and ability to install plugins.
In a pervious post, I talked about how to enhance our blog sites performance following simple steps regardless of your hosting type. Here, I’m trying to go a little bit deeper considering you’re either on WordPress.com Business Plan or Self-Hosting.
It makes accessing your website content faster by eliminating the many steps a browser takes to generate pages dynamically. If you’re self hosted, WP Rocket Plugin is a must; considering it’s the best in the cache field. However, if you’re on Business Plan, it’s not needed. Cache system provided by WordPress.com is the best I’ve ever tried.
Compress images and display them in the right resolution. ShortPixel is doing great job here. Autoptimize Plugin with its Pro version cooperates with ShortPixel to provide you with CDN and image optimization. For me, I got better results using the defaults on WordPress.com. If you’re using WP Rocket Plugin, you need Imagify Plugin to handle the optimization of images.
CSS & Scripts handling
Individual techniques or practices by the users themselves
In addition to choose the right hosting, plugins and theme, please refer to my earlier post Blog’s Statistics & Performance.
WordPress Performance Plugins on self-hosted
For optimal combination, I’d go with WP Rocket (Cache, Lazy Loading) and Autoptomize Pro (CSS, Scripts, Image Optimization, CDN). There could be a use for Asset CleanUp Plugin too. Remember that extra plugins often involves extra processing and thus a delay in rendering your website.
However, I’m on a Business Plan
Most of the performance components are provided by default here. While installing WP Rocket Plugin and Autoptimize Plugin (including ShortPixel/CricicalCSS) made my website reach the highest score on PageSpeed and Gtmetrix, the user experience wasn’t so good. Asset CleanUp Plugin didn’t work well on Business Plan. Jetpack Boost Plugin failed me in critical CSS – a lot of Cumulative Layout Shift; it might because I have many components other than the default WordPress ones; that’s, Blog and WooCommerce.
For me, the best combination of WordPress Performance Plugins on Business Plan is:
Page Optimize default Plugin for handling CSS files (free).This is done by JetPack Boost now
- WordPress.com default Cache, CDN, Image Optimization, and Lazy Loading (price is included).
- Extra: Cloudflare with good optimization enhanced my score of TTFB (1/2 less) and FCP (1/3 less).
Now, do you think that $300/year for Business Plan is expensive after all?! And the ultimate question would be: Do you really need to upgrade your WordPress.com account beyond Personal or Premium Plan?
P.S., If you’re self-hosted and ever thought to move to WordPress.com, you might need to check this link first.