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Since it all started back in 2003, WordPress has quickly grown to be the world’s most popular CMS. Today, more than 23% of all websites are built using WordPress, that’s almost 1 in every 4 sites. That number grows every minute and thanks to its ease of use, army of loyal fans and a marketplace bursting at the seams with free plugins, its popularity is not likely to potter off any time soon.It’s no secret that we love WordPress but, the all singing all dancing CMS doesn’t come without its downfalls. Every day we see reports of slow loading WordPress sites. Many of these sites are running outdated versions, some have messy databases and others belong to ‘plugin happy bloggers.’ In this post I pull together 5 of the best plugins you can action now to optimise and speed up your WordPress site.Before you install a plugin run your site through Pingdom or Google Speed Insight to measure any speed improvements.

WP Super Cache

First, to understand how WP Super Cache can help speed your site up, it’s beneficial to understand what’s going on under the bonnet. Your WordPress site is dynamic, it’s constantly making calls, serving server scripts and updating files. WP Super Cache takes a snapshot of your websites movement and creates a static copy. When a visitors lands on your site, it then servers the preloaded files to increase the speed at which your site is served. Of course there’s a risk that updates will not be show on your site, however you can set when you would like WP Super cache to capture one of these snapshot.s If you install WP Super Cache we highly recommend that you clean your cache regularly, or use the plugins built-in cache ‘flush.’


With Autoptimize minimising your websites CSS and JavaScript is a walk in the park. Once installed Autoptimize will minimise and compress scripts and any HTML you have cached. It also has a user-friendly interface, with a bunch of options for beginners and advanced users.

WP Smush

WP Smush lives up to its name, smushing large images into smaller file sizes without compromising on quality. Best of all, Smush will go ahead and compress all the images already uploaded on your site, along with any new images you go to upload.


As strange as it sounds, Imsanity is a plugin that helps with both compressing and scaling images. Imsanity offers you more options and utilises some of the built-in scaling functions of WordPress. To seamlessly scale images it can automatically convert BMP into JPG, meaning you don’t ha1ve to go through the terror of converting a hundred images (or more) to get the most out of the plugin

WP Optimize

Your website is made up of a mixture of files and database, when you add a plugin, theme or even change your password a change is made in your database. What you might not know is that in some cases when you delete a plugin a table remains in your database. Overtime this unnecessary content adds lag to your site. If you’re not sure what should and shouldn’t be in a database then WP Optimize is the perfect plugin for you. In just 1-click WP Optimize will automatically remove any junk in your database, and whilst it’s there carry out a few db optimisation tricks in order to keep your site lightweight

This article was originally published in 6 May 2015. It was most recently updated in November 28, 2022 by

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