If your site still runs on PHP 5, we have some bad news: your code is out-of-date and unsupported. If you don’t upgrade, you could get hacked, and believe us when we say that’s pretty hard to beat on the “sucks-ometer”. PHP 5 reached its End Of Life — that’s EOL if you’re an irredeemable nerd like us — on January 1st, 2019.
This means no more support and no more updates. You might wonder why that matters; if everything you have works, why upgrade to PHP 7? Because no more updates mean no more security updates. Any vulnerabilities discovered after a product’s EOL leave you wide open to all manner of bad actors. You’re an albino bunny in a dark wood during a rabbit season that never ends.
You might be okay. Probably not, though.
And of course, there’s another layer of complexity. Problems can arise when updating your version of PHP, as PHP 7 isn’t backwards compatible. If your theme and/or plugins have also not been updated recently, they can “break” or cause some weird errors on your website, if they use a PHP version 5 function that doesn’t exist in PHP version 7. This is what we call depreciation.
Why thigs changed if everything was fine?
This is a normal part of web development. This is a normal part of software development. This is a normal part of every aspect of information technology. I’ve discussed before how security is basically an arms race and that same principle applies here.
PHP supports their releases for 2 years starting at release plus 1 more to address these sorts of security issues as they arise. 3 years after its release, that version of PHP reaches its EOL.
Some people who don’t have perspective on the information technology world may be put off by the fact that PHP doesn’t support their own legacy products, but most tech companies stop security updates on heavily dated software at some point. Microsoft recently announced that Windows 7 will no longer receive security updates after January 14, 2020.
Coming from the other side of it, the uninitiated may also wonder why their developer didn’t put PHP 7 on their site when they first built it. The answer is that it might not have been out yet at the time of your site’s development. So basically if you are not yet updated to latest version 7 you are in risk of losing your website or compromising its database beyond recovery.
PHP 7 is also very fast, which can greatly reduce the loading time of your website. It will help you with your website speed optimisation processes.
If you have not done so already, it is time to do so now. If you cannot, call us on 091 450 817 and we will do that free of charge for you if you move hosting to our high-tech provider.
Media PRO Web Design Galway – Make us your upgrading partner for the future.
Do you want to speed up your WordPress site? Fast loading pages improve user experience, increase your page views, and help with your WordPress SEO. In this article, we will share the most useful WordPress speed optimization tips to boost WordPress performance and speed up your website.
Unlike other “X best WordPress caching plugin” lists or generic “X tips to speeding up WordPress” tutorials, this article is a comprehensive guide to WordPress performance optimization.
We tried to cover everything from why speed is important, what slows down your WordPress site, and actionable steps that you can take to improve your WordPress speed immediately.
To make it easy, we have created a table of contents to help you navigate through our ultimate guide to speeding up your WordPress site.
- Why Speed is Important for your WordPress Site?
- How to Check Your WordPress Website Speed?
- What Slows Down Your WordPress Website?
- Importance of Good WordPress Hosting
- Why Speed is Important for Your WordPress Site?
Studies show that from 2000 to 2016, the average human attention span has dropped from 12 seconds to 7 seconds.
What does this mean for you as a website owner?
You have very little time to show users your content and convince them to stay on your website.
A slow website means users will potentially leave your website before it even loads.
According to a Strange – Loop case study that involved Amazon, Google, and other larger sites, a 1 second delay in page load time can lead to 7% loss in conversions, 11% fewer page views, and 16% decrease in customer satisfaction.
On top of that, Google and other search engines have already started penalizing slower websites by pushing them down in the search results which means lower traffic for slow websites.
To sum it all up, if you want more traffic, subscribers, and revenue from your website, then you must make your WordPress website FAST!
How to Check Your WordPress Website Speed?
Often beginners think that their website is OK just because it doesn’t feel slow on their computer. That’s a HUGE mistake.
Since you frequently visit your own website, modern browsers like Chrome store your website in the cache and automatically prefetch it as soon as you start typing an address. This makes your website load almost instantly.
However, a normal user who is visiting your website for the first time may not have the same experience.
In fact, users in different geographical locations will have a completely different experience.
This is why we recommend that you test your website speed using a tool like Is – It – WP’s WordPress Speed Test.
It is a free online tool that allows you to test your website’s speed.
After you run your website speed test, you might be wondering what’s a good website speed that I should aim for?
A good page load time is under 2 seconds. However, the faster you can make it, the better it is. A few milliseconds of improvements here and there can add up to shaving off half or even a full second from your load time.
What Slows Down Your WordPress Website?
Your speed test report will likely have multiple recommendations for improvement. However, most of that is technical jargon which is hard for beginners to understand.
Learning what slows down your website is the key to improving performance and making smarter long-term decisions.
The primary causes for a slow WordPress website are:
- Web Hosting – When your web hosting server is not properly configured it can hurt your website speed.
- WordPress Configuration – If your WordPress site is not serving cached pages, then it will overload your server thus causing your website to be slow or crash entirely.
- Page Size – Mainly images that aren’t optimized for web.
- Bad Plugins – If you’re using a poorly coded plugin, then it can significantly slow down your website.
- External scripts – External scripts such as ads, font loaders, etc can also have a huge impact on your website performance.
Now that you know what slows down your WordPress website, let’s take a look at how to speed up your WordPress website.
Importance of Good WordPress Hosting
Your WordPress hosting service plays an important role in website performance. A good shared hosting provider like Irish – Hosting or our own Hosting Service take the extra measures to optimize your website for performance.
However, on shared hosting you share the server resources with many other customers. This means that if your neighboring site gets a lot of traffic, then it can impact the entire server performance which in turn will slow down your website.
On the other hand, using a managed WordPress hosting service give you the most optimised server configurations to run WordPress. Managed WordPress hosting companies also offer automatic backups, automatic WordPress updates, and more advanced security configurations to protect your website.
Speeding Up WordPress in Easy Steps (No Coding)
We know that making changes to your website configuration can be a terrifying thought for beginners, especially if you’re not a tech-geek.
But don’t worry, you’re not alone. We have helped thousands of WordPress users improve their WordPress performance.
We will show you how you can speed up your WordPress site with just a few clicks (no coding required).
If you can point-and-click, then you can do this!
Install a WordPress Caching Plugin
WordPress pages are “dynamic.” This means they’re built on the fly every time someone visits a post or page on your website.
To build your pages, WordPress has to run a process to find the required information, put it all together, and then display it to your user.
This process involves a lot of steps, and it can really slow down your website when you have multiple people visiting it at once.
That’s why we recommend every WordPress site use a caching plugin. Caching can make your WordPress site anywhere from 2x to 5x faster.
Here’s how it works.
Instead of going through the whole page generation process every time, your caching plugin makes a copy of the page after the first load, and then serves that cached version to every subsequent user.
Digital Marketing Trends
Digital marketing keeps growing. The way you did something last year is probably done differently this year. The latest technology, such as artificial intelligence is being used to personalize campaigns and automate marketing tasks. With technology and its role in digital marketing accelerating faster than ever, it is a no brainer to stay on top of the latest trends.
Influencer marketing is the use of influencers to grow your brand’s awareness, primarily through social media channels. For years, influencer marketing was all about big followings and big names, but that’s changing. As consumers grow smarter on how influencers are used to promote products and services, companies are becoming more selective.
Companies are opting for influencers that are experts within their niche and their audience can trust and relate. These influencers have smaller followings, but audiences with higher engagement rates and are more affordable. It makes growing your online presence, strengthening your brand image and earning your audience’s trust simpler and more effective than ever before.
Social Media Stories
Social media channels such as Facebook, Snapchat and Instagram have a stories option where you can post images, videos and graphics that only last 24 hours. Although putting up posts that only last 24 hours doesn’t sound effective, it is important to do so as it is content that is considered more authentic and genuine. This makes it the perfect content to implement to your content strategy to boost visibility, engage audiences and build trust and authenticity.
Have you conversed with chatbots powered by AI and machine learning yet? Conversational marketing is the practice of fostering one-on-one conversations with leads and customers. This is becoming a key trend in the digital marketing industry, as companies are focusing on providing personalized customer journeys. It also keeps consumers always connected to marketing, sales and customer service efforts.
There has been a significant increase in voice search queries. If you ask Google something via voice or search it usually retrieves a small snippet with a very accurate answer. So it shouldn’t be a surprise that companies are polishing up their content to be more conversational and focused on voice search optimization.
Video is all over the place and if you haven’t hopped on this trend, it is better late than never. Platforms like Instagram have now made it super easy to create and share video, so there is no excuse to not leverage this channel.
Digital marketing efforts can be daunting at times, but with a partner like Media PRO, you won’t feel it that way. We will do the hard bits for you while you can relax or work on things you like. Call our Digital Marketing team today and we will respond with a tailored, fully customised offer that’s hard to resist.
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FROM THE BLOG
- HOW TO ADD AN ADMIN USER TO THE WORDPRESS DATABASE VIA MYSQLDecember 27, 2019 - 5:36 pm
- 15 WAYS TO HARDEN THE SECURITY OF YOUR WORDPRESS SITESeptember 15, 2019 - 2:00 am
- Depreciation of your Server’s PHP versionAugust 21, 2019 - 10:34 am
- The Ultimate Guide to Boost WordPress Speed & Performance – WordPress Speed OptimisationApril 8, 2019 - 8:16 am