GTMetrix is a tool that enables its users to optimize their site for both speed and SEO purposes. A slow website will result in frustrated visitors, sending them elsewhere. A faster and more responsive website will help them keep more engaged and focused on the page content.
Additionally, Google uses page speed in its ranking algorithms. Therefore, a quick responding site may rank higher in search engine results.
This article advises a very minimum number of simple steps which will see your GTMetrix score increase dramatically.
I’ve quickly put together a secure home page using WordPress. The page includes a few images and a social media plugin. It depends on the Customizr theme.
The GTMetrix scores are typical of a site that without optimizing – I’m now about to implement four steps that should see those scores rise.
Step 1 – Optimize Images for your GTMetrix Score
There are four images on the homepage – these are going to contributing to the big Total Page Size and affect the page load time.
A plugin like WP-Smush or ShortPixel Image Optimizer allows the website owner to compress images after they’ve mentioned to the site – Simply download the plugin, install then optimize to improve your GTMetrix Score.
As you’ll be able to see we’ve vastly reduced the page size by almost 2MB. It has had a play effect with the page load time improving.
Step 2 – Enable Caching for your GTMetrix Score
There are many caching plugins available for WordPress. I would recommend WP Fastest Cache. Download and activate for your better GTMertix Score. you’ll now want to enable the below options:
The caching plugin has improved the PageSpeed & YSlow scores intensely. It’s also knocked a few seconds off the page load time and again reduced the page size.
To improvise my GTMetrix score, I’ve trialled many plugins that claim to do this efficiently, but the majority lead to a page that loses it’s functionality once the CSS code after optimization. However, Autoptimize may be a great plugin and works with a couple of clicks. Again, download and activate then within the settings enable the following:
Optimize HTML Code
Optimize CSS Code
Another great step. We’ve got a near-perfect PageSpeed Score. The YSlow Score has increased while the loading time, page size and the number of requests have also improved.
Step 4 – Activate a Content Delivery Network
A content delivery network (CDN) could be a system of servers spread over multiple data centres located around the world. When a user visits your site, they’ll be served content from the server closest to them.
The most popular CDN is Cloudflare – to activate, you’ll need to sign up and add your site to a free plan. Once this finishes, you’ll need to change your nameservers, so the domain looks towards Cloudflare. It may take up to 24 hours for the DNS to update but is typically much quicker.
Our final addition has seen the YSlow Score improve, and therefore, the page load time decrease further.
These four simple steps took less than half an hour to implement but have seen an enormous improvement to the GTMetrix Score. In turn, this should have a positive effect on Google rankings along with a decrease in visitor bounce rate.
The scores are on our standard shared hosting, and while a page with more content, widgets and plugins might not obtain as high a rating, the steps above should put you on the proper track.