How to Increase WordPress Speed Without Using Plugins

In the world of WordPress, speed and performance are critical factors that can make or break the user experience of your website. While there are numerous plugins available to help optimize your site’s speed, it’s often possible to achieve significant performance improvements without relying on additional plugins. In this article, we’ll explore several effective strategies you can implement to increase your WordPress website’s speed without using plugins.

Increase WordPress Speed Without Using Plugins

1. Use WordPress VPS Hosting

Using a WordPress VPS hosting solution can be an excellent way to further improve the speed and performance of your WordPress website. Here are some of the key benefits of using a WordPress VPS:

  • Dedicated Server Resources: Unlike shared hosting, a VPS provides you with dedicated CPU, RAM, and storage resources, which can significantly enhance the performance of your WordPress website. This ensures that your website’s resources are not impacted by other websites on the same server.
  • Customized Server Configuration: With a VPS, you have more control over the server’s configuration, allowing you to optimize settings such as caching, PHP, and database configurations to improve your site’s performance.
  • Scalability: As your WordPress website grows in terms of traffic and content, a VPS can be easily scaled up by allocating more resources (e.g., increasing CPU, RAM, or storage), ensuring your site can handle the increased demand.
  • Faster Page Load Times: The dedicated resources and optimized server configurations of a VPS can lead to faster page load times, which is crucial for providing a great user experience and improving your website’s search engine rankings.
  • Enhanced Security: VPS servers are typically more secure than shared hosting environments, as you have more control over the server’s security settings and can implement additional security measures to protect your WordPress site.
  • Flexibility and Customization: With a VPS, you have the freedom to install and configure the software and tools you need to optimize your WordPress website’s performance, such as advanced caching solutions, content delivery networks (CDNs), and custom server-side optimizations.

When choosing a VPS provider, consider factors such as the provider’s reputation, the available server configurations, the level of support, and the overall cost. Some popular WordPress VPS providers include DigitalOcean, Linode, and Cloudzy.

2. Optimize Your Images

One of the primary culprits for slow page load times is unoptimized images. Follow these steps to optimize your images:

A. Compress Your Images Manually

  • Use online image compression tools like TinyPNG, Optimizilla, or to reduce the file size of your images.
  • These tools allow you to upload your images and download the compressed versions, which you can then upload to your WordPress media library.

B. Choose the Right Image Format

  • For photographs and images with a lot of colors, use the JPEG format.
  • For graphics with transparent backgrounds or images that require lossless compression, use the PNG format.

C. Resize Your Images Properly

  • Before uploading your images to WordPress, make sure to resize them to the exact dimensions they will be displayed on your website.
  • You can use image editing software like Adobe Photoshop, GIMP, or even the built-in tools in your operating system to resize the images.

D. Implement Lazy Loading Manually

  • Lazy loading is a technique that defers the loading of images until they are needed, reducing the initial page load time.
  • To implement lazy loading without a plugin, you can use JavaScript to detect when an image comes into the viewport and then load it dynamically.
  • There are several JavaScript libraries available for this, such as Lazy Load by Applause or the native loading=”lazy” attribute in modern browsers.

3. Minify Your CSS, JavaScript, and HTML

Minifying your website’s code can significantly reduce file sizes and improve loading times. You can use online tools like CSS Nano, UglifyJS, or HTML Minifier to minify your CSS, JavaScript, and HTML files.

4. Enable Caching

Caching is a powerful technique that can dramatically improve your website’s speed by serving previously cached content instead of generating new pages on each request. Configure your server to set appropriate cache headers, which instruct the user’s browser to cache certain resources for a specific period of time.

5. Leverage a Content Delivery Network (CDN)

A CDN stores and serves your website’s static content (such as images, CSS, and JavaScript files) from servers located around the world, reducing the distance between your users and the content they’re accessing. This can significantly improve your website’s loading times, especially for users located far from your server’s physical location.

6. Optimize Your Database

Over time, your WordPress database can accumulate a lot of unnecessary data, such as post revisions, spam comments, and transient data. Regularly clean up your database to remove this unwanted data, improving your website’s performance.

7. Defer JavaScript Loading

Defer the loading of non-critical JavaScript files until after the initial page load. This can prevent JavaScript from blocking the rendering of your page’s content, leading to faster load times.

8. Implement Gzip Compression

Gzip compression reduces the size of your website’s files before they are sent to the user’s browser, which can significantly speed up the download process.

9. Optimize Your Fonts

Fonts can have a significant impact on your website’s loading times, especially if you’re using multiple font families or custom font files. Consider the following font optimization techniques:

  • Use web-safe fonts whenever possible, as they are already installed on most devices.
  • Limit the number of font families and font weights you use.
  • Use the font-display CSS property to control how the font is displayed while it’s loading.
  • Host your fonts locally instead of using a third-party font service.

10. Combine and Inline Critical CSS

Critical CSS is the minimum CSS required to render the initial viewport of your web page. By inlining this critical CSS and combining it with your HTML, you can reduce the number of requests and improve the initial rendering of your website.

11. Optimize Your Server Configuration

Depending on your hosting provider, you may be able to optimize your server configuration to improve your website’s speed. This could include:

  • Adjusting PHP settings, such as the memory limit, timeout, and other performance-related settings.
  • Configuring the web server (e.g., Apache or Nginx) for optimal performance.
  • Ensuring your server is using the latest stable versions of PHP, MySQL, and other software components.

12. Implement Preconnect and Preload

Preconnect and preload are HTML tags that can help your browser establish connections and load resources more efficiently. Preconnect allows the browser to establish early connections to important third-party origins, while preload tells the browser to fetch and cache specific resources before they are needed.


Remember, optimizing your WordPress website’s speed is an ongoing process, and you may need to revisit and fine-tune your strategies as your site evolves. Stay vigilant, continuously monitor your website’s performance, and be willing to adapt your approach as needed. With the right optimization techniques, you can ensure your WordPress website is lightning-fast and providing the best possible experience for your visitors.

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A heavy gamer, there's nothing that Faith loves more than spending an evening playing gacha games. When not reviewing and testing new games, you can usually find her reading fantasy novels or watching dystopian thrillers on Netflix.

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