wordpress plugins

In this article, I will dive into how WordPress plugins that affect the speed of your website. So that you can review your plugins and decide which ones to keep and which ones to remove.

Will WordPress plugins slow down your website?

The general answer is “yes”.

Which plugins will make your website slower?

You can measure based on the following experience:

The plugin changes the front end of your website will make it slower. And plugins that only affect the management backend will generally not.

Below I will give detailed examples:

Suppose you installed a new plugin to add a social sharing button at the end of the article. Will this plugin slow down your website? Yes, you can be sure, because it is changing the front end of the website.

Wordpress Plugins

Instead, suppose you add a new plugin to your website, which adds categories to your media library. Will this slow down your site? No, because it is only modifying the management background and does not automatically trigger execution.

To understand this more clearly, we need to pinpoint exactly what makes a WordPress site slow.

What is causes the site to slow down?

File: Loading more files and larger files are the main way to slow down your WordPress site.

When a visitor arrives at your site, many files are passed from the server to their browser. And the browser’s load indicator will continue to rotate until all file transfers are complete.

Websites need to pass three main file types to visitors: style sheets (CSS), Javascript (JS), and images (JPG / PNG / GIF).

CSS files are often called style sheets, and they style your website. For example, all themes load one or more CSS files to provide a unique design for your website.

When you add social media buttons to your articles, you need to style them to make them beautiful. So the plugin must load a style sheet on your website, which slows it down.

Javascript is often used to add interactivity to a website. For example, if a visitor is reading an article and showing a popup form, this is using Javascript to display the form, and it can also be used to hide the form when they press the “X” button.

Plugins rarely load images, but if you do see new images from the plugin on your site, this will further affect the speed of your website.

So we can come to the following conclusion: If the plugin adds styled content to your website, it means that it is loading a CSS file, and if any part of the content is interactive, it may also load a Javascript file.

In most cases, no plugin will directly cause your website to be slow, but it is hard to say if multiple plugins are together.

If you have 20 plugins that both load style sheets and Javascript files, the performance of your website will be significantly affected. 

What’s more: Some plugins are really poorly optimized. Originally, only one file needs to be loaded, but extra CSS and Javascript files are also loaded. 20 plugins like this can make your website significantly slower.

Loading the files of some third-party websites that cannot be accessed normally in Your Country, or linking the interface APIs that cannot be accessed in Your Country, will also greatly reduce the speed of the website!

Maybe there are very few CSS or js files loaded by the plugin you installed, but these files are not accessible in Your Region. At this time, the browser will continue to try to load, so it will obviously cause the website to slow down. As for some websites that need to connect to foreign countries Plug-ins that can only be used by the API interface will also cause the website to slow down.

Plugins that only modify the website background generally do not cause the website to slow down, but if the plugin has some scheduled tasks (such as collecting plugins), it will occupy certain system resources (CPU, memory, etc.) during execution, which may cause excessive resource consumption More or 100%, making the site unresponsive or slow.

So, it’s not like there are as many plugins that make changes to the website backend as possible.

How to reduce the impact of plugins?

While reading this article, you may have such frustrating thoughts:

"So if I want to add social sharing buttons or any other cool feature via a plugin, will it affect the performance of my site?" 

Unfortunately. Everything comes at a cost, and it’s important to understand this when managing your WordPress site.

Most of the time, when someone’s WordPress site is running slowly. It’s because they’ve been installing the plugin frantically without knowingly increasing the cost of performance. These plugins will have a negative impact on the performance of the site, and some plugins that are no longer used are still active!

If your website is also in this state, it’s time to organize the plugins. When you are done, I guarantee that your site will load faster.

Disable unused plugins:

It only takes a minute. Browse the “Plugins” menu to find the plugins you no longer need, then disable them

If the plugin is disabled, it will not run any code or have any impact on the performance of your website.

Generally, you should also remove disabled plugins. The only situation where you want to keep a disabled plugin on your site is if you want to reuse it as quickly as possible. Such as a maintenance mode plugin. Similarly, when you delete a plugin, it will likely delete your previous settings, so if you plan to reuse the old settings, you only need to disable the plugin.

Disable plugins that cannot be used in Your Region:

As mentioned earlier, if plugins load files that cannot be accessed in Your Area or need to connect to APIs of websites that cannot be accessed, do not use these plugins. Because they really affect the speed of the website, and it is not possible to be complete in your country or region.

Integrate your WordPress plugin

After disabling completely unused plugins, you can further reduce the number of plugins that are running by removing duplicate features.

I’ve seen many WordPress sites have two plugins that do the same thing. For example, one plugin adds a social media gadget, while another plugin adds a social button after the article. These plugins cannot communicate with each other, so they load their own files (2x the number of files). solution? Find a plugin that does both.

Integration takes more time and effort, but if you have never done it before, you can remove some plugins and get some good gains. In addition, your management interface will become tidier when you are done.

Clean up or replace old WordPress plugins:

There are many WordPress plugins, but we cannot guarantee that all plugins will be constantly updated. So we need to regularly check the plugins in use. If there are updates for plugins, it is generally recommended to update them in time. If the plugins have not been updated for more than a year, you may need to review the plugin’s compatibility and security and try to find new plug-ins that can be replaced.

In short, our principle of using plugins is: do not need to be resolutely removed, only one of the same kind of plug-ins is kept, and plug-ins with errors, security issues, or not updated for a long time are removed or replaced in time.

Continuously optimize your website

I hope you have a clear understanding of how plugins affect site performance.

After you clean up the plug-in, you will immediately see performance improvements. But you can do more to speed up your site.

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