What is WP Rocket?
WP Rocket is an easy-to-use WordPress plugin that makes your website loads super fast by caching static content.
So they don’t have to be loaded from your webserver every single page view. This means less data being transferred over the internet, which results in a blazingly fast website.
It’s super-fast, easy to use, and works with any theme or child theme on your WordPress website.
WP Rocket automatically applies 80% of web performance best practices.
This way, it makes sure that only relevant content gets loaded on every page load, which improves loading time and SEO score. The result is a fantastic boost in rankings and traffic!
- How does it work?
- Why should I try WP Rocket?
- What are the benefits of using WP Rocket?
- How does it compare to other caching plugins like W3 Total Cache?
- How to measure the page load time of your web pages?
- Can I switch easily from other caching plugins, like W3 Total Cache or WP Super Cache, to WP Rocket?
- Can WP Rocket help me optimize Core Web Vitals?
- What is the best way to optimize my setup?
- How to Install and Setup WP Rocket
- 1. Installing WP Rocket Plugin in WordPress
- 2. Set up Caching Options in WP Rocket
- 3. Minifying Files using WP Rocket
- 4. Lazy Load Media For Page Load Speed Improvement
- 5. Fine Tune Preloading in WP Rocket
- 6. Set up Advanced Caching Rules
- 7. Performing Database Clean up using WP Rocket
- 8. Configure WP Rocket with Your CDN
- 9. Reducing WordPress Heartbeat API Activity with WP Rocket
- 10. WP Rocket Addons
How does it work?
WP Rocket comes with preconfigured settings optimized for best results on most websites and uses a combination of techniques and will help you to increase your website speed and user experience. By removing all unnecessary code, CSS/JS files from your site. Including pre-rendering and lazy loading to ensure that only what you need loads when someone visits your site.
This means faster page load times for visitors and less data being transferred over the internet, which can help save money on bandwidth costs and overall a better user experience.
Why should I try WP Rocket?
Google loves sites that load quickly. Because you can speed up the loading time of your site by more than 50% without compromising quality. So if you want your website to rank higher on the SERPs, you need to make sure that your site loads fast! And last but not least: You’ll be able to save money on hosting services.
What are the benefits of using WP Rocket?
Why use WP Rocket? There are several reasons why you should consider using WP Rocket:
- Blazing fast websites & page load speed
- Boosting up your Google Page Speed score to 90/100
- Better SEO performance and rankings in search engines like Google, Bing or Yahoo!
- More secure browsing experience due to a better cache system.
- No more server errors when you try to load some pages on your site.
- A faster loading time of all web pages, including images and videos.
- Compatible with all major CDNs like MaxCDN, Cloudflare or Amazon S3
- No need to install any additional plugins
- Easy setup process
- And much more…
How does it compare to other caching plugins like W3 Total Cache?
WP Rocket has a straightforward interface that allows you to configure your site with just one click. You don’t need to install anything else – everything works out of the box! It also comes with an easy-to-use dashboard where you can monitor all aspects of your website performance at once.
How to measure the page load time of your web pages?
There are many tools available on the internet that can check how long it takes to download and render a web page.
- Google Page Speed Insights
Can I switch easily from other caching plugins, like W3 Total Cache or WP Super Cache, to WP Rocket?
WP Super Cache doesn’t work with the new version of WordPress, and it’s not compatible with Jetpack either. JetPack uses a different cache system than all others. If you use any of these two plugins together, they will conflict. W3 Total Cache works fine, but there are some issues when used in combination with WooCommerce. We recommend that you disable this plugin and just stick with WP Rocket.
Can WP Rocket help me optimize Core Web Vitals?
The Largest Contentful paint is one of the most critical factors in page speed optimization. It measures how long it takes for web browsers to download content from different parts of a website. A large content-heavy site with many images can have a larger CFP than a smaller site with fewer graphics. A larger CFP means that more time has passed between when visitors arrive at your site and when they start reading or interacting with it.
What is the best way to optimize my setup?
Suppose you have advanced knowledge about how the rendering of a website works in the Browser. In that case, you can start to further optimize your setup based on recommendations from performance testing tools like GTmetrix Pingdom Tools Google Developers PageSpeed Insights. However, we generally recommend taking those with a grain of salt.
How to Install and Setup WP Rocket
It has a lot of features that will make sure your site loads faster, including:
- Page Speed Optimization – This feature helps improve page load time by compressing images, removing unused CSS/JS files, etc.
- CDN Support – You can use any third-party content delivery network like Cloudflare or MaxCDN to serve
- Lazy load of images
- Deferred loading of JS/CSS files
- Preloading of pages
What is the best way to test WP Rocket?
You’ll want to do the first thing once you’ve activated WP Rocket: Run an ON/OFF test with WP Rocket’s default settings and see how much faster your site has become already!
What settings are activated when you activate WP Rocket?
When activating WP Rocket for the first time the following settings are activated by default and are not always represented on WP Rocket’s settings page:
- Page caching for static HTML file & browser caching
- Cross-Origin web fonts support (Apache)
- Third-party plugins, themes, and hosting environments detection
- Inline and 3rd party scripts like WooCommerce Refresh Cart Fragments Cache Optimize Google Fonts files
- Disable (WordPress) Emoji
- Mobile cache (Default 10 hours)
- WordPress Embeds Disabled
- Cache Preloading (Homepage and pages links)
- Preload Links
- Heartbeat Control (set to Reduce Activity)
Note: Depending on your individual WordPress setup and hosting, some other settings may be activated or disabled by default.
1. Installing WP Rocket Plugin in WordPress
Download from the official website https://wp-rocket.me
2. Set up Caching Options in WP Rocket
Go to settings and click on the cache tab, then you’re good to go.
Page caching is a default feature of the WP Rocket platform, and you can modify it to improve your website speed.
- Mobile Caching is on by default – It is recommended you look at the ‘Separate cache files for mobile devices’ option as well. This option allows for the creation of cache files for mobile users. Checking this option is necessary if you want to have the whole cached experience on a mobile device.
- User cache is an option that you need to check if your website has users who have to log into it to access certain features. Suppose you have a membership website or store with this option. In that case, it will improve the user experience for anyone who is logging in.
- You need a cache lifespan for the files that are on your website. You can set the limit to 10 hours for most websites. If you run a site with a lot of traffic, you can set it to less than it is. If your website doesn’t stay up-to-date frequently, then you could increase it to a higher value.
WP Rocket will clean the files after the lifespan is over. It is going to immediately start preloading the cache with new content.
Don’t forget to Save Changes.
3. Minifying Files using WP Rocket
You can minify static files with WP Rocket. To minimize the file types you want, you need to check the boxes on the File Optimization tab.
What are the benefits of minifying files?
Those files have a smaller size due to Minifying static content. It is possible to reduce overall bandwidth usage and save on hosting costs if you run a large traffic site.
What if I have problems with my files?
There are some unforeseen consequences of minifying files, like files not loading or not working as they’re supposed to. Ensure to thoroughly review your website pages when you turn on this setting to make sure everything is functioning as it’s supposed to.
4. Lazy Load Media For Page Load Speed Improvement
The second heavy item on the page are images, and they’re usually taken in conjunction with a video. The download size increases because of the time it takes for images to load before the text can load. The techniques called lazy loading are now used on a lot of websites.
What is the lazy loading feature?
WP Rocket comes with an option to use a lazy loading feature. Lazy loading downloads only the images visible on the user’s screen instead of loading all your images at once. This will speed things up and makes the page feel faster to the user. You can enable lazy loading under the Media tab on the plugin’s Settings page. You can also allow lazy loading for embeds like YouTube videos and iframes.
5. Fine Tune Preloading in WP Rocket
Next, you can get a look at the preloading settings by checking the tab titled “Preloading” in WP Rocket. By default, it crawls your home page and follows links to load the cache. Alternately, you can use your XML sitemap to build cache.
We don’t recommend turning off the preloading feature. When you turn off preloading, WordPress will only cache the pages if a user requests them. A slow website will be seen by the first user who loads that specific page.
6. Set up Advanced Caching Rules
WP Rocket makes it easy to have control over caching. The settings page has a section called Advanced Rules, which will help you exclude pages you don’t want in the caching system. You can exclude cookies and user agents and rebuild cache if you update specific pages or posts. The default settings are the ones that work for most websites. Best to leave them blank if you’re not sure about these options. Developers and power users should look at the settings area since they likely have a complex website setup.
7. Performing Database Clean up using WP Rocket
WP Rocket can be used to help clean up the WordPress database. It’s not likely to affect your website performance, and you can still review the options if you so desire. Open the Database tab on the plugin settings page. You have the opportunity to deleted post revisions, drafts, and trash comments from here. Post revisions help undo changes to your posts, so it’s not wise to permanently delete them. You don’t need to remove comments or deletion as they’re automatically clean up after 30 days by WordPress.
8. Configure WP Rocket with Your CDN
The next step is to move to the CDN tab. You can set a CDN service up to work with WP Rocket if you use one of the services on your WordPress site. Static files can be served from a network of servers spread across the globe using a content delivery network. It will speed up your website by allowing users to download files from the server closest to their location.
Your website is more responsive, and it also reduces your hosting server load. MaxCDN by StackPath is one of the best CDN services for WordPress beginners. You can sign up for Sucuri, a great firewall and security add on. Sucuri’s cloud-based firewall & CDN service to serve your static files.
9. Reducing WordPress Heartbeat API Activity with WP Rocket
WordPress Heartbeat API sends periodic requests to the hosting server in the background to perform scheduled tasks. It is possible to reduce its frequencies to improve performance for more significant sites. For example, the editor uses a heartbeat to check post changes when writing blog posts. To control this feature and reduce its frequencies, click on the heartbeat API tab. Some valuable features are included in the Heart Beat APIs, so we don’t recommend deactivating them.
10. WP Rocket Addons
Some ready to deploy Add-on features available are.
- Google Analytics Addon – The Google Analytics add-on for WP Rocket allows you to host Google Analytics code on your own server. This does not significantly improve, but will help get a 100% page speed score. It’s also compatible with the popular Google Analytics plugins MonsterInsights.
- Facebook Pixel – This add-on will host the pixels locally on your server. Again, this will improve your page speed score but may not have any actual impact on website speed.
- Varnish Add-on – WordPress hosting company that uses Varnish cache. Enabling this add-on will ensure that the Varnish cache is cleared when WP Rocket clears its cache.
- Cloudflare – If you are using Cloudflare CDN, this add-on to works alongside WP Rocket. Click the ‘Modify options’ button enter your account credentials to connect WP Rocket with your Cloudflare account.
- Sucuri – If you are using Sucuri, enable this add-on and click on the ‘Modify options’ button to enter your Sucuri account’s API key and connect the account.
Managing Your WP Rocket Cache
WP Rocket makes it easy for admins to manage and clear the WordPress cache.
How do I clear cache?
Go to the Settings → WP Rocket → Dashboard tab and press the Clear cache button.
How do I clear cache on specific posts/pages?
Visit the Pages or Posts section in WordPress, and roll over a page or post table row to see a Clear this cache action link.
Start a preloading sequence on-demand to rebuild the cache.
Export and Import
Easily export and import plugin settings, helpful when moving WordPress from a local server to a live website or moving to a new domain.
Rollback plugin to an earlier version handy if a WP Rocket update didn’t work as expected.