HostArmada Top Choice WordPress Caching Plugins for 2020
7 minutes reading
We at HostArmada understand the importance of website speed and optimization for every site owner. Therefore, we have invested our efforts to develop a fast, secure, and stable server environment so we can grant exceptional website performance to all our customers. While the server-side is unquestionably a significant factor for website loading speed, there are other essential elements as well.
Typically to speed up a site, you need to review its code and content and optimize those areas to enhance its performance. Unfortunately, not every user can write or fine-tune code, thus, an alternative solution was brought to light – caching plugins.
This convenient method of speeding up WordPress sites allows everyone to enjoy a fast loading website without going through the hassle of hiring a developer or investing time in learning to code.
Caching technology is quite complicated and we will not go over all the technical details surrounding it. We will attempt to give you an idea of how it works, and we will include the benefits of implementing it on your WordPress-based website.
What is caching?
The caching tech revolves around storing data types of your website (commonly static files such as HTML, CSS, and JS) in a storage called “cache”, which you can imagine as a memory for intermediate data. When this technology is active, your website’s first visit will fill this storage with the respective data types. Each consequent request towards the already-cached page will not query the server directly for the resources needed to deliver it to the client’s browser. Instead, the data will be pulled from this temporary storage and returned to the viewer’s browser faster, ultimately resulting in a much quicker loading speed.
How does Caching affect WordPress site performance?
In addition to speeding up your website, there are other benefits of using caching plugins:
- Improves UX (User Experience) as they navigate more smoothly on your pages.
- Reduces the number of requests made to your server, thus making it more stable and able to handle more traffic.
- Lowers TTFB (Time To First Byte), which is quite an important metric, especially if you are aiming to increase your SEO and your ranking in Search Engines (Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc.)
In the next few paragraphs, we will be going over a few WordPress caching plugins that we believe can be a great addition to your site’s arsenal. We have installed and used each of the plugins from this list to give our readers an accurate idea of what they can expect from implementing them on their sites.
Which caching plugins should you consider for your WordPress website?
We have made a series of blog posts, each reviewing a specific WordPress caching plugin. Each post gives detailed know-how of the plugin and its settings, and you should check out the one that seems most appealing to you. To satisfy each type of WordPress user’s needs, we have included both premium and free solutions and more complex and easy to use plugins.
LiteSpeed Cache is a popular plugin amongst the community and for a good reason. A solid choice, especially if your server environment is empowered by LiteSpeed webserver. Be sure to check our comprehensive tutorial series on the plugin.
- Multiple installation methods which make it very flexible for both new and experienced users.
- Extraordinary static content caching capabilities due to its integration with LiteSpeed webserver.
- A tremendous array of settings, making it ideal for developers and high experienced WordPress users.
- Object caching integration option allowing you to set up Memcached or Redis for your WordPress.
- Image optimization if you register and use the QuicCloud, a free WordPress CDN service with extra benefits if you are already on a LiteSpeed webserver.
- LazyLoad for images and iFrames.
- Requires a LiteSpeed-powered server to be used, otherwise, the majority of the functionalities will not work.
- It has a cache prebuild option, but it requires the LiteSpeed crawler enabled for you to take advantage of this feature. If you are using a shared hosting server, there is a good chance that this is not active, as the crawler tends to utilize many resources.
- The massive amount of settings makes it very overwhelming for new WordPress enthusiasts.
WP-Rocket is a fan-favorite plugin amongst WordPress enthusiasts due to its user-friendliness and effectiveness. Make sure to read our WP-Rocket – Premium and Well-rounded WordPress Plugin blog post for an in-depth look at the plugin.
- 80% of the speed benefits come with the base installation and require no additional tweaking, making this plugin an ideal candidate for new WordPress users.
- Database optimization capability allowing you to refine your database.
- WP-Rocket is one of the few plugins out there offering optimization for Google Fonts.
- WP-Rocket has an average number of configuration options that will satisfy the needs of advanced WordPress users who prefer having additional fine-tuning options.
- It has a preload option that builds up the cache of all your pages if you clear it. However, it could be more taxing on the server resources, especially if you have lots of pages.
- LazyLoad for images and iFrames.
- It could prove harder to install for inexperienced users as you cannot directly install it from your WordPress Admin Dashboard.
- There is no free or trial version available, which may be offputting to users that want to test it out first. They offer a 14 days money-back guarantee, which is more than enough for you to get an idea if this plugin works out for you.
- It does not have a direct object caching integration through its interface.
- WP-Rocket lacks an image optimization feature, which may be a deal-breaker for some people as there are premium plugins out there that have this option available.
Swift Performance has been rocking it hard the past few years and has found a stable place in the caching plugins ladder. Feature-full, it stands tall, and if you like to use it to its full extent, check our Swift Performance – Free or Premium solution for Robust WordPress Optimization blog post where you will comprehensive instructions on the installation and configuration process.
- Swift Performance has a free and premium version making it ideal for people who want to test before spending money.
- The plugin has a vast pool of configuration options, making it more appealing for advanced WordPress users.
- Preset configuration options that newcomers can choose from removing the need to go through the hassle of manually configuring the plugin.
- Swift comes with an Image optimization feature that is easy to use and can save you money for a separate image optimization plugin/service.
- The plugin has a cache preload option that builds up all your pages’ cache if you clear it. This feature can be somewhat taxing on your server, mainly if you use a shared hosting solution.
- Swift Performance does not have a direct object caching integration, and to use such, you need to resort to other plugins to achieve this goal.
- Naturally, the premium version of Swift Performance has a price tag on it, which is not necessarily a con, as you do get a lot out of it.
- Using its interface to enable settings on your own will seem overwhelming if you are new to WordPress optimization.
Simple Cache is a newcomer in the WordPress caching plugin pool, which has been gaining popularity steadily. While it may not have the depth of the other plugins in this post, it is a solid choice if simplicity and ease of access are what you want. If this is your choice, please check our Simple Cache – Free, yet Effective WordPress Optimization Plugin blog post explaining all there is for this plugin.
- Very easy to install and get started with it.
- Simple Cache is free and extremely easy to set up.
- Great static content caching build into its core and requiring no additional configurations.
- Despite its simplicity, Simple Cache allows the integration of object caching directly through its interface.
- Simple Cache has no preload option meaning that you may experience more inferior performance if you clear the cache before it generates it again.
- No image optimization feature, which means you need to use external sources/plugins to do so.
- There is no flexibility to fine-tune the plugin, which will seem lack-luster to advanced users.
Cache Enabler & Autoptimize
- Easy to install and set up, giving you fantastic performance even with baseline settings.
- Both Cache Enabler and Autoptimize are free.
- Both plugins have a moderate amount of balanced features, and both new and advanced users can use them intuitively.
- Solid caching & minification capabilities as each of the plugins excel at its respective niche.
- This plugin combination is superb for new users who have just finished building their site.
- Cache Enabler is one of the few plugins out there that uses unique technology to serve WebP images, so if you use an image optimization plugin that can convert images to WebP format, you can get an even better result with this combo.
- As both plugins are free, they do not offer image optimization features.
- Advanced users may prefer other plugins with more configuration options available.
- There is no object caching integration through either of the plugins, and if you want to use it, you need to use other means.
- Both plugins do not offer cache preload.
We hope our blog post helped you understand the importance of using a caching plugin for your WordPress website and choose the most suitable option according to your needs and knowledge. We realize that this concept could seem complicated for the average user, and this is why we have attempted to provide accessible information and options for both advanced and new users.
Note that we at HostArmada have made our mission to help people who wish to use an affordable, secure, and fast service without any gimmicks. Our technical support team is 24/7 available and will be more than happy to install and configure the desired plugin for you. If speed is your primary concern, consider signing up for our Speed Reaper hosting plan. In conjunction with either of the above plugins, the LiteSpeed webserver will surely take your WordPress website’s performance to a whole new level!