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Make WordPress website faster: the plugin factor

One of the great things about WordPress is that you rarely have to write your own code, since there are more than 56,000 free plugins at wordpress.org alone and thousands more elsewhere. Unfortunately not all plugins are written with performance as an important starting point. We have seen several plugins at Hoasted that caused a high load and therefore greatly delayed the website.

So we can say that not so much the number of plugins (although that can certainly be a factor), but especially the quality plays a role. There are sites with more than 20 plugins that are very fast.

Plugins that we recommend for performance and performance

Security

For this we recommend Sucuri Security On. In combination with the Hoasted firewall at the server level, this ensures optimum security and only a low load. Tip: turn off the email alerts.

Caching

For caching, use the LiteSpeed Cache. This works optimally together with the LiteSpeed web server from Hoasted and ensures high speed of your website. The LiteSpeed Cache works significantly faster than the other WordPress caching plugins.

SEO

Yoast SEO is really recommended, user friendly and does what it promises.

Editor

If you want more than you can with the Gutenberg and the classic editor of WordPress, you need an editor.

Our tip:  Elementor. The free version already lets you build beautiful designs with easy drag and drop! More than 1.2 million downloads within three years says enough about the quality.

Gallery

If you want to show a lot of images on your website, the standard WordPress functionality is no longer useful. In that case you can install a Gallery plugin.

A free and fast gallery is Modula with which you can easily create great looking galleries. The paid version offers more options.

Contact Form

Highly recommended Ninja Forms, the free version is already very user-friendly to create your forms with. If you want more functionalities, there is the
paid version

For developers, the paid one is Gravity Forms one of the most popular form plugins, with a lot of functionality and customization options.

Plugins that we advise against

We have made an overview of plugins that we strongly discourage. Herein a list of plugins in areas such as security, caching, backup and plugins that adversely affect the load and I / O (and therefore the speed of your website).

One problem with uninstalling plugins: contamination

Deactivating and uninstalling a plugin is easy. However, many plugins makers have set the settings to be saved in the database. If you want to install the plugin again later, the old settings are immediately taken back. So what you can get in the long run is that your database is contaminated with tables of disused plugins. For example, WordFence leaves 24 tables in the database upon deletion, see part of it below:

!
Fortunately, you can easily solve abandoned tables and rows with the Plugins garbage collector. It cleans up the surplus tables for you in one go.
Sometimes folders and files are also left behind when deactivating and removing a plugin.

Speed with queries

Database queries have a significant effect on the speed of the website and plugins can run a large number of queries. The builders do not always have performance in mind because they are focused on functionality. Good plugins only do one query in the correct table or row, but there are unfortunately also many more queries. For example, plugins have been observed that run through the entire wp_options table, including the rows left after uninstallations.

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