Free WordPress Cache Plugins: Looking to improve the speed of your WordPress site? Using a cache plug-in can increase loading speed, creating a better experience for your users. Statistically, almost half of your site’s target audience expects your site to load in less than three seconds.
So it’s not surprising that Google continues to emphasize the speed of the site in its search algorithm. The faster the page, the better your search rankings and the more organic traffic you can attract.
What is Cache?
Simply put, caching is basically a simple solution to a complex problem: Pages in WordPress are generated dynamically, when a user enters the website and accesses, for example, an article, a request to the server is made so that this page is processed and delivered, then the PHP programming language kicks in and performs several queries in the database to build the requested page and return it to the user.
As the number of visits to your site increases, this ends up overloading the server and reducing the response time of the page for the user. This is where the cache comes into play, as most pages do not need to have necessarily dynamic content, it creates a static page file, and whenever the user requests it, it delivers that page already created, which dramatically reduces processing and response time.
The Cache normally works with an expiration time, for example, your home page can have an expiration time of 24 hours, when the Cache sneezes, a new updated version of the page is generated and served to its users.
Working with caching in WordPress can be complicated, as many users use ready-made themes, optimization can become a complicated and boring task, but don’t worry, most plug-ins can do an excellent optimization job with little effort.
Why You Use Cache
- Speeds up the site for users : We have already covered this, but it is good to mention it again, as it is the main advantage.
- Improves the overall user experience : As the site loads faster for users, they are now more likely to browse and may decrease the bounce rate for your site, many people do not want to wait 10 seconds to view a page.
- Your server uses less resources : It puts less pressure on your server, reducing the processing and memory needed to withstand the stress of many users, and can even reduce hosting costs.
- Increase in search engine optimization : You show Google and other search engines that your site is worth indexing in a higher ranking, as this is a very important metric for your ranking.
Top Free WordPress Cache Plugins
I separated a list with the best and most popular free WordPress cache plugins, I will bring a brief comparison of the advantages of each one.
- WP Super Cache
- W3 Total Cache
- WP Fastest Cache
1. WP – Optimize
WP-Optimize is a revolutionary plug-in, all in one, that cleans your database, compresses your images and caches your website. The cache feature is built around the world’s fastest cache engine. This simple, popular and highly effective tool has everything you need to keep your website fast and completely optimized!
WP-Optimize is the plugin I chose for my blog (I don’t get anything for the recommendation ), after testing several plugins, I chose this one for its simplicity and efficiency, easy to configure, it delivered a very significant performance and loading improvement. It attacks by optimizing different parts of your site:
- Database: It optimizes your database, removing unnecessary tables and compressing / defragmenting.
- Image Compression: It has a tool to compress your images, reducing their size and increasing the page loading time.
- Cache: It comes with all the essential features of any other cache plug-in with a very simple configuration.
2. WP Super Cache
This plugin generates static html files from your dynamic WordPress blog. After an html file is generated, your server will serve that file instead of processing WordPress’s PHP scripts, which are comparatively heavier and more costly.
WP Super Cache is a very popular free WordPress cache plugin, with over a million active installations. The plugin is maintained by Automattic, the same developer team as WordPress.com.
WP Super Cache serves cached files in three ways:
- Simple : This is the most recommended method of caching files, because you do not need to edit PHP files, and the file
.htaccessdoes not need to be configured.
- Expert : This is the fastest and most efficient caching method but requires modification of
.htaccessadditional files and settings.
3. W3 Total Cache
W3 Total Cache (W3TC) improves your site’s SEO and user experience, increasing site performance and reducing load times, taking advantage of features such as content delivery network (CDN) integration and best practices more recent.
W3 Total Cache is one of WordPress’s most popular cache plugins, with over 1 million active installations. It improves server performance by caching all layers of the website.
4. WP Fastest Cache
The WP Fastest Cache – The fastest, easiest and free wordpress cache plugin.
WP Fastest Cache is one of the easiest WordPress cache plugins to configure. Like any other cache plugin, it creates static HTML files on your dynamic WordPress website.
To reduce the size of the files, the plug-in reduces the HTML and CSS files. It effectively implements the browser cache to reduce the page load time for repeat visitors and combines many CSS files in one to reduce the number of requests made to your server.