High performing sites with great loading speeds are always loved by users word-wide and is greatly adored by the search engines. if a site loads in slowly, it will have a very negative impact and high chances of loosing customer stands positive. Joomla is a great CMS highly optimized and greatly crafted to design some of the most breathtaking sites. Since it is open source, we stack up many things on it to scale it up to suit our needs. In this process, we sometimes add heavy loads making it respond slowly which turns the user experience down. In this article I will help you through some basics and some pro level steps to tune the site giving it a next level Speed Booster.
Before going in for the steps below, I highly recommend you to take a full backup of your Joomla Site. Go here to see how to backup Joomla in one click
Benefits of Speed:
- Better speed has a great impact on Google ranking which results in more user flow on your site.
- With a great performing site, you will have more happy and returning users.
- Better performing and highly tuned sites are always loved by servers since they have a low impact on server.
- Better speed results in more room to handle higher visitors.
Some Basics to Remember:
- Always keep your Joomla Install fully updated.
- Keep all your extensions up to date.
- Remove or deactivate any extensions that are not in use.
- Don't add heavy plugins unless extremely needed. (Mostly used to decorate the elements)
- Optimize images before you load them and avoid large images. (Optimizing images will give you the best quality even while keeping it small) DON'T upload 2560 x 1600 images.
- Avoid loading content from remote servers.
- Use image sprites
- Combine & Minify CSS and JS files
- Use CDN to add more speed and avoid unnecessary requests. I recommend CloudFlare
- CDN will also put your site as a good boy in front of Google, Bing and other search engines.
You may find it difficult to handle some of the options listed above. Let us reduce your tension and keep you worry free. We recommend JCH Pro edition that will do the job of tuning for you to the best.
JCH Pro setup steps
- Buy and install JCH Pro edition. The free edition is good, but pro is far beyond good.
- Get inside the plugin under your admin page
- Order the plugin automatically by clicking "Order Plugin button"
- Click on "Optimum button" under Automatic settings.
- Enable Sprite Generator under Sprite Generator Tab
- Under Optimize Images Tab, click the "Optimize Images" button and wait until the image optimization is complete.
- In most cases, this should do the wonders, but in case, you face difficulty or any of the site elements are behaving unusual, I recommend you to:
- Disable this JCH Pro plugin
- Enable it back and this time use minimum level settings.
- Now enable each option and save.
- Test the site each time you save and see if the unusual behavior is continued. This way you will be able to locate the root cause and accordingly decide whether to keep that option On or turn it Off.
Despite of all this, you may experience speed issues. This behavior is mostly noted on shared resources. if your website is on shared hosting plan, it is one of the most obvious reasons for low speed. If you can afford, I recommend you to switch to a VPS or a Dedicaed Hosting.
Update 01 - Noticed when we updated Joomla to 3.4.1
After updating to latest Joomla 3.4.1 version, we've noticed that one of the pro options are conflicting with the display of Google Ads and Drop menus of Purity III template from JoomlArt.com.
After testing each option carefully, we've noticed "Include PHP and external resource files" option under Pro Options tab was causing conflict due to which Google Ads were not appearing and Drop menus were not functioning upon mouse over. To fix this behavior, we've turned off this option. If I notice any change in the behavior, I'll update it here.
Update 02 - Some cool options are added that would make optimization more handy
- Leverage browser caching has been added right under basic options tab which will add browser cache codes to your sites .htaccess file making it run more faster and smoother.
- Fix file permissions option is added alongside of the Leverage Browser Cache making it simple for you to fix all the file permission to tighten the site security.
- The most beautiful option that was added to this fleet was to Add Image Attributes that will add the mossing width and height attributes to all <img/> elements.
We will keep updating this article to make it more useful, hence keep watching for any updates.
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