- By Colin Newcomer
- October 3, 2020
Searching for the best WordPress caching plugin?
If you want to make WordPress faster, implementing page caching should be at the top of your list. With page caching, WordPress can store the static HTML version of a page and serve that to visitors instead of dynamically processing PHP for every page load. This reduces server processing time which offers a big increase in performance (and this will also help your site hold up during periods of high traffic).
Unless you’re using managed WordPress hosting that implements page caching for you at the server level, you need a caching plugin to set everything up.
In this post, I’ve collected eight of the most popular and best plugins that help you do just that. At a minimum, all of these plugins make it easy to implement page caching. Better yet, many of them also go further and help you implement other WordPress performance best practices such as browser caching, Gzip compression, code optimization, and more.
To help you choose the best plugin for your needs, I installed each plugin on a test site and ran some performance tests. Beyond that, I’ll also share each plugin’s key features and a look at the user interface so that you can pick the plugin that best meets your needs.
Let’s dig in…
Performance Test Summary Table
If you’re in a hurry, here’s a quick look at which plugins performed best in the performance tests. Keep reading to learn more about each plugin and where this data came from.
- *The median value of nine separate tests
- **Higher is better. I think this makes it easier to compare performance between different plugins by seeing the percent value for how much each plugin reduced the load time.
- ***TTFB = time to first byte — more on this below
- ****Not technically a caching plugin — more on this later
Details on Our Test Setup
To help you understand where this data comes from, let’s go over how I set up the test site and ran the tests.
First off, the test site is using the popular Avada theme (our review). To make it a realistic scenario, I imported the full Avada Freelancer demo site which includes a good amount of content. I’m testing the homepage, for reference.
As for hosting, the test site is hosted on a cheap cloud VPS from DigitalOcean (the $5 plan) and managed by SpinupWP, which uses Nginx as the web server. While cheap, this setup does offer significantly better out-of-the-box performance than budget shared hosting. If you are using cheap shared hosting, you’ll probably see a more dramatic improvement with any of these plugins. In my personal experience, I usually see speed reductions of about 40% when adding page caching
This article was written by Colin Newcomer and originally published on WinningWP.