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W3 Total Cache Question

  1. Daniel Roo profile image77
    Daniel Rooposted 3 years ago

    I am using W3 Total Cache on a self hosted wordpress blog and although I expected my site speed to improve, I am actually seeing sharp decline (slower than 90% of other sites acording to Google). Obviously this is bad news for my visitors and probably close to Google's site speed penalty/filter.

    The server is shared and I was wondering if the cache might be adding too much load to the server? If so, what settings would i need to change? I am struggling to optimize the plugin for what I suspect is a slightly heavy server.

    Does anyone here have any experience with the W3 Total Cache Plugin for Wordpress?

    1. opensourcevarsity profile image89
      opensourcevarsityposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Hi Daniel,

      Here are my thoughts on the subject of Page load speed.

      All to often your page is loading slowly not so much because of caching but due to a host of other, often overlooked web page issues.

      1) If the page has a number of images on it this will cause your Browser to make an individual round trip to your web server for each image.

      2) If you've got multiple affiliate links on your webpage that needs to go to affiliate websites to display content from there

      3) If you've got a lot of JavaScript loading right at the start of your web page
      This is quite common if you've got affiliate links on a web page, because its JavaScript that is used to display affiliate link content on your web page

      4) The image sizes on your web page.  Large image sizes - long time to down load.

      5) If you are using the image height and width attributes to have the Browser squeeze the image to fit your web page correctly. This is going to adversely effect your page load speed. 

      Here the Browser must download a large image, and then squeeze it based on the dimensions you've given before the image is displayed on your web page.

      6) If you've not compressed your images, using SmushIt, before uploading them to your WordPress website.

      As you can see there are a number of reasons why you've got slow web page download speed.

      To know exactly what is going wrong I recommend that you use a Chrome / Firefox plugin named YSlow.

      Then open your page in either Chrome or Firefox and let YSlow tell you exactly how long your page took to load, and exactly what are the exact reasons why your page is taking so long to load.,

      You may be really surprised to discover what is going wrong.

      I've written a hub on how to correct Page load times as well. May be that will be of help. 

      Do feel free to contact me with your questions if you like.  I'd try and help whenever I can.

      I hope this has been of help/

      1. Marisa Wright profile image91
        Marisa Wrightposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        That's not answering the question, because the OP says his blog loads faster WITHOUT the caching plugin.  so clearly, the caching is the problem, since he didn't change anything else.

    2. expertscolumn profile image79
      expertscolumnposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I'm using W3Cache on Wordpress, it should speed up the site..

      Try reducing links, ads, and scripts in header/footer and elsewhere

      Also disable unncessary plugins they increase db load times

    3. Marisa Wright profile image91
      Marisa Wrightposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I had a similar experience, though not as dramatic.  I've tried other caching plugins since then, and have yet to find one that increased page load speed when tested on Pingdom.    I did some Googling at the time, and found that we're far from alone in finding that caching plugins don't always achieve what they claim.

      It partly depends on what other things you've already done to speed up your blog.  For instance, I had already minified everything, moved scripts to the footer, smushed my images etc.  If your pages are already loading fast, there may not be much left for the caching plugin to do!

      However settings can also be an issue: from what I recall, shared hosting is part of the problem, because there are some settings for W3 Total Cache which you can't use on shared hosting.