Speed Up WordPress – Even on a Shared Hosting!

Summary: Is it possible to have a fast WordPress blog on a shared hosting? Yes - here's the video proof of what's possible when you speed up WordPress like a ninja.

You might have read some of my WordPress optimization posts, like how to optimize images and .htaccess rules for site speed. So you know that I'm getting quite good at speeding up WordPress.

So maybe it's time to see just how fast I've taken this blog now...

Here's how fast my blog loads compared to couple of my favorite blogs...

Can't see the video? Watch it on YouTube: Speed Up WordPress.

About the test

There's a timer at the bottom, each sites screenshot (taken every 0.1 seconds) pops up when the site render is started = First render (FR) - before that the screen is white - and screenshot turns gray after the site is fully loaded = Fully Loaded (FL).

  • This test was executed on the 27th of May 2010
  • Test and video were done using the WebPageTest.org visual comparison tool.
  • For each URL, 3 first-view tests were be run from 'Dulles, VA - 1.5Mbps ADSL' and the median run was used for comparison.
  • I edited the video on Windows Movie Maker - I had to, because the video went too fast from 0 to 1.2 seconds! :)
  • The tests reports are public (not sure how long they keep'em there, but here's the website comparison and the original video generated by the visual comparison tool).

Note that load times can be different based on location, time of day, etc - so the other sites in the test might be faster at some other time. I ran the test three times to make sure it was reliable (and rendered video from the last run).

Sites included in this test

I picked 8 blogs I liked, favoring the big blogs, because when you compete, you want to compete with the best, right? I didn't plan to make a video out of it, but did it when I saw the option on the visual comparison tool.

  1. Zemalf.com (First render 0.9s, fully loaded in 1.2s)
  2. Yoast.com (FR 0.9s, FL 3.8s)
  3. ViperChill.com (FR 2.0s, FL 4.1s)
  4. DailyBlogTips.com (FR 1.5s, FL 4.4s)
  5. Copyblogger.com (FR 2.6s, FL 5.1s)
  6. Problogger.net (FR 4.6s, FL 13.1s)
  7. Mashable.com (FR 4.6s, FL ~18s)
  8. SmartPassiveIncome.com (FR 5.8s, FL ~20s)
  9. SEOmoz.org (FR 6.3s, FL ~24s)

Interestingly, the last four sites just begun their rendering when the first five were already fully loaded. At around 6-8 seconds all the sites are "readable" (with main content visible). The last four continued to load scripts, ads, images, etc. after that.

WordPress blog that loads as fast as 1.2 seconds on shared hosting

This tiny WordPress blog of mine, running on shared hosting, was done loading in 1.2 seconds...

I'm pretty sure the other blogs in the video pay more than $9.95 a month for their hosting. That's what I pay for my shared hosting at DreamHost.

My page loading is slower on the individual post like this (abound 3-5 secs fully loaded I think), that's mostly because of Disqus commenting system (boo for slowness, yay for many other things), but I still beat the big guys with their cloud hostings and CDNs fair and square.

Do I need to say that DreamHost is awesome for WordPress blogs? (That's very much of an affiliate link. I couldn't be more proud recommending DreamHost to any WordPress blogger.)


My blog is fast, and it's something I'm quite proud of. And now I have a video to proof it :)

Everything in moderation; I have (purposely) very minimalistic design on this blog which favors my blog on a test like this, using CSS-based design without any images is unbeatable. I don't have huge load because I don't have as much traffic as the other blogs on the video, and the amount of traffic might slow the other blogs down.

But my blog would not be this fast without the other tweaks I've done... And it's still pretty cool that I "won" them all, isn't it? And I didn't just win, I CRUSHED them.

  • Is my blog more minimalistic than the other blogs? - Yes.
  • Do all the other blogs get way more traffic than my blog? - Yes.
  • Does my blog kick ass in this speed test and wipe the floor with'em? - Hell yes!

So yeah - the test is just a test, but it gives you an idea how fast my blog now is...

...and I'm confident that your WordPress blog can get just as fast.

Would you like me to show you how to speed up WordPress?

Join the WordPress Speed Challenge to do this yourself - speed up your WordPress blog and make it load a lot faster!

Posted by

Topic: WordPress Optimization
Tags: , , , , ,

If you enjoyed this post, sign up for updates (it's free)

Feedback, questions and comments are also welcome on my Facebook page