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Why my WordPress website is slow?

Aakash @ July 19, 2022

Why my WordPress website is slow?

Your WordPress website can be slow for many reasons. The most common reasons could be one or a combination of a few of the following:

  • Your WordPress Webhosting environment
  • Plugin conflicts or circular dependencies
  • Too many plugins
  • Unoptimized theme
  • Blocking third-party dependencies
  • Unoptimized custom code
  • Unoptimized images
  • No CDN

Lets check all of above in little bit more detail.

Your WordPress webhosting environment

This could be a reason if you are using a cheap shared web hosting provider. Here your WordPress website network resources are shared with many other websites such as network bandwidth, CPU, and memory. A bunch of websites is hosted on the same server in a shared hosting environment, you will only get your share of resources. In case one of the hosted websites get a traffic spike, your website will compete for bandwidth and CPU.

Solution: Change your web hosting to cloud hosting or upgrade the plan with current hosting provider.

Plugin conflicts or circular dependencies

This could be a reason for many WordPress websites where plugins are installed to extend the core WordPress functionalities. Plugins in general are fine, but sometimes plugin code creates a condition where one plugin’s action is dependent on the second one and the second one’s on the first one. This is basically a wait condition for the server and it eventually increases page load time. This is also called circular dependency.

Solution: Debug your WordPress backend code. Get the help of a developer.

Too many plugins

Sometimes even though there are no plugin conflicts but just the presence of too many active plugins can also slow down your WordPress website. On each request, WordPress has to go through all those plugin codes to serve the webpage. This degrades the server performance and especially if you are hosting your website on the low capacity server then it really limits the serving capacity for your website.

Solution: Re-evaluate your plugin usage and get the help of a developer to suggest you better ways.

Unoptimized theme

This is one of the popular reasons why your WordPress website could be slow. There are a plethora of themes available for WordPress. You might choose the best-looking one. However, that doesn’t mean the theme can perform well on the server. Good themes are also optimized for their performance and can give a good page speed score.

Solution: Replace your theme with a good performance score theme. Generally, this information is available on the theme sell page. If not, you can ask the theme developer about it.

Blocking third-party dependencies

Sometimes the website depends on the response of the third-party API it is calling to get the information. For example, a cooking recipe website might wait for the response of the nutrition API to get the nutrition information. There is nothing wrong with this approach, but dependence on third-party API means the at-least server has to wait until it gets the response from API. Getting the response includes the network latencies, the traffic load on third-party API, and many other factors which you can’t control.

Solution: Update your code to make a non-blocking (AJAX) request so that your server does not have to wait for the response immediately.

Unoptimized custom code

This happens when you might have or your developer has created custom code for some functionality for your website. This code might have not followed the best practice and so it creates an unnecessary load on your server. Code could have included infinite loops, large memory objects, or excessive loggings.

Solution: Get the help of other developers to optimize the code.

Unoptimized images

This is also the other populate case for many websites. Nowadays, the average size of images taken from the phone is around 5MB. Sometimes when using these images directly taken from the phone to the website as it is, it can slow down the page load time, as your page now need to load this large image (s) on each page load.

Solution: Use the image optimizer plugins in WordPress to take care of this problem automatically. Following are some of the plugins that you can use:

  • Smush.
  • Optimus.
  • EWWW Image Optimizer.
  • ShortPixel Image Optimizer.
  • Compress JPEG and PNG Images.
  • Imsanity.
  • Imagify.


A content delivery network (CDN) is a great way to speed up your website quickly. It is recommended to use CDN to improve your Website performance. You can read it here: WordPress with CDN

Solution: Configure CDN for your WordPress website. Popular CDN services are like the following:

  • AWS CloudFront
  • Cloudflare
  • Fastly

Founder of AWON

AWS Solution Architect and WordPress Developer.


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