How to Increase Magento Site Speed

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Magento sites are generally very big & slow because they have a lot of products in the catalog. Because of this, the database gets filled with a huge amount of data that needs to be indexed, processed and updated every time a visitor browses your Magento site. Slow loading speeds are Magento’s numer one conversion killer, so its very important to keep your site up to speed. There are a few easy steps that you probably haven’t heard of that you can use to make your Magento E-commerse shop a lot faster.

Enable Caching

A lot of Developers forget to turn the caching back on when they are done with developing. Caching makes your site so much faster, so please check that this setting is enabled. This can be done by logging in to your Magento admin panel and navigating to System > Cache Management. Make sure you select all cache types, and use the enable action on the top right. Magento caches a page after it has been visited one time, so the time it takes to cache your whole store may vary depending on your store’s size. Generally the biggest part of your store will be cached within a day, and you will start noticing the site speed increases.

Install Full Page Cache

While the default Magento caching is pretty strong, there is always a bigger & better solution in the Magento connect marketplace. We recommend this free full page caching module. When we installed this module on a Magento web shop of a client, site speed increased by more then 60%. The full page cache plugin can bring your loading speed to under a tenth of a second, which is way above average loading speeds. It also reduces bandwith & server load which saves you money your hosting provider charges you for hosting traffic.

Get a good Magento Hosting

Lets be real: if you have a slow host, you can try everything you want, but your Magento shop will never load fast enough. You should never host Magento on a free host, or a low quality one. While this may seem cheap in terms of hosting bills, it will cost you more revenue through visitors who exit your slow site in the long run. We recommend Siteground hosting as your Magento hosting solution. They offer great plans for a decent price, and you won’t be charged for bandwith or disk space, which is a huge plus.

Enable Flat Categories & Products

If you run a really big store (1000+ products), it might be useful for you to turn on the Flat Categories & Products option in the Magento backend. You can do this by navigating to System > Configuration > Catalog in the Admin Backend. Turn “Use Flat Catalog Category” & “Use Flat Catalog Product” to “Yes”. Enabling this feature will create separate tables in the Database for your product & category attributes, which greatly reduces site loading speed.

Merge Javascript & CSS Files

Magento has an awesome feature built into the backend that compresses all Javascript & CSS files, which means that they load faster. This setting can be found & enabled under System > Configuration > Developer in the Admin backend. Under Javascript Settings & CSS Settings you can enable the Merge feature.

While some other guides on the internet recommend you to turn on the Magento compiler, we don’t. The loading speed increases you gain from enabling the compiler are minimal, and they carry a very big risk. We have come across big shops that permanently crashed when the compiler was turned on, which is not fun. We advice you to leave it off, and if its on, disable it as soon as possible

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