Your Blog Speed Sucks!

Your Blog Speed Sucks
Image courtesy of digitalart / 

“I’m sorry Mr Bonner, there’s a problem with your blog speed.”

“We’re going to have to commandeer your blog for further analysis”. Say what?

“Well, I don’t want to alarm you but your blog is crawling along.”

“I mean, there’s tortoise speed and then there’s snail speed. Yours comes somewhere in between!”

Have you ever driven behind someone in their car and they’re going so slowly; not doing anywhere near the speed limit?

I know I have and it makes me feel quite frustrated, so that’s how people would be feeling on my blog, right?

I had a frenzied few hours looking for a solution and had no idea what I was really looking for. So what did I find?

Pingdom Tools

This site is a little gem but boy did it give me some horrendous results!

I ran the homepage of my website through the Full Page Test a few times. You can access this free test here.

Oh my… Average load time of… wait for it… 22 seconds. Something was seriously wrong with my blog speed.

But look at my result now. Much better! Down to between 2.5 and 3.5 seconds load time on average.

Pingdom Tools

What does Pingdom do?

Pingdom allows you to test the load page of your website but it does more than that.

Here’s the feature list from Pingdom:

  • Examine all parts of a web page – View file sizes, load times, and other details about every single element of a web page (HTML, JavaScript and CSS files, images, etc.). You can sort and filter this list in different ways to identify performance bottlenecks.
  • Performance overview – We automatically put together plenty of performance-related statistics for you based on the test result
  • Performance grade and tips – See how your website conforms to performance best practices from Google Page Speed (similar to Yahoo’s Yslow). You can get some great tips on how to speed up your website this way.
  • Trace your performance history – We save each test for you so you can review it later and also see how things change over time (with pretty charts!).
  • Test from multiple locations – See how fast a website loads in Europe, the United States, etc.
  • Share your results – We’ve made it easy for you to perform a test and share it with your friends, work colleagues or web host.

You get a breakdown of all the things that are being loaded by your website and from this you can see where any problems lie. Here’s an example:

Pingdom Tools

I noticed that there were a few things which were holding the loading time up.

In particular a couple of my images seemed to be causing an issue which I was able to rectify.

OK. Now what? How could I check whether any of my plugins were causing an issue as well?

Luckily, there’s a plugin that you can check this with too!

P3 (Plugin Performance Profiler)

With P3, you can check which plugins are affecting your blog speed and take action. Take a look at the image below.

P3 (Plugin Performance Profiler)

Now this is after I’ve removed some plugins and consolidated a few.

By using P3, I narrowed down which plugins were slow and was then able to make a decision about whether they stayed or not.

For example, I had a Google Analytics plugin and 2 AWeber plugins and I combined these by adding the Add to All plugin.

This allowed me to add the script required for Google Analytics and AWeber without needing individual plugins.

I know I could have added the code manually to my blog, however I do not want to keep having to do that each time my theme is updated.

This is still a work in progress. I need to really look at the plugins I have installed and cull a few more non-essential ones if I can.

There are others things apart from plugins that I really need to check as well.

I’m going to look at other tools I have come across to do this and I’ll let you know the outcome in a future post.

This will hopefully bring the load time of my web pages down even further.

Does Your Blog Speed Need A Boost?

Have you given your website a once-over recently? What about your plugins? Do they need tweaking?

What did you think of these tools? Are there any other tools you use to check the health of your website and plugins?

I look forward to receiving and comments you may have and please share my post on your favourite social media site.

Thank you in advance!

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69 Comments on "Your Blog Speed Sucks!"

2 years 2 months ago

Thanks Tim. I hadn’t heard of this. I know just the blog (one of mine) that needs it :-)

2 years 2 months ago

Hi Joy

Welcome to my blog and thank you so much for commenting.

I’m glad I could be of some help and I hope that you find the tools useful.

I hope to see you again soon.


2 years 3 months ago

Thank you. This was exactly what I was looking for. Thanks again. *joy* my blog loads 80% faster thanks to your tips

2 years 3 months ago

Hi there Niranjan

Welcome to my blog and thank you for your comments.

I’m pleased that your blog is running much faster and 80% is a great deal faster!

I hope to see you again soon.


2 years 3 months ago

I’ve just used pingdom on my latest niche blog and was happy to see it loaded in just over a second which is faster than 82% of websites out there. That’s pretty good :)

I also used it on my main blog because it was running slow and the results forced me to make some changes. P3 helped but it was more than just the plugins. It also had to do with website compression, optimizing images and a slew of other things. I wrote a post on part of what I did to speed things up and will be following it up with another one soon.

2 years 3 months ago

That’s pretty impressive Peter; loading in just over a second is very fast!

Mine is still around the 5 second mark. I had to take W3 Total Cache off my blog as it was interfering with other plugins. I’m going to try WP Super Cache though as I’ve been told that that is more stable.

Pingdom is great for isolating things which run slow and I’m glad you’ve been able to interpret the results so well. I had a similar problem with a few of the images I had loaded. WP has helped compress things a little but I try and resize all images now before I load them onto my blog.

I’ll look out for your post Peter!

2 years 3 months ago

I used to use Quick Cache on those two blogs basically because of ease of use and because W3 kept crashing the site. I resolved the issue by manually stipulating which parts of the blog, css and php. files, that I wanted to minify as it was the auto selection to the config that was crashing the blogs.

The commentluv link in the previous comment actually links to the second post of my new blog. The one in this comment links to my main blog. Last time I checked this one loaded in under 5 seconds but I’ve added some new plugins since then and I haven’t updated W3 to allow for them. Man oh man, a bloggers work is never done :D

2 years 3 months ago

I don’t know Quick Cache Peter so I’ll certainly take a look at that one. Andy Bailey suggested WP Super Cache as he uses it and it’s stable with CommentLuv.

I tried to use W3 with manual minify settings but it just kept interfering with my WordPress theme as well as CommentLuv and nRelate.

A bloggers work is certainly never done Peter! You have so many sites, I’m not sure I’d be able to keep up with that many. I barely keep up with two!

Ammar Ali
2 years 3 months ago

Tim, Your blog speed looks fine to me!

I’ve Tested out my site using pingdom tool. Load time is 1.60s. :D

It’s not bad. What you think?

2 years 3 months ago

Hi Ammar

1.60s seconds is awesome for your load time. I wish mine were that low. Well done!

I’ve had to take W3 Total Cache off my blog as it was causing some issues which may have caused the load time to go up a little on mine recently.

I’m going to look at WP Super Cache as I know that seems to have less compatibility issues with other plugins.

Great job on the load speed though Ammar. You couldn’t really ask for more!


2 years 3 months ago

Great stuff Tim! I bet this post drives a lot of folks to your blog. You’ve created a great resource, thanks!

2 years 3 months ago

Hi Cameron

Welcome to my blog and thank you for your comments.

This post does get quite a bit of traffic and I’m pleased you found it useful.

Hope to see you again soon.