When it comes to making a website stand out, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of factors that go into creating a good website that receives plenty of attention.
Many people stand up a website and over-rely on their chosen theme. However, as we will show in this WP Rocket overview, sometimes you need more than just a good theme to be noticed online.
The content you are publishing is essential, it’s so much of what makes a website become a hit, so why not maximize the user experience while you are at it?
How SEO interacts with the content and layout of your webpage, is about how you say it online, as much as what you are even saying.
It is no small wonder then that, as the Internet has become such a ubiquitous part of everyday life, the algorithms that power its searches have become more and more specialized.
Many businesses would start to sell themselves as effective website builders.
They have helped newcomers enter the market by making a website that is going to be one of the first search results that you find when you type in your keyword search.
Many businesses have used WordPress to become very successful with this model, helping many new web pages make it to the first 2 or 3 pages of results.
We’ll be covering the issues with this model, and the use of plugins for websites, as well as focusing on one particular helpful caching plugin that has become popular, WP Rocket.
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WordPress Plugin and Page Builder Bloat
With so many people using WordPress, the average quality of webpages, certainly in terms of formatting and structure, has also increased.
At first glance, this may appear intimidating. If everyone is on the same playing field regarding quality, how does anyone stand out anymore?
The real issue that many new people who are starting websites now find is that the WordPress model makes it easy to publish content without any indication of required optimization.
We suppose the good thing about WordPress powering nearly a third of the Internet, it makes it easier to stand out with a little optimization. Plugins can help tip the scales for WordPress in this area.
The additions and customization they often bring to a website not only help make your website more optimized than your competitors but will also make them run smoother, as opposed to the same bloated cookie-cutter setup that everyone else is using.
This is where WP Rocket comes into the equation.
What Is WP Rocket?
WP Rocket is an all-encompassing cache plugin that has been tailor made and optimized to work with WordPress websites.
It is designed to be a plugin to tackle loading times that can often detract from the overall traffic that a website can receive.
It also helps alleviate any issues that having many cache plugins attached to a website can bring to a webpage, which is the primary reason the plugin was first released in 2013 to tackle.
WP Rocket has an interface that is easy to use, requires little setup to start making it work, and has excellent customer service and support. This makes WP Rocket excellent for beginners to get started.
Why Page Speed Matters
Some of you may be wondering if page speed is really that important. After all, Google seems to go back and forth on its stated importance. Is page speed a ranking factor? The short answer is yes!
Making your website snappy, with a good user experience, will increase your chances of ranking higher on a Google search.
Put yourself in the searcher’s shoes for a moment. How do you feel when you’re looking for something, and the website doesn’t load quickly or even at all? Do you try to load a different page or abandon the site completely after a few seconds?
Improve page speed and see your retention increase.
This also leads to our next point, which is to do with how caching, compression, and loading times affect your website’s Search Engine Optimization (SEO). SEO can determine not only where you appear in search results, but how those search results look as well for a particular search result.
Ideally, your webpage should appear within the first 5 listings of a search result, as turning over from there includes massive dropoffs in people’s searches.
Many factors can affect how optimized a website is for a search. The layout of articles, pages, word counts, keywords, topics, authority, and more are often the focus of SEO optimization programs.
Other factors will also affect a webpage’s SEO, such as loading time, and size of the page in the bandwidth that is used to load it.
Therefore using WP Rocket can reduce the number of KBs (and even MBs) it takes to load a page.
Besides cutting the loading time down, there are small, yet significant ways to make your website more likely to turn up higher in a web search engine.
How To Install And Set Up WP Rocket
Sounds great so far, right? Even if you don’t use WP Rocket, caching is more important than you realize.
So, if you are interested, check out the following steps below to install and set up WP Rocket on your website.
Installing And Activating WP Rocket
One aspect of WP Rocket that is different from many other WordPress plugins is that it doesn’t upload to your webpage automatically, which means that you’ll have to do this for WP Rocket manually.
Once you have downloaded the plugin, you must go into the plugin file to upload it.
- Go to your dashboard in the admin area.
- Plugins, then Add New.
- Then finally select Upload.
- Click the Activate link to get started. Review any warning messages or first time notifications.
Configuring Your Settings
Activating WP Rocket will put settings into place automatically for you, up to applying 80% of web performance best practices from jump street.
However, just activating it by itself won’t solve all of your problems. To get things just right for your website, you’re going to need to adjust some of the settings. In your dashboard, go to:
- Settings, then click on WP Rocket.
- Click on the File Optimization tab.
This is where you’ll most likely need to start to adjust the plugin to function just right for your website.
Generally speaking, these are the options that you should set up and test for yourself first, before making additional changes:
- Minify CSS files.
- Minify JS files.
- Combine your Google Fonts Files.
- Remove query string from the static resources.
- Combine your CSS files.
- Optimize the delivery of your CSS files.
- Combine the active JS files.
- Select safe mode for jQuery.
Make sure that you select the Save Changes button when you are done.
These items will help minimize tasks and processes slowing down your webpage loading times.
Maintain Optimal Performance
To make sure that your website stays functioning at its best, WP Rocket can be monitored from Heartbeat, the API used by WordPress to help keep track of plugin requests and updates.
Simply enable heartbeat control, set the desired activity, and you’re good to go! If you’re not sure which activity levels you should shoot for, try starting with these:
- Disable behavior in backend.
- Reduce activity behavior in post editor.
- Disable behavior in frontend.
The settings appear tricky at first, but once you learn a little more about what they do, the ease of use of the plugin increases. This and the maintenance of the plugin is the main selling points.
WP Rocket Pricing
If you’re first starting out, the thought of yet another premium plugin may irritate you, especially if you don’t fully understand why you need something like this.
The good news is that this plugin is sold in 3 broad packages that people can use, and are sold and renewed annually. There is nothing too complicated here.
All the services will receive full support from WP Rocket’s customer service, as well as any updates that the cache plugin receives.
- The least expensive package is the Single WP Rocket deal. This gives you year-long access to the plugin and customer support and updates for a single website. The price for this package currently sits around $50.
- For the next level up for WP Rocket, there is the Plus package deal. For around $100 right now, you will have access to the plugin and technical support for a year, covering three different websites. This deal is essentially selling you the use of this plugin for 3 different websites for the price of 2!
- The most expensive package that is currently available to customers is the Infinite package, at around $250 currently. Like the previous deals, this offer gives you full technical support from the providers of the WP Rocket plugin for a year. However, this package can be used for an unlimited number of websites, perfect for people looking for coverage over many different venues or channels for their business.
WP Rocket works on a 14-day return policy, meaning that, if you are unsatisfied with your purchase, you will get your money back, no questions asked.
Once you are near the end of your deal’s expiration date, usually within the last month, you will receive a notification that your license is close to expiring. You will be prompted to renew it through an email.
It should be noted that once your license expires, you can continue using the plugin, but you won’t get updates, which is the lifeblood of a plugin like this. Eventually, your version will age out and be open to bugs, security vulnerabilities, and not be able to get future optimizations and best practices.
The quality of your website will naturally decrease over time. You will also no longer receive support from the WP Rocket customer support service.
WP Rocket Pros And Cons
We have covered the most important information regarding buying and setting up WP Rocket, what are the pros and cons of using it for your website?
WP Rocket makes it easy to get the standard optimizations done automatically, right out of the gate, leaving you to optimize as you wish further.
As your website becomes optimized and efficient, you can expect to see loading times cut by nearly 50%. The page score in the 90s can be fully reached without as much effort as doing it yourself.
WP Rocket also includes database optimization, which can help optimize tables, and clear some of the naturally increasing temporary bloat your website produces.
With updates, you don’t have to worry about this plugin being forgotten.
There is a lack of free options, so you may have trouble verifying the use case of this plugin in your environment without having to shell out the cash beforehand.
Contact with their support team appears to be a time consuming process. We haven’t needed to reach out to them yet, as their documentation is pretty good.
How Popular Is WP Rocket?
Regardless of what the potential pros and cons are of using WP Rocket for your WordPress website, it can’t be denied that the plugin has become popular since it was launched in 2013.
With several years of successful business, as well as over 900,000 websites using the plugin, it is clear that WP Rocket is well trusted.
WP Rocket Overview – Final Thoughts
WP Rocket isn’t perfect, but it does an excellent job of delivering on its targets. If this looks like a good fit for you, consider taking a look at buying them!