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Keep It Simple: Speed Up Your Blog

What’s your attention span when waiting for a website to load? This is a question to keep in mind when designing your blog. With some small changes to how you arrange content, you can speed up the load time of your blog.

Before making changes to your blog, get an idea of how quickly your blog loads using Stopwatch or Pingdom.

  • Use a two column right or three column right layout. By placing the sidebars to the right of the main content column, your new posts will load quickly and be the first thing visitors to your site see.
  • Keep widgets to a minimum. Widgets are cool but take more time to load on your site. Only use widgets which you feel enhance the content of your blog and place the widgets in the far right column. See our list of recommended widgets.
  • Add a page break to longer posts. The split extended entry feature allows you to break up your content and display an introduction followed by a Continue reading… link to view the full post. Place images and videos below the fold for quicker loading of your front page.
  • Insert image thumbnails. Large images take longer to load, but you can insert smaller thumbnail images in your posts which link to the full size image in a pop-up window. Also check out the thumbnail gallery feature available in beta.
  • Reduce the number of posts displaying per page. At Settings > Posts, you can limit the number of posts displaying on the front page of your blog.

If you do see your blog loading slowly out of the blue, pay attention to the content not loading on your blog when the page is seemingly stalled. A third-party script or image may not be responding preventing your blog from loading completely. You can watch the status bar in your browser to see what website is showing as “Waiting…” for a long time. Also check which module should display after the last item to load and remove it at Design > Content.

For more tips, see the article in the Knowledge Base on improving your blog’s load time.

After updating your blog, go back to Stopwatch or Pingdom to compare the load time. Even an improvement of a second can keep someone from navigating away from your blog.

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