Excessive load time of your WordPress website can lower your SEO ranking and decrease your website’s overall potential. We introduce you to WordPress caching plugins, the best way to enhance and increase your WordPress speed.
A free or relatively inexpensive caching plugin can help you tackle such lag and problems accompanying it.
This blog consists of a comparative breakdown of the ten best WordPress caching plugins in the market.
What is Caching?
- Cache: a small area in a computer’s memory that stores all the recently used data and information.
- Caching: a process in which site’s images, files, pages, web objects are stored on the computer’s local hard drive. So, whenever a user enters your website and asks for any sort of information, the browser accesses all its cached files and displays the result.
How Caching Works?
If your website gets a decent amount of traffic, it puts a load on the web hosting server that you are on, thus, slows down your page speed. What caching does is creates a static version of your website that does not require going to the database to retrieve information.
So, when someone visits your website, the webserver is able to display the information that they are looking for faster. It is because now it does not need to go to the database to pull the information.
Best 10 WordPress Caching Plugins (Compared)
There are various caching plugins available in WordPress to create the static version of your website and make it load faster.
Below are the top ten:
#1 W3 Total Cache
It is known to be one of the most popular caching plugins with over a million active installs. It has been rated 4.3 out of 5 stars in the WordPress Plugin Directory.
The plugin offers content delivery network integration and improves the performance of your server by caching every aspect of your site.
The plugin offers up to 80% bandwidth saving by minification.
#2 WP Fastest Cache
It is not much different from any other caching plugins. Its fewer customization options make it easier for an average user to get hands-on it. It is regularly updated and has been rated 4.8 out of 5 stars in the WordPress Plugin Directory. There have been over 700,000 active installs, till now.
Price: There are both free and premium versions available for this plugin.
However, the price for the premium version is not visible and can only be seen after clicking the buy button inside the free plugin.
#3 WP Super Cache
It is one of the most popular WordPress caching plugins having over 2 million active installs. It has been rated 4.3 out of 5 stars.
WP Super cache helps you produce static HTML files from your dynamic WordPress blog.
It serves cached file through three different methods which include: Simple method, Expert method, and WP Super Caching method.
#4 WP Rocket
It is one of the best WordPress caching plugins. WP Rocket is a lifesaver for webmasters who find web programming and technical terms very puzzling.
Till now, it has been installed on over 488,797 sites. You don’t need to worry about configuring it as the plugin functions automatically, after activation.
Price: single site; $39, three-site; $99, unlimited license; $199.
#5 Comet Cache
It is one more very popular caching plugin formerly known as ZenCache and Quick Cache. The plugin uses enhanced methods to decide when a cached version should be sent and when shouldn’t.
By using this plugin you can increase the page speed by staying away from numerous roundtrips between the browser and the server. Comet cache monitors the server load and disables cache expiration, for a short period of time.
This helps in avoiding the production of new versions of the cache while the server is busy. The plugin has had 60,000 active installs to date. It is rated 4.6 out of 5 stars in the WordPress Directory.
Price: it offers both premium and free versions. Single site license (premium version); $39.
#6 Hyper Cache
It is a cache written purely in PHP. It can be used in cheap hosting environments as well as high-end servers. This plugin is equipped with a mobile theme switch option that gives you access to cache even when you are using various layouts for desktops and mobile users.
It comes with an ability to serve cached pages to comment authors which you can also disable if needed. It is ranked 4.4 out of 5 with over 30,000 active installs in the WordPress Directory stats.
It is a very fast and simple WordPress cache plugin.
Cachify works with WordPress multisite installations and features various types of caching. This plugin has over 20,000 active installs and has been rated 4.8 out of 5 stars in the WordPress Directory.
It is a very simple and easy WordPress caching plugin. It scores 5 out of 5 stars in WordPress Directory with over 4,000 active installations.
#9 Simple Cache
It is the simplest, one-click install caching plugin available. Simple Cache is easy to remove and uninstall.
It does not break your website when removing or uninstalling. Currently, this plugin has over 7,000 active installs and has been given 4.7 out of 5 stars.
#10 Cache Enabler
It is a lightweight caching plugin. Cache Enabler generates a static HTML file of your site. These static files are saved on the user’s local hard disks which are later used to serve the visitors of the respective website, only on request.
It holds a rating of 4.4 out of 5 in the WordPress Directory stats with over 40,000 active installations.
WordPress Caching Plugins Compared
In order to get a better idea of the performance of all these WordPress Caching plugins, we used various testing tools, divided into two groups; site grading and timing tools.
#1 Site Grading
Consists of tools provided by GTMetrix, Yahoo, and Google. These tools do not really judge a site on speed, but instead, on quality factors.
GT Metrix and YSlow – Both of these are tools that are based on Yahoo’s performance guidelines. They score a site from 1-100 based on their grading result.
GT Matrix and YSlow are considered to be very useful as grading tools; however, they are much more sophisticated and effective when it comes to measuring.
They are the best when finding clues on the improvement of your site’s speed.
#2 Page Grade Test
Below is a table showing the results of a test which we made by using the above-mentioned tools i.e. YSlow, GTMetrix, and Google.
|plugin||Google PageSpeed Insight||GT Metrix|
|W3 Total Cache||55||43||82||78|
|WP Fastest Cache||67||54||88||76|
|WP Super Cache||80||74||81||74|
As you can see, WP Fastest Cache, WP Rocket Cache, and WP Super Cache have scored the best amongst all.
Hence, according to this test, these are the best plugins.
Speed Test through Pingdom and GT Metrix
|Average cut down in loading time||Average Improvement in speed (%)||Average cut down in loading time||Improvement in speed (%)|
|W3 Total Cache||0.62 sec||20.64||1.06 sec||29.16|
|WP Fastest Cache||0.50 sec||15.3||0.50 sec||15.74|
|WP Super Cache||0.85 sec||28.07||1.03 sec||28.61|
|WP Rocket||0.98 sec||34.12||1.27 sec||35.21|
|Comet Cache||0.92 sec||32.13||1.26 sec||35.07|
|Hyper Cache||0.45 sec||13.75||0.71 sec||20.37|
|Cachify||0.78 sec||27.89||0.74 sec||21.14|
|WP-Cache.com||0.85 sec||31.53||21.25 sec||8.56|
|Simple Cache||0.75 sec||26.93||98.89 sec||26.62|
|Cache Enabler||0.44 sec||16.08||0.48 sec||16.55|
I hope these figures of our top ten and best WordPress caching plugins will help you get a clear picture of the most suitable plugin for your WordPress website.
So, which one are you choosing?