Rainbow flowerLike a wonderland full of rainbows, WordPress has a boundless collection of plug-ins (extensions) you can install to make your website do just about anything. But like the real world, there is a time when you can have too much of a good thing.

We just found one of those moments: too many extensions.

Here’s what happens: Every plug-in has a set of files that make it work. Many of these files do functional things like calculate a date 10 days out, help Google rank your pages better, save information to an individual’s account, add something to a shopping cart, and so on. Each function requires computer processor time. The more of those you have, the more the web server needs to work, and the slower your site will load. This happens over and over again with every visitor to your website. You can probably see how this can add up and go bad quickly.

Normal amount of plug-ins

Too many plug-ins

Fortunately, just like the wonderland that is WordPress, there’s a plug-in to help with that. It’s called WP Super Cache. It has a way of processing all of the requests once, up front, and storing the things that don’t change from person to person. With this, much of the processing is already done. That reduces the amount of processing each page load requires, and reduces the amount of time to load any given page.

WP Supercache

Pro-tip: Turn the cache off when making and testing edits. Even though there is a Delete Cache button, it still tends to retain your old information and you won’t see your changes.