Website speed does matter – Speed up your Joomla Site
A slow Joomla website will lose visitors quickly. The following describes some steps that might help with a Joomla 2.x site.
The first step is to benchmark the speed of your site. http://tools.pingdom.com/fpt/ provides an excellent tool for doing just that.
The first step is to go into the system tab in the global configuration and set the Caching to ON CONSERVATIVE or ON PROGRESSIVE. Your choice will depend on the individual requirements of your site.
You can run a benchmark again to determine if there was an improvement. We have found that, for low volume sites, the load time will increase if the server cache has expired due to a lack of visitors within the cache timeframe. Setting the timeframe to a higher value will help but changes will not be available to viewers until the cache refreshes.
The next step is to go to the server tab and turn Gzip compression on. Some servers will not support this. Again, take a look at the resulting page load speeds.
If you look at the waterfall display using the Pingdom tool, you will probably see that your CSS pages are the key factor now. (Keep in mind that if the server cache has expired, the load time will increase until someone views the page. In that case, simply run the test again)
There is a non commercial extension, JCH optimize that will help with this. Keep in mind that there are reports of this extension breaking websites. Take the usual precautions of backing up. The JCH optomizer can be found at
Install and configure the JCH Optimizer and see how that affects your page load times.
You configure the JCH Optimizer by locating it in your plugins. We generally set all Basic options to “yes” but you will need to determine the best configuration that would meet your needs. Don’t forget to set the plugin to “Enabled”
The history tab of Pingdom will show a table about three quarters of the way down where you can see and compare previous results.
If all has gone well, you should see some dramatic improvements. The SEO position of your sites will be greatly enhanced due to longer time-on-site for visitors and a dramatically lower bounce rate.
We offer Joomla Consulting Services. For more information, see our site at www.cgmsystems.com
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