The speed of a website can be influenced by a wide range of factors, but the factors discussed in this article have the biggest impact. The perfect website equation can be tricky to solve, as certain elements don’t depend on your actions. They are dictated by each situation in particular (e.g. geographic location, Internet speed). However, you can optimize CSS delivery by modifying the elements that you are able to fully control. Learn below more about this topic in this article created by our team at wpDataTables.
Defining render-blocking and above-the-fold content
When a visitor accesses a website, they are greeted by a certain part of the site – i.e. the topmost part. To see the rest, the user will have to scroll down or perform other actions on the site. The content that visitors get to see immediately after they access it is called above-the-fold content.
Browsers read HTML in order to display a site. This is a process that has multiple steps. If the browser stumbles upon elements which reference a script/stylesheet, extra steps are required to read the code. The browser will need to request a file, wait for a response, download the file from the server, and then execute the file.
- Async: this attribute tells the browser that it should start downloading the resources immediately to avoid slow load times. Once the resources are available, HTML parsing is temporarily paused, and the resources are loaded.
- Defer: this attribute tells the browser to postpone downloading the resources until the HTML parsing process is finished. Once it is completed, the browser will download and render the scrips in the order of their appearance on the website.
Check how CSS resources are delivered and optimize them
To eliminate render-blocking resources in CSS, you will have to:
- Identify the resources required for above-the-fold content and inline the CSS styles with HTML.
- Use another attribute to identify the CSS resources which are absolutely required (media attribute).
- Load the CSS resources asynchronously (using the attributes discussed above).
To install this plugin, you simply need to access your WordPress dashboard and navigate to the Plugins tab. Then, select the Add New option which is located on the upper side of the window. After that, you can look for Autoptimize or other plugins in the search bar. Click on Install Now, active it for the website you want, and you are good to go.
W3 Total Cache
Autoptimize has many other alternatives that you can use to remove render-blocking resources from WordPress. The W3 Total Cache plugin is one of the better ones. What is interesting about this plugin is that it incorporates multiple extra features for optimizing WordPress. Caching represents the process in which certain files are stored on a user’s computer to make his experience with the website better. Subsequence visits will be easier, and the load times will improve.
Speed Booster Pack
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