WordPress does not have a system for speed optimization by default. That’s why you need a powerful plugin that speed up WordPress with technical and advanced features, yet accessible to everyone.
While most blog posts (including ours) will share the top most popular WordPress Caching Plugin, it is important for you to understand that you never want to use more than one WordPress Caching Plugin on your website.
With that said, let’s take a look at our expert pick of the best WordPress Caching Plugin and tools.
WP-Optimize is a revolutionary, all-in-one WordPress performance plugin that cleans your database, compresses your images and caches your site.
WP-Optimize cache feature is built around the world’s fastest caching engine. This simple, popular and highly effective tool has everything you need to keep your website fast and thoroughly optimized!
It does it in three clever ways:
- It allows you to clean and optimise your database.
- It gives you the option to compress your images.
- It allows you to cache your pages, for super fast load times (read more caching information below).
Extensive tests show the cache feature alone can make WordPress sites at least as fast as any other caching or speed plugin available and often faster. But when you combine the cache with the database optimization, image compression features and minify, the speed difference with alternative solutions is significant.
With minimal configuration, caching your site with WP-Optimize is easy to do thanks to a load of useful features, including:
- Cache preloading to ensure the cache is always ready and loaded.
- Device-Specific cache to ensure the optimized page version is always served.
- Advanced cache exclusion rules, so that you can cache almost anything by excluding logged in users, specific URLs or cookies.
- Browser Cache to instruct client browsers to reuse cached resources (HTML, CSS, JS, images) if no changes were made since the last request.
Overall WP-Optimize brings the best cache and optimization technology together in a single seamless plugin to make your WordPress site fast, lean and efficient.
W3 Total Cache
W3 Total Cache (W3TC) improves the SEO and user experience of your site by increasing website performance and reducing load times by leveraging features like content delivery network (CDN) integration and the latest best practices.
W3TC is the only web host agnostic Web Performance Optimization (WPO) framework for WordPress trusted by millions of publishers, web developers, and web hosts worldwide for more than a decade. It is the total performance solution for optimizing your WordPress Website.
- Compatible with shared hosting, virtual private / dedicated servers and dedicated servers / clusters
- Transparent content delivery network (CDN) management with Media Library, theme files and WordPress itself
- Mobile support: respective caching of pages by referrer or groups of user agents including theme switching for groups of referrers or user agents
- Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) support
- Secure Socket Layer (SSL) support
- Caching of (minified and compressed) pages and posts in memory or on disk or on (FSD) CDN (by user agent group)
- Caching of feeds (site, categories, tags, comments, search results) in memory or on disk or on CDN
- Caching of search results pages (i.e. URIs with query string variables) in memory or on disk
- Caching of database objects in memory or on disk
- Caching of objects in memory or on disk
- Caching of fragments in memory or on disk
- Caching methods include local Disk, Redis, Memcached, APC, APCu, eAccelerator, XCache, and WinCache
- Minification of posts and pages and RSS feeds
- Minification of inline, embedded or 3rd party CSS with automated updates to assets
- Defer offscreen images using Lazy Load to improve the user experience
- Browser caching using cache-control, future expire headers and entity tags (ETag) with “cache-busting”
- Import post attachments directly into the Media Library (and CDN)
- Leverage our multiple CDN integrations to optimize images
- WP-CLI support for cache purging, query string updating and more
- Various security features to help ensure website safety
- Caching statistics for performance insights of any enabled feature
- Extension framework for customization or extensibility for Cloudflare, WPML and much more
- Reverse proxy integration via Nginx or Varnish
Speed up your site tremendously, and improve the user experience for your readers without having to change WordPress, your theme, your plugins or how you produce your content.
WP Super Cache
This plugin generates static html files from your dynamic WordPress blog. After a html file is generated your webserver will serve that file instead of processing the comparatively heavier and more expensive WordPress PHP scripts.
The static html files will be served to the vast majority of your users:
- Users who are not logged in.
- Users who have not left a comment on your blog.
- Or users who have not viewed a password protected post.
99% of your visitors will be served static html files. One cached file can be served thousands of times. Other visitors will be served custom cached files tailored to their visit. If they are logged in, or have left comments those details will be displayed and cached for them.
The plugin serves cached files in 3 ways (ranked by speed):
- Expert. The fastest method is by using Apache mod_rewrite (or whatever similar module your web server supports) to serve “supercached” static html files. This completely bypasses PHP and is extremely quick. If your server is hit by a deluge of traffic it is more likely to cope as the requests are “lighter”. This does require the Apache mod_rewrite module (which is probably installed if you have custom permalinks) and a modification of your .htaccess file which is risky and may take down your site if modified incorrectly.
- Simple. Supercached static files can be served by PHP and this is the recommended way of using the plugin. The plugin will serve a “supercached” file if it exists and it’s almost as fast as the mod_rewrite method. It’s easier to configure as the .htaccess file doesn’t need to be changed. You still need a custom permalink. You can keep portions of your page dynamic in this caching mode.
- WP-Cache caching. This is mainly used to cache pages for known users, URLs with parameters and feeds. Known users are logged in users, visitors who leave comments or those who should be shown custom per-user data. It’s the most flexible caching method and slightly slower. WP-Cache caching will also cache visits by unknown users if supercaching is disabled. You can have dynamic parts to your page in this mode too. This mode is always enabled but you can disable caching for known users, URLs with parameters, or feeds separately. Set the constant “DISABLE_SUPERCACHE” to 1 in your wp-config.php if you want to only use WP-Cache caching.
If you’re not comfortable with editing PHP files then use simple mode. It’s easy to set up and very fast.
Breeze is a free, simple (yet powerful) and user-friendly WordPress Caching Plugin developed by the Cloudways team. It offers various options to optimize WordPress performance at various levels. It works equally great with WordPress, WordPress with WooCommerce and WordPress Multisite.
Breeze excels in the following areas:
- Performance: Breeze improves website speed and resource optimization. Other features include file level cache system, database cleanup, minification, support for Varnish cache and simplified CDN integration options.
- Convenience: Breeze is easy to install and configure directly from WordPress. Configuring Breeze is easy and most of the default options work well right out of the box. The recommended settings should work on all your WordPress websites seamlessly.
- Simplicity: Breeze is designed to be simple for all users. Just install and activate the plugin and you’ll see the results instantaneously.
What makes Breeze WordPress Cache Plugin awesome is that it comes with builtin support for Varnish. If Varnish is not installed on your servers, Breeze will utilize its internal cache mechanism to boost up your WordPress site performance.
WP Speed of Light
WP Speed of Light starts with a cache and Gzip compression, plus, you got a file minification and group tools, a database cleanup system, a htaccess optimization, an auto cache cleaner and a full CDN integration.
When it comes to performance loading time, it requires some test to identify witch plugin, theme, page may require more attention.
WP Speed of Light also includes a speed loading test and compare, and a database queries test. To go one step beyond with your WordPress speed, a PRO ADDON upgrade (optional) with custom support is available.
WP Speed of Light, speed optimization plugin features
- Generate static cache
- Selective or global cache for Desktop, Tablet and Mobile
- Check Gzip compression
- Remove Query strings: better score on Pingdom, Gtmetrix, Google Page Speed…
- Browser cache: Expire headers optimization
- Minify resources: HTML, CSS, JS
- Add Expire Headers (browser cache)
- Database optimization, clean: post revision, auto draft content, trashed content, spam comments, trackbacks and pingbacks, transients options
- CDN integration: load any CDN content
- Automatic clean cache on interval and cache cleaner button
- Automatic clean cache on content saving
- Option to disable the WordPress REST API
- Option to disable the WordPress RSS feeds
- Cache external resources such as scripts served from Google (served locally)
- WooCommerce dedicated integration
- WordPress multisite compatible
- Page builders compatibility: ACF, DIVI Builder, Beaver Builder, Site Origine, Themify builder, Live Composer, Elementor…
- Developer friendly using Hooks and Filters
- Gutenberg auto cache cleanup on save