WP Rocket Review – Best WordPress Caching & Speed Optimization Plugin

wp-rocket-review-best-wordpress-caching-speed-and-performance-optimization-plugin-themaverickspirit Pin It

Everybody hates slow websites! Whether it’s you, your website visitors or Google! 

If your website loading speed is slow it could –

  • impact on your business revenue.
  • force visitors to abandon your site which could be a possible reason for traffic drops.
  • marks a negative impact on SEO and thus affects your Google page rankings on search results.
  • a bad user experience which could lead them to visit your competitor’s website.
  • a slow-performing website could lose the mobile audience as well.

Well, there are multiple reasons that affect the loading speed of a website!

If you want to know – how to speed up your WordPress website and boost its performance on search results?

Then, read this step-by-step case study, to know – how I used the best WordPress caching plugin – WP Rocket to optimize the speed and performance for two of my WordPress websites?

One of the most popular caching plugin for WordPress which installs in 3-4 mins and cost $49 per month. The best alternative to WP super cache and Auto-Optimize plugin.

The speed of my sites is increased by 53.77% and 47.50% using this speed optimization WordPress plugin. 

caching-plugin-for-wordpress-speed-up-your-website-with-wp-rocket

To know how? Let’s get started with the WP Rocket review the best WordPress caching plugin.


What is WordPress Caching and Why it is Important?

It is important to understand what is caching and its importance?

What is WordPress Caching?

WordPress caching is the process of generating, storing, and serving the static version of your website to your website visitors. 

Caching plays a significant role in WordPress performance optimization. It is important as it can –

  • increase your website response by reducing the loading time,
  • improve your SEO score,
  • give better user experience,
  • saves a massive amount of server space (best for users who use shared hosting)
  • and boost in Google’s SERPs (Search Engine Result Page).

Why Do You Need a WordPress Caching Plugin?

A WordPress caching plugin plays an important role in website performance.

To support this statement read the following benefits that you get on installing the best WordPress cache plugins –

1. Reduces Server Load – 

WordPress cache plugin reduces server load on your WordPress hosting by creating a static copy of website pages. 

2. Improves User Experience – 

Nobody likes to visit a slow website.

By using a good cache plugin your website load and runs faster which not only improves user experience but also encourages them to visit and explore more pages of your site. 

3. Boost Engagement and CTR –

A fast loading website is more likely to get more user engagements and high CTR when compared to a slow loading website.  

4. Pagespeed is a Ranking Factor in Google’s Algorithm –

Since 2010, site page speed is one of the ranking factors in Google’s algorithm.

site-speed-google-ranking-factor

Now that you’re aware of what is WordPress caching and why it is important!

Let’s move on to how you can improve your website speed by using WP Rocket speed and performance optimization plugin.


WP Rocket Made 2 of My Websites 53.77% & 47.5% Faster!

I had never used a caching plugin before, but after reading and hearing so much about WP Rocket, I decided to give it a try.  

So, before moving on to the WP Rocket features, I want to show you the Before & After Results for two of my websites by adding WP Rocket. 


This speed optimization WordPress plugin integration has provided some serious performance optimization results as shown below –

1. TheMaverickSpirit – Site Speed Improved by 47.5%

When we activated WP Rocket on TheMaverickSpirit, it improved the overall site performance by 47.50%.

Check out the stats below –

Stats Before Activating WP Rocket Plugin

themaverickspirit-gtmetrix-scores-before-installing-wp-rocket-plugin
  • The page speed score is 86%, 
  • Loading time is 4.0 seconds, 
  • Total page size is 1.08MB,  
  • and the number of requests is 61.

Stats After Activating WP Rocket Plugin

themaverickspirit-gtmetrix-scores-after-installing-wp-rocket-plugin

After activating the plugin, 

  • The page speed score went from 86% to 97%, 
  • Loading time decreased from 4.0 seconds to 2.1 seconds, 
  • Total page size reduced from 1.08MB to 874KB,
  • and the number of requests reduced from 61 to 39.

2. ThemeMantis – Site Speed Improved by 53.77%

On the other hand, ThemeMantis website’s performance boosted by 53.77%.

Check out the stats below. 

Stats Before Activating WP Rocket Plugin

thememantis-gtmetrix-scores-before-installing-wp-rocket-plugin

As you can see, 

  • The page speed score is 89%, 
  • Loading time is 10.6 seconds, 
  • Total page size is 1.50MB, and 
  • The number of requests is 79.

Stats After Activating WP Rocket Plugin

thememantis-gtmetrix-scores-after-installing-wp-rocket-plugin

Improved stats after activating the Wp Rocket cache plugin, 

  • The page speed score went from 89% to 97%, 
  • Loading time decreased from 10.6 seconds to 4.9 seconds, 
  • Total page size reduced from 1.50MB to 1.21MB, and 
  • The number of requests reduced from 79 to 51.

WP Rocket – Is It the Best WordPress Caching Plugin?

WP Rocket is more than just a caching plugin.

It does various smaller optimizations to enhance a WordPress website’s loading speed and performance that goes beyond caching. 

However, it is a paid plugin that costs about $49 per month for a single WordPress website.

But according to me, it is worth the price and you should definitely try it.


Let’s check out its comparison with other popular WordPress caching plugins.

WP Rocket vs W3 Total Cache vs WP Super Cache

If you are wondering whether WP Rocket is the best WP Super Cache and WP Total Cache alternative.

Then, I would say Yes it is!

This performance optimization WordPress plugin leaves all its competitors (W3 Total Cache and WP Super Cache) far behind on the basis of easy to use interface, top-class features, and especially performance.

Not only this below are some more features to support my statement – 

1. Easy to Configure Settings Without Any Tech-Skills Requirement

Unlike, W3 Total Cache, this caching plugin doesn’t really need any hard configuration settings.

It comes with the basic configuration for any WordPress website which you can set in no time and no tech skill requirement. 

Later you can always change configuration settings from the WP Rocket configuration page.

Jump to => WordPress Dashboard > Settings > WP Rocket 

2. Easy-to-use User Interface

One of the best things is the easy-to-use user interface.

The interface is properly divided into sections, easy to navigate, clean, modern, and simple. 

It takes a huge plus from its competitors in terms of – Interface, UI design, and user experience. 

wp-rocket-settings-page

The Dashboard consists of – 

  1. Account details, 
  2. Optimization options like cache, media, file optimization, and CDN. 
  3. Quick actions (cache clear and preloading), 
  4. Knowledgebase & FAQs 
  5. And much more. 

3. Speed and Performance

This WordPress cache plugin not only provides far better performance than WP Super Cache and W3 Total Cache!

But also performs smaller optimization at different levels like –

  • htaccess,
  • minification,
  • file delivery optimization and much more.

What Problems WP Rocket Solves that Tools like Google Pagespeed and GTMetrix Suggests?

Google page speed and GTMetrix tools surely suggest a lot of issues related to optimization and WP Rocket solves maximum issues out of them.

Below are some of the website issues this premium WordPress caching plugin solves – 

  1. Eliminate Render blocking resources (CSS and JS files).
  2. File minification (HTML, CSS, & JS)
  3. Text Compression with Gzip 
  4. Reduce the number of requests by combining them. (CSS, JS, and fonts)
  5. Leverage Browser Caching
  6. Optimize CSS delivery
  7. Remove Query String from Static Resources
  8. Critical CSS Generation
  9. Load JavaScript files deferred and many more.

WP Rocket Pricing Plans – How Much Does It Cost You?

WP Rocket offers 3 pricing plans which vary according to the number of website licenses. 

All plans come with 1 year of support and updates. 

wp-rocket-pricing-plans

1 website license will cost you $49, where –

  1. You get functionalities of multiple plugins in a single plugin. 
  2. Easy and quick setting configuration. 
  3. Simple and easy-to-understand user interface. 
  4. Compatibility with commonly used plugins and services like Yoast, WPLM, PolyLang, Sucuri, WooCommerce and many more. 

How To Install & Use WP Rocket Caching WordPress Plugin? [5 Steps]

1. Log in to your WP Rocket account and download the WordPress plugin.

wp-rocket-account-download-plugin

2. Now, open up your WordPress dashboard and go to Plugins > Add New

3. Click on Upload Plugin. 

upload-wordpress-plugin

4. Browse the plugin and click on Install Now.

browse-and-choose-wordpress-plugin-you-wish-to-upload

5. Click on Activate Plugin. If you’re not aware of the plugin installation, you can look at on step-by-step guide on WordPress plugin installation.


WP Rocket Features & Settings that Powers Your Website Speed and Performance Optimization

1. Caching 

WordPress is a dynamic CMS. It fetches data from the database every time a user visits your website which makes your website load slower. 

WP Rocket solves this problem by creating a static version (cache) of your website until the new changes come up. 

It handles cache at multiple levels – 

1. Single Page Caching 

Page caching refers to the process of creating a cached version of a particular page. 

This wordpress caching plugin lets you clear and creates a cache of an individual page as well as for all pages simultaneously.

wp-rocket-page-caching

The plugin adds a menu to the WordPress admin bar from where you can clear a page cache for a particular URL. 

2. Bulk Caching 

You remove and regenerate cached files for all the pages and posts in a single click from the dashboard.

remove-all-cached-files-wprocket

3. Mobile Cache 

The mobile speed of a website becomes significant especially after the release of Google’s mobile-first index.

mobile-cache-to-speed-up-website-for-mobile-visitors

Well, this WordPress performance plugin allows you to create separate cache files for mobile devices that speed up your site for mobile visitors. 

4. User-Specific Cache

You can create a user-specific cache by creating separate cache files for logged in and not logged in users.

user-specific-cache

This feature is pretty handy when you have user-specific content on your website.

For example – A membership website or a website where a user must log in to see the content.


2. Cache Preloading

This WordPress speed optimization plugin automatically generates the cache whenever you add new content or updates existing content. 

1. Cache Preloading Manually 

You can also trigger cache preloading manually via – 

1. WordPress Admin bar

preload-cache-from-wordpress-admin-bar

2. WP Rocket Dashboard

preload-cache-from-wp-rocket-dashboard

2. Sitemap-based Cache Preloading

By default, WP Rocket starts cache preloading with the links on your website’s homepage and then the sitemaps mentioned in the settings.

cache-preloading-and-sitemap-preloading

It automatically detects if your website sitemap is generated by Yoast SEO, All-in-one SEO, Rankmath SEO or The SEO Framework. 

For other sitemaps, you can specify the sitemap URL in the text under the heading – Sitemaps for preloading. 

3. Prefetch DNS Requests

DNS Prefetching is used to load third-party resources faster, especially on mobile devices and networks.

dns-prefetch-requests

WP Rocket lets you prefetch third-party resources.

All you need to do is to add those resource URLs in the textbox under the heading Prefetch DNS Requests. 


3. Render-blocking Javascript and CSS

What is render-blocking JavaScript and CSS?

In simple words, render-blocking resources are those JS & CSS files that are requested from the server while rendering a website. 

Google Pagespeed Insights tools throw an error – Eliminate render-blocking JavaScript and CSS in above-the-fold content.

It becomes difficult for both technical and non-technical users to find the solution for this error. 

WP Rocket offers 2 solutions for this error. 

1. Optimize CSS delivery

optimize-css-delivery

Check the Optimize CSS delivery option it will handle everything. 

2. Load JavaScript deferred

load-deferred-javascript-files

Just like CSS files, you can optimize avoid render-blocking JS files by enabling load javascript deferred option. 


4. File Optimization – Minification & Concatenation

File Optimization is one of the powerful features of WP Rocket. 

Below are the file operations which boost up the website performance and improves page speed and GTMetrix scores.

1. File Minification (HTML, CSS, JS) 

This WordPress speed optimization plugin minimizes HTML, CSS, and JS by removing unwanted whitespaces, comments, and line breaks which ultimately reduces file size. 

File minification results in reducing server load which makes your website load faster. 

2. Combining Resources (CSS, JS, and Fonts)

WP Rocket offers file concatenation for CSS, JS, and even Google font files. It combines multiple files into one to reduce the number of requests. 

Combines Google Fonts Files to Reduce the number of HTTP Requests

combine-google-fonts-files

Merges All CSS Files into 1 to Reduce the number of HTTP Requests  

combine-css-files

Combines JS Files (Internal JS, third-party JS, and inline JS) to Reduce the number of HTTP Requests

combine-js-files

Optimized CSS Delivery to avoid render-blocking CSS & JS. 

I’ve already discussed delivery optimization for CSS in the above point. 


5. Media Optimization

WP Rocket offers 2 optimizations for media files – 

1. Inbuilt Lazy Load Functionality for Images, iFrames & Videos 

Image optimization is as equal as CSS and JS files optimization. 

70% (or above) files are media files like images and videos in almost every blogging, eCommerce, or business website. 

Therefore, WP Rocket plugin offers inbuilt lazy load functionality for images, iframes, and videos.

lazy-loading-for-images-videos-and-iframes

2. Disable Emoji & WordPress Embeds

On the other hand, it also lets you disable Emoji and WordPress Embeds which prevents the loading of extra files that are not getting used on the front end. 

Because people rarely use emoji in their blogging or business website. 


6. Database Optimization

Database optimization is one of the unique and powerful features that WP Rocket offers. No other cache plugin offers this level of database optimization. 

It cleans up or frees up the database by removing data that takes unnecessary space which results in an ultimately fast response of database queries.

Below are the database optimizations this speed booster plugin offers – 

1. Posts Cleanup (Revisions, Autodrafts, Trashed)

The plugin removes post revisions, trashed posts, and auto drafts which not only optimize the WordPress database!

But also cleans up unused data but also increase your database query search response. 

post-cleanup-database-optimization

2. Comments Cleanup (Spam & Trashed)

Cleans up spam and trashed comments that take unnecessary space even after you marked them as trashed and spam.

comments-cleanup-database-optimization

3. Transients Cleanup (Temporary Options)

Well, there is no harm or setting loss even if you remove these options as plugins automatically regenerate these options if they require them. 

transients-cleanup-database-optimization

4. Database Cleanup (Table Optimization)

No matter how small the page on your website is. Database operations are always going to happen when someone opens up your website page. 

At some point, it increases the overhead of database tables. WP Rocket lets you reduce this database tables overhead by optimizing database tables.

database-cleanup-optimization

5. Automatic cleanup (Schedule Cleanup)

WP Rocket lets you schedule automatic database cleanups to maintain your website optimization.

automatic-cleanup-database-optimization

7. CDN Integration

One of the important factors in a website’s optimization is CDN (Content Delivery Network). 

WP Rocket lets you integrate your CDN with your website to maintain optimization.

Also, if you use Cloudflare or Sucuri as your CDN services, you don’t need to add them here. 

WP Rocket provides a dedicated addon for them.

enable-content-delivery-network-integration

8. Integrations

Apart from the above amazing and handful settings and optimization techniques, WP Rocket offers 5 add ons to extend its optimization reach.

1. Google Analytics

google-analytics-tracking-wp-rocket-setting

WP Rocket optimizes third-party Google Analytics tracking script by hosting them locally on your server. 

It helps in improving the page speed score in Google PageSpeed Tool and GTMetrix.

2. Facebook Pixel 

facebook-pixel-tracking-wp-rocket-setting

Just like Google Analytics, if you are using Facebook pixel on your website, then you should enable it as well. 

It stores Facebook pixel code on your website server to maintain caching policy effectively for third-party resources. 

3. Varnish

varnish-http-cache-wp-rocket-setting

WP Rocket lets you purge varnish cache directly from your WordPress dashboard. 

4. Cloudflare CDN

WP Rocket lets you integrate the Cloudflare account with your website within the WordPress dashboard.

cloudflare-cdn-addon-wp-rocket-settings

All you need to do is to provide a global API key, account email, and zone ID. 

It not only lets you purge Cloudflare cache, but also lets’s enable development mode, optimal settings, and relative protocol right from the WordPress dashboard. 

5. Sucuri

WP Rocket lets you synchronize the Sucuri cache when the WP Rocket cache is cleared. 

sucuri-security-addon-wp-rocket-setting

9. Other Features

1. Heartbeat API 

wp-rocket-control-wordpress-heartbeat-api

2. Import and Export Plugin Settings

import-export-rollback-wp-rocket-settings

WP Rocket lets you import, export, and rollback WP Rocket option settings. 

3. Advanced Rules

WP Rocket provides some advanced options for website optimization. 

1. Never Cache URL(s)

There are URLs like login and logout you’d never want to cache in order to maintain website security

never-cache-urls

You can add those URLs here to exclude them from getting cached. 

2. Never Cache Cookies

WP Rocket lets you exclude pages from getting cached with specific cookies. 

never-cache-cookies

You can add those cookies in this setting.  

3. Never Cache User Agent(s)

WP Rocket lets you disable caching for particular user agents like mobile, safari, etc. 

never-cache-user-agents

You can exclude them by using wildcards. 

4. Always Purge URL(s)

You can specify posts or page URLs here which you always want to purge on every post or page update.  

5. Cache Query String(s) 

WP Rocket lets you cache specific GET parameters. 

4. Multisite Compatibility 

WP Rocket lets you configure your desired configuration (subdomain, subdirectory, and domain) if you’re using WordPress multisite. 

5. Ecommerce Friendly 

If you’ve installed WooCommerce, Easy Digital Downloads, Jigoshop, iThemes Exchange or WP-Shop on your website, WP Rocket auto-detects it and excludes cart, checkout pages from caching. 

6. Multilingual Compatibility

WP Rocket offers 100% compatibility with multilingual plugins like WPML, polylang, and qtranslate.


My Recommendation – Is WP Rocket Worth Paying?

As a WordPress developer, I personally found WP Rocket an amazing caching plugin for WordPress websites that combines multiple features that other cache plugins offer in ONE..!!

From the detailed WP Rocket review described above. You would agree too.

Of course, you can achieve the same by installing multiple plugins for different functionalities on your website.

For example – 

  1. You can use free WP Rocket alternatives like WP Super Cache and WP Total Cache for caching.
  2. WP-Optimize for database optimization
  3. BJ Lazy Load for image lazy loading. 
  4. Autoptimize for file minification and concatenation.
  5. And many others. 

But they are going to take more time for configuration. 

WP Rocket probably is a better option that provides everything above in a single monster package.

Let me know your thoughts in the comments below. 

Also, if you find any difficulty in the installation or have any kind of questions or doubts, you can ask them here.

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