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10 Fastest WordPress Themes Compared (Tested Results)
You know that nice feeling when you get a satisfied customer bragging about how much website traffic he or she gained and how fast the page is overall. These customers will turn into the most loyal ones, and if you want to get more clients like that you need to make sure you provide the fastest website possible.
But where should you start? Getting the right WordPress theme is the first step towards creating a fast website, but how do you check which theme is better? To conduct an accurate comparison of WP themes you need to remove all outside factors and test them out with various tools.
But don’t worry, we’ve done all the hard work for you so you can simply lay back and enjoy our best recommendations of WP themes. But before we talk about how we’ve tested our themes and share the results, let’s first of all find out:
What makes a WordPress theme fast?
There are multiple factors you should consider when choosing a WP theme if you don’t want it to slow down your overall performance. Your speed depends on the number of resource files, the content itself, the CSS and JS sizes, and many other factors.
Now let’s take a look at some good tips that’ll help you speed up your site. For those of you who have more time on their hands, make sure to check out this article for more details.
So take a look at the sizes of CSS and JS: The lower the number the faster the theme. The perfect size for both is under 100 KB. If they are 200 KB and more then the theme will surely make your site slow..(number of resource files, the content itself)
Another good advice is to go for a simpler theme and one that will perfectly suit your website’s functionality. Sometimes it’s tempting to pick a multifunctional, all-mighty theme, but you should consider that those themes may turn out to be really inefficient in the end.
Instead, define the main functionality of your website (is it a blog, an ecommerce site, a landing page, etc.) and choose a theme that’s specifically designed for it. At the same time, make sure that your theme has all the necessary features.
Because if it doesn’t, you’ll have to add them via plugins which will also make your page run slower. So understand what you need and find a perfect theme that will cover all the basics and at the same time isn’t too heavy.
But instead of checking all of these features one by one, you can also benefit from our already available case study delivering speed test results. For the purpose of full disclosure we also share with you the methodology of how we analyzed the speed performance of each WP theme.
Before we get to it, just let us remind you that content plays a big role in your website’s speed. That’s why in order to minimize the differences between the various themes we tested, we created one page with a medium amount of content and tested all themes on it. This way, you can rest assured that everything in the testings was identical.
How we tested the fastest WordPress themes candidates
So, you might wonder: How do I check my WordPress theme’s speed?
Well, we started our research by picking out the most famous and trendy WP themes out there. Then we started testing them in two separate trials:
We installed and activated all themes without adding any content to them. Then we tested out all of these blank themes with GTMetrix, and Google Pagespeed insights.
GTMetrix is a perfect speed checker and optimization tool. It will tell you if your website is overloaded with unnecessary files. Here are the basic metrics with which it summarizes the speed performance:
- Again, this is your speed score out of 100%, this time measured by different aspects such as cookie sizes, DNS lookups, errors and much more.
- Fully loaded time: This metric indicates how long it takes for your web page to load completely when a visitor opens it.
- Total Page Size: The total size of your web page including resources.
- Requests: The number of requests that is sent to your server in order to deliver the web page and associated resource files (the lower this number the better).
The other tool we used is the Google PageSpeed insights (for desktop), which measures the speed from the users’ perspective and focuses on how quick it is shown to the visitor. Some important metrics here are:
- Overall score: The score out of 100 that shows the overall speed score of your page.
- First Contentful Paint: The amount of time it takes for your website to show the first image or text.
- Speed Index: How much time it requires for your website to be fully visible to the user.
- Time to become fully interactive: How much time it requires for your website to become fully interactive for the user.
Finally, we didn’t use it in our testing as it is similar to Google PageSpeed Insights, but you can also use 10Web’s WordPress Speed Optimization tool, which shows your Google PageSpeed score and gives you some good recommendations on how to improve your performance. You can check the speed of your website right now by entering the URL in the field below:
How Fast Is Your WP Website?
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