Here’s How You Can Speed Up Your Drupal Website

Guest Post: Speed Up Your Drupal Website

Speeding up your Drupal site is not that hard. Following some quick steps can ensure optimum speed for your Drupal website. Read this article to find out. A guest post by Hassan Raza from Cloudways Hosting. 

 

Drupal, as we all know is an immensely popular and customizable CMS, in fact many refer to it as a CMF. However, when building a site with a CMS like Drupal, speed of the website is often overlooked. Although Drupal 8 is pretty well-optimized out-of-the-box, some practices tend to slow down the site.

Optimum speed and performance not only keeps your visitors engaged, but also helps with the SEO. Google ranks websites better that load quickly on its searches. Leaving no shred of doubt about the importance of loading speed of a site. In this post, I’ll list down some best practices for ensuring a speedy Drupal website.

Remove Unneeded Modules

Drupal modules are undoubtedly the crux of Drupal’s extended functionality. They not only help in adding immense functionality to the website, but they also achieve this with relative ease. However, installing too many modules to your site will eventually slow it down, since that much code will need to be executed every time your website is accessed. So, one of the most important thing to keep in check is that you only make use of the modules that serve your purpose and remove the ones that aren’t needed any longer.

Keep Your Site and Modules Updated

The devs behind Drupal regularly roll out patches and updates to keep Drupal at the very cutting edge. Not only that, the devs behind Drupal modules roll out updates of their modules as well. Sure, these updates can be a bit too much and start to annoy you, but they are there for a reason. Be sure to keep up with the updates and keep your site updated to ensure it stays healthy and performs well. This one is a no-brainer, really.

Simple Site = Speedy Site

While fancy animations and heavy graphics do look great on a site, at the same time, they can slow down the site significantly due to the scripts that need to be run for such animations. It is always a great idea to keep your site as simple as possible and only includes eye-candy where you feel necessary. Ensuring that your site looks accessible and straightforward, and keeps the loading speed fast since there are fewer components that need to be run continuously or loaded.

Optimize Images On Your Drupal Site

One of the heaviest resources on your website are images. Higher resolution images can reach quite a large size, and it requires more resources to load them. Thankfully, you do not have to stop using images on your site. Instead, you can optimize the images on your website. There are several methods to go about doing this. You can either compress the images or you can use Image Optimize or ImageOptim modules.

Make Use of Caching

While Drupal has an excellent built-in caching mechanism, there are a lot of other caching technologies that can drastically speed up your site. Some of the most popular ones are Redis, Varnish, Memcache, etc. The good news is that Drupal already has modules out there for such technologies, making their integration in Drupal quite hassle-free.

Use a Content Delivery Network

Content Delivery Networks are a well known for increasing the speed of any site. It is one of the most effective methods of increasing the speed of your Drupal site as well. There are a lot of CDNs on offer out there to choose from. Do your research and pick the one you think is best for you.

Optimize Database

One aspect that is often overlooked when optimizing a website is the database. All the data for a site is stored in its database and there is always a constant fetching, and storing operation going on between the front-end and the database. For an operation that is integral to the website, it is necessary that the database is optimized.

Make Use of Lazy Loading

Lazy loading is a technique wherein the entire site isn’t loaded together. Lazy loading allows the loading of only those components of the website that are needed, eliminating the overhead required to load an entire website in one go.

Aggregate CSS and JavaScript

CSS and JavaScript are crucial for any site, enabling styling and interaction. However, excessive and unchecked use of CSS and JavaScript will hamper a site’s loading speed. Fortunately, Drupal comes with a built-in aggregating feature which aggregates CSS and JavaScript to be loaded from a single file, speeding up the process. Make sure you make use of this feature.

Eliminate Errors From the Website

Many issues can occur with a Drupal site resulting in the dreaded 404 error. Issues like these can seriously slow down your site’s performance and can even potentially break it. Make sure you stay on top of such issues and eliminate them. This can be done in a straightforward way through the fast_404 module.

Choose a Good Hosting Provider

All of the tips mentioned above won’t be of much help unless the hosting provider for your website isn’t up to the mark. Make sure you choose a trusted and a reliable hosting provider for your site. Personally, I recommend Cloudways Managed Drupal Hosting because we are an entirely managed hosting service. With our Cloudways platform you will never have to worry about server issues and can focus on your Drupal site.

Conclusion

That’s all for now. Make use of the tips and implement them on your Drupal site to make it blazing fast. Let me know if you have any questions and I’ll be happy to answer them.

 

This post is a guest article by Hassan Raza. If you have any questions or want to exchange your experience, you can contact him via hassan.raza@cloudways.com .