Plugin Monday: WP Super Cache

Plugin Monday: WP Super Cache

WordPress’s flexibility comes at some cost in efficiency. Every page of a WordPress site is a PHP page, which means it’s generated on the fly. As a result, the browser can’t cache it, since it might be different each time.

In reality, most pages don’t change very often. It shouldn’t be necessary to regenerate them from the PHP code each time. WP Super Cache is a WordPress plugin that provides an intelligent way to cache pages and deliver them as if they were static content.

On a heavily loaded site, WordPress may be doing the same work over and over, regenerating the content of pages that don’t change. This slows down the page loading time for the user, who will be less satisfied, and for search engines, which give slow-loading pages a poorer rank.

WP Super Cache saves static versions of pages and delivers them when a page is requested. You can choose in the settings how long a cached version should remain in use before it expires. It can report back to the browser that a page hasn’t changed since it was last accessed, making the browser cache useful.

Caching doesn’t work well with all sites. If your site has plugins that need to display new information each time, WP Super Cache will often redisplay old information. There’s a fundamental conflict between caching and dynamic content. If your widgets have information that doesn’t strictly need updating every time, such as a weather report, you can set a short expiration time to strike a balance between caching effectiveness and current information.

Several popular caching plugins are available, and they have different advantages. WP Super Cache is free and relatively simple to use. Alternatives include W3 Total Cache, which is more flexible and more complicated to use, and WP Rocket, which costs money but has a reputation for fast performance.

Ndevr’s experienced engineers provide customized solutions to difficult technical problems. Contact us to learn what we can do for you.

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