If you are a seasoned developer, or even if you’ve just put up your first website, you are probably familiar with WordPress cache plugins. In computing context, a cache is a place to temporarily store data. Active data is often cached in an effort to decrease load times. When you frequent a particular website, it is likely that your browser has stored many of the site’s files in its cache. In essence, this means that the browser needs to receive less new information from the site, resulting in quicker load times.
Caching plugins work by saving the specifically generated HTML files and then serving them from the cache whenever a request is made, instead of loading all of the PHP scripts from Word Press every time you hit refresh. This results in a site that loads quickly for your website visitors. If you’re wondering which WordPress cache plugin would work best for you, have a look at a few of the top favorites:
1. Quick Cache
Quick Cache is a popular and efficient cache plugin that has grown in popularity over time. Quick Cache works by taking an image of your web pages to deliver a quicker reading experience to visitors. What’s nice is that Quick Cache knows not to serve cached pages to logged in users or visitors who recently left a comment.
There are eight sections on the options page, even though there are actually not that many settings to configure. What makes Quick Cache stand out from other cache plugins are the thorough explanations offered for each setting. Quick Cache offers an explanation to help you understand exactly what each setting does. For these reasons, Quick Cache is a popular cache plugin for many users.
2. W3 Total Cache
W3 Total Cache is another cache plugin that has grown in popularity on many WordPress websites. With W3 Total Cache, you need to first activate it and then possibly configure some files for a full installation. For example, you might need to change the file permissions of particular folders. The plugin will guide you through the process by displaying notification messages at the top of the page. W3 Total Cache will prompt you regarding installation process steps. W3 Total Cache also has several features. That being said, for some users, this plugin can be a little overwhelming.
3. WP Super Cache
WP Super Cache has the reputation for being the most popular cache plugin available for WordPress. WP Super Cache is simple to configure, making it popular among many users. There are seven tabs in the options page, and you simply enable caching through the Easy tab so that the plugin will begin to cache your pages. The contents tab will then show you how many pages have been cached and how many have expired. You can choose what type of caching you use in the advanced settings area. Many settings, such as compressing files and not caching pages for known users are available.
Caching can improve not only your website’s speed and usability but also its search engine rankings. Which plugin you should use depends on how comfortable you are with technical concepts. If you are a power user, I would recommend W3 Total Cache since it comes with tons of features. On the other hand, if your comfort level is not that high you might want to stick to one of the other plugins on this list.
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