The overall performance of your website might have a big impact on your search engine results. Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) in WordPress is one of the metrics Google employs to assess the quality of your site. As a result, raising your LCP score can help your website function better and achieve higher rankings.
You don’t need a lot of technical knowledge to get started, fortunately. You can take the required steps to optimize your content and speed up your site by determining the heaviest piece on your page.
We’ll look at how to measure LCP in this piece. Then we’ll go through five techniques for increasing your Largest Contentful Paint score in WordPress. Let’s get this started!
How to measure Largest Contentful Paint in WordPress
Google announced the Core Web Vitals project in 2020. This set of indicators is used by the renowned search engine to assess the performance and quality of your website.
Largest Contentful Paint is one of these metrics, and it evaluates how long it takes for a page to fully load the largest thing on the screen. This content is usually represented by a conspicuous visual element, such as the hero image:
Google’s PageSpeed Insights can help you determine your LCP score. This tool gathers real-world performance statistics from a variety of users and breaks down each score:
In the Diagnostics section further down the page, it will not only tell you the time, but it will also tell you which element on your site Google uses to decide Largest Contentful Paint:
Most other speed test programs can now test for Largest Contentful Paint, allowing you to test from a variety of locations, devices, and connection speeds.
A decent LCP score, according to Google, should be 2.5 seconds or less. It can lead to a poor user experience if the largest element on your webpage takes longer to load (UX). This could result in a greater bounce rate. As a result, optimizing your website for a higher LCP score is critical.
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Five ways to improve your Largest Contentful Paint score in WordPress
As we have seen, your LCP score plays a vital role in your site’s overall performance. With this in mind, let’s look at five effective ways to improve this score and make your website load faster!
1. Optimize your images
LCP, as previously said, is a metric that measures how long it takes a website to render the largest piece on the page. The heaviest files are media files like photos and videos.
It’s critical that you optimize your photos to solve this. In fact, your PageSpeed Insights report recommends this method:
You can use an image optimization program like Optimole to resize your photos and optimize them with techniques like compression and the WebP format:
Optimole will also provide your photographs through a content delivery network (CDN). When someone visits your website, the optimized graphics will load from the nearest network location rather than from your WordPress site’s server, resulting in faster download times.
You may substantially improve the speed of your site by shrinking and compressing your photos. Smaller files will load faster, resulting in an increase in your LCP score.
2. Eliminate render-blocking resources
You can fix the loading problem by removing render-blocking components or requiring them to load after the rest of the page has loaded. Fortunately, this procedure is less difficult than it appears.
In fact, you can utilize a plugin like WP Rocket to take care of everything for you:
If you’re using WP Rocket, the File Optimization tab has the most useful settings to enable.
Under CSS files, enable the following:
- Optimize CSS delivery > Remove unused CSS
- Load JS deferred
3. Use a content delivery network (CDN)
Using a content delivery network is another excellent technique to raise the Largest Contentful Paint score in WordPress (CDN). This is a network of servers that are dispersed throughout the world.
Your visitors will be served cached versions of your content from the server that is geographically nearest to them when you use a CDN. Your site will load faster for your visitors this way.
A CDN also reduces the burden on your hosting server. This will help your site load faster.
You’re already using a CDN to load your images if you’re using Optimole. However, to increase LCP even more, you might want to employ a CDN for your other static files as well.
If your site caters to an international audience, a CDN might be a wise investment. It can make sure that your information loads swiftly for everyone, regardless of where they are. This configuration has the potential to enhance your LCP score dramatically.
4. Remove unused plugins
Remove any plugins that cause bloat to your pages, according to PageSpeed Insights:
The URLs of troublesome scripts are included in the PageSpeed Insight report to assist you in identifying those heavy plugins. If you have a significant number of tools on your site, however, deleting them might be time-consuming.
As a result, you should begin by deleting any unneeded or unnecessary plugins from your site. After that, you might look for lighter alternatives.
5. Reduce your server response time
The time it takes for a user’s browser to get the first byte of material on your page is known as the server response time, or time to first byte (TTFB). Page loading delays caused by slow server response times will damage your LCP score.
Your plugins, themes, and hosting service can all have an impact on your server response time, according to PageSpeed Insights:
Recommendation from PageSpeed Insights for lowering initial server response time.
If you’ve deleted all unnecessary plugins and scripts from your site but still have a low LCP score, it’s possible that the problem is with your server. As a result, it may be time to change to a more suitable hosting package.
Because it is inexpensive, shared hosting is frequently the best option for new websites. With this bundle, though, you’ll be sharing a server with a lot of other website owners. As a result, if the server receives a large number of requests at the same time, your response time may be slowed.
As your site expands and your traffic increases, you should consider upgrading to a more advanced plan. We advise you to go for managed WordPress hosting. Your web server will perform all optimization chores required to keep your website running well with this service.
You could also look into a virtual private server (VPS) or dedicated hosting plan. While these services are more expensive, you will have access to greater server resources. Furthermore, the provider will customize the server to meet your exact demands and specifications. As a result, it will be more capable of handling high volumes of traffic and efficiently delivering your information.
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Speed up Largest Contentful Paint in WordPress today
Your site’s user experience (UX) and loading times can affect your visibility in search results. Therefore, it’s crucial to improve your site’s overall performance, including your LCP score.