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Best Autoptimize WordPress Plugin Configuration Tutorial for 2020

Since you have already searched for a WordPress Autoptimize tutorial on Google, you are certain you want to know how to configure an Autoptimize WordPress Plugin to make your website faster.

Hence in this post, there is no beating around the bush. I will go straight through to the important actions you should perform to configure an Autoptimize plugin because I value your time.

Remember that I will explain only about the optimal configuration for an Autoptimize plugin. It is a configuration I have achieved after several tests and I believe you will get an amazing site performance with that particular Autoptimize configuration.

If, at any point in time, while reading this tutorial, you will feel lost or confused, please send me your feedback via the contact form or comment down below. I will happily reply to your genuine feedback into this blog post, so future readers will have an even better website creating experience on their end.

Before we proceed to the proper and most effective configuration and optimizing for these plugins, let me introduce you to some reviews about it from real people who are currently using these kinds of plugins.

If you have noticed that your WordPress site has begun to experience much higher bounce rates or your Metrix reports have begun to minify HTML, CSS, and JSL files, then you may also find a slower-moving website and as a result, you are looking for the option to enable better performance and speed by optimizing the plugins you are using.

A WP optimize plugin is one of the best WordPress plugins to get if you are looking for effective ways to speed up your website and improve its performance with optimization. 

In addition to combining all of the CSS and JS files, this WordPress plugin loads them into proper order and helps with minify HTML codes and cache different files. 

Results of Autoptimize Plugins

When the Autoptimize plugin is run correctly, you will find a reduction in the number of requests being made to the server, a reduction in the page size and file size of the website and decreased initial load times for the website. 

To optimize the HTML code on your website, you want to remove all of the white space that is between the HTML code. This will go a long way in helping to reduce the file size of your site. This is just one of two HTML code options. You can also enable it so that all HTML code comments remain on the page.

How to Optimize a WordPress Site

A good way to optimize your WordPress site, as you may already know, is to monitor your plugins. The plugins used on a WordPress site are one of the biggest reasons the site begins to slow down. If you continue to install these plugins without doing any research, you will also find a ton of performance issues you will need to address as well.

Bad coding and calls to external servers can both be reasons a site can slow down, so only use plugins that will help you. P3 Profiler is a good tool to use to see how much load time the plugins you are adding to your site are taking. This is one of the more effective ways of pinpointing which plugins are affecting the performance of your site.

You should also optimize any images you use for the web as well. Optimize the images before you post them using a photo application like Photoshop that allows you to choose a save for the web option. There are other plugins you can use to optimize images that have already been uploaded as well.

autoptimize-wordpress-plugin-review

These are some examples that some people love to use that autoptimize plugin as they find it works better than other plugins specifically on their website. But one or two reviews can’t prove that Autoptimize will always work well with you. Some people even find it difficult to run/open/load their site after installing the optimization plugin.

For example, This is the reason why you should be very careful while setting up the plugin with WordPress. After reading this guide, I hope you can complete the setup easily and be able to achieve a faster site speed as well as better performance in many types of networks.

How Do I Set Up Autoptimize?

Install the Autoptimize WordPress Plugin

Either install the plugin from WordPress admin panel > plugins >add new > Autoptimize or download the plugin from WordPress repository and upload it to your WordPress.

When the installation is done, activate the plugin and proceed to settings > Autoptimize. On the main tab, find “Show Advanced Settings” on the top right corner and active it.

autoptimize-wordpress-plugin

Autoptimize-Options

Configure HTML Options

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HTML-settings-autoptimize-WordPress

*** You can enable and disable the HTML comments and check if it does affect your website or not? If not required, you can disable it, but I recommend to keep it enabled.***

Configure JavaScript Options

autoptimize-wordpress-plugin

Autoptimize WordPress-JavaScript-Options

  1. If you detect render-blocking on tools like Gtmetrix or Pingdom, then enable the Aggregate JS-files.
  2. For faster page loading, activate the aggregate inline js but practice clearing your cache regularly.
  3. JavaScript in the head can lead to a slower loading page due to rendering blocking.
  4. Enabling the catch-wrapping can fix the JavaScript problem of your website.

Configure CSS Options

autoptimize-wordpress-plugin

CSS-Configuration

Should You Inline All CSS?

  1. Back in the day, CSS optimization was easy; put all CSS in your head, aggregating everything in one CSS-file per media-type.
  1. Inlining all CSS has one clear advantage (better PageSpeed score) and one big disadvantage; your base HTML-page gets significantly bigger, and if the amount of CSS is big, Pagespeed Insights will complain of “roundtrip times.”

Configure CDN Setting

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MISC Configuration

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Extra Settings Configuration

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Extra-Autoptimize-Settings

Important: If you notice a huge drop in performance score due to multiple content delivery networks, then disable the ShortPixel Optimize Image.

*** Autoptimize 2.4 beta 3 includes image optimization ***. So, keep that enabled.

You can also read our previously published guide on: How to reduce server response time.

Install Async JavaScript Plugin

When Autoptimize is all set up, then install another plugin to extend the java-script control. This plugin is developed by the same producer of Autoptimize, so it will totally work with the main plugin.

Go to the WordPress repository and download the plugin and install it. When the installation is done, activate it and follow the given configuration.

autoptimize-wordpress-plugin

Async-JavaScript-Plugin

async-javascript-plugin

When done , click on save and test your website.

CriticalCSS.com Power-Up

There’s one more plugin you can add for a more optimized performance. The Autoptimize criticalcss.com Power-up is available in the WordPress plugin repository. This plugin integrates with and extends Autoptimize. It integrates with criticalcss.com, a premium service that uses a “headless” browser to extract real critical CSS.

It charges $2/month to provide the service. CriticalCSS fully automates the extraction of high-quality critical CSS and the creation of rules for that critical CSS. It can work 100% automated, but also allows semi-automated jobs and manual rules.

When activated, it will appear inside the Autoptimize settings and gives you the following features.

crtitcal-css-settings

Critical CSS Alternative:

In case you don’t want to go with a premium critical CSS add on, you can use “Speed Up – Optimize CSS Delivery” plugin. This is an automated plugin, and the purpose of using this plugin is to load your vital stylesheets synchronously and non-vital CSS files asynchronously.

Non-vital CSS-files can be, for example, fonts, icons, before the fold template-specific CSS, etc. Additionally, you can choose which files to load synchronously with a filter in your function.php files. To do that just modify(add) the function.php files with the code below.

// exclude main and child stylesheets from delivery optimization function exclude_from_delivery_optimization($handle){ return in_array($handle, array(‘main-stylesheet’, ‘child-stylesheet’)); } add_filter(‘speed-up-optimize-CSS-delivery’, ‘exclude_from_delivery_optimization’);

One Last Step: Keep Your Database Optimized

Removing all the unnecessary data is precious. A junky database takes more time to respond to any queries. So, it’s better to keep your database clean, compact, and de-fragmented. To shape your data tables clean, install WP-optimize.

When activated, you will get a WP-optimized link on the bottom of your WordPress left-bar. Once you click on there a dashboard will appear with all the cleaning options with priority. It’s better for you to follow their recommendation.

autoptimize-wordpress-plugin

*Consider installing WP-draft to back up your site before cleaning your database. It will keep you safe from losing precious records. When you are done with these settings, go to GTmetrix and check your domain name. (you can consider checking any other pages too).

For this website, I have really good performance ratings. Look at the test result screenshot below.

gtmetrix-test-autopimize-wordpress-plugin

Conclusion

So, these are the settings I have found useful for performance improvement as well as providing a better user experience overall. Feel free to try these settings if you are using the Autoptimize WordPress plugin and see the output and the results for yourself. Also, keep testing your page speed and performance to make sure your site is not losing user impact due to bad performance and slower load speeds.

If you find this article helpful, send me your feedback & don’t forget to share your experience with other readers. Have any questions about any of the info we have included above? Get in touch with us.  Also, send me a review so that I can work more on my crafting and come up with more resources to help you in the future.

About the Author Jon

I am a 33 year old husband, father of 3, engineer and a huge fan of developing systems to build useful and profitable websites. The reason I build online businesses is to provide financial independence for my family and yours AND so I can spend time outside skiing and biking with my family.
Jon Gillham, Online Entrepreneur

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