The Speed Study Goal
My goal with conducting these Speed Studies is to find out which strategies are the best at improving our site speed.
I’ll implement each strategy using the following approach:
- Setup the strategy on all 8 of our live test sites
- Then for the following 3 weeks, use hourly monitoring via GT Metrix to independently gather the load times. To eliminate the possibility of location bias, I change the test servers each week, starting in Dallas, then London and finishing off in Sydney.
- Next measure the impact of each strategy by comparing the average speed before and after
- Ultimately decide whether the strategy works?
2018 Hyper Cache Speed Study
In our most recent Speed Study, Simple Cache was able to slightly outperform Cache Enabler. Now let’s throw another caching plugin into the ring and see which performs better.
So this Speed Study will look into how effective Hyper Cache is at speeding up our sites?
How to Setup Hyper Cache
To kick off this 2018 Hyper Cache Speed Study, we first need to install Hyper Cache using consistent settings across each site. I used the settings included within our step by step tutorial on How to Setup Hyper Cache.
I have now followed this process on all 8 of our Live Test Sites.
Next up is 3 weeks of testing – I am curious to see whether Hyper Cache can spring a surprise against the more fancied caching plugins like W3 Total Cache & WP Rocket.
The Results – 26 May 2018
After 3 weeks of testing, lets take a look at how our 8 hosts performed with Hyper Cache installed.
Let’s first see how Hyper Cache performed compared to Cache Enabler? The average load time across our 3 different testing locations is 2.42s for Hyper Cache, which is 25% slower than with Cache Enabler setup.
When we dig into the 3 locations we test from, all were slower with Hyper Cache, most notably Dallas which was 48% slower.
Interestingly when we look into the other GT metrix stats, there was very little difference between Hyper Cache & Cache Enabler across Page Size, Google PageSpeed & Yahoo YSlow Scores.
So when it comes to making a call on which caching plugin is preferred, the decision is strongly in favor of Cache Enabler.
Individual Host Performance
Let’s now take a look at how our individual hosts performed:
- When it comes to our individual hosts, the comparison between Hyper Cache & Cache Enabler also favored Cache Enabler:
- The exceptions were InMotion Hosting & HostGator, which were 2% & 29% faster with Hyper Cache setup.
- The remaining 6 hosts experienced slower speeds with Hyper Cache, ranging from 2% with GoDaddy up to a whopping 81% with Web Hosting Hub.
- The overall observation from where I sit is that Cache Enabler should generally be considered the preferred caching plugin. The only clear exception would be if your current host is HostGator, then Hyper Cache would be preferred.
With Cache Enabler proving to be faster than Hyper Cache, let’s find out if another caching plugin can outperform both of them?
So Speed Study #31 will focus on what speed improvement is possible when we use Comet Cache?