What is a Cache Plugin?
Cache plugins create a static version of your site’s content and deliver it to visitors. This reuses data from previous requests so that visitors don’t have to request the same information every time they view a page.
Why is this important?
Caching reduces the amount of fresh information that a visitor loads when viewing your page, improving its loading time significantly. The higher the page speed, the better your search rankings, so the more traffic your website will attract. To further improve you search rankings, see our article on SEO plugins here.
Now that you know what a cache plugin is, let’s take a look at the 4 best WordPress cache plugins available.
WP Super Cache
With over 1 million active installations and a 4.5 star average rating from 1,000+ reviews it is one of the most popular WordPress plugins.
WP Super Cache features 3 methods of caching files:
- Expert: This is the fastest method, recommended only if you are experienced with editing PHP files.
- Simple: With an easy configuration and no PHP file editing, this method is recommended to most users.
- WP-Cache caching: This is the slowest method but has its advantages. It is useful for known users such as those who are logged in or leave comments.
- Flexible. With 3 methods of caching files you are sure to find one that is perfect for you website.
W3 Total Cache
With over 1 million active installations and an average rating of 4.5 stars based on nearly 4,000 reviews, W3 Total Cache is even more well regarded than WP Super Cache.
The wide range of features that this plugin offers is impressive. Perhaps its only downside is that this number of features can be overwhelming. However, W3 Total Cache manages this fairly well as the default settings are ideal for most users. If you do wish to configure each feature, there is a dedicated settings page for each one.
- Huge number of features.
WP Fastest Cache
Despite its lower 700,000 active installations this is the most highly rated free plugin available. It received a 5 star average rating from over 2,000 reviews.
WP Fastest Cache describes itself as the ‘simplest WP cache system’ and it certainly delivers in this regard. It is the easiest free WordPress cache plugin available, featuring fewer configuration options allowing for an easy setup.
- Free with the option of a premium upgrade for $40.
- Simple interface with a lack of overwhelming features.
- Simple setup.
WP Rocket is this most popular premium cache plugin for WordPress with an average 5 star rating from 2,000+ reviews.
This plugin begins caching on activation meaning no setup is required. This is great if you don’t want to mess around with setup configurations. You can of course alter the settings if you wish however the default configuration is perfect for most users. The only downside to this plugin is its price of $39 for 1 website. However we believe that the benefit of this plugin justifies its cost.
- Effective caching and customer support
- Instant setup on activation makes this the simplest caching plugin to configure
Which Plugin is Best for You?
When trying to determine which of these plugins are best for you and your site, we would wager that any one of these would more than meet your demands. However here are some guidelines to assist you in your decision:
- If you are willing to spend money on a caching plugin, we highly recommend WP Rocket. This is the best premium WordPress cache plugin available regardless if you are more interested in simplicity or effectiveness.
- If you are looking for a free caching system that prioritises simplicity, or you are a beginner, we recommend WP Fastest Cache.
- For a wide range of features and a more advanced setup, give W3 Total Cache a try for free.
We hope this article helped you find the caching plugin that is best your site. If we left any out please let us know in the comments.