Website of the day: BLUES DESIGN

Awwwards website of the day: BLUES DESIGN

New website of the day at Awwwards.com: BLUES DESIGN

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Skyrocketing WordPress Speed: The Ultimate Guide To WP Fastest Cache

WP Fastest Cache is a versatile plugin that helps decrease the page load time of your website by creating quickly rendered HTML files that are stored and accessed by subsequent visitors.

Since a WordPress website is rendered through PHP and MySQL it requires RAM and CPU usage each time the page is requested from the server. This slows down the load time and places more effort on the user’s computer or device, as well as the database. However, with a cache system, the page is rendered one time and then stored as a static HTML file, thereby reducing the load time for each new visitor.

How WP Fastest Cache Works

After installing the plugin, start digging into the customization settings by clicking on the WP Fastest Cache link in the menu bar.

This directs you to the Options page, where you will really begin to utilize the plugin’s features. We will focus on each one of the tabs in the option menu.

1. Starting with the first tab, Settings, we will start implementing the caching system. Check the first box, Enable, to allow the plugin to start working on your site.

2. The next option, Widget Cache, is grayed out, which means it is not available in the free version of the plugin, in order to use any of the premium option, you will need to upgrade to the paid version. We will focus on the free options in this tutorial.

3. The Preload option will generate the page caches automatically, instead of when someone visits the site. Choose which features you want to automatically cache and click OK.

4. The next option allows you to block the cached version for logged-in users and will cause the page to load naturally.

5. After that, we’re also given the option to block the cached desktop page when someone accesses the site from a mobile device.

6. The subsequent Mobile Theme would allow you to cache the mobile version, but is available only to those who purchase the premium version.

7. New Post allows you to choose which cache files to clear when new content is published on your website.

8. Similar to the previous option, Update Post allows you to choose which cache to clear when content is updated on your website.

9. Minify HTML allows you to decrease the amount of HTML that composes your cache file, thereby also decreasing the load time for your visitor.

10. Minify CSS actually decreases the size of your CSS files to make page rendering faster.

11. Combine CSS will integrate multiple CSS files into one file in order to reduce the number of HTTP requests and decreasing load time.

12. As with the CSS, the Combine JS option will combine multiple JavaScript files into one file for fewer requests from the server.

13. Gzip compresses the size of files and resources being sent from the server, allowing them to load faster.

14. Browser Caching enables frequently used files (such as CSS and images) to be stored in a visitor’s web browser so the resources will not have to load each time the visitor views the page.

15. The last option on this page is Language. This will only change the language in which the options menu appears for this plugin, not for your site as a whole.

Choose Turkish, for example. Only the words contained in the plugin’s options pages will be changed.

English is the default. Make your selection from the dropdown menu, then click Submit to save the changes you’ve made on this page. You’re well on your way to optimizing your site with a cache system.

Next, let’s check out the second tab in the menu. Delete Cache.

Delete Cache

The grayed out features are only for premium subscribers, but the two main options at the bottom are still available.

  1. Click on Delete Cache to delete every cached file.
  2. Choose Delete Cache and Minified CSS/JS to delete all caches as well as the minified CSS and JS files created in previous options. The minified versions of CSS and JS are kept in a separate file on the server that the rest of the cache, so choose this second option to delete those as well.

That’s it for this tab. Not bad, right? Let’s move on to the next tab, Cache Timeout.

Cache Timeout

1. In this tab, we have the chance to create Timeout Rules. Click Add New Rule to bring up an options box.

The first option in the box is If REQUEST_URI. Click to view a dropdown menu with four choices: All, Home Page, Starts With, and Is Equal To. Choosing All will cover every URI requested by visitors, while the following three options will limit the timeout rule to either the Home Page or a URI Starting With or Equal To the value you type in the text box next to the menu.

Once you have chosen the URI type, choose what happens Then from the dropdown menu. The options in this box are for the time period in which the cache is deleted.

Choose how frequently the cache should be timed out, and then click Save. You will see your new timeout rule appear.

Create as many rules as you want in order to cover different areas of your website. Choose the type of URI (whether homepage or starting with a specific URL) and choose the frequency in which the cache is deleted for that area.

Great, that was the Timeout Rule section. Let’s move on to the next tab. Notice that Image Optimization and Premium contain content only available to premium subscribers.

We will move on to the Exclude tab. The first option here is to exclude certain pages from being cached.

Exclude

1. Notice there are two default rules to exclude the wp-login.php and wp-admin pages. These cannot be edited or deleted.

2. Click Add New Rule to create a new rule.

3. Select the type of page, content or URI you would like to exclude, and click Save.

4. You will see your new exclusion rule appear. Any rules you create can be edited or removed by clicking on them.

5. The next section to which you can add rules is the Exclude User-Agents area. Again, notice two default rules that cannot be changed or removed. Choose Add New Rule to define a rule.

This option allows you to create a rule that excludes caching for a certain type of user agent. Type your content and click save.

6. The last three options allow you to exclude specific cookies, CSS or Javascript. Use these in the same way by clicking Add New Rule, choosing the excluded URI and saving the changes.

You should now have a good handle on the types of files that are being cached, minified or combined, as well as how to exclude certain types of pages, content or user agents from utilizing the cache system.

CDN

Of the two tabs left to explore, one is available only to premium subscribers. So, we will take a brief look at the last tab we can utilize. Click on the CDN tab.

In a nutshell, CDN, or Content Delivery Network, is a system of storing your cached files in different geographic locations to minimize the amount of time it will take for a website user in another country to access the files.

There are different CDN providers which can help deliver your content speedily. If you have an existing account with any of the providers listed above, click on it to get set up. If not, it’s easy to create an account with MaxCDN to get started using this additional feature.

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Top Website and Page Building Tools of 2018

Unless you’re working from a short list, trying to find the best website or page builder can take lots of time. There are plenty of “almost but not quite what you need” software solutions out there. Also, the prices can also be an obstacle.

We want to make it much easier for you to find what you need. So, we created this listing of what we believe to be the best of the best site and page builders on the market. We have taken into consideration the factors of power, performance, and price.

One thing we know for sure; you’ll like what you see here.

1. Mobirise Website Builder

Mobirise Website Builder

There’s good news and more good news about the Mobirise Website Builder. First, it’s free for both personal and commercial use. Whether you’re building a website for yourself, for your own business, or for a client’s business, there are no restrictions; you can style your website any way you like and host it wherever you like as well.

The other good news about this easy-to-use website builder is the more than 800 trendy website blocks and templates that include a responsive image gallery with lightbox, full-screen intro, video backgrounds, and parallax scrolling to name a few.

There’s much more of course. Building is by drag and drop, no coding is required, and you have access to a library of 7,000 icons, 100,000 free images, and 800 Google fonts. Since the Mobirise templates are based on the latest Google AMP or Bootstrap framework, you can expect lightning-fast performance and mobile-ready results.

Download Mobirise’s free version for Windows or MacOS now. A premium version is also available.

2. Visual Composer Website Builder

Visual Composer Website Builder

Although Visual Composer Builder was designed by WPBakery, it is not the same as the WPBakery Builder. These two high-performance website builders are completely different, and independent of one another.

You can select Visual Composer Builder’s Free version or the Premium version. We suggest you select the free version first. All you need to do is visit the website and download it. You’ll be more than happy with the features the Builder provides, as well as its performance. You can then decide if and when you want to make the switch to the Premium version.

This mouse-click driven drag and drop builder requires no coding, it is compatible with any WordPress theme and you’ll have multiple design options and elements to work with including WordPress widgets and shortcodes.

Give Visual Composer’s free version a try. You’ll like what you see.

3. Portfoliobox

Portfoliobox

If you’ve grown weary of the various constraints many standard themes impose on you, Portfoliobox lets you create any style for any website page. With Portfoliobox, it’s much easier to build a website that’s unlike any others and stands out from the crowd. No coding is involved, and a project can be completed within a few hours.

Portfoliobox also gives you the option of choosing either a Free or Pro plan. This amazing website builder also has a one-of-a-kind option for students. Porfoliobox’s student account offers all the Pro features and templates, with personalized domain coming only at USD 19 / year.

The Free plan provides hosting for 30 images, ten products, and ten pages. You also have access to any Pro template for 30 days. The Pro plan provides hosting for 1,000 images, for an unlimited number of pages and products, a personalized domain, Easy Google integration, and custom CSS/JS.

4. uKit

uKit

uKit is a super-flexible, responsive website builder that was created with small businesses in mind. 200+ templates to start a project come with the package. Simply drag and drop design elements along with your content onto each page.

When your pages are complete you can wrap up your project with a single click.

5. Elementor Page Builder

Elementor Page Builder

Elementor is a visual drag and drop page builder. This WordPress plugin allows to design & build anything, and it’s free!

Elementor is probably the easiest way to create a website on WordPress. The visual editor is fast, intuitive and no coding is necessary. Designing pixel perfect landing pages with the mobile editing feature will take your WordPress design to the next level. You’ll also have access to the large template library and other unique features that will supercharge your workflow.

6. Themify Builder

Themify Builder

Themify Builder offers an easier, more practical approach to creating layouts. It’s drag and drop builder gives you a live preview of the changes you make, and its responsive styling feature enables you to custom style a layout so that it will appear correctly on the desktop and mobile devices.

Themify Builder works with any theme and most plugins.

7. Pixpa

Pixpa

Pixpa’s all-in-one platform will save you time and money by enabling you to avoid having to rely on multiple services. Pixpa’s affordable pricing, its mobile-friendly themes and an extensive feature list that includes a built-in eCommerce store, makes creating professional websites and portfolios a breeze. Photographers, artists, and designers of all types love what this creative portfolio builder has to offer.

You can try Pixpa for free.

8. IM Creator

IM Creator

You can build your own website starting now and do it the fun way – assuming a Lego block approach appeals to you. The IM Creator approach to page building involves using ready-made stripes and polydoms. Mix, match, and customize them as you please, add your content, and you’re done.

A gorgeous eCommerce solution comes with the package. IM Creator is totally free for artists, non-profits, and students. A white label version is available.

Conclusion

It isn’t often you get to select from the best of the bunch of any product. Especially, if most of them are free, or free under certain conditions.

Any one of these 8 products can make your day. Any can satisfy a crying need and speeds up your workflow. Additionally, each of these products enables you to delight your clients. They do so by delivering better and more innovative websites.

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