In a crowded marketplace, web hosts need to find ways to differentiate themselves with value-added offerings. Some go with freebies like a free domain, or domain privacy. Others differentiate themselves with features like staging, and dynamic caching.
Very few hosts provide server level dynamic caching out of the box on their basic shared hosting plans. Due to its architecture and choice of LiteSpeed as the web server, NameHero is able to offer server based dynamic caching on its WordPress sites.
WordPress Page Generation is Expensive
WordPress pages are dynamic. That means there’s no “HTML” file sitting around for each post and page. Rather, they’re generated on the fly via the database and PHP operations. This is why native WordPress performance depends heavily on your CPU speed, and whether or not you have SSDs.
This operation is repeated each time a visitor sees a page – even if it’s the same one! Needless to say, it’s an expensive operation, and doesn’t scale well. If you have 10x the visitors, the strain on your server will be 10x more. This means your site is ill-equipped for traffic spikes, and can easily become a victim of its own success.
What we need is to generate each page only once, and then save the HTML for future visitors, so it doesn’t have to be generated again. This is called dynamic caching.
Server and Plugin Dynamic Caching
Saving static copies of dynamically generated pages can be done in two ways:
- On the server at the backend
- By a PHP plugin inside WordPress
Of these two methods, the first is much faster and more efficient. In this system, you as a user often don’t need to do anything other than turn on dynamic caching in the cPanel backed. NameHero uses LiteSpeed, which integrated with a plugin, but it’s still server level since the heavy lifting is done by the server.
Plugin-based caching is for those situations where your web host doesn’t provide server level caching. I remember years ago playing around with different types of caching plugins like WP Super Cache and W3 Total Cache. It was messy, and often buggy. Plugin caching has gotten a lot better in recent times, but it’s still much slower compared to server level caching.
In addition, server caching can save the static HTML pages in the RAM instead of on the disk. This makes the retrieval process much faster.
NameHero LiteSpeed Caching
Unlike other web hosting providers, NameHero uses a special type of web server called “LiteSpeed” instead of Apache. While you as a user won’t notice the difference, it has one massive benefit – server-side dynamic caching!
The WordPress plugin “LiteSpeed Cache” integrated with the backend LiteSpeed server and saves static HTML copies of your dynamic pages. So even though you’re installing a plugin, it’s not actually plugin caching since it makes use of server level resources. The LiteSpeed plugin also has a bunch of other options that make it an ideal caching solution. Here’s a tutorial on using the LiteSpeed cache plugin.
In fact, you can compare the performance of LiteSpeed cache with other plugin based solutions like WP Super Cache and W3 Total Cache as shown here:
You can see that the LiteSpeed web server with the LiteSpeed Cache plugin has a far higher number of transactions per second compared to the other options – even more than with W3 Total Cache and WP Rocket.
NameHero is one of the few web hosts that goes the other way and uses optimized software instead of what everyone else is using. LiteSpeed, MariaDB, and other choices ensure that your WordPress applications are going to have an edge over the competition. And with dynamic caching, that’s a real performance booster!
I’m a NameHero team member, and an expert on WordPress and web hosting. I’ve been in this industry since 2008. I’ve also developed apps on Android and have written extensive tutorials on managing Linux servers. You can contact me on my website WP-Tweaks.com!