The first part of the article was pretty simple stuff and something every site can utilize. This part is going to get more technical but will also be where you may see the biggest impact so hang in with me here.
As mentioned before, I’m a WordPress user and one of the things I love about WordPress is plug-ins. There are, I kid you not, 16,924 plug-ins available for WordPress and they’re free. Anyway, in my pursuit to reduce my blog’s size I started looking at compression. It’s a very simple thing to implement and has a huge impact. I found a plugin called Improve My Load Times and what it does is sets WordPress to use gzip compression. With gzip compression it takes your entire site and puts it into a buffer, compresses the data and returns it. The returned data is compressed and so it’s smaller and in turn faster. It’s a tiny plug-in with a big impact. Once I turned this on I saw my blog’s file size reduce by around 300KB; that’s significant.
A note with this plug-in, the problem with it is it also uses the compression in the admin area of WordPress. It sounds good because it means the admin area will also be faster but the problem I found with it is it messes up your plug-in installation process for future plug-ins you install. It really just causes a…cosmetic issue, yet it is annoying. I modified the plug-in so it only loads on the front end of your site, not the admin area, to resolve this issue. If any WordPress users are interested in my modifications then just hit me up.
For other blogging platforms I’m not sure if a plug-in like this exists but it very well may. Just do a search on gzip compression and see what you come up with. It really is a very simple thing so I’m sure it’s been done for other platforms. If you’re a programmer, or just enjoy messing with sites, then take a look at this. It’s easy to do if you have access to your site’s files.
In installing this plugin my blog reduced another 200KB in size.
So, between these two things I reduced the size of this blog by 500KB. Factor in the size savings mentioned in the first part of the article and that’s 700KBs worth of reduction.