CoolfundasWordpressWordPress Speed Test - The 5 Best Tools To Test Speed

WordPress Speed Test – The 5 Best Tools To Test Speed

As a WordPress site owner, you cannot overlook page loading speed. Website speed is essential to delivering a great user experience. Your visitors will likely go elsewhere if your webpage takes more than three seconds to load.

In this article, I will introduce you to the WordPress speed test. It is a great way to objectively check how quickly your website loads. These speed-testing tools use bots to ping your site. And report back about the various speed parameters.

Let me first touch on why WordPress site speed is vital for your website.

  1. Website speed is a significant factor in Google’s search algorithm. Therefore, it has a direct bearing on your SEO. The quicker your site is, the higher it will rank in SERPs.
  2. Website speed has a close correlation to user experience. Visitors are more likely to stay on your website when it loads rapidly.
  3. Website speed is critical for improved bounce rate and extended session times. This improvement increases your chances of conversion.

I want to highlight one important aspect here. Your website may load quickly on your computer. This speed is because the web browser may have already cached the web elements. But it might not be the same for other first-time users. So, objective testing for performance is absolutely essential.

Speed Testing
WordPress Speed Test – vital for desktop and mobile

What are the factors affecting your WordPress Site Speed?


WordPress site administrators are often forced to ask themselves, why is my WordPress site so slow?

  1. WordPress page functionality: The loading page may include heavy objects. Examples are rich video content, heavy CSS files, and high-definition images. Also, unproductive WordPress plugins add to the server processing. They don’t even contribute to the website’s functionality.

All these make the pages ‘heavyweight’ and increase the loading time of a webpage.

  • Hosting geolocation: Network latency may contribute to slowness. This latency may happen if, for example, your end-users are in Europe while website hosting is in the US. Especially if you don’t happen to leverage Content Delivery Networks.
  • Network conditions: Webpages may sometimes not load quickly in browsers, even if they are ‘light.’ This slowness could be due to the quality of the ISP services or mobile devices using 2G/3G networks.

All the factors mentioned above may not be fully in the control of the WordPress developer. But they can design attributes to render webpages on slow networks.

Tools for WordPress Speed Test – How can I Test my Website Speed?


I will now present five popular solutions to test WordPress site speed. Most of these Testing tools are online and easy to use. You may only need to copy/paste the URL and click a button to properly run a website speed test. Therefore, they are simple to use for beginners as well.

Many of them allow you to configure testing by specific locations or devices. They also have the option to recreate complex test scenarios.

Let’s jump into the five recommended tools to test WordPress performance.

PageSpeed Insights

PageSpeed Insights by Google is an excellent tool for a WordPress website speed test. This tool can test both desktop and mobile sites. Google is the undisputed leader in Search engines. So, this Google speed test report gets top credibility in the industry. Being free makes it popular too.

The test combines data from a controlled environment (lab) and real-world (field). In addition, the report gives detailed information on your website’s Core Web Vitals.

Google Page Insights report 1
PageSpeed Insights report for Coolfundas

The outputs from this report provide actionable insights on specific areas to address. The flip side of this testing process is there’s no way to specify the server location. So, it becomes challenging to know the experience for global users.

PageSpeed Insights performance scores are based on Lighthouse performance scoring. A good target for PageSpeed Insights performance score is 85+ (out of 100). Then your WordPress website is considered to be performing well.


Pingdom site
Pingdom Speed testing

Pingdom by Solarwinds is a tool providing performance and availability monitoring solutions. The WordPress speed test can run across seven different global locations. Unfortunately, the free version does not have the option to configure different devices or connection speeds.

The results give helpful inputs alongside the scores. I liked the drill-down details of the site’s performance. Pingdom explains what you need to do to improve performance.

Pingdom can simulate user interaction with your WordPress website. This simulation is available in the paid version of the tool. Here you can review if critical pages are working correctly. The details in this report allow you to slice the data to view it from different angles. This data helps you create a comprehensive plan for performance improvement measures.


GTmetrix Speed Testing

GTmetrix is the most popular free tool to test WordPress speed. Comprehensive performance reports give you handy insights.

I strongly recommend signing up for the free account. Signing up opens more configuration options for the website performance test. For example, you can define a test server location and choose the browser type for the WordPress Speed test.

GTmetrix combines the metrics from Google PageSpeed Insights and Yahoo! YSlow. It displays the page speed score as a summary.

GTmetrix Report
GTmetrix speed test report for Coolfundas

Other tabs in the report give details on the Performance, Structure, Waterfall, and Video. These tabs give you a comprehensive analysis of your WordPress site’s speed metrics. The insights are color-coded to let you focus on the specific problem areas.

The Waterfall tab is a graphical representation of the time taken by each element to load. You can expand the individual web elements for advanced diagnostics info.

They have a broad range of pricing options for individuals and businesses.

GTmetrix Pricing
GTMetrix pricing


WebpageTest Speed Testing

WebPageTest is another tool that allows you to run a free WordPress speed test. You can execute this test from different global locations. You can also do it across many browsers at connection speeds typical of your user base. The test report provides many dimensions of the results. You can do so by choosing the appropriate parameter from the drop-down.

Their free plan WebPageTest Starter is available with all the performance metrics. You get access to the Opportunities report as well. This report includes detailed suggestions to improve site performance.

WebpageTest Report
WebpageTest report for Speed Testing

Their paid subscription plan, WebPageTest Pro, includes a lot of extra functionality. This plan has features like

  • Bulk testing
  • Premium testing locations
  • High priority in testing queues
  • WebPageTest API experiments
  • Dedicated support
  • Private tests

Both plans allow you to save your Test History for 13 months. This history will help you compare and review performance improvements over time.


Uptrends Speed Testing

Uptrends is one more WordPress speed test tool. It has options to test your website against several parameters. You can choose to run the test on a desktop or mobile.
For desktops, you can choose the screen size and bandwidth throttling. You can also choose to test on Chrome or Edge browsers. For Mobile, you can choose the device model and bandwidth throttling.
For both desktop and Mobile, you can choose the city from where you want to run the speed tests.

Uptrends Report
Uptrends Speed Test report for Coolfundas

I found the test report uncluttered and easy to follow. In the summary section, you get a Google PageSpeed score as well. Along with test results of the Core Web Vitals, you also get recommendations on improvement areas.
Finally, the report gives detailed insights into the Web elements. It is with a color-coded graph of Waterfall and Domain Groups.

How do I optimize my WordPress speed?

This topic merits a detailed article by itself. But here are the low-hanging action items to address WordPress site speed:

Check out this exciting article on speeding up a WordPress Website in 17 Simple Ways.


I have reviewed five WordPress Site speed testing tools in this article. They all do an excellent job of measuring your site performance. They also recommend areas of improvement. You can leverage specific aspects of the report recommendations and park the rest. It also depends on your website development team’s level of technical expertise.

Wrapping it up!

  • If you need a comprehensive all-in-one tool, GTmetrix is the way to go. Its free version allows you to run up to 20 tests, track your website, and check out all kinds of visuals. Additionally, it incorporates metrics from PageSpeed Insights and YSlow (by Yahoo!).
  • Pingdom is a great choice when you need a speed testing tool combined with website monitoring.
  • Check out WebPageTest if you are looking for very detailed reports. For example, their Opportunities reports allow different views of data with many parameters.
  • If you’re starting today and need a free website speed test tool. Then Google PageSpeed Insights is a good bet. It includes a website speed test report on mobile and desktop.
  • Finally, Uptrends does the job well and is your choice if you need an uncluttered, simple report. It’s nice if you want to present to your clients.

I would love to know which WordPress Site testing tool worked best for you and why. I look forward to your comments.

Prashant Shetty
Prashant Shetty
Prashant is a Technology Industry Veteran with 20+ years of experience in the field. He loves reading, music, and blogging about technology in the context of Life. He craves for a cup of sugarless black masala tea and is a religious runner.


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