According to WordPress's latest statistics, WordPress makes up over 28% of the top 10 million pages on the Internet. With its accessibility and power it's no wonder that fledgling designers and developers look to WordPress and its ecosystem to build their web pages. Today, you can super-charge WordPress with Let's Encrypt HTTPS, Edge Middleware, HTTP/2, and a global Application Delivery Network. Let's check it out!
WP: Circa 2003
WordPress has been around. A veteran of near 15 years of service, it started from humble beginnings as a snippet to improve web typography. From there it grew as open source projects are wont to do. Now, people visit pages created with Wordpress tens of millions of times every day.
WordPress can be hosted for you as a service or configured on your own hardware. It's a content management system for building websites, blogs and stores. WordPress.org features over 52,000 plugins and there are thousands of after-market themes you can plug-in and configure to manage the full look and feel of your websites.
There are many ways to host WordPress. So many that it can be difficult to assess how well it performs. The most common options are using a one-click hosting function of a Virtual Private Server host like Digital Ocean or the de-facto Wordpress-as-a-Service platform WordPress.com. These options can be great, but often have missing pieces; we'll look at how a service like Fly fills the gap.
Hot Off the WordPresses
WordPress.com will take care of hosting and patching for you. They make your life easier by allowing you to purchase your own custom domains. Their promise is that you can sign-up, buy a domain, pick a theme, then start writing or selling. While they may offer a smooth Wordpress experience for you, there isn't much added by way of delivering your site to the masses.
Application Delivery is often left out of the WordPress equation; ensuring that your pages are secure over HTTPS is one major benefit, another is keeping things as fast as possible as your website makes its way around the globe. Fast pages are of the utmost importance -- we've written on the topic before fast pages lead to higher revenue!
A WordPress page can appear slow for a number of reasons...
It may be hosted within one location. If your WordPress server is in San Jose and someone in India or Germany visits then they need to take the full, long trip multiple times to create a secure connection.
The plugin market makes it easy to plunk in third-party code that is either insecure or burdensome to the client.
Cache-related plugins marketed as speed improvements may alter the client's experience in unexpected ways, creating broken links and odd happenings instead of speed things up.
Fly serves your WordPress sites through a global network, reducing the distance client requests need to travel before they arrive at your pages. Edge Middleware removes plugins from your pages themselves and cuts them in at the edge; this is what's known as edge-computing, off-loading the burden on the client to powerful, globally networked servers in the cloud. Edge Middleware is a safer way to inject useful features and improvements into your WordPress pages -- the client stays lean.
The key benefit, however, is the ability to compose Onehostname to Rule Them All with ease. Instead of building your whole brand with WordPress, you may want to use it only for your blog or store. Once attached, you can bind WordPress to any subfolder on your domain. Whether it's simply at
/store/, you can serve it from wherever you'd like. Without further ado, let's see what it takes to attach WordPress to Fly!
First, create an account within Fly. You'll need your own domain and an account on WordPress.com -- a free one will do! Select WordPress then enter the subdomain that you have chosen:
Preview your site. Fly will generate a preview URI. When you visit the URI you should see your site how you expect it, only now faster and over HTTPS. Next, create a DNS record with that preview URI; you should now see your WordPress page from your own custom domain.
From here you can checkout our library of nifty Middleware, add more backends, services, or applications to your hostname, and enjoy safer connections and accelerated speeds!
Fly started when we wondered "what would a programmable edge look like"? Developer workflows work great for infrastructure like CDNs and optimization services. You should really see for yourself, though.
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