Speed Up Magento Store with Page Caching

Speed up Magento

How much time does it take to load a page of your Magento store? If you don’t know, you can always check the speed of your website on the Internet. For example, with the help of a free tool GTMetrix. So you’ve checked, and the page loads in under 2 seconds? Good for you! However, we advise you to check several random pages (not only the homepage) at a random time of the day and even the week to be sure that the entire website is fast.

According to Google’s researches, if the page loading time increases up to 2,25 seconds, merchants risk to lose their customers and, as the result, money. In this article, we suggest you have a close look at the page caching — one of the methods, which can help you to speed up your Magento store.

What is Page Caching?

Page caching is remembering all the details of a website page (content, fonts, Javascript files, etc.) by the browser or server. In other words, when you visit a page for the first time, a server has to perform numerous intricate and enduring tasks. Once the server has fulfilled the tasks, it can cache (remember) the results and show them to the next visitor faster. The server doesn’t have to perform all those difficult tasks again; thus, the time of page loading is lower and the users are happier. 

Magento Caching

What is Cache Backend?

Cache Backend accumulates the cached data and shows it the next time the page is requested. Take your time when deciding which kind of the storage to choose, as it will determine the speed of the website. Further down, we offer to take into account 4 variants of Magento 2 cache backends with their advantages and disadvantages.

File System

You can keep the cached data in files on the disk. This solution doesn’t require tweaks from your side, it is already available after you’ve installed Magento 2. If you’ve chosen this storage, you’ll find the cached data in the var folder on the disk. You can remove the cached data by just deleting the files from these folders. 

However, there’s a downside of this storage — on the average, the disk reading and writing speed, which greatly impacts the speed of the page, is quite low. You can speed it up with a decent file system and SSD storage.

Moreover, there’s a possibility that you’ll reach the limit of inodes on the server, and then, files can’t be generated or uploaded even if there’s some free space left on the disk.

Database

You can choose to keep the cached data in Magento 2 database. But the setting-up requires some tweaks, which are described in the official Magento 2 guide. If you’ve done everything correctly, the cached data will be accumulated in relevant tables, and there can be millions of records just after a couple hours. This is a disadvantage of the solution as it leads to overloading the server and negatively affects the performance of the website. Nevertheless, the situation can be improved with a decent management system and correct database structure. 

Magento Database

Redis

Redis uses the server’s RAM — Random Access Memory; thus, the essential thing for Redis is an appropriate size of RAM for the cached data. A lot of Magento merchants select this solution, because:

  • The writing and reading speed is the highest among the above-named cache backends.
  • It finds the required data like a flash, thanks to a well-optimized indexation and cache tags.
  • Redis can be placed on a different from the Magento store server.
  • Its memory can be extended.
  • It offers to keep a duplicate copy of the cached data on the other server, that makes the store independent from the poor connection with the first key storage.

However, Redis is not as easy as the previous solutions; so you’ll need to find a skillful system administrator, who is able to perform a proper installation and setting up of this cache backend. 

Varnish

Varnish is a fresh approach in keeping and using the cached data: when the data has been already cached, the user gets a page loaded straight from Varnish, a web server doesn’t even know that the request has been done. Therefore, it offers the fastest service so far. Moreover, Varnish is supported in Magento 2.

Nevertheless, there several disadvantages:

  • The setting-up process is rather intricate, we don’t advise you to do it by yourself. 
  • It doesn’t support HTTPS (SSL protocol), but there is a loophole.
  • Varnish requires a decent amount of RAM on the server.
  • If the cached data has been deleted manually, Varnish must be restarted.

What is your preferable cache backend? Share your opinion in the comments! If you need help with your Magento store, contact Our Skillful Magento Developers!

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