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So you may have come across some YouTube videos or blogs explaining how easy it is to build & design your WordPress website with Elementor page builder.
After googling & grabbing some more information around Elementor, it’s likely that you may have heard it’s a slow page builder.
And you suddenly started questioning…
- Is it worth installing?
- Should I delete it & so on.
Well, my friend I was in the same situation a couple of years back & just like you, I had to google for “does elementor slow down your website?”
Most of the results that I found on google were kind of incomplete & I had to test out myself by installing the Elementor plugin & later on, I even opted for the paid version of Elementor (more on this later)
In fact, I've managed to get 90+ scores (on GTmetrix) for my Tools & Resources page that's built (entirely) using Elementor…
Looks good? It should 😅
Here's one more… (my contact page)
I've been an elementor user since 2019 & from my experience, here's my genuine opinion…
Although Elementor does add extra CSS, div wrappers & unnecessary codes to your website, it doesn't impact your page speed a lot.
Some users claim that elementor slows down websites by 20-30% but I don’t believe that bcoz Elementor or any other page builder performance depends on your web hosting.
I can confidently say that achieving a 90+ page speed score with Elementor is quite possible.
Quick Note: I’m not a speed optimization geek & won’t give you a ton of advice like do this & do that. I simply love to design websites & create content around topics that interest me.
I find it hard to give any time of my day for speeding up my websites with all those technical tips. That’s why I only use some of the most straightforward speed hacks (listed below in this post).
In this guide, I've shared practical tips on how you can easily test out Elementor performance for FREE along with a few speed optimization tips (the ones that are simple & provides results).
But before that, why should you consider Elementor over other page builders?
Let’s quickly find out…
Why Consider Elementor over others?
Talking about page builders, there are a ton of them.
Out of all, Elementor has been the #1 choice for web designers, professionals, & solopreneurs like me.
The reason for Elementor being the best page builder for WordPress is
- its ease of use (yes, it’s beginner-friendly)
- awesome free & paid addons
- strong & helpful users community
With over 5 Million+ downloads, Elementor is rated as the 4th Most Popular on the Entire Internet in the WordPress plugin category.
Take a look at the ratings for Elementor on the WordPress repo…
As of writing this blog post, around 5,435 people have given the Elementor plugin a 5-star rating & that’s huge.
But if you hop onto Trustpilot, the ratings for Elementor (just 2.9/5) may scare new users from testing out the tool…
Pro Tip: Even though Elementor has got poor ratings on Trustpilot, you should try out the way I’ve suggested below so that you can add your own review.
Out of 219 reviews on Trustpilot, 53% (around 116 people) have rated it Excellent while a whopping 36% (around 78 people) have rated it poor.
If you sit back & read the negative reviews, you’ll find that most of them are related to their customer support.
But honestly, to date, I never had to ask for support bcoz of the community, the video tutorials & the number of blogs available around elementor.
Almost all of your queries can be solved easily without asking for support. In case you need support, you can opt for higher plans where VIP support is provided.
I talked about community, & these numbers seem crazy to me…
Around 122K people in their Facebook group & more importantly, the group is really helpful.
Coming back to why you should choose Elementor, here are a few real reviews that may convince you to Grab the pro version & install it today…
For me, Elementor is a growth stock & I've invested in it wisely 😅.
It’s a complete game-changer & for some, it’s their business. Many professional web designers prefer Elementor to design their client websites instead of using page builders like Divi & so on.
Talking about speed, here's what one of the users has replied to a support query on WordPress.org about Is Elementor Slow…
If you’re still skeptical, think about it this way…
If Elementor slowdowns the websites, then why would 5 Million+ web creators including me, use this tool to build their WordPress website?
Now let me quickly share how you can test the Elementor performance…
Take these 10 Simple Steps & Test out Elementor's Performance yourself for FREE!
If you read any speed optimization tutorial or follow any speed blogs, you'll get to know that Hosting is the #1 factor that determines the speed of your elementor website.
But, what If I told you that most hosting recommendations are garbage. Yes, they are. I’ll create a dedicated post on that someday.
For now, I’m not going to suggest switching your host or anything like that. Doesn’t matter whether you’re on Bluehost, Hostinger, or any other host, here’s how you should proceed…
Quick Note: The reason I’m asking you to follow these steps is to let you know the real truth & I'd love for you to try out my practical method.
Step1: Install the Elementor plugin (you can get the pro version here) on your current website (for this example, I’m using Hostinger business shared hosting)
Step 2: Install & activate the Starter templates plugin by Brainstorm force (I've already done that)
Step 3: Now, deactivate all other plugins you’ve on your website. (Just for testing purposes) & then, Go to Appearance > Starter Templates as shown in the image below
Important Note: Please avoid caching plugins. If installed, deactivate it while we are testing.
Step 4: Click on Build your Website now & then select Elementor Page Builder
Step 5: From all the available options, select the “Outdoor adventure” template & import it (click on skip & continue)
Step 6: Once you're done with selecting colors & typography, ignore the rest of the steps by clicking continue.
Imp Note: Once the import is ready, make sure to delete the additional plugins installed by the Starter Template plugin (in my case, they installed the WPForms plugin).
Once everything is done, it’s time for testing your current host with Elementor.
First, test your page in incognito mode & see how fast your website loads. Navigate through pages, take the visual experience & reload it several times & notice the speed.
Lastly, note down the scores. (Better you take a snapshot using this free chrome extension)
Here are my GTMetrix results (hosted on Hostinger's Business Shared Hosting plan)
Quick Note: Elementor & Starter Template were the only two plugins installed & active. Other than these two, all other plugins were deactivated.
Now comes the most interesting part by which you’ll know the performance of Elementor & your Hosting.
Step 7: Signup on Cloudways hosting using this link. It’s completely free for 3 days & you won't need to fill in your credit card details, meaning, no credit cards are required.
Quick Note: When you're on a free trial, you don’t even need to point your domain name. They offer a free sandbox website (something like ___.cloudwaysapps.com) & it’s perfect for testing purposes.
People have seen a great result when they migrated to Cloudways…
Why just see the results? Better test it yourself.
Click here to start your 3 Days FREE Trial
Step 8: Launch your server (here’s how to do it) & then log in to your temporary WordPress website
Step 9: Now, Repeat Steps from 1-6 i.e Install Elementor & Starter templates plugin & then deactivate default plugins (breeze). Import the Outdoor Adventure template & test your site in incognito mode, GTMetrix & Page speed insights.
Step 10: Finally compare Cloudways vs your current host by running a few more tests.
Pro Tip: Once happy with Cloudways, ask them for a FREE migration & you’re all set to design your Elementor website. You won't need to bother about speed anymore.
Check out my Results in the next section…
Elementor Performance Test on Different Hosts
One of my Elementor websites hosted on Hostinger's Business Shared hosting…
Quick Note: I've hidden the URL of the website hosted on Hostinger as it's one of my live projects & doesn't feel like disclosing it.
Secondly, no speed plugins & any kind of optimization were done. Just plain installation of Elementor & Starter Templates plugin.
Elementor website hosted on Cloudways DigitalOcean server…
You can clearly see that page builders like Elementor perform great on hosts like Cloudways.
Here's the head to head comparison:
Elementor Performance on Cloudways
- TTFB: 881ms
- FCP: 1.9 seconds
- LCP: 1.9 seconds
- On Load Time: 2.4 seconds
- Fully Loaded Time: 3.1 seconds
- Overall Grade: B
- Performance: 81%
- Server: Bangalore, India
- Plan: Digital Ocean Standard
- Monthly Cost: $10/mo (billed monthly, no high reneweals & provides real-time billing)
Elementor Performace on Hostinger
- TTFB: 1.1 seconds
- FCP: 1.7 seconds
- LCP: 1.7 seconds
- On Load Time: 2.4 seconds
- Fully Loaded Time: 7.0 seconds
- Overall Grade: C
- Performance: 74%
- Server: Singapore, Asia
- Plan: Business Shared Hosting
- Monthly Cost: Rs.339/mo (around $4.59/mo bcoz I had purchased for 24 months
I know Comparing Cloud Hosting vs Shared Hosting isn't the best comparison, but most of us go with shared hosting as it's cheap & recommended by a lot of YouTubers.
TTFB, On Load Time & Fully Loaded Time, are the key metrics.
On Cloudways, the website was loaded within 3 seconds whereas it took 7 secs to fully load the site on Hostinger.
Without any optimization, my elementor website is loading in under 3.5 seconds & I think these results are good enough for anyone to try out.
Quick Note: Cloudways is also one of the easiest hosts to try out as they offer 3 days FREE Trial and to put the cherry on top, No Credit-card is required.
Start your FREE Trial Now
One important thing you should notice is the Server.
My Cloudways DO server is located in Bangalore, India whereas Hostinger's server is located in Singapore, Asia.
Hostinger does allow to select server location but they don't offer as many options as Cloudways.
I hope this comparison helps you in choosing a better host.
If you’re like me who want to spend more time creating & designing websites rather than dealing with codes & optimizing a site for speed, consider reading the next part…
How can I make my Elementor website faster with minimal effort?
Out of all optimization methods, if I had to point out only one & the major one which would require minimum effort then it would be this;
Ditch shared hosting & move to managed cloud hosting for a faster Elementor website.
Yup, that’s true.
I’ve recommended the same step above and the reason for this is “it's truly the ultimate speed hack” that worked for me & many others.
I switched to Cloudways after seeing a ton of polls like this on various Facebook groups…
This website is hosted on Cloudways & I’m happy with the performance.
You can navigate through some of my pages & see the performance. I hope you’ll like it.
So, If there’s one thing that you can do to speed up your Elementor website with minimal effort is “switch to cloud hosting”.
I use Cloudways Digital Ocean. It’s very popular & most recommended in Facebook groups.
They also offer Free migration & have a rating of 4.7 on Trustpilot…
Out of 1,226 reviews on Trustpilot, 90% (around 1,103 people) have rated it Excellent.
Talking about Cloudways pricing, it starts at $10/mo (currently, I’m on this plan).
For most Elementor websites, Digital Ocean or Vultr HF plan will be more than enough.
Start your FREE Trial with Cloudways & see how fast your Elementor website can be
A Few More Tips for Faster Elementor Websites
Need more speed? Try out these proven methods for optimizing your elementor site…
- Try the Elementor Experiments modules: Once you're inside your WordPress Dashboard, Go to Elementor > Settings > Experiments & then Activate “Optimized DOM Output, Improved Asset Loading, Improved CSS Loading, Font Awesome Inline”.
Quick Note: After activating these settings, make sure to check your website from the front end as some of these options can break your site.
- Upgrade your PHP version & memory limit: One of the simplest ways to speed up the elementor website is to upgrade your PHP version to 7.4.
To check your current PHP version, go to Elementor > System Info. Also, it’s recommended by Elementor to increase the memory limit to 256 MB.
You can change both these settings from your hosting account. A quick google search for how to increase memory limit in “your web host”.
- Use Compatible & Optimized theme with Elementor: Not all themes perform well with Elementor. Use some of the well-coded & compatible themes like Hello theme, Kadence, Astra, Generatepress, OceanWP, etc. I personally use Kadence with Elementor as I like global styling.
- Use well-coded & optimized Addons: There are over 40+ Elementor Addons & you shouldn’t be using each one of them. If you need more features, I recommend using addons that come with enable-disable modules. Some of the addons I use & recommend are Crocoblock, ElementsKit by Wpmet.
- Harness the power of CDN’s: Most of the folks use Cloudflare CDN hoping that it will speed up the site. Hell no! It’s not as fast as BunnyCDN. Cloudways CDN (the free one) is mainly for DDoS protection. I personally use BunnyCDN for my elementor websites. You can try BunnyCDN FREE for 14 days.
- Cache your Elementor Site for optimized performance: If you’re on a Litespeed server like Hostinger, A2hosting, etc, install & set up Litespeed cache. On Cloudways, try setting up the Cloudways Breeze plugin. I personally use WpRocket. It’s a premium yet very easy-to-use cache plugin.
- Limit the use of Elementor Addons: Although Elementor Addons are great, you should limit the use of addons for every feature. See if it’s possible with Elementor Pro or else try some different method to achieve your desired result.
Verdict: Does elementor slow down your website & Is it Worth it?
So, Does elementor makes the website slow?
Well, It depends. I agree that Elementor does add some extra code to your site but if you’re using a good host like Cloudways, achieving a 90+ page speed score as well as GTmetrix grade is quite possible when using Elementor.
Lastly, more than 5 million+ web creators can’t be wrong using Elementor page builder. You can download it here.
Even though Gutenberg is much faster than Elementor, I don’t see Elementor page builder going anywhere as the design possibilities with Elementor are endless & most web agencies, freelancers & solopreneurs use this tool. It’s totally worth it.
Now, what about you?
Are you using Elementor on your WordPress website or planning to? Which host you're currently on & how's your experience?
Do let me know in the comments below.