7 Best Free and Paid Cache Plugins For WordPress 2024

Among many WordPress cache plugins, here are the top ones based on our experience, user reviews, valuable functions, and other factors.
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I tried all the cache plugins I could find before writing this article. And tested with multiple cache settings and web servers for optimum results.

You’ll get various results depending on the web server and how your website is built. Your plugins, themes, external resources, hosting service, and CDN can affect your website’s performance. A lot of other things involve it, too.

You can combine a cache plugin with an asset optimization plugin like Perfmatters. However, you should be careful when combining multiple cache plugins because it can cause a website to crash and duplicate features.

I use LiteSpeed Cache and FlyingPress in my setup. LSC is free and has tons of features, and FlyingPress is paid, but it is a clean and user-friendly plugin that gives you exactly what you need. Users can use other caching plugins, too.

So, here are the best WordPress cache plugins based on personal experience, flexibility, ease of use, user reviews, features, and other things.

Top WordPress Cache Plugins For 2024

1. LiteSpeed Cache

LiteSpeed Cache plugin

My #1 pick is LiteSpeed Cache because it’s free. #2: It’s a good solution. #3. It has more features than any other cache plugin. In addition, LiteSpeed provides DDOS and brute-force protection.

If you have a large site, LiteSpeed Cache can help you optimize certain sections. Yes, for new users, this cache plugin can be a bit complicated.

Nowadays, LiteSpeed uses a lot of hosting companies. And use a good LiteSpeed hosting service with LSC. I’ve noticed that LSC updates quite frequently and fixes bugs and problems right away.

The Benefits Of Using This WP Cache Plugin

  • Server-side Cache: Almost all caching plugins work at the PHP level. However, LSC is a server-side cache plugin that is not always helpful because it doesn’t have cache preloading.
  • Preset: This plugin comes with five presets, from basic to extreme. Simply apply the preset you want, but it’s better to do it manually.
  • Cache Control Options: It has lots of cache controls like commenters, REST APIs, PHP resources, private cached URIs, and tons more.
  • Object Cache: With OC settings, it supports Redis and Memcached and extra settings like persistent connection, cache web admin, etc.
  • Localization: It supports some external resources for localization, like Gravatar, analytics scripts, and user picks.
  • Media Optimization: The LSC plugin effectively uses image and media optimization features such as featured image preload, WebP, quality control, placeholders, lazy load, and more.
  • Advanced Page Optimizations: Unlike other caching plugins, LSC has tons of asset optimization features, you’ll have to be careful with these, though, because most of them can mess up your site.
  • QUIC.cloud: a CDN for LiteSpeed users. Plus, it’s the first CDN service that caches the HTML at the CDN level. However, I don’t think QuiC.cloud is ideal, and I prefer Cloudflare’s APO over QUIC.cloud.

Drawbacks

LSC requires the LiteSpeed or OpenLiteSpeed server to use its caching and many other features. It works with QUIC.cloud, but not so well.

Non-LiteSpeed users get this LSCache warning message

I think the advanced UI is the biggest downside of LiteSpeed Cache. It isn’t easy to keep track of everything because the LSC has many features.

It’s like W3TC because it has complicated settings that make it easy for users to break their sites without understanding what they’re doing.

Another downside is that it doesn’t have a cache-rebuilding feature. It’s not a big deal for big sites, but you may experience difficulties if your site is low-traffic or changes often. Perhaps LiteSpeed Cache is the most popular cache plugin for WordPress because it already has over 5 million users.

It has pros and cons and better alternatives and it is only compatible with LITESPEED or QUIC.CLOUD. Still, LSC is a superb plugin for dynamic and traffic-heavy sites. Plus, LiteSpeed Cache optimizes core web vitals effectively.

2. FlyingPress

FlyingPress WordPress cache plugin

A top-notch cache plugin from Gijo Varghese. FlyingPress is the most reliable cache plugin I’ve found, with advanced features without being complicated. It works with hosts like Kinsta, WPEngine, Rocket.net, Vultr, Flywheel, etc.

This plugin does more than solve issues related to Core Web Vital; for real users, it provides blazing speed. Read my FlyingPress review for more details.

FlyingCDN is FP’s CDN service with extra features like geo-replication, WebP, dynamic images, and edge-optimizing CSS and JS. However, it’s not advanced.

No matter what server environment you choose, whether Nginx, Apache, or LiteSpeed, FlyingPress works seamlessly on any server that supports it.

Here’s why FlyingPress rocks:

  • Easy to use: This is a significant advantage of FP. You can use it even if you’re new to WordPress.
  • Separate iFrame Settings: It comes with custom settings for iFrames, including lazy load and replace YouTube videos with thumb images.
  • Image Optimization: IO isn’t built into most cache plugins. You have to use separate plugins or CDN settings. But FlyingPress has useful image features, like exclude above-fold images, preload critical images, Add responsive images with FlyingCDN, Auto-add width and height, etc.
  • Optimize fonts: Every site needs fonts, but most people don’t optimize them. However, FP has combined and self-hosted Google fonts and displays fallback fonts. Self-hosted users can preload them.
  • Delay JavaScript: JS slows down sites, especially third-party ones like ad networks. FP optimizes JS by executing after user interaction.
  • Remove Unused CSS: I’ve used several WP cache plugins, and most aren’t good at removing unused CSS. However, FlyingPress lets you pick how to load unused CSS after generating critical CSS.
  • Auto-preload: Cache preload is a problem with most plugins, even LiteSpeed Cache. Once settings are saved and other relevant events occur, FP preloads the whole cache automatically.
  • Bloat removal: Most cache plugins don’t optimize WordPress assets. However, FlyingPress has some bloat-removing features.
  • Lazy render elements: This is a cool feature I don’t see in others. This lets you skip rendering elements until they’re needed.

Any Cons?

It’s hard to find cons for FlyingPress, but it may be good if it adds add-ons like object cache (Redis, Memcached) and Varnish.

It would be good to have advanced bloat removal features, like filtering. Database optimization could be improved, but most features are good enough. FlyingPress makes it easy for anyone to optimize their WP sites.

I don’t think you need speed optimization services on most points. Yes, it can’t optimize everything, but it’s usually very effective. The simple user interface is user-friendly; just tick things, and it will do the rest automatically.

3. WP Rocket

WP Rocket WordPress premium cache plugin

Over the years, WP Rocket has been one of WordPress’s most popular premium cache plugins. I used Rocket for a long time, but LiteSpeed Cache and FlyingPress fixed my performance problems faster than WPRocket.

Still, it’s got enough features and works well. I think it’s easy to use, and the support is good, but it is hard to list the pros over the cons of WP Rocket.

My biggest complaint about this plugin is that it’s outdated and hasn’t changed in a while; as per their CHANGELOG, they only fix bugs.

Compared to FP, LSC, or even PerfMatters, WP Rocket does not offer good performance concerning “unused CSS.”. It can seriously damage your site. Rocket doesn’t support local fonts, so it’s not good at optimizing fonts.

I don’t recommend WP Rocket for iFrames and third-party resource optimization. However, I prefer WP Rocket’s add-ons, especially VARNISH and Cloudflare.

In conclusion, WP Rocket is still a reliable caching plugin, and its tutorial is helpful. They’re no longer the top choice for WordPress cache plugins.

I think it’s an abandoned plugin, and those who love WP Rocket should look at FlyingPress instead. Also, they increased the price for all packages.

4. Powered Cache

Powered Cache caching plugin

Powered Cache is an impressive cache plugin with many features that are available in free and premium versions. Even though the free version has enough features to optimize a static site, it has some restrictions.

I’ve tested the premium version and recommend it. Powered Cache isn’t as famous as others, but I think it’s worth mentioning. Besides that, it’s got a few flaws. I’m not impressed with the cache features, but others work flawlessly.

This cache plugin has these useful optimization features:

Features:

  • Basic Options: This section has features like page cache, gzip compression, cache timeout, and mobile Cache.
  • Advanced Options: In this section, you can set custom cookies, cache or ignore query strings, and ignore pages for caching.
  • File Optimization: Even the free version has some handy features like optimizing HTML via dom parser, combining Google fonts and bunny fonts, delaying/deferred JavaScript, etc.
  • Media Optimization: lazy load, disable WordPress embeds, lazy loading for widgets, and remove emoji scripts.
  • Preload: Most cache plugins need the Pro version for preload. But Preload is free with Powered Cache, and it includes extra features like DNS prefetching and pre-connecting external sites.
  • Cloudflare: It’s fantastic that the extension lets you purge the Cloudflare cache from the WordPress dashboard.
  • Object Cache: Powered Cache supports both Redis and Memcached. You don’t have to install an additional plugin for Object Cache.

With Premium, you get features like image optimization, critical CSS, unused CSS, varnish addon, Google/Facebook tracking, etc. Yes, there are more I didn’t mention, but it is better than other popular WordPress cache plugins.

This isn’t just useful; it’s packed with features. I don’t think some features are needed because some feel overkill. The UI needs to be more organized.

Try the free version first, and if it works, try the pro version too. Despite this, I use LiteSpeed Cache or FlyingPress when optimizing WordPress sites.

5. Cloudflare APO

Cloudflare APO - Automatic Platform Optimization

This Cloudflare plugin isn’t a conventional cache plugin. You can still use it to connect to Cloudflare – Automatic Platform Optimization. It’s not practical without APO; you still need a cache plugin with this plugin. However, it enables Cloudflare to serve your whole WordPress site from its edge locations.

Why should you consider Cloudflare APO?

Most CDNs, including Cloudflare, don’t cache HTML on their CDN network.

IMO, that is one of the biggest reasons why, even using a CDN, the TTFB of the website takes longer. APO, however, lets Cloudflare serve your entire site instead of just static pages.

This approach is also known as full-page caching. TTFB significantly impacts Core Web Vital and other page speed measurement scores.

As a result of the long TTFB, the user usually has to wait until the server responds. With this plugin, you can reduce your website’s time to firstbyte.

TTFB means how long users get their first byte of data from the server after a request. If a website is fast, then it has the promptest TTFB.

You should optimize your site’s Time to First Byte before using other optimization tactics. See this screenshot, showing TTFB with and without Cloudflare APO. TTFB test on Speedvitals.com.

An example of a website's TTFB without Cloudflare APO
TTFB without Cloudflare APO
An example of a website's TTFB with Cloudflare APO
TTFB with Cloudflare APO

You can also use the KeyCDN performance test.

APO is an easy way to speed up your site with Cloudflare. It is only compatible with WordPress, costing $5 monthly, even with the Cloudflare free plan.

And APO is free with PRO and other plans. In addition, it is a cheaper CDN option with decent performance at $5, along with other Cloudflare features.

6. Breeze

Cloudways' Breeze free cache plugin

Breeze is a free cache plugin from Cloudways and works well with Cloudways and other NGINX and VARNISH settings. But the optimization features aren’t impressive, and I’d like to see better progress in Breeze. It does not have the same stability as other quality plugins like LiteSpeed Cache, FlyingPress, etc. 

I noticed some improvements with this cache plugin over the past few months, but it still lacks many features. It’s a free plugin for WordPress, and cache features are handy if you host your site on Cloudways with Varnish.

However, its file optimization isn’t ideal, especially with CSS, so you may end up with some troubles. Here are some ideal Breeze plugin features:

Features:

  • Cache Engine: Combined with Varnish, it’s ideal for caching.
  • Cross-Origin Safe Links: This isn’t an optimization feature, but it might be helpful to add a “noopener noreferrer” to outbound links to improve security for access to the website.
  • Move the Javascript files to the footer: This isn’t useful and can crash your site. But if you have JS files in the header and body sections, you can add them to the footer. (Not recommended)
  • Inline JS delay: You can reduce the slowdown of your website due to third-party scripts like ads, analytics, etc.
  • DNS prefetch: I don’t think it’ll improve site performance. But it helps identify external domains and reduce the impact of external scripts.
  • Varnish: Users can control the Varnish cache in Breeze; if you change the content, you can purge the Varnish cache.
  • Heartbeat Control: I don’t think it’s a big deal for most websites, but it can help manage some server resources efficiently.

You can use Breeze to cache your website, which has several other features. Unfortunately, it lacks many core features, like images, fonts, CSS optimization, etc., so you’ll need additional plugins to address them. You’ll also need some knowledge of configuring the Breeze WordPress cache plugin.

7. Cache Master

 Cache Master free cache plugin

As another simple and free cache plugin, Cache Master doesn’t have a large user base or a paid version. However, it has some valuable features.

Users can choose a driver to cache their posts and pages, like Filebase, Memcached, Redis, etc. even set cached pages to show when logged in.

With the cache master plugin, you can display benchmark information, like cached size and load time. You can exclude pages from caching with URLs. 

However, this plugin is unsuitable for advanced users who need aggressive features such as instant preloads, scripts, image optimization, etc. It’s enough for those who just want a simple, free cache plugin for their WP static sites.

To Sum Up

I know there are tons of WordPress cache plugins, both free and paid. I’ll add them if I find anything relevant. Currently, FlyingPress is my top paid cache plugin, and LiteSpeed Cache is my favorite free plugin. Also, I recommend Cloudflare APO because it caches full pages at the Cloudflare Edge Network.

Other WordPress cache plugins: Here’s why I didn’t add them:

  • Swift Performance: It’s great for advanced users who know what they’re doing. It isn’t good for beginners/average users; it’ll be messy.
  • Cache Enabler: This is a simple cache plugin from KeyCDN. But I didn’t see anything unique. It’s basically just another WP Super Cache.
  • Hummingbird: A cache plugin from WPMU. It’s got an attractive UI, and the free version has some features. It feels bloated, and I don’t see the point in using the paid version; good for people who prefer fancy UI.
  • SG Optimizer: Cache plugin for SiteGround hosting; there’s nothing impressive about SG Hosting or this one.
  • W3 Total Cache: Definitely the most annoying cache plugin I’ve ever seen. There are many ways for average users to crash websites.
  • WP Fastest Cache: It is an old plugin, and there is no reason to use it in today’s world. Yes, it’s simple, but there are better ones.
  • WP Super Cache: This is just a cache plugin without any optimization. It’s from the WordPress core team. It’s just a waste of time.
  • SpeedyCache: I have radar for SpeedyCache, but I still don’t want to use it despite the decent free version.
  • 10Web Booster: Similar to NitroPack. It’s expensive, but you get Cloudflare Enterprise, and don’t even try the free version.

Read more: Steps For Copying Text From Restricted Websites

Madushan Bandara
Madushan Bandara

I'm Madushan, a WordPress developer, and it has been over a decade since I became an online entrepreneur. On this website, I write about WordPress, web hosting, web tools, and digital marketing: Get to Know Me

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