How to Create a Caching Strategy for Your Website


A caching strategy is a way of ensuring that content can be found quickly if someone requests it, by storing static files locally. This may also involve sending dynamic files to the client-side for faster retrieval.

Performance optimizations are important in web design, but this type of optimization should not come at the cost of your website’s usability or accessibility. A quick note on timing: You should think about caching strategies at the time you are writing code and developing your site, not after you have completed building out your site. As is the case with most times when you start development, says, usability and accessibility features can be modified later in the process if needed after they are in place.

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Caching strategies come in different forms

There are session-based caches that store data for a user, which only expire when the user closes their browser or logs out of their account, and there are page-based caches that store content for an entire web page. Caching is most effective when it is combined with other optimization techniques used on your site to improve load times.

The caching strategies discussed below will not help visitors who do not have JavaScript enabled on their browsers.

You can also use DOM storage. DOM storage, also known as data-* attributes, may be used in HTML documents to store data that should persist across browsing sessions. When a document contains such an attribute, the browser stores the data in the local database until it has been edited or deleted. The disadvantage of adding such an attribute to an HTML document is that it slows down page loads and prevents certain content from being cached.

CSS Sprites

All of the following caching strategies require that you use a web server that supports media (or application) cache. Some of these strategies will not function properly if certain folders are removed from the server.

CSS Sprites are small images that are saved as one image, that contain several different images. Modern browsers support CSS sprites by drawing the first image that is defined in the CSS instead of splitting it into separate images. This enables you to save time when loading your site, because all of the images are loaded at once, instead of having one image load per page load.

There are two ways to start using CSS sprites. You can either copy each graphic separately onto a single image or use an online generator to do it for you. If you copy them individually, make sure that all of your graphics have the same x-height and width before saving them as a single sprite. After you save your image, be sure to set it as the background of the container.


For those who don’t know how to create sprites, you can use SpriteGenerator 

Note: Note that there is a limit on how many items you can include in one sprite, so check your server’s configuration and test the site after creating the sprite to make sure it is working properly before saving all of your images as one sprite and replacing them with the new image.

There are several ways to check which methods your web server supports.

You can also access them with PHP’s GD extension or manually using Apache’s mod_deflate module.

There are some methods for creating CSS sprites that work with Apache, but you must first know the correct syntax. 

PHP’s GD extension

You can also use CSS Sprites on your server with PHP’s GD extension.

Assume you have a sprite on your files called “images.gif” that contains several images that you want to display on your page, like so:

Assume that the web server supports image compression and supports image sprites. After uploading your file, log in to your account on the web server and read the instructions on how to execute it properly for this site. There are various ways of executing the code, but make sure they are executed correctly before moving forward.

After obtaining the correct code, add this code to the <head> element of your document:

After reloading your site, you should see all of the images on your page.

This is a great optimization technique because it takes only minimal space and loads quickly. The downside is that CSS sprites take up more space and can be difficult to work with when finding and removing old images from your pages.

To use CSS sprites in your website’s layout:

You can also use jQuery to create CSS Sprites using .css() or .image(). You can then add them into the page using .css() or .image().

Using this method, you can load the images after the page is loaded with JavaScript only.

If your site uses a cache plugin like W3 Total Cache or WP Super Cache, it will most likely use a database to keep track of the page cache and any other things it stores. These plugins require that you use a server side language like PHP with an Apache server to function properly. If you do not know how to write code or use these types of servers, contact your web hosting service and ask about adding the required code to your website’s wp-config.php file. This will enable them to create plugins for your website so it can utilize caching features without any major design changes.


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