How to Improve Site Load and Performance
When it comes to website load time and overall speed / performance, here are some things to consider:
Plugins: All of our themes include some required plugins and some recommended plugins that each add specific functionality. Depending on your site however, they may not all be necessary. Additionally it's common to have extra 3rd-party plugins that were added for a specific reason, or included with your hosting account. I would recommend disabling all non-essential plugins and testing to see the difference.
Caching: Using a plugin to add caching can usually make a solid difference in load time. We use this plugin in our demos: https://wordpress.org/plugins/w3-total-cache/
Images: In our themes we have setup many content areas to use specific images sizes, but depending on the images you have uploaded they could still be very large in size. It's best to keep most images under 100kb (0.1mb) and smaller if possible. For large, full width images sometimes they'll be larger, but ideally shouldn't be much above 150-200kb.
Preloader: You can consider removing the preloader feature that appears for pages containing a standard slider. The option is under Appearance > Theme Options > General. It's personal preference- without it the page will appear a bit quicker but things may take a second to full align.
Hosting: All hosting is not created equal. Depending who your provider is, it could certainly be a bottleneck. While WordPress is an amazing platform, it's still going to take more resources than say just a basic HTML site. Our recommendation for low-cost hosting is SiteGround which offers really good value at a low price point. If you are looking for really great performance and you're willing to spend a bit more, then definitely check out WPEngine.
CDN: Another option to consider is utilizing a content delivery network (CDN) - we use KeyCDN which works well with W3 Total Cache mentioned above. The main idea behind a CDN is that a user’s distance to the server on which your site is hosted has an impact on loading time - by using a CDN, your content is hosted not just on one server but is distributed on specifically places servers worldwide to improve speeds for all users. More info here.