A completely free solution
The Super Page Cache for Cloudflare plugin, offered for free by the company Optimoletakes full advantage of the FREE plan proposed by Cloudflare, which allows you to activate a page cache by entering the page rule “Cache Everything”, which greatly improves the response time of your web server (TTFB “Time To First Byte”) and therefore the loading time of your WordPress site from a visitor’s request. Server response time is a general measure of the responsiveness of a server. It represents the time elapsed between the user’s request and the first byte that the Web browser receives from the server.
For dynamic websites such as WordPress, it was not possible to use this page rule without running into problems, as it was not possible to exclude certain web pages from the cache, including logged-in user sessions or Ajax requests. This is where the Super Page Cache for Cloudflare plugin comes in, allowing the exclusion of certain pages, while taking advantage of the Cloudflare “Cache Everything” page rule.
Benefits of Super Page Cache for Cloudflare
This plugin helps you make your website faster by drastically improving response times when a visitor wants to connect to your website. The plugin will help you cache not only static files (e.g. CSS and JS files, image files) but also HTML web pages generated by WordPress, both on your web server and the Cloudflare CDN.
Unlike most caching plugins that only offer disk-based caching (i.e. cached web pages will be served from your web server), the plugin will cache your web pages and static files on the Cloudflare CDN, one of the most stable and fastest CDNs in the world.
With over 200 CDN locations provided by Cloudflare, your web page will be served from a web server closest to the visitor, rather than sending the request to your web server that may be halfway around the world. This will significantly improve the loading speed of your website, not only for static files but also for HTML web pages.
Moreover, Super Page Cache for Cloudflare is completely ready to use, all you have to do is provide some information about your Cloudflare account, and the plugin will do the rest. But this plugin also offers detailed settings that you can modify to make it work the way you want. That being said, most users will not need to change the settings as this plugin will work fine with the default settings.
Installing Super Page Cache for Cloudflare
From your WordPress control panel, go to the “Plugins” tab, then click on “Add Plugins” and type in the search field “Super Cache For Cloudflare”. Once found, click on “Install now”. Activate the plugin.
But you can also download the plugin from the WordPress.org website. Then go to the “Plugins” tab, then click on “Add New ” and “Upload Plugin”. You must download the Zip file without unpacking it first. Activate the plugin.
Once your plugin is installed and activated, go to the settings, and you will have to indicate three elements:
- the email account you usually use to log in to your Cloudflare account,
- your Cloudflare API key (you can find it by clicking on your Cloudflare profile, then on the “API Tokens” tab),
- the domain name of your WordPress site.
If you are already using a caching plugin like WP Rocket or WP-Optimize, you need to make sure that the page caching feature is disabled on that plugin, as this feature will only be handled by the Super Page Cache for Cloudflare plugin. You will of course be able to take advantage of all the other features offered by WP Rocket, such as Lazyload, page preloading, or cleaning your WordPress database.
Main features of Super Page Cache for Cloudflare
This Super Page Cache for Cloudflare plugin is ready to use, you will not have to make any settings.
– Developed to work perfectly with any Cloudflare plan (whether it is a Cloudflare Free or Pro or Business or Enterprise account).
– Take full advantage of Cloudflare’s “Cache Everything” rule.
– Cachebuster support to ensure that logged-in users do not see cached content.
– The plugin can also use the Cloudflare Worker feature, but this Cloudflare Worker mode is disabled by default because it is not 100% free, unlike the Cache Everything page rule, allowing then to do without Cache Buster.
– Ability to override our default Worker code to add your own custom connection.
– Disk-level backup cache system for requests that have not yet been cached by Cloudflare or have expired in Cloudflare’s cache.
– Ability to customize what you want to cache and what you don’t.
– Automatically purge the cache of posts and pages when you update them.
– Possibility to purge only the HTML pages of your website instead of purging everything (HTML pages + static content).
– Possibility to preload pages based on page urls, sitemaps, the last 20 published contents or the last 20 updates. Preloading can also be done manually, from the plugin settings or through a CRON task.
– Ability to automatically purge the Varnish or OPcache cache when the Cloudflare cache is purged.
– Purge the entire Cloudflare cache using a CRON task.
– Export / import of plugin parameters in JSON.
– Ability to purge the Cloudflare cache from the WordPress admin panel toolbar.
– Ability to exclude a page from caching on individual page/posts bases.
– Super Page Cache for Cloudflare is guaranteed 100% jQuery-free, and this plugin is compatible with all versions of WordPress and all major WordPress themes.
How to set up a free Cloudflare account
Cloudflare is a content delivery network (CDN), which means it stores website content on servers around the world to improve the load times of its customers’ websites, including those with a free Cloudflare account, while providing protection against DDoS, thanks to an impressive network of DNS servers.
1/ Creating a Cloudflare account
To create a free Cloudflare account, you’ll need to go to Cloudflare.com and click on the “Sign Up” button in the upper right corner of the screen. The Cloudflare interface is available in 10 languages: English, French, Spanish, Italian, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Japanese, Korean, German, Brazilian.
You will then be redirected to a registration page where you will need to provide your email address and password. After that, you will have to confirm your email address by clicking on the link sent to your inbox.
Cloudflare also offers a number of paid services, including enhanced cyber-attack protection, Web Application Firewall (WAF), Lossless Image Optimizer, page acceleration for mobile devices, management of your SSL certificates, and domain name registration (Cloudflare Registrar).
Cloudflare’s Domain Registrar allows you to securely register new domains, or transfer existing domains, with no hidden extra fees and at cost. Cloudflare Registrar is committed to never charging its customers more than what must be paid to the registry for your domain.
2/ Adding the domain name of your website
Once your account is created, the next step is to indicate the name of your website. You must enter the root domain of your website. It is possible to register several websites for the same account. Cloudflare will then automatically look up your DNS records.
3/ Nameservers update
Before your domain can start using Cloudflare for DNS resolution, you must update your Nameservers at your registrar (this will be your web host in most cases). If you have purchased your domain name from Cloudflare, this step is unnecessary.
You will have to wait for a maximum of 24 hours for the change to take place (in general, this change takes place after one hour). You will receive an email from Cloudflare confirming that your site is properly configured.
4/ Improving your website’s security
Make sure your site enforces HTTPS connections by using the “Always use HTTPS option” and “Automatic HTTPS rewrites” features. For more details, visit this page. You can also get a free SSL certificate.
5/ Optimize the performance of your website
Speed up your site by activating Brotli compression. It is a lossless data compression algorithm that is developed by Google. You can check that compression is active on your site by visiting giftofspeed.com.
Do you allow bypassing the cache for logged-in users?
Yes, this is even the main objective of Super Page Cache for Cloudflare.
What is the “swcfpc” variable I see at each internal link when I am logged in?
It is a cache breaker. It allows you, while logged in, to bypass Cloudflare’s cache for pages that might be cached.
Is it possible to automatically clear the cache when changing websites?
Yes, you can clear the Cloudflare cache from the Super Page Cache for Cloudflare settings page.
What happens if I delete the plugin?
It’s best to disable the plugin before deleting it, so you can restore all the information on Cloudflare. Super Page Cache for Cloudflare will remove all the data stored in your website’s WordPress database to keep your WordPress installation clean.
Does Super Page Cache for Cloudflare work in multi-site mode?
Yes, but it must be installed separately for each site on the network, as each site requires an ad hoc configuration and may also be part of different Cloudflare accounts.