Usage statistics published on various websites suggest that many web developers prefer Laravel over other PHP frameworks. Laravel’s expressive syntax makes it easy for developers to quickly write custom web applications. In addition, the platform accelerates the development of custom web applications by simplifying common web development tasks such as session management, routing, authentication, file system management, and unit testing. Laravel developers can further reduce web development by leveraging object-oriented libraries, command line interface, templating engine, ORM system, and queuing services.
Laravel is also constantly evolving to keep up with new trends in web development. For example, Laravel 5 comes with a redesigned directory structure, simplifies method injection and route caching, and supports multiple file systems natively. But built-in functions make Laravel slower than other PHP frameworks. Many developers even choose Lumen – a lightweight version of Laravel – to make their website run faster. Smarter Laravel programmers even optimize the performance of web applications using a number of best practices and tips.
7 Tips to Improve Performance and Speed of Laravel Applications
1) Switch from lazy loading to active loading
The Eloquent Object-Relational Mapper (ORM) makes it easy for Laravel developers to work with multiple databases; perform create, get, update and delete (CRUD) operations; and map object models to database tables. But Eloquent ORM performs database operations based on a lazy loading approach. It does not retrieve data until it is explicitly referenced in the code.
The lazy loading approach negatively impacts website performance due to additional requests being made. Laravel developers can easily speed up a website by switching from lazy loading to eager loading. The eager loading approach retrieves the data along with the associated object models when the query is initially executed. Therefore, the web application can deliver data to the client faster without making additional requests.
2) Compress response data
By working with API-based frameworks, developers improve website loading speed by compressing response data. Laravel developers can easily speed up a web application by compressing the response data. They can take advantage of the Eloquent ORM to retrieve data to be displayed to the end user with a single query. But the extra data will affect website speed and increase bandwidth consumption.
Programmers can easily speed up a Laravel application by compressing the resulting data using view models. The view models will create multiple subsets of the data models and send the data item to the displayed user. Laravel even allows developers to compress response data and transform object model data using robust libraries like Fractal. Programmers can use Fractal to provide a presentation layer and transform the extracted data.
3) Use JIT compiler for Laravel
Often times, web developers use PHP compilers to compile PHP scripts into native machine code. The machine code runs smoothly on a computer without requiring a PHP interpreter. Smarter web developers use JIT compilers to speed up a web application by compiling PHP scripts once. Many programmers even compile PHP code using third party JIT compilers instead of Zend Engine.
Laravel developers can easily speed up web applications using an open source virtual machine like HHVM. HHVM uses a JIT compiler to quickly execute programs written in PHP and significantly improve the performance of a web application. However, HHVM currently supports the core functionality of PHP 7. Developers can use HHVM to speed up a Laravel application without additional time and effort.
4) Run Artisan Optimization Commands
Laravel 5 enables programmers to improve the speed and performance of applications by executing a set of commands. Developers can easily speed up a Laravel application by running commands to optimize the store path, compiling commonly used classes into one file, merging all configurations into one file, creating a route cache file, and compiling view files. Optimization teams also help programmers perform a number of mundane web development tasks.
5) Pre-compiling website resources
In a development environment, programmers make it easier to maintain websites by storing website resources in different files. Additional files often have a negative impact on website loading speed. Laravel developers can easily speed up a website by saving resources in fewer files when deploying an application. Laravel allows developers to pre-compile the efficiency of website resources using craft command line tools.
Programmers can run special commands to compile commonly used classes into a single file and combine configuration files and routes into separate files. Compiling and combining will help programmers speed up website loading. However, the effectiveness of the speed optimization method can differ from one website to the next.
6) Explore ways to implement caching
Laravel developers can easily speed up a web application by caching configuration and routes. They can even run artisan commands to cache the configuration and update the configuration when changes are made. Similarly, they can run the artisan command to move routes to the application controller, cache routes, and update route caches. At the same time, developers may also consider using a robust tool like Redis as a cache and session driver.
7) Remove unnecessary plugins and unused services
When using Laravel, programmers use plugins to add functionality to a web application without writing additional code. But due to these errors, the web application often downloads additional libraries and files. Developers can easily improve the performance of a Laravel application by removing unneeded plugins and trimming required plugins.
They can easily identify the providers loaded with the web application by accessing the config / app.php file. Similarly, they can run artisan commands to trim unneeded files and use composer to reduce dependencies when loading the application. Developers can even disable unused services in the config / app.php file to make the site load faster without affecting its functionality.
Overall, the features and tools provided by Laravel make it easy for programmers to create web applications to suit a variety of business needs. But they should learn ways to speed up the Laravel application to prevent user abandonment and improve the site’s search engine rankings. Laravel developers can easily optimize the performance and speed of a web application by implementing a few simple techniques and best practices.