I'm building it from scratch and probably a 100 or so of those pages will be ecommerce.

I would like to create meaningful, normal looking permalinks for aesthetics and SEO.

I would really love to use Wordpress for this but I'm concerned about performance issues with this volume of pages.

6 Answers 6


There are some issues in WP permalinks implementation that introduce scaling issues for large amount of pages and some specific permalink configurations, see Category in Permalinks Considered Harmful.

Other than that it is business as usual - use decent hosting, keep plugins setup efficient, add caching and you will be fine.

  • 3
    For what it's worth, the noted issue was resolved in WP 3.3, and is noted at the top of the linked article. Oct 29, 2013 at 21:01
  • The important part to Rarst answer is the comment from Grant, this was fixed. But the permalink rules is always important and a ID inside the permalink is faster, but only measurable.
    – bueltge
    Feb 16, 2014 at 22:48

My advice is to heavily invest a lot of their time in caching your site. I am using WP Super Cache and DB Cache Reloaded on a site that is getting around 15,000 hits a day and it is not struggling whatsoever. Wordpress can handle surprisingly large amounts of traffic with ease.

It's usually the database calls the kill everything on a Wordpress site, so good database and asset caching are essential and achievable with those two plugins.

  • Sorry, but a cache via plugin way is not the first idea to use a site with much accessing and many pages. In this topic is a cache from the server side a faster and better to maintain way. The page count is not the problem and not a good count for a "big" or less side. The accessible of users and the query is more important. But a small hint. I have a lot of isdes with much more pages, +1.000.000 in Multiste, more as 16k every day and much more examples. But always is the way about good hardware a important topic.
    – bueltge
    Feb 16, 2014 at 22:47

The amount of pages is unlikely to be a problem.The amount of users accessing the website is. If you have a lot of traffic, make sure you use static cache plugins and set the garbage collection to a very long time. Only use plugins that you really need, less code means less render time.

  • I see, it might have perhaps 500 unique visitors per day at a guess, less than 1000 anyway, so presumably that's not a lot of traffic to cause issues?
    – Jules
    Jan 14, 2011 at 9:17
  • You should be able to handle 500 an hour without issue. If you do, then it is either your hosting (such as GoDaddy) or some bad plugin or theme hitting the database hard. Feb 16, 2014 at 3:45

I use the category/postname permalink structure and my site contains over 1200 posts and around 100 pages.

It loads in around 1 second on average and i have thousands of images and Javascript for Github Gists on most posts.

There's 2 areas i think are amongst the most important for performance and efficiency.

  1. In my opinion, the best solution to solve performance issues is to host on managed servers. Could never get my site to load in less than 3.5 seconds using different levels of VPS.

  2. I have also found that theme framework selection can make a big difference. After moving many sites over to a more efficient parent theme framework from inefficient themes it was clear choosing a good parent theme framework can make a big difference in many cases.

Poor quality custom coding in your theme and plugins can also cause problems.

It doesn't matter how many posts your site includes, its how many are being loaded, what the page contains, like images, Javascript etc and how your servers handle this as far as how they are managed and configured.


Based on my experience using the most popular caching plugins for WordPress, they don't perform nearly as well as a Managed Proprietary Caching System which includes:

  1. Page Caching
  2. Object Caching - WordPress already includes a caching system which is better managed by proprietary caching than plugins.
  3. CDN management and URL re-writing - Caching plugins like W3 Total Cache rewrite only about 50% of your URLs compared to the best proprietary caching systems.
  4. Browser Headers and Compression

I don't think it will be much of an issue. I have several sites with hundreds or thousands of posts.

Just to clarify though, you'll likely have fewer issues if you use WordPress "Posts" rather than "Pages."

Maybe you know this, it's in the codex, but just in case... Posts and Pages are different in WordPress. Posts will show up in the RSS feed, you can assign categories and tags to them. Pages are meant for your contact page, about page, etc. This is generally how WordPress is designed to be used.

I wrote briefly about this here but it's in the context of creating artists portfolios.

There's a video (recorded a while ago) by someone here. The key thing I would add to the video is that posts show up in reverse chronological generally, but the way you display content can be changed however you like.

And here's an especially good article about it by Lorelle

Good luck...

  • Cheers, can you create a non-blog site using only 'posts', yet have it appear to be a normal static site to the visitor? ie. no dates in urls etc
    – Jules
    Jan 14, 2011 at 22:55
  • yeah, absolutely. Just modify the theme a bit. Feb 5, 2011 at 0:39

Some of the Wordpress sites I manage have more than 50,000 posts. So handling 500 pages should not be an issue at all.

However, website performance depends on factors including:

  1. Web host / type of account (shared, VPS, dedicated etc)
  2. Optimized Wordpress instance (optimized plugins, code, DB etc)
  3. Cache (I recommend using DB Cache Reloaded with Hyper Cache Extended)

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