One of the best ways to accelerate your website and help readers to visit it again is to optimize images in WordPress. It’s not a hard task to do, just follow the below simple steps. Today, I’ll talk about how to optimize your WordPress site images, using simple methods and a plugin that you can install for free.
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Why Optimizing WordPress Images to Load Fast?
New bloggers believe that their images are the last thing to care about because they see no difference in their browsers. They browse thousands of pictures on popular websites without knowing that these pictures are compressed to serve their millions of visitors.
Every blogger should compress all his images, this is not just to save space in their servers. But, the most important thing is to get the fastest loading time for their pages. You will help search engines to crawl your site easily, without issues, but also, you keep returning visitors who find and appreciate the speed pages.
You should know that, even, if you use a service from fast web hosting servers, you still need to optimize your images. Fast loading time will lose its value if you have large and not compressed images.
Big images can take the majority of your page’s total size. As an example, non-optimized photos with large size can take 2MB of the page size, while the rest of the page size is 100 KB. So, a single image can be 20 times the size of your text file. That’s why browsers need more time to load your entire page.
Web pages with such a size can take up to one minute and more in other cases to load. Noe one will find your site good with that slow loading time. It kills the user experience and that affects the conversion and the sales if you have an eCommerce site. This is why you need to compress your images and optimize them.
Optimize Image speed in WordPress
1. Compress images before uploading them
The best available solution to compress images is to install the free Smuch.it plugin. But, to get the maximum performance, you need to compress every image that you upload in Photoshop or any other image editor.
That’s an additional step before letting the plugin compress your uploaded images. So, if you have Photoshop installed on your laptop, open your image and save it “for the web”, it’s an option when you save your images from the software.
If you don’t have that software, use Google and search for free photo editors, or optimizers. You will find lots of tools to use by uploading your photos, or simply, you can download other tools and compress your images locally.
2. Install the WP Smush.it plugin
This is a plugin that will take care of all your uploaded images, it compresses them again using a great method. The best thing is that you don’t need to click any setting on it. All you have to do is to install and activating it, and then, the plugin will compress every image when you upload it.
So, no more work, all images will be served through this plugin and result in faster loading time for your pages.
You can also compress the old images that you haven’t optimized yet. Just click on ‘Media” from your WordPress admin dashboard, and then, select ”WP Smush.it”. The tool lets you scan all your WordPress images, and you can click the start button to compress them. That will take some minutes and even more if you have a large size folder.
If you don’t have the W3 Total Cache plugin, then you need to install and activate it. It’s also free and will cache all your pages before sending them to your visitor’s browsers.
Use MaxCDN (content delivery network), It’s the best service that you can use to make your website faster. It works well with W3 Total Cache, all you have to do is to add your details in the general setting, and this can be done directly from your WordPress dashboard.
Think about your server response time
Your web hosting can affect your blog loading time if it responds slowly to browsers. Make sure you’re not using low-quality hosting, especially the free ones, it’s the worst way to host your blog and verify if your server response is fast. It’s highly recommended that the response time of your server should be less than 200 milliseconds.
If you really want the best premium and fully managed WordPress hosting, then, I recommend WP Engine that will take your site to the next level of speed like never before. Also, it helps ranking better in search engines for the blazing fast response time and the great user experience.