Images are larger in size than plain text which means they take longer to load and can slow down your website.However you’ve probably heard the saying: “a picture is worth a thousand words”. Images make your content more engaging and interactive.To improve your WordPress website speed, you need to optimize your images for the web. The best way to do this is by using Photoshop or another image editing software before you upload the image to WordPress. This gives you a lot more control on the quality of images on your website.However, not all users are comfortable working with image editing program. For some optimizing every single image they upload sounds like a lot of work.
Luckily, there are several WordPress image compression plugins that can help you with that. These plugins optimize your images by automatically compressing them and using the smaller sized version on your website.That being said, let’s take a look at the best WordPress image compression plugins, and how they stack up in terms of image optimization, performance, and quality.
1. WP Smush
The reason why WP Smush is topping this list is simply that it is the fastest and easiest image compression plugin on the market. This plugin has been voted as the best WordPress image compression plugin because of its amazing features and the fact that it is completely free!
Resize, optimize, optimise and compress all of your images with the incredibly powerful and 100% free WordPress image smusher, brought to you by the superteam at WPMU DEV!
(You say optimise I say optimize…let’s call the whole thing off 😉 )
AWARD WINNING IMAGE OPTIMIZER
Smush has been benchmarked and tested number one for speed and quality and is the award-winning, back-to-back proven crowd favorite image optimization plugin for WordPress.
- Lossless Compression – Strip unused data without affecting image quality
- Lazy Loader – Defer offscreen images with the flip of a switch
- Bulk Smush – Optimize up to 50 images with one click
- Image Resizing – Set a max width and height and large images will scale down as they are being compressed
- Incorrect Size Image Detection – Quickly locate images that are slowing down your site
- Directory Smush – Optimize images even if they are not located in the media library
- Automated Optimization – Asynchronously auto-smush your attachments for super fast compression on upload
- Unlimited & Free – Optimize all of your images up to 1MB in size forever (no daily, monthly, or annual caps)
- Gutenberg Block Integration – View all Smush stats directly in image blocks
- Multisite Compatible – Both global and individual Multisite settings
- Process All Your Files – Smush will process PNG, JPEG and GIF files for optimum results
- Super Servers – Smush images with no slowdown using WPMU DEV’s fast, reliable Smush API
- And many, many, more!
PRESERVE IMAGE QUALITY
Some image compression tools destroy images with as much as a 30% loss in quality. Our servers strip hidden bulky information from your images and reduce file size without affecting the appearance.
2. EWWW Image Optimizer
Just like WP Smush, EWWW Image Optimizer is also a popular WordPress image optimization plugin that helps increase your website’s speed by compressing your images. The increased page speed will improve your rankings on search engines, increase traffic and ultimately help promote conversions.
EWWW Image optimizer helps you improve your website’s reception and popularity using the power of image compression. This lossless WordPress image optimizer allows you to compress your images on the best compression ratio for JPG, PNG, GIF and PDF files. The correct compression is automatically selected based on the file format as well. The plugin is also completely free and while a paid service exists(exclusive for API use only), it is completely optional. The plugin also comes with complete SSL protection for your files.
Moreover, you can also choose between image optimization to be done on your server or a specialized server. Besides, you can bulk optimize images, from a large number of images to entire folders. Furthermore, already optimized images can be skipped as well.EWWW image optimizer is also fully compatible with WP Image editor, WEBP images, WP-CLI, NextGenGallery and many other plugins for images
- Unlimited file size for compression, no speed limits, background optimization
- Free image backups save your original images for 30 days.
- Automatic image resizing with basic retina support and automatic lossless compression.
- Compress images from plugins as well, BuddyPress avatars and images, Meta slider slides, GD bbPress attachments, and user-specified folders.
- CDN support for uploading to cloud servers.
3. ShortPixel Image Optimizer
Image optimization plugins are must-have tools for any WordPress website owner. ShortPixel is one of them and I heard a lot of good things about it lately. So I decided to to put it to the test, and see for myself what it can do. For this, I downloaded some free big images, and I added them to my WordPress Media Library. Let’s see what ShortPixel did to them.
ShortPixel: Installation and use
It took a second to sign-up for me to get a ShortPixel account and get the API key from shortpixel.com. The free monthly account includes 100 image optimization credits. We will use them to optimize those large pictures I told you about.
The easiest way to install ShortPixel is from the plugins section of the WordPress dashboard. I went there, I clicked the ‘Add New’ button, and found ShortPixel. Then, I opened the plugin settings, and I successfully validated the API key received by my email. ShortPixel was ready to work and chew some bytes from my big images.
All process took less than 5 minutes and it was straight forward.
How ShortPixel works?
ShortPixel can optimize images individually from the Media Library, but I didn’t have time to lose, so I went directly to the the ShortPixel Bulk page located under the Media section. I clicked the Start button, and the plugin begun to process my images.
4. Compress JPEG & PNG images
Compress JPG and PNG is a WordPress plugin developed by the developers behind Tinypng, a free online image compression tool. The plugin works in conjunction with the online tool to externally compress your images thus optimizing your images and gallery while having no effect on your overall site speed. The plugin allows automatic image optimization for your newer uploads as well as bulk optimization for compressing older images.
A strong point about this plugin is that it preserves metadata, creation dates, copyright information and GPS location ensuring that you can take full credit for all the images uploaded on your website. Easily monitor your image compression data and statistics using the Dashboard Widget the plugin provides. Furthermore, the plugin is also made to optimize color profiles as well. The plugin converts images to standard RGB color profiles in order to conserve space and maximize compatibility.
- Automatically optimize new images on upload.
- Advanced background optimization to speed up your workflow.
- Optimize individual images already in your media library.
- Easy bulk optimization of your existing media library.
- Automatically resize huge image uploads by setting a maximum width and/or height for more reasonable browser display.
- Display JPEG images more quickly with progressive JPEG encoding.
- Chose to preserve copyright metadata, creation date and GPS location in your original images.
- Supports compression of animated PNG.
- Select which thumbnail sizes of an image may be optimized.
- Multisite support with a single API key.
- WPML compatible.
- WooCommerce compatible (see below).
- WP Retina 2x compatible.
- WP Offload S3 compatible.
- See your usage on the settings page and during bulk optimization.
- Color profiles are automatically translated to standard RGB color.
- Convert CMYK to RGB to save more space and add compatibility.
- Dashboard widget with your total savings.
- Optimize and resize uploads with the WordPress mobile app.
- No file size limits.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
After you upload an image to your WordPress site, each resized image is uploaded to the TinyJPG or TinyPNG service. Your image is analyzed to apply the best possible optimization. Based on the content of your image an optimal strategy is chosen. The result is sent back to your WordPress site and will replace the original image with one smaller in size. On average JPEG images are compressed by 40-60% and PNG images by 50-80% without visible loss in quality. Your website will load faster for your visitors, and you’ll save storage space and bandwidth!