WordPress does a great job these days at creating multiple versions of an image during the upload process. It also displays the correct HTML code so that the browser knows which version makes sense to display within your theme based on the user’s screen size.
Where it falls short though, is in optimizing the original uploaded image. And the associated thumbnails. So, if it isn’t already optimized using manual techniques, this image could, and often does, negatively affect user experience on a website.
Introducing ShortPixel service/plugin
ShortPixel is an image optimization service, that silently intervenes during the image upload process (and optionally the thumbnail creation process). Its function is to be certain that any uploaded image is optimized, using complicated algorithms, before it hands it off to WordPress to create the different sized thumbnails defined by your Iografica Themes theme. It can also jump in and save optimized versions of the newly created thumbnails as well. ShortPixel is an image optimization service, that silently intervenes during the image upload process. See how to start optimizing your WordPress images with the ShortPixel plugin. This process is largely invisible to you, the WordPress admin.
Already have images uploaded? That’s OK, ShortPixel will optimize all previously uploaded images en masse!
ShortPixel creates images that are smaller but that look like the originals
While image backups are turned on by default when using ShortPixel… just in case, the optimized image looks near identical to the original anyway, but with an often significantly reduced file size.
Why is this important?
I won’t bore you with green benefits of saving space and bandwidth, but I would like to discuss the speed benefits achieved when your WordPress pages and posts have optimized images embedded. With the growing number of mobile users, speed is becoming increasingly more important, and truth be told, many websites are slow even when viewed on desktop computers with fast hardware and high bandwidth. Well, when an image is optimized, as pointed out, it sports a smaller file size on disk. Regardless of size though, when a web page calls for an image from a server, that image has to be downloaded to the device being used to browse the web page, at least on the first visit. Now, the smaller the image, the faster it will download.
Improved SEO, user experience, and conversions with faster web pages
Faster pages get better rankings in the search engines, all other things being equal. Additionally, faster pages keep visitors on the website longer statistically. The longer the visitors stay, the more likely they are to achieve your desired call to action.
So, with the smaller size of your ShortPixel optimized images, coupled with the efficient codebase of your Iografica Themes theme, you can expect to see more traffic (from the SEO boost), and higher user retention (from the faster page loads). And as a bonus, higher conversions are often a natural result.
Best of all, you can set it and forget it! You can download the plugin for free on WordPress.org