Images are indispensable rich media for a website, no matter the content: news, eCommerce, blogging, social networking, etc. Unfortunately, today’s standards of site speed and search engine ranking prioritize load times alongside quality content. And if you have to compete with another content provider, but your site load speed is abysmal, search engines will punish you for it by lowering you in the rankings. Google, Yelp, Bing, et. al., expect you to not only serve quality content, but to serve it quickly and optimized for all devices.
The good news is with some free plugins for your WordPress site, you can get on top of these issues without having to manually fix each and every image on your site, which in some sites could mean upwards of thousands of images. Try utilizing some of these plugins to assist your efforts in getting your beautiful image content optimized for the new standards of today’s mobile web.
Optimizing Images Quickly with EWWW Image Optimizer Plugin
Whether your site has ten or ten thousand images, each and every one of those image files can benefit from this plugin. Images often have a lot of unnecessary meta data applied to them, and can often squeeze some more compression on top of that. EWWW Image Optimizer automates this with one click.
EWWW optimizes images that are already in your WordPress Media Manager. It can also convert your images to file formats that will provide the greatest level of optimization. You can use lossy compression algorithms for your JPEGs and PNGs, to achieve huge speed improvements without compromising your image quality.
You can even selectively include or exclude specific folders of images if you require some images to be their full quality, rich meta data versions.
The best part about this plugin is the bulk optimizer. It’s quite literally one click, and your entire site will be compressed, one image at a time. Just set and forget, take a lunch break and when you return your work is done. We love this plugin for its ease of use.
Check out the optimizer plugin here.
Tag Your Images Easily with SEO Friendly Images Plugin
Good search engine rankings for your image content require you to appropriately tag your image data with alt tags. Alt tags are key determining factors in serving up images for related search terms. This can be a huge chore if you have to go back and do this for thousands of images. The SEO Friendly Images Plugin can do the heavy lifting.
All you have to do is install! The plugin automatically begins adding the missing content (alt, and title) tags for your images. All you need to do is setup some basic rules for these tags, and the plugin takes care of the rest. This is a massive time-saver for image heavy sites that desire improved rankings for their image data.
Take a look at this helpful plugin here.
Faster Load Times with Smaller Thumbnails: Regenerate Thumbnails Plugin
Sometimes you may want to shrink your thumbnail sizes for your images for even better load times. Image thumbnails are set in your WordPress admin area in the Media sidebar link under Settings. But it’s not enough just to change image sizes here. You will have to reupload your images for the system to recreate these thumbnails for the new settings.
This is where the Regenerate Thumbnails plugin comes in. When you are happy with your new sizing for your image thumbnails, you can use this plugin to resize each and every thumbnail on the site with one click. This plugin is essential for when you are making design changes or image size changes on your site. Additionally, if you ever decide to change WordPress themes, this plugin can be crucial to quickly fix image sizes that may not conform to your new theme dimensions. It’s easy to use and fast at what it does.
Check out the regenerator plugin here.
With the help of these plugins you can quickly manage your media. This is a godsend if you are dealing with thousands of image files. Compressing countless hours of work in an image editing program to a few minutes of mouse clicks means you can move on to more important tasks you need to maintain with your site, like creating quality content for your users, or going outside to collect even more photos to share with your audience. Leverage WordPress to help you avoid the tedium and drudgery of manual image manipulation, and get back to creating fantastic content for your website users.