How to optimize images.
Next to reducing the amount of images your site uses and lazy loading images, one of the ways you can increase page speed for your website is to optimize images and photos for the web by reducing their file size to the absolute minimum while still maintaining high quality to present the images to your visitors. To see if there are images being loaded on your website that can be optimized you can run your website through our speed test. This can be done through various ways which are listed below.
Best performing free online image optimizer tools
There are many online tools which you can use to optimize images. Some are better than others, there is a lot of difference in compression rate between the various online tools available. After checking out the compressors for all the available image formats, here is a list of great (in file size reducing percentage):
– The JPEG Compressor for JPG’s/JPEG’s
– The PNG Compressor for PNG files
– GIF Reducer for static GIF files
– EZGIF for animated GIFS.
– Online Convert to convert images to different file types (for a decrease in file size).
Best free image optimizer software
Image optimizer software can come in handy, especially when you want to bulk optimize images for the web. After testing many programs we can come to the conclusion that most of the available software is not that good. Many of them only optimize images with an average rate of 1%-2%. However, there are a few exceptions which can optimize images with as high as an average rate of 40%-50%:
– FileMinimizer Pictures (by far the best optimizer for JPG files)
– FileOptimizer (best optimizer for PNG)
– Radical Image Optimization Tool (RIOT) (best for GIF)
There are many many other free software tools for optimizing images available on the web. However, after using all of them the above three had the best results for the particular file types mentioned. If you come across a better tool for a file type leave a messageand if it is better it will be listed here instead.
If you use WordPress for your website you can use various plugins to speed your website up. One of those types of plugins are image/photo optimizers which can automatically optimize all the images your site uses with a simple click on a button. One of the best and most used plugins for optimizing images in WordPress is EWWW Image Optimizer which can automatically optimize all your Media Library image files to a minimum while still maintaining their original quality. It does so by optimizing JPG’s and transforming files to the best file type(usually PNG). Although EWWW is a good (if not the best) for most WordPress sites there are other plugins which you can also use like WP Smush.It or CW Image Optimizer.
If you are in the possession of a Photoshop copy you should make use of the options it gives you to save images in their smallest form possible. You can do this by saving your image in different file types (jpg, png or gif) to see which file type gives you the smallest file. Photoshop also gives you the ability to adjust the quality of your image. Mess around with this option to save your images in the smallest size possible.
Convert GIF to PNG
As a last word it may come in handy to mention that in general the best practice for minimizing GIF files is to convert them to PNG files, unless they are animated GIF’s. PNG files generally are better for web performance as GIF files. You can do this by using a good PNG converter tool like this one or, when you use WordPress, by using a plugin which automatically does this for you.