Have you ever imagined what your website looks like without images and just bombarded with pure text? If you ponder that question carefully, images play a vital role in making your website attractive and effective. Therefore, without web image optimisation them, your site will never work and you may lose your main purpose of web development according to latest trends.
Data have shown that images can take a large part in every website’s data loading and thus, can cause poor speed and browsing experience. It is a big problem that can cause you to lose traffic as well as revenue. The best way to stop and avoid this is to simply optimize your images. It means loading lighter and fewer images as much as possible, then creating a way to load those faster and without the hustle to your website. So, to make things clear and more profound, you can fully rely on the following 5 steps to increase website speed 2021.
Take a look at these strategies and apply them. It will help you make wide changes to your image-heavy website and make it better.
What is the basic definition of image optimization?
In simple terms, image optimization is making your images lighter so that it occupies less space in your server. Reducing their file sizes will make them less heavy to load and improve website performance. Optimizing images does not directly mean that because you are making them lighter, you will compromise on quality in return. The file sizes will decrease but not the whole quality of the images.
Is web image optimisation so essential?
Yes, it is very essential because it is one of the determinants and contributors of a heavy website page, causing your site to load content poorly. Heavy images can result in poor loading and optimizing them is the best option you have to consider.
To wrap it up, when you choose web image optimisation, you get to load lighter images quickly and without your visitors feeling frustrated. It can occupy low server space, and less data consumption into your website while having a smooth loading experience. It will decrease your page loading process and subsequently improve website speed resulting in more leads and traffic.
Do image resizing:
Resizing your image according to what your website requires can help you a lot in improving your site’s poor speed. You must consider doing this because as I have said, your images occupy space, and therefore, the more you want to load a lot of those, the more you are making it hard to achieve a better browsing experience for your users.
Resizing your image does not have to be so complex as altering them using the HTML or in the CSS. All you have to do is to simple resize your image on the server and you are good to go to upload it to the browser. Resizing those means you have to lower their weight by reducing their actual size but the quality is still there. Like for example, you want to upload an image to your website to promote your product. From a 300 x 200 px image, you can resize it into a smaller one. Let us say a 200 x 200 px image instead. When your images have lighter weight, then expect a smooth site loading.
Try to choose a perfect image resizing tool for you to make the work easier. Check these tools out:
- B.I.R.M.E or Batch Image Resizing Made Easy
- Simple Image Resizer
- I Love IMG
Choose the right format for your image:
Another step to increase website speed is through optimizing your images by choosing the right format for them before loading them to your site. The image formats for websites that are commonly used are GIF, PNG, and JPG since it is perfect to use in many use cases. Every website design & development agency recommends their clients to have high-quality images on their website because it attracts users and can generate site traffic. But, the problem is, high-quality photos have large size, resulting in poor loading speed. It means that your site speed is somehow dependent on the quality of your images.
If you have observed, GIF, PNG, and JPG formats have different sizes and quality ranges but visually, they are almost similar in that it seems like they are on the same page of quality. The decision is all yours. Just choose the kind of image format that you think suits you and your visitors.
If you want more visually appealing images that carry smaller sizes for better loading times, then you can also consider using WebP. It is a new image format that combines the best quality of the above-mentioned formats. Plus, it carries a small size of 30% and is mostly supported by modern browsers too.
To help you in compressing your images for a better website speed, here is a list of some image optimizing tools you can look out for:
- Online Image Optimizer
Make your website mobile-friendly:
If you want rank higher, then you must not neglect mobile device users. Why? Because data showed that the main source of website traffic comes from mobile devices taking over desktops or laptop users. If your online business receives excellent mobile traffic than you should plan to create a mobile app with the help of mobile application development service.
Creating a responsive website also means you are creating responsive images for your website. Through this, you can load an image into your browser without worrying less about how it will appear even though accessed in different screen sizes. If you are wondering why this is so, the browser itself will pick the best and the right dimension of the image to load either on small or large screen. Your browser will not just choose random image sizes because it is highly dependent on your layout and the dimension of the device you specify.
The logic between the above-mentioned browser process is the use of `sizes` and `srcset` attributes. To better understand them, read the following bits of information.
● What is the `sizes` attribute used for?
✔ This image attribute provides basic information about the layout of your image.
● What is the `srcset` attribute used for?
✔ These image attributes provide the following lists of the images with specified width on each URL.
Load or upload fewer images as much as possible:
After taking action in resizing and optimizing your images, still it will not work out if you upload many on your website. Doing so will not increase your site speed but will result in an opposite way causing your users the likelihood to have a poor browsing experience.
Thinking of this idea may appear to you that you cannot upload images that you think can help in promoting your brand as much as you want, but that is not the real case. You can reduce the number of images to help your site’s speed improve but it does not limit you to upload elements like buttons and gradients by using CSS. Besides these are good alternatives in to develop your brand and website without worrying about your speed or loading times too much.
If you think you can not eliminate some of your images because these are still important, you can try a strategy known as lazy loading. This strategy means that primary images that need to be seen by the visitors will appear on the screen first. So, those that are not on the screen will load later at the right timing and in a gradual process.
Let us imagine that you have 80 pictures in total and you want to upload it all. But you have set a goal to increase your site’s speed and by doing so, that goal will not be achieved. If you will apply the lazy loading strategy, you will just initially load your first 25 pictures for example. When they start scrolling your site, the remaining images will also load at the same time. Sometimes, visitors get tired of scrolling down the remaining parts of the page and tend to just leave resulting in not fully loading all your images. If this happens, you are not just improving your site’s speed but also saving cost in bandwidth consumption in delivering your images.
So, as a reminder, if you want to apply the lazy loading strategy to deliver your images, consider choosing the best ones that you will initially load since they are the first batch of photos your visitors will see. Also, web design services in India recommends lazy loading strategy in single page website.
Choose the right CDN for quick image loading:
Considering that you already have resized and compressed your images to improve your site speed, what is the next step you have to comply with? It is how those images get loaded quickly and without the hustle even if your visitors are from far away land.
CDNs or also known as Content Delivery Network are proxy servers distributed around the world that help in increasing your site’s speed rate plus improves the loading process of your images. If someone wants to access your site and view your images, it would be a little complicated if that visitor of yours comes from tPhilippines and your website server is located in the USA. You know, the data connection is still limited when hindered by distance. But do not worry because CDN is ready to help you on the way. How? Well, it can store image files at data centers of networks around the globe. So, if someone wants to view or access your photos, it would be easy for them to do as much as the CDN will deliver from those distributed data networks nearest to them.
If you are worried about its cost, you can also try free CDNs that offer the same purpose but because it is free, it has limitations like access to some features too. If interested, try checking this out:
● Amazon CloudFront
● Imperva Cloud Application Security
● Jetpack Site Accelerator
● Varnish Software
Over to you:
No matter how we think of it, web images can take your website down. It may not be automatic but in a gradual process for sure. From that downfall, further costs and loss of potential sales await you. So, your outdated website will impact business revenue. That is why you have to take action now if your images are causing you a heavy website affecting your users.
Upon reading, you have now gathered essential pieces of information on how to optimize your image-heavy website for a better browsing experience for your prospective customers.
By following the above-mentioned techniques, you will have better and higher chances of improving your site. It may not be fully 100% effective and will not eliminate all image-related problems you are worried about so much, still, it can make a significant difference. As we all know, it takes just a few seconds to make your visitors leave you behind and find a better alternative. And if you are giving them a slow loading time, then you are likely giving them a reason to do so. You will not lose something on optimizing your images and finding a better way to load them faster, instead, it will bring you a lot of benefits too. Find a solution as early as now, before it is too late.