Page speed plays a vital role in your SERPs and directly affects your conversion rate. Fast loading websites result in better user experience and significantly improve conversion rate. That’s why it’s crucial to optimize certain areas of your WordPress website for better ranking and more traffic.
Every time you hear a lot about the significance of speed in SEO so, let’s actually find out how important is it. Below are some of the finding from KissMetrics survey:
- A 1-second delay in page response can result in a 7% reduction in conversions.
- If an e-commerce site is making $100,000 per day, a 1-second page delay could potentially cost you $2.5 million in lost sales every year.
Also, according to Matt Cutts from Google:
Accelerating websites is extremely important. Faster websites mean satisfied customers. PageSpeed becomes significant for rankings.
Image compression is one of the areas which significantly improve your page speed. That’s why there are tons of image optimization plugins for WordPress out there. Recently, I got to try this incredible new image optimization plugin called WPCompress.
WPCompress provides lossless image compression packed with some awesome features and capabilities. It’s FREE, fast, and produce impressive results. After using it for a while now, I am pretty excited to share my experience. So, let’s get started.
WPCompress is a bold new player in the field of image compression in WordPress. Launched in the mid of January 2018, it currently has 1000+ downloads and has evolved to version 2.3.5. WPCompress does an incredible job in lossless compression of images at a quite fast pace.
Primarily, there are two types of image compression i.e.
👉 In the lossy compression, image quality/data is compromised for size. While in the lossless compression, there’s no loss of image quality. In fact, image data is re-written in a different format and unnecessary metadata is removed.
WPCompress provides three types of image compression – Lossless, Intelligent, and Ultra.
✅ Lossless compression mode is self-explanatory.
✅ Intelligent mode is kind of hybrid mode which utilizes both lossy and lossless compression.
✅ While in the ultra mode, the ratio of lossy compression increases further.
Intelligent mode is something unique to WPCompress. I have been using it for most of the time and it produced awesome results. 💯
The pricing strategy of WPCompress has been devised quite intelligently. It is free for first 1000 images with all basic features. After that, you have two options. You can either purchase images credit priced at $1/1000 images or go for a monthly subscription.
In monthly subscription, there are three tiers – Bronze, Silver, and Gold. It ranges from $1/month for 1000 images to $3/month for 10,000 images for unlimited websites. If you need more credits, you can contact the support for custom packages. 💯
One thing important here is, in the subscription model, you get all additional features such as night owl, lightspeed, and double backup time. However, if you opt for purchasing credits you would not get those features.
You can also earn some power-ups by referring WPCompress to your friends. The referral system also works uniquely. It unlocks the power-ups on referring WPCompress to your friends. You can earn free credits, premium features, and even lifetime license. 🍕
WPCompress is packed with some incredible features out of the box. It’s not possible to describe every aspect of WPCompress here. However, I will go through some major features of WPCompress.
→ Images Backup
You get free unlimited backups of your images which are backed up on the WPCompress servers. So, in case if you are not satisfied with the optimized image, you can always restore it. Restoring images is just a single click away in WPCompress. Just click the restore button in front of your image in the library and WPCompress will do the rest.
If you have a subscription, your images will be backed up for 1 month. So, you get a longer time span to restore your images. You can even purchase cloud storage to have a permanent backup of your images.
→ Bulk Compress/Restore
With WPCompress you can compress/restore images in bulk with a single click. You can also exclude specific images in bulk compression. To do so, go to Media > Library in your WordPress dashboard.
Click on the drop down of Compress button in front of the image and select Exclude. This way, these images will not be compressed in the bulk compression operation.
→ Secure HTTPS Communication
Now, before I explain this feature, let us understand how WPCompress works. The team at WPCompress have built a WordPress oriented image compression API. You get a personal API key to communicate with WPCompress servers and get your images compressed. This whole communication is secured via HTTPS connections.
→ No Size Limit
Unlike other image compression plugins, there is no maximum size limit on images. You can compress any size of an image with WPCompress. I have tried up to 15 MB image and it worked like a charm. It can compress JPG, GIF, and PNG files. If you use any other format, it would be automatically excluded.
→ Auto Resize Large Images
If you want to automatically resize images above a particular size, you can set a threshold value for that. All Images exceeding the size would be automatically resized to match the threshold value.
By default, its value is set to 2048 px, which is fine. With this feature enabled, you can upload high-resolution images without resizing and get them cropped automatically.
→ Preserve EXIF Data
With WPCompress you can even preserve EXIF data – shutter speed, ISO etc. – of images while compressing them. So, if you’re a photographer or want to share EXIF data, then you can use this plugin without worrying about it. By default, it is set to enabled, you can disable to save more data.
🎩 WPCompress Support
Support of a product plays a key role in its success or failure. Bad or no support can result in loss of many potential customers. On the other hand, quality support can result in increased number of customers.
I was using CDN and had some issues while compressing the images. I went ahead and reached out their customer support. Support was pretty quick and provided detailed help in resolving the issue. I must say, they’ve got one of the best support team.
You can view the screenshot below:
Now, one of the must check things while considering a product is its documentation. Detailed documentation shows the concern of the developers for its users. It saves tons of time used while writing emails back and forth.
If you look at the documentation of WPCompress, it’s pretty well organized. It contains almost all the answers that you need. In fact, I went through the documentation to know about supported image types and backup duration.
🔥 Getting Started With WPCompress
Now, let us move on to setting up the WPCompress plugin. It is pretty easy and straightforward. Follow the quick steps below to get things ready for this plugin.
→ Step #1
The very first step is to download the plugin and install it. Go to your WordPress dashboard and navigate to Plugins > Add New. Select the .zip file of WPCompress, install, and activate the plugin.
→ Step #2
After the basic plugin setup, you activate the plugin subscription. For this, you’ll need an API key. To get an API key, either go to their site and create an account or go to WPCompress through sidebar menu.
It will ask your email address. So, enter a valid email address and click on Sign Up to get the API key.
→ Step #3
Now head back to your plugin dashboard. Enter the API key and click Activate button to activate the subscription.
→ Step #4
Now, your plugin has been activated successfully. Next step is to compress the images. Go to Media > Library and switch to list mode to start compressing the images. Note that, the WPCompress only works in list mode. Because it shows button in front of each image to compress it.
To compress an image, simply click on Compress button in front of it. It will take a couple of seconds to complete the compression process. Once done, Compress button will change to Restore button. Which is pretty self-explanatory.
🎯 Bulk Compress Images
Now let us see how can you bulk compress images in WordPress using WPCompress plugin. This intuitive feature is just one click away. Follow the steps mentioned below:
→ Step# 1
The very first step in bulk compression is to exclude the images which you don’t want to compress. To compress all images simply skip this step. To exclude the images, go to Media > Library in WordPress dashboard. Click on the Exclude button in the drop-down in front of the image.
→ Step #2
Next step is to execute the bulk compression operation. To do so, go to Media > Bulk Compress in your WordPress dashboard. Click on the Compress button to start compressing images. While it compresses, you can do other tasks, just don’t close the tab.
📈 Compression Results
To check out the compression results, I turned on the Intelligent mode and tested the plugin on different image sizes. For small images, the response was pretty quick and the difference was negligible. So, I went ahead and tried on large sized images.
I tested the plugin on a 15.11 MB sized image, it was reduced to 278 KB only. It was mind blowning compression. It resized the image to 2048 pixels wide because I had put a resize limit. Apart from that, the entire optimization procedure was handled by WPCompress.
Visually there was no major difference in the two images. Only they differ in size and the compressed image was little less crisp. But the difference in size was massive. Check out the image before and after.
🙈 Free WPCompress Credits
Team WPCompress was kind enough to provide free credits exclusively for WPCouple Readers. Use coupon code WPCOUPLE to claim 3,000 FREE credits.
🎯 Final Thoughts & Recommendations
WPCompress delivers what it promises and provides incredible compression results. It’s super easy to use and very reasonably priced. You got to pay only when you use. Also, it ‘s much better than its competitors when you look at the pricing model. WPCompress published a detailed comparative study on their site.
🤔 While WPCompress is definitely one of the must-have plugins, it might not be getting the desired audience which it truly deserves. I liked the way they have set up their referral system to increase their users. But still, the team at WPCompress need to polish their marketing strategy to effectively grow their user base. They can set up their Twitter account and make it viral.
📌 Also, when I opened their 404 page, the web layout for this page went distorted. The main menu disappeared and went blurred. Here’s a link to its screenshot → http://on.ahmda.ws/q5PE.
👉 One of the common mistakes that I have seen many plugin developers doing is using colored icons in WordPress menu. Though it differentiates from the rest of the menu it doesn’t count for a good user experience. I will recommend the read Never Build Colored Icons/Menus in WordPress by Ahmad to the developers.
So, that’s all about WPCompress from my end. Do you use any image compression plugin on your site? How was your experience? What do you think about WPCompress? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!
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