Are you getting the Efficiently Encode Images error from Google Search Console or Core Vitals?

When it comes to making a website, images play a critical role in attracting and capturing visitors’ attention. They deliver a contextual message that enhances the user experience and answers the information the visitor needs. But in many cases, we use unoptimized high-resolution images, especially for WordPress sites. That’s something that needs to be fixed by each website owner. Because large images slow down your site, annoying the visitors by creating a poor user experience. So bringing the images to the correct size is critical for making your site fast. There are many ways to reduce the image size on your site, and one of them is known as efficiently encode, or encoding images.

This article will explain everything about efficiently encoding images, how they affect your site speed, and how you can encode images to display them on your site properly.

What does it mean to encode images efficiently?

Encoding images is generally referred to as image optimization for reducing the image size to a level that renders after and consumes less cellular data. So basically, encoding images is a way to compress an image to a smaller size without degrading its perceived quality. You can compress the images either using a plugin or manually, both ending up with a faster load time.  

Typically the compression level ranges between 1 – 100, from which 100 is considered as the best quality. Google Lighthouse scans all images with a compression level of 85%. Usually, images with a quality level of 75-90 are considered safer to deliver. At these levels, the images render faster, therefore, accelerating your site speed and performance. 

Efficiently Encode Images

Why do you need to encode images efficiently?

We know images are critical for making your site more engaging and interactive. But they are larger than standard text, taking a long time to load as compared to text. The larger the image size, the slower the page speed. When a visitor visits your page, the server takes more time to download images to show on the screen. Consequently, the visitors spend more time waiting for the images to be rendered. And when your website has multiple photos, it becomes even slower and frustrates the user and Google. 

To improve the page speed and performance, we need to encode or compress images to a size that renders them as quickly as possible. So when images are compressed, they take less space on the hard drive and it’s possible to create image-rich sites without using much bandwidth or storage space, making them faster. One of the significant advantages of optimizing images is that it allows you to retain the quality of the image while reducing the file size. So you can resize images without disrupting the image quality. Google uses speed as one of the ranking factors, so by compressing images you can improve your SEO and rank high on google. It also helps to create a faster backup. Collectively, It is an ideal way to provide a better user experience and attract more and more visitors to enhance your business. 

It is important to note that images make up a lion share of your speed issues and your sites overall weight, so make sure to optimize them for accelerating your site speed.

How to efficiently encode images?

Now you have seen how efficiently encoding images is something that you should not ignore. It is crucial for accelerating site performance and speed. Let’s take a look at how you can efficiently encode images. 

It is pretty easy and effortless to encode images. You can encode images both manually and using a plugin. Here I have written some of the best ways to compress images that wouldn’t disappoint you. 

Let’s get started. 

Compress Images to 85%

One of the best ways to efficiently encode images is to compress them up to 85%. The best way to compress your images is by using Photoshop or any image editing software. You can compress images with more control on image quality. But if you don’t want to work manually, thankfully, there are some incredible WordPress image compression plugins that can help you fix this audit. These plugins optimize your images automatically and compress them to the best possible size to accelerate your site performance. Let’s take a look at some of the best plugins that improve your site speed and image size. 

1. reSmush.it – reSmush.it, a free API that optimizes photos, is now live. The most popular CMSs, such as WordPress, Drupal, and Magento, have been implemented with reSmush.it . Moreover, reSmush.it is the most used image optimization API with more than 7 billions images already treated, and is still totally Free of charge !

2. EWWW Image Optimize – Do oversized pictures give you the urge to say “eeww”… Let EWWW Image Optimizer help you make your site quicker, reduce your bounce rate, and improve your SEO. However, the most importantly, make your visitors happier so they will be more likely to return.

3. TinyPNG – JPEG, PNG & WebP image compression – Reduce page load time by optimizing your JPEG, PNG, and WebP pictures. This plugin automatically optimizes all of your photos by working with the popular compression services TinyJPG and TinyPNG.

4. ShortPixel Image Optimizer – It’s a user-friendly, easy-to-use, comprehensive, stable, and frequently updated lossy image compression software that’s been created by a helpful staff.

5. WP Smush – The incredibly powerful and 100% free WordPress image smusher, brought to you by the superteam at WPMU DEV, will optimize images, activate lazy load, resize them, compress them, and enhance their Google Page Speed!

compress images

Lazy Loading Images

Bonus – Lazy loading is an ideal way to save loading time by preventing the browser from rendering unnecessary assets. By lazy loading the offscreen images, you can incredibly increase your age speed without disrupting the image quality.  Lazy Load is an excellent plugin that efficiently encodes images and fastens your site speed. 

Replacing animated GIFs with video

Bonus – Since GIFs are larger in size, they slow down the loading speed, therefore, take more time to show on the page. Replacing the GIFs with animated videos significantly reduces their massive size and accelerates your page speed. You can convert the GIFs into Mp4 or Webp to reduce their size and save big on the user’s bandwidth. 

Using Webp images

Another efficient way to reduce the image size is by converting the JPEG and PNG images to Webp images. WebP images are considerably smaller than JPEG and PNG images; therefore, shifting to them reduces page size and accelerates speed. It is an excellent replacement to minimize file size without compromising on quality. Youtube found that converting images to WebP can decrease the load time up to 20% and for facebook up to 80%. Moreover, this format offers both lossy and lossless styles.

The Bottom Line

Optimizing website images is an ideal way to increase site performance and speed. If you want your site to be ranked top at google, you should optimize the image size on your site. Above are some helpful strategies you can put into practice to encode images on your site. They are accommodating and work incredibly. So start working on image optimization and accelerate your page with a few clicks. It is crucial always to upload images with a proper size. Don’t upload images with monstrous sizes that kill the site loading speed. 

Try out these hacks to optimize images, and let me know if you have any problems. I would love to help you sort the problem. 

Need Help?

Know your websites slow and worried about Google reducing your visibility due to image issues scripts and other speed-related errors. Book in a call to talk to us today or book one of our free speed checks or paid speed audits.

Josh Morley

I have been designing & marketing websites since 2013. I specialize not just in WordPress web design but also in online marketing. SEO, PPC, keyword research, link-building and most recently on lead acquisition for local businesses.

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