Image Optimization for WordPress

I am often asked which image optimization system I recommend with WordPress. There are many available now and it is important to me that they are fully compatible with WP/LR Sync and WP Retina 2x. Here is a list of them. If you have any problem or anything to say about those optimizers, please let a comment.

First: Don’t use S3 with WordPress

Plugins working with images can’t work/deal with images uploaded to S3. This process is totally not natural to WordPress, is a kind of hack and totally decentralizes the images system without providing an alternative to do something with them through the WordPress API. You shouldn’t use S3 to host images from your WordPress (S3 is awesome, but it has been made for a different usage – NodeJS and Ruby on Rails for instance). WP + S3 is the guarantee that you will have many problems in the future.

Moving your files to S3 will break the process of most of my plugins working with images.

Serve your content through a CDN

My recommendation is MaxCDN. They are simply the best, easy to install, not expensive. Other solutions are CloudFlare or Fastly. None of those solutions require you to alter your WordPress install.

Optimize your Images

Here are a list of plugins that optimize images in WordPress.

1. EWWW Image Optimizer

Works with WP Retina 2x and WP/LR Sync.

The developer is super friendly and enthusiastic, he really does his best for his clients and compatibility with other plugins. The plugin works very well. You can pick a plan here: Plans for EWWW Image Optimizer. The only downside is that the UI looks a bit clunky and it might not super easy to use for the average user.

2. ShortPixel

Works with WP Retina 2x and WP/LR Sync.

The developers worked with me on the compatibility very nicely. I used this plugin and it also worked perfectly for me. It’s simpler than EWWW but has fewer options and no free alternative.

3. SmushIt

Should works with WP Retina 2x and WP/LR Sync.

They contacted me to work on the compatibility in the past, so it should still work. The plugin is really simple, works well. I feel like it reset the optimized status of the images from time to time. Much simpler than EWWW, quite similar to ShortPixel actually.

4. Imagify

Waiting for more testing…

I recommend you to use WPEngine or SiteGround. They are both excellent hosting services and work perfectly with all my plugins.