Everyone knows that images are some of the most important aspects of a well-designed website. But the size of those image files can have a huge impact behind the scenes, affecting how fast your website loads. The bigger the size, the longer it takes to load on the page when your user visits your website. Visitors want information as fast as possible, which means that waiting for large images to load can lead to a less than satisfactory user experience.
So how do you fix this problem?
The simple answer is to compress your images. The goal of compression is to reduce the size of the file while retaining the best possible quality of the image. This can be done manually using programs like Adobe Photoshop, or automatically with programs like TinyPNG, Compressor, and JPEG Optimizer. If you’re using WordPress, plugins like ShortPixel, Smush.it, and WP Smush make quick work of compressing the files to an optimum size for your website, and can save you a lot of time in the process.
Another consideration for the size of an image file is the type of file you save it as. The 3 most common file types for the web are JPG, PNG, and GIF.
- JPG – JPG files are the smallest file type because they remove all the unnecessary detail from the file. JPG is usually great for photographs.
- PNG is good for both photographs and line art, especially if there are a lot of colors involved. PNG is typically used for images with transparent backgrounds. The file size of a PNG usually higher than that of a JPG.
- The GIF file type is not a good choice for photographs but can be used for line art and images where there aren’t many colors. Moving images are saved in GIF format.
As a general rule, it’s best to stick to JPG or PNG for the fastest loading times and best quality whenever possible.
While understanding how image size impacts your website experience, it can sometimes be a bit overwhelming to learn. Of course, that’s why many people hire professionals (like us!) to create and optimize their website. If you have questions about your pictures, your website’s load time, or image editing in general, please reach out to us! We’re here to make your digital marketing efforts “EZY” – give us a call or connect on social today.