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Agencies that build and host dynamic, high-volume, high-traffic WordPress websites are tasked with delivering fast loading speeds for their clients.
Their clients might be eCommerce websites, community websites, or membership websites with:
- massive amounts of images that keep changing
- many concurrent visitors
- many simultaneous transactions
All these images can be hard to maintain and can significantly slow down the loading of the website. For clients, though, faster loading speeds mean credibility.
Fast-loading sites keep customers satisfied, supporting conversions and sales. A fast, responsive site will reduce the number of abandoned shopping carts and, perhaps most importantly, lead to higher search engine rankings.
But images use a lot of bandwidth, which in turn slows down webpage loading speeds. Research has shown that:
- 65% of a webpage weight is composed of images.
- 47% of users move on if a website takes more than 3 seconds to load.
Here is the hard truth: images are an indispensable part of your content, but they can hurt website performance if you're not careful.
The Solution: Image Optimization Plugins
Image optimization used to take a long time, but not anymore. WordPress image optimization plugins optimize your images by automatically compressing your images and using smaller versions for your website. They maintain the original quality of the image and deliver the image in the right format, resolution, dimensions, and size.
What to Look for When Choosing Image Optimization Plugins
Here are some questions and prompts to keep in mind while selecting an image optimization plugin.
A good image optimization plugin will compress your images to reduce the file size. A superior image optimizer does it live, on the fly, when visitors are on the page.
- Does it offer compression while preserving the quality of the images?
- Can you determine your own optimization settings?
- Can you set your own compression levels?
- How does it prevent over-compression?
- Does it save original image files?
- Can it do compression on autopilot?
- Does it offer WebP files?
Performance and Back-End
An optimization plugin is only as good as the performance gains it delivers!
- Does it offer cloud storage services?
- Does it work with a reputable CDN?
- How much website space does it save you?
- Does it vastly improve image loading speed and website loading times?
You want to be sure that compression and optimization won't ruin the quality of your images.
- Does it compress a high percentage of the image size?
- What kind of file size is left afterwards?
- Does it save original files in the cloud?
Consider the admin interface of your optimization plugin—an easy-to-use plugin will be used more and so will work better.
- Does it offer features like a centralized dashboard to manage the client’s websites?
- Does it offer personalized monthly reports?
WP Compress fulfills all these requirements for an excellent image optimization plugin.
What Is WP Compress?
WP Compress is an image optimization plugin for WordPress. There are two versions of WP Compress:
Local Version: Performs compression locally, optimizes images locally, and saves on website storage space on the local server.
Live Version (the main version): Compression is done live, with up to 333x faster image load speeds of up to 7 milliseconds!
Once a visitor is on the page, it is automatically optimized on the fly, loading fast for existing visitors and new visitors. This means higher conversion rates and lower bounce rates, with fast speeds helping keep users on the page.
Using a top-rated CDN in the background, WP Compress makes websites available to users at lightning-fast speeds.
WP Compress is focused on the needs of agencies that build and host websites. A single WP Compress account can be used on unlimited websites.
Live compression means every time a new visitor comes to the website, it is instantly optimized and made available to them in up to 7 milliseconds, even when there are already other visitors on the website.
Under the Hood of WP Compress
WP Compress consists of the following components:
- plugin component that can be downloaded on all the websites your agency manages
- cloud storage service for original images
- centralized management portal where you can configure the optimization of all websites your agency manages
WP Compress Features
Incredible image optimizations paired with the following advanced features will give you 333x faster image loading speeds.
All your images are securely compressed, resized, and saved in the cloud so as not to use up your local server resources, while saving on storage space and ensuring faster loading speeds. Only optimized images are loaded on your server.
Adaptive images are responsive images that are properly sized to be viewed on different kinds of devices. WP Compress generates and loads these images based on the actual devices they will be viewed on. This, combined with adaptive images and automated WebP delivery, is a combination that results in up to 333x faster image loading speeds of 7 milliseconds, with especially noticeable effects on mobile devices.
You can generate WebP images for each of your optimized images. Just toggle Generate WebP image, and it will be created and served to web browsers that support the WebP format.
Lazy loading ensures that only pictures that are currently visible on the user device are loaded. This saves bandwidth for users and is one of the many methods that WP Compress uses to bring websites to users at lightning-fast speeds.
Once images have been compressed, they are automatically resized.
The WP Compress algorithm is designed to prevent over-compression in order to maintain the original quality of the image.
Unlimited Cloud Backups
Backups of original images are always safe (and offloaded to the cloud to save server space).
Customers will be able to access client websites anywhere in the world in seconds. Whether they're in Brazil, Oslo, Madrid, or Johannesburg, they will all have the same loading speeds.
Say your client is based in New York, and their customer is based in Rio de Janeiro. Their customer will access the website content not from a server in New York but from a cloud server in their own city.
To make this happen, WP Compress uses a highly reputable global content delivery network, meaning that the pages and images are accessed from the cloud server closest to the location of the customer.
A lot of thought has gone into how hosting management works. And since WP Compress is made with agencies in mind, it comes equipped with tools that enable you to easily manage multiple websites.
You can remotely manage all websites from a central portal to configure settings, bulk compress, and view reports.
The agency can assign monthly quotas to each client’s website based on hosting plans they already have.
Custom Branded Reporting
You can generate and send detailed reports for each website account, such as a web report, email report, or PDF report. Also, you can put your own logo on the report.
Hide From WordPress
You can fully hide WP Compress from your clients’ websites and take credit for lightning-fast load times.
How to Get Started With WP Compress
Using WP Compress is completely effortless once it's set up. Just paste in your API keys to activate, hit start, and optimization is always done automatically. You don't need to lift a finger.
Now I will show you how to set up and use WP Compress.
1. Register for a WP Compress Account
Go to the portal, sign up, and you will be sent a confirmation email. After you've confirmed your email, you will be asked to log in, and you’ll be taken to your dashboard.
2. Add a New Website
Click Add a Website and you will be taken to this screen. You need to have a WordPress website for you to link to WP Compress. You also need to select a maintenance plan.
(Note that a free WordPress.com account will not work with WP Compress because it doesn't allow plugin downloads.)
3. Install the Plugin
Click Download Plugin to download the WP Compress plugin. Go to your WordPress site and upload and install the plugin. (See our complete guide to installing plugins for help with this step.) Alternatively, you can find and install the WP Compress plugin from the built-in plugin search engine in your WordPress admin pages.
4. Get Your API Keys
When you click Next Step, you will be assigned API keys. Copy this key to the clipboard—you'll need to paste it into the WP Compress admin page on your WordPress site.
5. Connect Your WordPress Site to WP Compress
Now you can link the WP Compress plugin on your WordPress site to the WP Compress management portal. Simply select WP Compress from the admin menu and paste your API keys to connect, and then press Start.
6. That's It!
From now on, your images will be automatically optimized when viewed by visitors coming into your website and will be delivered at lightning speed from a global CDN.
Using the Local Version of WP Compress
If you prefer to use the local version, which optimizes on your local server, here's a screenshot of the image optimization settings you can choose from:
I'll explain some of these settings below.
When compressing images, you can choose from three optimization settings:
- Lossless: There will be no loss of image quality, but only limited compression.
- Intelligent: This is the recommended setting—a balance between quality and compression.
- Ultra: Choose this setting if you want images to be compressed into tiny sizes and don't mind a significant reduction in quality.
Assign a maximum size for images. Any images larger than this will be shrunk to fit.
If you don’t want to manually compress every time new images are loaded, turn on autopilot mode and let WP Compress look after detecting and compressing new images. However, if you want to compress images manually, you can turn off autopilot mode and handle compression of each image individually from the Media Library.
Here's what you'll see in the Media Library for images that have been successfully compressed:
WP Compress offers some reports to make it easy to see the benefit that your clients are getting from image optimization and compression. Let’s take a look at the report below.
This shows that WP Compress is achieving a high compression rate—reducing images to about 10% of their original size.
Note: You do have the option to choose delivery of your website content from a CDN.
Reports for Clients
As an agency, you can generate and send detailed reports for each website account. This can be a web report, email report, or PDF report. Also, you can put your own logo on the report.
Conclusion and Next Steps
After testing WP Compress, I can conclude that it delivers on its promises. It is very easy to install and simple to use. Once I installed it, everything was done automatically and effortlessly.
For the live version, I created a website and loaded it with images. It significantly reduced my image files down to 10% of their original sizes. Talk about website weight loss! The images also maintained their original quality.
The same applied for the local version. You still save upwards of 75% disk space on your local server, and your newly light pages will load up to 4x faster.
I highly recommend the agency features like monthly quotas because they fit with clients' website care plans. You don't need to revamp how your services are structured.
Finally, you should consider adding WP Compress to the package of services you offer to clients.
You can learn more about WP Compress on the plugin's website
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