7 Best WordPress Image Compression Plugins Compared & The Winner Is…

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I remember a time when compressing images on this blog used to be free.

Thanks to the developer of the Smush.it plugin, we got very spoiled and became used to free image compression.

In the last few months, everything we knew about free image compression has changed.

Now, most of the WordPress plugins which are available online offer a small quota of free compressions & then you have to pay if your usage is higher.

So in this post, I thought it would be a good idea to look at all the existing WordPress image compression tools out there (free & paid).

WordPress Image Compression Plugins
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Those who have a small or medium sized WordPress blog can use multiple WordPress plugins to optimize all of their existing/future uploads for free.

It might be time-consuming, but I know that when you are starting out, money is more important than time.

For those who have a medium-sized or a large blog, you may want to consider going for a paid option. This will help you load your blog faster & will keep your readers happy.

Here’s the formula:

  • Happy readers = Good blog = Better ranking = More money

That’s a good formula, but let’s get down to the real business. Here are some of the best image compression WordPress plugins.

(Like always, I will try to put as many important points as possible about these plugins to help you make an informed decision. Cool?)

Best Image Compression WordPress Plugins: Make Website Faster

  1. ShortPixel
  2. Imagify Image Optimizer
  3. ImageKit
  4. Optimus
  5. TinyPNG: Compress JPEG & PNG images
  6. ImageRecycle
  7. Kraken

Here we go…

1. ShortPixel

Shortpixel WordPress Image Optimization service
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ShortPixel is a developer specifically for WordPress. They offer both free & paid accounts (like all the others). Though, there is one really cool part about this service which I’ll tell you about in a minute.

Features:

  • Supports Lossy and Lossless Optimization.
  • Supports JPG, PNG, GIF & PDF.
  • Restore original image anytime.
  • Compress all old uploads with a single click.
  • Process new images automatically on upload.
  • No file size limit.
  • Your free quota & paid quota are treated separately.
    • This way, you always have 100 free image compressions.
  • Save and keep a backup of your original images in a separate folder.
  • Option to optimize all images (thumbnail images) or only the original image.
  • Option to keep or remove the EXIF tag of the image. <Read about EXIF tag here>
Bulk WordPress image optimization ShortPixels
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Free account:

  • 100 free image compressions every month.
  • Refer a friend program: For every referred user you get another 100 images every month.

Paid account (10,000 images):

  • $9.98 for 10K images.
  • Purchased quota never expires.
  • Offers monthly subscription.
  • Supported payment mode is PayPal.

Ease of use:

It’s easy to setup & the interface is very pleasant. You will see what I mean when you start doing bulk image compression with this plugin. You can read my detailed review of Shortpixel.

Tips on using:

Once you have created your free account, log in to your admin area & grab the API key. Install & activate the ShortPixel WordPress plugin.

Add the API Key from Settings > ShortPixel.

Head over to Media > Library > Bulk ShortPixel to optimize your old images.

Bulk Image Optimization Shortpixels
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One cool thing about this plugin is you can deselect thumbnails from compression.

This ensures that your free quota is only used for the bigger sized images, which in most cases is the culprit for your slow loading pages.

Saved bandwidth using Image compression
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This plugin is updated on a regular basis & has 20K+ active installs with a 4.7-star rating.

ShortPixel is an ideal solution for image & PDF compression in WordPress.

Create free account || Create paid account

2. Imagify Image Optimizer

Imagify Image Compression
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This plugin is from the developer of the WP-Rocket plugin.

It has all the essential features such as bulk compression and image resizing.

It offers 3 different levels of compression & depending upon your blog type, you should pick 1 of the 3:

  1. Normal, a lossless compression algorithm. The image quality won’t be altered at all.
  2. Aggressive, a lossy compression algorithm. Stronger compression with a tiny loss of quality which, most of the time, is not noticeable at all.
  3. Ultra, the strongest compression method using a lossy algorithm.
    • With the backup option, you can change your mind whenever you want by restoring your images to their original version or optimize them at another compression level.

In the coming days, they also plan on adding a feature to convert images into WebP format.

This plugin is also compatible with WooCommerce and NextGen Gallery.

Features:

  • Supports JPG, PNG & GIF.
  • Resize images on the fly.
  • Resize based on percentage.
  • Support for PrestaShop, Magento, Shopify, and Joomla coming soon.
  • Images above 5Mb will only be compressed with the paid account.

Free account:

  • 25 MB free every month.
  • Bonus 25MB at sign-up.

Paid account (10,000 images):

  • $4.99/month for 1 GB of data.
Imagify pricing
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Ease of use:

Onboarding is pretty easy & like other plugins, you need to create a free account & get your API Key.

The plugin is easy to use & once you have configured the settings, you can start using it right away.

You can enable or disable the option to compress thumbnails.

Imagify WordPress plugin configuration
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Apart from compression, one thing that I enjoy the most about this plugin is the interface.

It’s sleek & feels like you are in a game.

Bulk Image Compression WordPress
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Overall, this is a good plugin & since it’s from the same people as the WP-Rocket plugin, I believe it’s a good choice for anyone looking for reliability.

The only thing that you might want to consider before opting for this one is the price.

Download plugin || Create account

3. ImageKit

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ImageKit is a new entrant but it offering worthy mention features. Do note it’s different than all other image compression plugin listed here as the images will be loaded from imagekit server. This is perfect for anyone who wants to offload image load from the web-server.

What anyone would like the most about Imagekit is the control on how and where the image will be displayed. Especially for photographers who wish to specify maximum dimensions of the image can take advantage of restrict image size based on users device feature.

In my opinion, ImageKit is not only an image compression plugin but also a CDN for images. This is perfect for any website type but a travel blogger, photographer or any WordPress site which has to use a lot of images will find this service useful.

The dashboard is intuitive and settings are easy to configure. You can also see the stats and if you make some major changes, you can clear cache with a single click.

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They offer 14 days free trial and after that, you can decide if you wish to upgrade to the paid version or not. Since the billing is done based on bandwidth usage instead of the number of images, in 14 days trial you will be easily able to estimate your bill.

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You can download the WordPress plugin from official repo to connect with ImageKit.

In my opinion, Imagekit is perfect for anyone who uses a lot of images on their WordPress site or people who have limited bandwidth.

Download plugin | Visit ImageKit

4. Optimus

Optimus WordPress image compression
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This is another popular solution which I’m sure many of you will like. Optimus seems to be a great alternative for the Smush.it plugin as this will let you compress all images <100Kb for free.

Features:

  • Support JPEG, PNG.
  • Bulk compression.

Free account:

  • Unlimited compression of images < 100Kb.
  • Supports Progressive JPEG.

Paid account:

  • $19 one time fees for unlimited image compression.
  • Maximum file size 5MB.
  • Supports WebP conversion.
Optimus Settings
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For the price, Optimus HQ is worth every penny.

But I would really like to see improvements in their bulk compression feature. If you stop the bulk compression in between & start the process later, it will start compressing all images again. It would be better if it could skip those images which have already been processed.

Download Optimus free ||Get Optimus Pro

5. TinyPNG: Compress JPEG & PNG images

TinyPNG is a somewhat popular online service to compress images.

Features:

  • Automatic compression for new images.
  • Supports JPEG & PNG files only.
  • Bulk optimization.
  • Resize image feature.
  • Convert CMYK to RGB.
  • Single API can be used for multiple sites.
  • No file size limits.

Free account:

  • 500 images compressed each month.

Paid account (10,000 images):

  • 10,000 images costs $85.50 (One of the most expensive for heavy users).
TinyPNG WordPress API Compression
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Using the plugin:

After activating the plugin go to Settings > Media.

Get your free API key from here, add it & configure any additional settings you want.

TinyPNG WordPress Plugin
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Go to Media > Compress all images & start compressing all of your old images. You can also go to the media uploader & selectively compress individual images (which is a good idea to conserve your quota).

Create an account on TinyPNG || Download plugin

6. ImageRecycle

Optimize WordPress Images & PDF files
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I talked about this one in an earlier post on online image compression tools.

While researching for this post, I got to know more about their WordPress plugin & I signed up for a free account.

One cool thing about this plugin is it lists down all the images in your theme folder. You can select individual ones or you can select all & compress those images. Preeeetty cool, huh?

Features:

  • Supports JPG, PNG, GIF & PDF files.
  • All plans support multiple websites.
  • Supports sub-accounts & you can define a quota for it (good for agencies).
  • Supports restoration of original files (images + PDF) for one month.
  • Compress all previous images in WordPress with one click or compress images selectively.

Free account:

  • 15-day trial.
  • 100 MB quota.

Paid account (10,000 images):

  • $30 for 10K images.
  • Valid for 1 year.
Imagerecycle Paid account
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Ease of use:

The plugin is pretty easy to use & in most cases, it auto-detects your API if you are logged into their online portal from the same browser.

  • Note: It directly leads to the media uploader for compression which might not be good for users. The first screen after activating the API should be the plugin settings.

Anyway, you can access it by going to Settings > ImageRecycle.

When I was testing this plugin, I realized my blog slowed down a lot. This could have been for multiple reasons, so it should not stop you from trying it. But since it happened with me, I believe it’s good to at least let you know.

Imagerecycle WordPress plugin
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Once you have setup the settings, go to Media > ImageRecycle to start compressing.

One thing which I really like about this plugin is you can sort images based on size, which is useful when you want to take care of really large images first.

Image recycle WordPress plugin compression
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Overall, their WordPress plugin is pretty solid & could be your next image optimization WordPress plugin.

Get 15-day free trial account for ImageRecycle || Download plugin

7. Kraken

Kraken Image Optimizer
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This is another paid plugin that is quite popular.

With 10K+ downloads & an overall rating of 4.7/5, it looks very promising.

Their web service lets you download & compress images from a web page by downloading all the images into a single zipped folder.

Features:

  • Supports JPG, PNG & GIF.
  • WP-CLI supported.
  • Keeps backup of original image in cloud storage.
  • Image resizing.
  • Preserve selective image EXIF data.

Free account:

  • 100 MB one-time testing only.
  • Maximum allowed size – 1MB.

Paid account (10,000 images):

  • $4.50/month (calculated relative to other services).
Kraken pricing
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Ease of use:

The plugin is also straightforward to configure like all the other image compression plugins on this list.

Here is what the settings page looks like:

Kraken io Image Compression WordPress
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The option to preserve specific data like Copyright is pretty smart.

It would be good if other plugins also follow this trend.

One big thing missing from this plugin is bulk image optimization. So it’s not ideal for those who are looking to optimize existing images. You will need to manually compress them.

Here is how to configure this plugin:

https://youtu.be/Wqtl0_cavx0

Download plugin || Create Free Account

(Since page speed is one of the factors for a better user experience, and also a search engine ranking factor, we can expect similar plugins launching in the coming days. I will keep adding new WordPress image compression plugins as I discover them.)

Conclusion

I have compiled those services from above list that offers a free image compression quota every month. If you have a small or a starter blog, this should be enough to take care of your monthly need.

Services that offer free image compression quota every month:

Paid services based on features & pricing:

These are the paid services that I like based on features, user experience & pricing.

  1. ShortPixels
  2. Imagekit
  3. Optimus
  4. Imagify
  5. Kraken
  6. ImageRecycle
  7. TinyPNG

In my opinion, TinyPNG hardly deserves to be on this list due to its high pricing & limited features.

Imagify is what I would recommend for a paid image compression service.

Again, I will keep adding new WordPress image compression plugins in the future.

Which WordPress image compression plugins are you using & why?

Enjoyed reading this guide? Do share this list with your WordPress users on Facebook & Twitter.

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WordPress Image Compression Plugins
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Authored By
A Blogger, Author and a speaker! Harsh Agrawal is recognized as a leader in digital marketing and FinTech space. Fountainhead of ShoutMeLoud, and a Speaker at ASW, Hero Mindmine, Inorbit, IBM, India blockchain summit. Also, an award-winning blogger.

48 thoughts on “7 Best WordPress Image Compression Plugins Compared & The Winner Is…”

  1. I have used Kraken and it works like charm. Thanks for this wonderful post and the new font definitely looks good.

  2. Hmm, all are almost good for wordpress image compression. Thanks Harsh Sir for sharing this comparison.

  3. I am using imagify on my website and its doing very well for me ! thanks harsh for your helpful post ..

  4. Thanks for taking a valuable time and doing a comparison for us. It has be en very useful for us. Kudos to your article..!!

  5. Jinka varalakshmi

    Thanks for this article. I am using ewww image optimizer cloud. After reading this article, i have decided to shift to shortpixel. Because on average i publish 20 articles in a month. If every article had 5 images, it would be 100 images. So I need not to spend money. Once again thanks for saving my money

  6. Hi Harsh. Really interesting post on image compression. I never knew about it. Thanks for the share.
    Regards.

  7. Hey, Harsh, I have a question, what exactly are we talking about here? Having these services minimize the size of the image that we will be using? How does it differ from EWWW image optimizer or smush it or any other plugins that are available in the WordPress directory?

      1. Gaurav Khurana

        Thanks for sharing this info.. I think tinyPNG is the best as people will rarely have more than 500 images per month to be uploaded to a blog.

      2. To be fair to the plugin author, that vulnerability was fixed within 24 hours and only affected multisite installs.

        We have been using EWWW on a few sites for ages and it has always worked very well – especially since it is free.

        1. Michael Aulia

          Been using EWWW as well and did look at some commercial solutions but decided to keep EWWW as it does its job pretty well

  8. I have been using Imagify and its works good also its good to know its rank 2nd according your list mean I have chosen the perfect one. Thanks for this comparison.

  9. Thank you Harsh for sharing these plugins.Once I used Imagify and it worked fine.I didn’t know these alternative image optimization plugins.There is one free software called RIOT(Radical Image Optimization tool) which works perfect.Its support JPG,PNG and Gif in both single and batch processing.First I compressed pictures then I upload into my WP media folder.

  10. I have used Imagify and it works like charm and i want vote for Imagify, Imagify is product of wp-media (wp-rocket)

  11. Hi Harsh,
    Thanks for sharing tips regarding WordPress Image Compression Plugins. But one thing is that currently I’m using ‘WP Smush’ plugin that is perfectly working on my blog at blogmehub.com

  12. Shohag Malik

    which is all rounder best for image compression without loss picture quality and automatically working ?

  13. Istiak Rayhan

    Great list, Harsh. I have used Smush.it for years. It worked great for me. I stopped using the plugin after moving to ThriveThemes.

    ThriveThemes has a built-in image optimization feature. It optimizes every image automatically. It uses Kraken service for image optimization. The only problem is, I can’t select which image not optimize.

    However, thanks for sharing this awesome list.

  14. First of all thanks for taking the time to write such an extensive review on this subject, it should be very helpful for many.

    I’m also familiar with some of these tools, here are my comments/corrections 🙂
    1) ShortPixel plan is $9.99 not $9.98 🙂
    2) Imagify’s “Ultra” compression results in pixelated images many times so it should be used carefully, its more a marketing gimmick
    3) optimus price of $19 is per year and not per 10,000 images
    4) optimus only offers lossless optimization and doesn’t resize original images which is a too limited feature set for my taste
    5) you haven’t wrote anything about EWWW which is another popular image optimization plugin
    6) correction: ShortPixel (100 MB/month) should be ShortPixel (100 image optimization credits/month)
    7) your article could really benefit from an image compression comparison as there are significant differences in this regard among image optimization plugins.

  15. I think one information is wrong in this or I am reading it wrong that Optimus is lifetime free updates with onetime price 19$. From what I understood is 19$ is their per year price. Kindly clarify Harsh. Thank you in advance.

  16. Gracias ..Thanks Harsh for sharing this comparison. Really interesting post on image compression 🙂

  17. Himadri Saha

    I use WP Smush for my blog and by using this plugin I was able to reduce the total image size by 34.32% which is huge. This is a huge plugin and loved by a lot of WordPress users. There is also a pro version of the plugin. But the free version is doing the job for me without any problem. If the readers do not know about this plugin, they can try. Thanks.

  18. Hello Harsh Agrawal I follow your blog a weeks ago and is very helpfully

    I have a question, do you convert the images at shoutmeloud to WebP format?

  19. Is there any free image compression plugins which a startup user can use. All the above plugins are paid or have the limit of image compression.

    1. Harsh list is always goldmine, but most startups cannot afford initially so here comes a plugin which provides 1000 images free per month w2e image optimizer, harsh should include this one also.

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