Performance Plugins WordPress

What is WebP and How to Use Them in a WordPress Website

WebP is a Google-developed web picture format that can deliver reduced image file sizes while maintaining the same degree of quality as existing image formats. In this piece, we’ll delve deeper into the question of “What is WebP?” and provide additional information about the format.

We’ll also go over the benefits and drawbacks of WebP pictures, as well as how to get started using them on your WordPress site.

What is WebP? Explained in more detail

There are a variety of file types that can be used to save photographs for use on the web. PNG, JPEG (or JPG), and GIF are the three most common formats. While these formats are popular, they each have their own set of advantages and disadvantages:

  • JPEGs are ideal for photography because they can exhibit extremely detailed images with a wide range of colors. At the same time, the files are frequently very huge and do not always compress efficiently.
  • PNGs are suitable for images that do not contain a lot of data, such as logos or screenshots of user interfaces. They’re great at preserving quality when compressed and supporting transparency, but they’re not great for photos.
  • GIFs are terrific for animations, but they’re not so great for storing static images.

WebP pictures are a Google image format that allows you to display images on the web with equal quality to other image formats but fewer file sizes.

WebP offers both ‘lossy’ and ‘lossless’ compression options to accomplish this. The latter preserves more data, whilst the former reduces the size of the generated files.

WebP images are on average: according to Google’s data, WebP images are on average:

  • Comparable JPEG photos are 25-34 percent less in size.
  • When compared to PNGs, they are 26% smaller.

The pros and cons of using WebP images on your site

Let’s talk about why WebP images matter now that we’ve answered the question “what is WebP?” Let’s talk about the advantages and disadvantages of WebP images now that we’ve answered the question “What is WebP?”

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WebP images have a lot of advantages.

The major purpose of this image format, as we’ve already mentioned, is to give a web-focused choice that is superior to both PNG and JPEG in most cases.

Image files, no matter how they’re saved, take up space. The more photographs and other media you include on your site, the more likely it is that it will lag. It’s critical to keep your sites loading quickly, as slow speeds will drive visitors away before they’ve even seen what you have to offer.

Compressing picture files reduces their size and efficiency, but does so at the expense of quality. In general, the more an image is compressed, the worse it seems. The file type you’re utilizing, though, has an impact on how strong the effect is.

WebP images can be made substantially smaller than JPEGs and PNGs while maintaining the same quality. Lossless WebP images can be used to replace PNG images, and the files are around 26% smaller. WebP images, on the other hand, are roughly 25% to 34% smaller than JPEGs.

It’s also worth noting that both sorts of WebP images can be transparent. Transparent images are quite helpful on the web; for example, you may use them for logos and other branding. Transparency isn’t a property of JPEGs, but lossy WebP pictures do.

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The disadvantages of WebP pictures

Why aren’t more people using WebP if it has so many advantages? The main disadvantage is that WebP pictures are not currently supported by all browsers, however this is gradually changing.

When available, here’s a comparison of current browser support as of January 2020, along with each browser’s desktop and mobile market share:

What is WebP

So while most web browsers do now offer these format of image support, there are still a non-trivial number that don’t have support (most notably, Safari).

Fortunately, you’re not losing anything by using WebP on your site, since you can simply include backup PNG and/or JPEG images that display to visitors with browsers that don’t support these format of images. This requires a bit more work, but can be worth it for the performance savings.

How to use WebP images on your WordPress site

Of course, as a WordPress user, simply asking “what is WebP?” isn’t enough. You’ll also want to know if this image can be used in conjunction with WordPress. Not every website builder and Content Management System (CMS) supports the WebP format, much like not every browser.

The bad news is that these format pictures aren’t supported by default in WordPress right now. You can still use the these format on your site, but it will necessitate the usage of one or more additional technologies.

Optimole

What is WebP

Optimole is our latest image optimization solution, and it’s packed with amazing features. Apart from being able to have all of your photos automatically optimized and then served over a CDN, you can also take use of the advantages of these format images.

Optimole‘s implementation of the format pictures is quite impressive. If the visitor’s browser supports this format pictures, the plugin automatically converts your photos to these formats. If the browser does not support the format of images, the image will be provided in its original format.

If you want to try out more of what’s out there, there are also alternative programs that permit These photos.

  • These images are supported by Jetpack‘s image CDN module.
  • You can also use ShortPixel / EWWW Image Optimizer in conjunction with Cache Enabler to enable this format. You can convert JPEGs and PNGs into these format images images with both of these image optimization plugins. Then, using the Cache Enabler plugin, you may deliver those files to users using WebP-compatible browsers. Go to Settings Cache Enabler in your dashboard after installing Cache Enabler and select Create an additional cached version for WebP Image support.

Any of these ways will do the job, so you can use any plugins you like. If you have an image-heavy site, it’s worth putting up one of these solutions because the performance increase can be significant.

Conclusion

WebP is an image file type that has the potential to speed up your website, even more so than by using compressed PNGs or JPEGs. WebP comes in both lossy and lossless varieties and produces smaller file sizes at a comparable quality.

Though its popularity is growing, WebP isn’t yet supported on all browsers. However, it can still be worth using this image format on your site, especially if you upload a lot of images. As a WordPress user, you have several options for setting up WebP support – one of the best being Optimole.

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