Images on your website are one of the key contributors to its increased load time. Heavier images take longer to load which ruins user experience and increases bounce rate. One of the solutions to this problem is Lazy Loading.
7 Best WordPress Lazy Load Plugins
Since you have landed on this article through search or any other platform, you probably know what lazy loading is and I would suggest you skip directly to WordPress lazy loading plugins. But if you don’t, I reckon you stick around and understand what lazy loading is and how it works.
What is Lazy Loading
Lazy loading is an effective optimization technique that loads only the content that is visible to the user while delaying the content that is in the next fold. This doesn’t mean that your web page will be partially loaded. It only means that the content is loaded when it is required by the user. This is the opposite of bulk loading where the entire page is loaded in one go.
For instance your web page consists of 4 folds. When visitors land on your page, they see the first fold and not the folds below so lazy loading loads only the first fold and once users scroll to the next fold, only then that fold is loaded.
This type of loading makes sense because if your users find relevant information in the first fold, you don’t need to load the entire webpage which can increase your load time and ruin user experience.
Top WordPress Lazy Loading Plugins
Now that we have understood what lazy loading is, let’s have a look at the best WordPress lazy loading plugins.
It is a great lazy load WordPress plugin with the idea of eliminating lag and promoting infinite scrolling. With its unique ability, it is also known to be one of the best lazy loading plugins for WordPress.
Ajax Load more can be used for building custom WordPress queries to shortcodes and also includes features like shortcode builder, query parameters, repeater templates to edit and extend the functionality of your website, multiple instances and multisite compatibility.
All the above mentioned functionalities and enhanced features makes Ajax WordPress lazy load plugin load more one of the best lazy load wordpress plugin available.
This lazy load WordPress plugin one is a bit different in the way it operates. As with the name, you would know that it helps load videos and such before a user gets to it. You would be right because this lazy loading plugin uses YouTube’s own website to gather what it needs to display whatever content you have on your website.
This lazy load WordPress plugin achieves this by inserting YouTube embeds which feel like normal YouTube videos. Once clicked, they start playing which gives the impression that YouTube itself is integrated into the website.
With this WordPress lazy load plugin, you also have multiple videos playing simultaneously on your website which provides a much better experience for your users online. It also eliminates the need to use more servers and in the end eases the load off your website to further contribute towards quicker loading times. This makes it one of the best wordpress lazy load plugins on this list
3. A3 Lazy Load
Last but not least, A3 lazy load WordPress plugin. It is a very simple to use plugin which is designed to help your page load quicker with minimal resources being utilized from the back end. The good thing about this lazy load WordPress plugin is that the heavier your page is with context to the content in it, the better this plugin works to help optimize it and make sure your website does not lag or cause any stability issues for your users.
What’s more is that this is optimized for mobile use, which means it is responsive, so since nearly all types of content is being optimized for being viewed on mobile phones, it makes A3 one of the best, if not, the best lazy load WordPress plugins ever.
What makes A3 lazy load WordPress plugin even better is that it is very easy to install and set up. Extensive controls over Admin will help you select what exactly you want and then leave A3 to work its magic on your page.
When your website loads, A3 optimizes the content in such a way that before a user scrolls to it, it is already loaded and ready to be viewed by your users. This makes it one of the best WordPress lazy load plugins on this list.
WP Rocket is a popular WordPress cache plugin which improves your site’s speed by caching static data. Keeping up with their optimization theme, WP Rocket also has a WordPress lazy load plugin that displays images and frames only when they are visible to the visitor. This method reduces HTTP requests and improves site speed.
The plugin not only works on images within the content but also works on thumbnails, widget text, avatars, smilies, and iframes. The script is really light so it doesn’t put a lot of load on your WordPress.
This WordPress lazy load plugin has more than 100,000 installs on the official WordPress repository and has a 4 star rating with more than sixty 5 star rating.
Speed Up is another great WordPress lazy load plugin that is available for free at the WordPress repo. The plugin avoids downloading iframes and pictures that are not displayed on the visitor’s screen for example images that are on the bottom of the screen and will take 2 or 3 scrolls to reach.
The plugin is easy to install and configure. All you have to do is download the plugin from the repository and install it on your WordPress dashboard. The plugin weighs just 5kb so it won’t affect your overall WordPress performance.
This WordPress lazy load plugin doesn’t have much install since it is new but it certainly does the trick.
6. Lazy Loader
Lazy Loader is a WordPress lazy loading plugin that supports images, iframes, audio and video elements. The plugin also allows users to manually modify the markup to lazy load background scripts, images and styles. Lazy Loader also supports post thumbnails and background images. All these lazy loading elements can be enabled from settings.
The plugin only works on PHP 7 or higher so make sure you update your WordPress version before you decide to download this plugin. Plugin settings allows you to add filters that should be processed by the lazy loader, enable lazy loading for iframes, images, videos and background images.
You can also display a loading spinner on your web page through this plugin. You can also choose to lazy load specific posts and pages.
Lazy Load for Videos is a popular WordPress lazy load plugin created by Kevin Weber. For those who don’t know, Kevin is an engineer at Airbnb who has created a number of plugins including wBounce, Inline Comments and Lazy Load Videos.
The plugin improves site speed by replacing embedded youtube and vimeo videos with clickable preview images which includes video titles as well. This smart WordPress lazy load plugin only loads the video once the visitor clicks on the preview.
Lazy Load for Videos also allows you to remove related videos that appear at the end of youtube videos, choose between thumbnail sizes, choose from several play button styles and much more.
Wrapping it Up
WordPress lazy loading is a step towards improving load time of your website. The method is effective and many site owners with image heavy websites use lazy loading to improve their site speed. The WordPress lazy load plugins mentioned in the article makes it easier for you to implement lazy loading on your website.
If I have missed your favorite lazy load plugin, let me know in the comments or ping me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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