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How to serve scaled images on your WordPress website

Last update: February 17, 2022

Published in: WordPress Addons , WordPress Tutorials


border of the flag

Serve images to scale

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Have you run your website through a performance testing tool only to be told you need to “serve scaled images”? Basically, the tool is telling you that you need to resize your images’ dimensions to match how they’re being displayed on your site.

Fortunately, WordPress has some great tools to help you out. You can use an image optimization plugin to automatically serve scaled images — or scale images yourself using a number of different techniques. Doing this will go a long way towards optimizing your page loading times and improving your bounce rates.

In this piece, we’ll explain why it is so important to serve scaled images properly. Then, we’ll offer some handy solutions to make the process as easy as possible. Let’s get to it!

Speed test tool telling you to serve scaled #images on your #website? Here’s how to do it 🖼️

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Here’s why you need to serve scaled images

A scaled image is essentially one that has been sized to fit the exact dimensions you’re using it for. On one hand, an image that’s too small and scaled up will be blurry. On the other hand, while a browser will shrink an image that is too large, it adds to the page’s file size unnecessarily.

Furthermore, large images cause the browser to spend time and resources to load them instead of loading the page itself as fast as possible. This can significantly slow your page loading times and negatively affect the performance of your website.

For example, if your theme displays an image at 100 x 100 px, then you’d want to load an image that is exactly 100 x 100 px. If you load an image that’s 50 x 50 px, it will look blurry when it’s scaled up to 100 px. On the other hand, if you load an image that’s 200 x 200 px, it will look great, but you’re unnecessary increasing the size of your page because it’s still only displaying at 100 px.

Of course, slower pages can drive visitors away. Not only can they promote a less-than-favorable user experience (UX), but they can also increase your bounce rate as users become frustrated and click away from your site.

That’s why almost every performance testing tool highlights the need to serve scaled images:

Advertising to serve escalated images in GTmetrix The scaled image service warning in GTmetrix

Three plugins to help you serve scaled images in WordPress

The great news is that one of the easiest ways to properly serve scaled images is to use a plugin to help you. The following options make it simple to optimize your heavy images and clean up your bloated pages. Let’s take a look!

1. Optimole

Image Optimization and Lazy Load by Optimole Image optimization & Lazy Load by Optimole

Author(s): Optimole

Current Version: 3.4.6

Last Updated: September 8, 2022

96%Ratings 80,000+Installs WP 4.7+Requires

Our first offering is Optimole. This handy plugin optimizes your images and delivers them at the perfect size for different devices. So it’s not only helping you serve scaled images, but it’s also able to automatically scale them to the optimal size based on a user’s device.

It has a minimal setup process, which is great if you need maximum quality with minimal fuss.

In addition to scaling and compressing your images, Optimole also serves them up from a global content delivery network (CDN) powered by Amazon CloudFront, which speeds up your load times around the world.

With the free plan, you can optimize and scale unlimited images for up to ~5,000 monthly visits. After that, paid plans start at just $9 per month.

2. Smush

Smush - lazy load images, optimize and compress images Smush – Lazy Load Images, Optimize & Compress Images

Author(s): WPMU DEV

Current Version: 3.11.1

Last Updated: August 22, 2022

96%Ratings 1,000,000+Installs WP 5.3+Requires

Another plugin you can use to serve properly scaled images is Smush. This is a highly-rated and popular choice that optimizes your images by scanning each one, stripping away unnecessary data, then setting an ideal size. Once it’s finished, each image is saved in your Media Library.

To scale your images, you can have it automatically resize images above certain dimensions to match your site’s requirements.

Additionally, the plugin has the ability to ‘smush’ up to 50 images at once, and you can set it to automatically optimize each one as it is loaded. Moreover, you can set it to compress images in any directory, including those stored on cloud services.

For this reason, the free version is a great place to start and will optimize unlimited images, though individual images cannot exceed 5 MB in size.

3. ShortPixel

Short Pixel Image Optimizer ShortPixel Image Optimizer

Author(s): ShortPixel

Current Version: 5.0.9

Last Updated: August 29, 2022

90%Ratings 300,000+Installs 4.8.0Requires

Our final recommendation is ShortPixel. This plugin is the perfect choice for those looking for a quality image compression and scaling solution on a budget. It can optimize up to 100 images per month for free. Plus, it is simple and easy to use.

Specifically, ShortPixel can help you automatically scale WordPress images as you upload them to dimensions that you specify.

ShortPixel also comes with lossless and lossy image compression for JPEG, PNG, and GIF images– you can also optimize PDFs. It provides you with the option to automatically convert images (including WebP) as you upload them or to handle them manually.

As mentioned above, the free version enables you to optimize up to 100 images per month. Beyond that, paid plans start at $4.99 per month to optimize up to 5,000 images per month.

How to serve scaled images in WordPress without using a plugin (3 methods)

If you’d rather serve scaled images without a plugin, there are other ways to go about it. For example, you can crop images in your media library, adjust them in your admin media settings, or use an image editor such as the open-source GIMP or Photoshop.

However, before we discuss how to serve scaled images without using a plugin, we should mention a native feature that comes with WordPress called srcset. This core feature makes your images responsive to different screen sizes. It works by offering the browser three different options, which will then use the one most optimized for that user. Of course, this does help somewhat with page loading times, but scaling images will give you even more performance.

Speaking of which, let’s take a look at our first method – cropping images in WordPress.

1. Crop images in your media library

Your first port of call to achieve this method is to head to your WordPress back end. In one of your posts or pages, begin by clicking on the image you want to scale and selecting Edit image:

The 'Edit Image' button in WordPress. The 'Edit image' button in WordPress.

From there, you’ll need to go to the Media Library screen, choose your image, and click the Edit Image link. On the next screen is the option to scale your image:

Cómo servir manualmente imágenes escaladas desde el panel de WordPress How to manually serve scaled images from WordPress dashboard

You’ll be presented with the original dimensions for the image, and a box to enter your new scaled dimensions. However, note that filenames are often saved with a string of additional characters, which may affect you if you’re using a specific image SEO strategy.

2. Adjust image sizes in the Settings > Media screen

You could also scale your images by adjusting the settings in WordPress directly. To do this, navigate to WordPress, then go to Settings > Media:

La opción Configuración > Medios en WordPress. The Settings > Media option in WordPress.

This will bring you to the Media Settings page. Here, you can set the maximum dimensions to use when uploading an image to WordPress, for each of the three options it will present to the browser (as we discussed above concerning srcset):

Uso de tamaños de miniaturas de WordPress para servir imágenes escaladas Using WordPress thumbnail sizes to serve scaled images

Here you can change width and height for the thumbnail, medium, and large image sizes.

WordPress will then automatically create scaled versions of each image using these sizes. You can choose which size you want to insert from the WordPress editor.

However, it should be noted that although you may be able to improve page loading times in some instances using these settings, they will not perfectly optimize your images in every circumstance. For this, you might consider the last manual method.

3. Use an image editor (such as GIMP or Photoshop)

Of course, our last method for scaling your images manually is to use an offline image editor. You might think of this method as the most obvious, although it’s arguably the most efficient option available. For instance, in Photoshop, you can head to Image in the toolbar and select Image Size:

Cómo cambiar el tamaño de la imagen Photoshop para escalar imágenes How to change image size Photoshop to scale images

A pop-up screen will appear with the basic dimension for your image. You’ll then be able to scale the image however you wish before uploading it to WordPress.

Cómo servir imágenes a escala en Photoshop How to serve scaled images in Photoshop

In addition to width and height, you also have some other options here. For instance, the resolution of the image can be set higher or lower depending on your needs (72 PPI is usually the standard for the web).


Whether your website is running slowly, or you’re simply looking for another way to optimize its performance, learning how to serve scaled images effectively is a must. With the perfect specifications in place, your site can run lighting fast.

Speed test tool telling you to serve scaled #images on your #website? Here’s how to do it 🖼️

Click To Tweet

In this article, we’ve discussed how to scale images manually, and offered three useful plugins for doing so. As a quick recap, they are:

  1. Optimole: This plugin offers a set-and-forget method for serving scaled images.
  2. Smush : Une solution populaire et très appréciée pour l’optimisation des images.
  3. ShortPixel : Pour ceux qui préfèrent une option légère, ce plugin est le choix parfait.

Do you have any questions about scaled image streaming or what scaled image streaming means? Ask them in the comments section below!

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How to Resize and Edit Images in WordPress (The Right Way) 

  • September 7, 2022
  • 4a09cc21104d8e3329e4ce238bef92efStacey Corrin


Are you having trouble with your image sizes? Many people often overlook the simple option WordPress has for resizing images.

Getting a handle on resizing your images in WordPress can have a significant impact on how fast your site loads, as well as saving server space.

In this article, we’ll cover exactly how to use WordPress to resize images, so you’re not bogged down with sluggish page loading times.

  • Why Use WordPress to Resize Images?
  • How to Resize Images in WordPress
  • How to Crop Images in WordPress
  • How to Rotate Images in WordPress
  • How to Flip Images in WordPress
  • How to Restore Resized Images in WordPress

Shall we get started?

Why Use WordPress to Resize Images?

Resizing the images you add to WordPress is important for 2 reasons:

  1. To make sure your site doesn’t slow down from the pressure of loading large images.
  2. To save space on your site’s hosting server.

If you haven’t already taken steps to improve the performance of your website, then image compression is a good place to start.

If you use high-quality stock photos or work with images taken from your camera, chances are your images have pretty big file sizes. While these large image files may be great for print, smaller image sizes work better on the web because it takes less time for browsers to load.

Most WordPress themes are optimized for a specific set of image sizes which are usually:

  • Large
  • Medium
  • Small
  • Thumbnail

Deciding which image sizes are called for in your theme and resizing your uploaded images to match is a great way to ensure your images load quickly.

Not sure what size your images should be?

First, find out the width of your content area in WordPress. Your content area is where any text or images you add to your site is displayed.

You can do this in Chrome with the inspect tool. Right-click on any content on your site and choose Inspect from the menu.

A window with code will appear. Don’t worry about how scary this looks, you won’t need to do anything to the code.

Use la herramienta de inspección para encontrar el ancho de su área de contenido

Move your cursor over the code until you see a highlighted column, usually in blue. You’ll notice a tooltip at the top of the highlighted area. The first number is the width of your theme’s content.

In our case, the width is 695 pixels. This means that any image we upload should be no more than 695 pixels wide.

Now you have the starting point for your image size, let’s take a closer look at how you can use WordPress to resize images.

How to Resize Images in WordPress

Using WordPress to resize images is pretty simple.

To get started, head to Media » Library from your WordPress admin panel.

Vaya a Medios y luego a Biblioteca desde el área de administración de WordPress

Now, upload or click on the image you’d like to resize in WordPress.

Agregue la imagen que desea cambiar de tamaño en WordPress

From here, click Edit Image.

Haga clic en el botón Editar imagen para usar WordPress para cambiar el tamaño de la imagen

Under the Scale Image heading, you can enter new dimensions for your image. If you just enter a width, the height will automatically be calculated based on the image ratio or vice versa.

In the first box, enter the width of your content area. In our case, this was 695 pixels.

When you’re done, click Scale to resize the image.

Haga clic en escala para usar WordPress para cambiar el tamaño de la imagen

To use the resized image, go back to the image details page, and copy the URL as shown in the screenshot below.

Copie la URL de la imagen para usarla.

That’s it! You’ve now used WordPress to resize an image, and you can use it wherever you like.

To give you an idea of how resizing an image can impact your page speeds, let’s take a look at the original image’s page speed compared to the resized image.

We used Blog Tyrant’s website speed test tool for this example.

Here’s the test result of the original image size when added to a standard blog post.

tiempo de carga de la página antes de cambiar el tamaño de una imagen en WordPress

And, here are the results for the resized image.

Tiempo de carga de la página después de cambiar el tamaño de la imagen en WordPress

The difference may not appear to be much at first glance. But imagine a website with hundreds of images. Even the smallest difference in loading times can have a huge impact on how likely visitors are to stay on your page.

Still, WordPress offers more than simple image resizing. You can use it to crop, rotate and flip images too. Shall we find out how?

How to Crop Images in WordPress

To crop an image in WordPress, we’ll follow the same first steps as we did with resizing an image.

Head to Media » Library, click the image you’d like to crop, and click Edit Image.

Next, click and drag your mouse on the image to start the cropping process.

Haz clic y arrastra para recortar tu imagen en WordPress

You can click on any of the little squares to adjust the cropped area or move the area around the image. Once you are satisfied, click the Crop icon as shown below.

Haga clic en el botón de recorte para recortar su imagen en WordPress

Now click Save.

Simple as that, you’ve cropped your image!

Again select the URL on the image details page to use the cropped image.

Copiez l'URL de l'image pour l'utilisateur

But what if you want to rotate your image in a different direction? Don’t worry, WordPress can handle that too. We’ll show you how next.

How to Rotate Images in WordPress

To learn how to rotate an image in WordPress, follow these instructions.

First, go to Media » Library, choose your image, and click Edit Image.

Now click the Rotate Left or Rotate Right buttons to rotate your image 90 degrees at a time.

Use WordPress to rotate an image in haciendo click to rotate to the izquierda or to rotate to the derecha.

If you mess up, don’t panic. Clicking the Undo button will reset the image to the last step.

Undo the changes by clicking the Undo button.

Click Save when you’re happy.

Great work! Rotating an image in WordPress is pretty easy, isn’t it? Now let’s look at how to flip an image.

How to Flip Images in WordPress

Flipping an image in WordPress follows the same basic steps as rotating an image.

First, go to Media » Library from your WordPress dashboard, select your image, and then click Edit Image.

Para voltear su imagen, haga clic en el botón Voltear verticalmente o Voltear horizontalmente .

To flip an image in WordPress, click flip vertically or flip horizontally

Haz clic en Guardar cuando hayas terminado.

Con todos los cambios que ha realizado en su imagen, ¿qué sucede si desea volver a la imagen original y comenzar de nuevo? Sigue leyendo para descubrir cómo puedes hacer esto.

Cómo restaurar imágenes redimensionadas en WordPress

Todos nos equivocamos de vez en cuando. Somos humanos, ¿verdad?

Si te equivocas al usar WordPress para cambiar el tamaño de tus imágenes, te respaldamos por completo. Hay una manera fácil de volver a la imagen original.

En la imagen a continuación, claramente hemos recortado la imagen en el lugar equivocado y hemos escalado la imagen a dimensiones que son demasiado pequeñas.

Learn how to restore the original image in WordPress

Mire hacia el lado derecho de la pantalla de edición de imágenes y verá un encabezado llamado Restaurar imagen original .

Al hacer clic aquí, aparece un botón que le permite restaurar la imagen a su tamaño original.

Click the restore image button to return the image to the original settings.

Haga clic en Restaurar imagen para restablecer todos sus cambios.

Ahora su imagen es exactamente como estaba cuando la cargó por primera vez. Bastante útil, ¿verdad?

¡Ahí tienes!

Hoy has aprendido a usar WordPress para cambiar el tamaño de las imágenes. Además, cómo voltearlos, recortarlos, rotarlos y restablecerlos también.

También descubrió cómo encontrar el tamaño de imagen ideal según el área de contenido de su tema de WordPress. Ahora, cuando los visitantes se dirijan a su sitio web, sus navegadores cargarán sus imágenes más rápido sin perder calidad.

Esperamos que haya disfrutado aprendiendo a cambiar el tamaño de las imágenes en WordPress. Y si no está convencido de que su tema de WordPress sea la mejor opción para usted, esta guía lo ayudará a encontrar uno mejor.

Mientras lo hace, no olvide seguirnos en Facebook y Twitter para futuras guías y tutoriales de WordPress.


  1. 9e0ab86ee2c79d27d17214d1bb6f78d7 Teresa says:

    March 16, 2021 at 10:19 am

    Hi, I am trying to resize an image and I tried using the Edit image option as you show above. Unfortunately, WordPress say ‘Unable to create new image’. Could you help me with that?


    1. 809764fd7eb0b6a3e66644f2e865b735 Francis says:

      March 22, 2021 at 1:04 pm


      The most likely reason is not having mod-gd installed. If you are working online with a hosting company and have Cpanel as your hosting platform you can enable this module in Cpanel through PHP Selector—> extensions—> gd.

      Let me know should you have any more questions.

      Best Regards,


  2. af4c65dfaa9475fc8d058f6bc532997b Travis Finley says:

    March 21, 2021 at 7:36 pm

    Re-sizing did nothing. Unless I missed a step, I followed your instructions and the image stayed the same size it was before.

    Yeah, tried again. This isn’t changing the size for me.


    1. 809764fd7eb0b6a3e66644f2e865b735 Francis says:

      March 22, 2021 at 1:07 pm

      Hello Travis,

      For us to further assist, would you mind telling us if you receive an error when editing/saving an image?



  3. fd33862bd863bbfbcf15ff6501c87fff Scott “Q” Marcus says:

    April 8, 2021 at 2:51 pm

    This no longer works on When I click on the image, “edit image” is on the top. When I click that, it only allows me to rotate, crop or flip. I’ve been using wp for years and have always found a way to get around this. Now, it looks like the only method is to edit it off-line before uploading.

    Am I missing something?


    1. 4a09cc21104d8e3329e4ce238bef92ef Stacey Corrin says:

      April 9, 2021 at 4:15 am

      Hi Scott,

      First, can I confirm if you’re using the free or self-hosted version? This guide is aimed at self-hosted versions of WordPress. It’s also a good idea to check that your WordPress installation is up-to-date for any issues.


  4. b49be1811b517ddbfb8985e5de2971bf Daan says:

    April 11, 2021 at 6:58 am

    Hi, I am trying to add images through a widget on the bottem of my webpage, but on the webpage they appear larger than the original imported image what causes the image to be less sharp. I resized the images approximatly 190/50 and 90/90 (for round logo’s) before adding them to my media. How can I adjust the image on the webpage to appear like the original imported image size? Do I adjust this in the theme of the webpage? What am I missing here?


    1. 809764fd7eb0b6a3e66644f2e865b735 Francis says:

      April 29, 2021 at 11:42 am

      Hello Dann,

      If you upload an image you can edit it here:

      The option to upload an image using sizes like thumbnail/medium/large, etc. is not anymore present using Gutenberg blocks. You can install the classic editor for this option to show up:

      Best Regards,


  5. 444f080a6a173a9cb0f0bcab7c3aaeba Emerson K. dit :

    28 avril 2021 à 20h37

    Bonjour. J’utilise la version gratuite de WordPress depuis plus de 10 ans et vous pouvez deviner que j’ai été très mécontent de leur nouvelle interface ces derniers temps. Donc, une question rapide : ont-ils supprimé l’option permettant de définir les tailles d’image sur Grande, Moyenne, Petite et Vignette ??? Je jure que je ne le trouve plus nulle part dans le menu habituel ou en jouant avec les “blocs” d’images/galeries.


    1. 809764fd7eb0b6a3e66644f2e865b735 François dit :

      29 avril 2021 à 11h39

      Bonjour Emerson,

      If I understood your question correctly. The blocks you are referring to are the WordPress Gutenberg image/gallery blocks and not the SeedProd plugin, correct? If so, yes, the option is not available with Gutenberg blocks. You can resize the image using the Edit link. See here:

      Or you can install the Classic Editor plugin. The option to upload images using different sizes is still available.



  6. 8a5008c2a5db9d16410dd266daff08d8 Brenna this :

    November 19, 2021 at 12:08 p.m.

    I tried to resize a jpg which is currently 850 x369. When I try to reduce, the file is limited to a width of 800. The image appears too large at 850 and 800. What can I do?


    1. 4a09cc21104d8e3329e4ce238bef92ef Stacey Corrin dit :

      November 25, 2021 at 4:01 a.m.

      Hi Brenna, you can try editing the image in an online image editor or image editing software to reduce the file size and then re-upload it to your website.


  7. ba5034e7f03d0e7c5c67e3ec934e63a1 Adam – US dit :

    April 29, 2022 at 05:21

    I know I should have started my blog with smaller images, but the page doesn’t load so small. Is there a way to upload new images (which are smaller) without having to reformat each post?


    1. 4a09cc21104d8e3329e4ce238bef92ef Stacey Corrin dit :

      April 29, 2022 at 8:58 a.m.

      Hi Adam. You can try one of these image compression plugins. Many automatically optimize images without you needing to re-upload them.


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Contents1 How to Add a Custom Logo to Your Site Header2 Site Logo2.1 Planes y precios versátiles3 Add, remove or edit a custom logo4 Video How to…

How to add a popup on wordpress

Contents1 Easily create a WordPress emergent form (2 forms)1.1 ¿Por qué usar un formulario emergente de WordPress?1.2 Método #1: Crear un formulario emergente con OptinMonster + WPForms1.3…

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Contents1 How to Revert WordPress: Undo WordPress Updates (Easy Way)2 How to Downgrade WordPress & Roll Back to a Previous Version2.1 1. A WordPress update included significant changes…

How to rollback wordpress version

Contents1 How to Downgrade WordPress and Revert to an Older Version1.1 1. A WordPress update included significant changes that are not compatible with your theme or plugins1.2…