Marketing 2 min read

WordPress Announces Lazy-Loading Images in WP Core

WordPress announced that a lazy-loading images feature could be rolled out on its next update to help improve the user experience of WordPress sites.

IB Photography / Shutterstock.com

IB Photography / Shutterstock.com

WordPress announced that the upcoming March update – WordPress 5.4 – might feature lazy-loading images.

Lazy-loading HTML attribute tells a browser whether to wait before downloading an image or download it right away.

WordPress first considered enabling lazy-loading for images in WordPress content in 2018. But at the time, the feature required a custom JavaScript-based approach, and this would have introduced many edges and failures.

Now, there’s a native web solution that relies entirely on the presence of a new loading attribute on img tags. As a result, users can enjoy a standardized experience without content shifting.

For several years, publishers have used lazy-loading images to improve their page-load performance. Since the feature wasn’t available natively, they either had to use Javascript or third-party plugins.

Well, not anymore. Earlier in the week, WordPress announced that WordPress 5.4 would add lazy-loading to all images.

How Lazy-Loading Images Impacts Performance

Three kinds of lazy-loading attributes exist, but only two matters. These are Lazy and Eager.

The Eager attributes tell the browser to download the image immediately. Meanwhile, the Lazy attribute means to wait until the browser’s viewport is within a certain distance before downloading the image.

As you can imagine, this behavior could significantly speed up a user’s experience on WordPress sites.

The announcement reads:

“With WordPress enabling native lazy-loading by default, it would significantly impact performance and user experience for millions of sites, without requiring any technical knowledge or even awareness of lazy-loading as a concept.”

The tech company points out that adopting a new loading attribute creates a chance for WordPress to set a precedent for a faster web.

With that in mind, the WordPress team has officially released a lazy-loading plugin designed for testing purposes only. The team is developing the plugin on Github, and they encourage publishers to test it and provide feedback.

Last year, Google also suggested plans to enable lazy-loading automatically when a browser is in Lite Mode.

Read More: Vulnerabilities in WordPress Plugins Place 400,000 Sites At Risk

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  1. Profile Image
    Shivam Dayani February 01 at 12:41 pm GMT

    Of course Edgy Universe,
    I am quite impressed with this Article regarding WordPress.
    It’s typical news to understand I would say by WordPress.

    Mihir Soni
    Digital Marketing Intern
    Brandveda

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