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Cloudinary Review: An Ultimate Image Management Tool For Better Optimization

Written by dk2lx1z on July 8, 2020

Are you looking for an overall management tool? Consider using Cloudinary as the best video and image management plugin. Let’s see some of its unique features and benefits in the sections given below. Will it stand better as an image optimization plugin? We’ll cover its specific performance for image compression and optimization. The plugin also points out the importance of overall video and image management. You will get to know several different features of such plugins from other generic image compression tools.

What is the Cloudinary WordPress Plugin?

Basically, Cloudinary is an old WordPress plugin. Yet, it is currently available in an updated version of 2.1.2 and is used widely for different purposes. The platform is well integrated between video and image management. It’s a cloud-based service that allows users to store, upload, manipulate, manage, and deliver videos/images on almost every platform. Furthermore, different extensions and plugins are also being available by Cloudinary for easy integration with various platforms.

Key Features And Benefits of Cloudinary Image And Video Management Plugin

Given below are various functions and benefits of the Cloudinary plugin in brief. Get to know its versatility via different features provided.

  • It facilitates the management of overall media in WordPress itself. The embedded digital asset management offers full DAM capabilities, including advanced research, automation, AI tagging, structured metadata, collections, and an intuitive user interface.
  • Cloudinary automates all the processes for videos, images, and other rich media for better site performance, user experience, and fast loading times.
  • It supports automatic optimization with specific global transformations on pre-existing media and other future uploads.
  • The Cloudinary plugin management results in automatic mobile-responsive images.
  • Users can also apply taxonomy level transformations via 'tag' or 'category.'

Merits of Cloudinary

  • AI-powered
  • Comprehensive manipulation of videos and images
  • Automatic optimization
  • Includes video transformation features with filters, thumbnails, and much more
  • Direct management of assets from WordPress interface

Demerits of Cloudinary

  • May contain bugs
  • No HTTPS protocol
  • Slow response to automatic optimization

It's a great tool if you are looking to manage videos and images in a single platform. However, beginners or those looking for just a simple image compression may find it a bit hectic. Let's rate its usage given below and decide yourself whether it is simple to use or not.

How to Image and Video Management of Cloudinary Plugin?

Getting started with the Cloudinary plugin looks as follows.

  • Installation and Configuration of Cloudinary
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Its installation and configuration are quite straightforward with several simple steps. The very first step is to activate the plugin from the official WordPress. After its activation, don’t forget to download the zip file along. If you haven't created an account on Cloudinary, click Sign Up for Free! Else, you can directly click the Connect to Cloudinary button. You are then required to enter a variable URL that can be found on the Cloudinary dashboard itself.

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Hit the Save Connection button afterward.

You can access and configure more things in Sync Media and Global Transformations. These are two essential configurations you need for further operation. These default configurations get your new media synced automatically and helps serve the auto-optimization quality. Thus, any media you will upload will be shown as being served from Cloudinary.

  • Image Transformations
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Cloudinary offers two features, namely the Video Transformations and Image Transformations. Let’s check out the Image Transformations feature in specific because the Video Transformations are quite similar. Select the Cloudinary> Global Transformations button to access the function. It is present on the Image Settings page by default.

  • Global Transformations

The Global Transformations feature of Cloudinary mainly provides three things as follows.

  • Global Level Transformations – Automatic application to all assets
  • Taxonomy Level Transformations – Tag/Category application based on taxonomy
  • Individual Level Transformations – Application to personal assets
  • Breakpoints

Breakpoints help generate n number of images depending upon your preferred settings. It has three primary settings, as defined below.

  • Max Breakpoints

The total n number of images you want to create.

  • Byte Step

Cloudinary will compress the images according to your preferred settings of the minimum difference of size between two successive images.

  • Image Width

The minimum and a maximum width of images you want in pixels.

  • Image Format

In terms of image format, it supports different forms such as PNG, GIF, WebP, and JPEG. After you set the recommended size, all the images will be delivered in that particular type and enhance user experience. The next option of Image Quality offers control of image quality on the WordPress website.

  • Image Transformation String

The feature of the image transformation string is quite confusing yet functional. It is something similar to the coding part where you have to add a section to the URL for the magical transformation of images. You just need to pass or set specific parameters in the URL for the task to happen automatically.

  • Video Transformations

The Video Transformations by Cloudinary provides several features as given below.

  • Video Player
  • Player Options
  • Bitrate
  • Video Transformation String
  • Sync Media
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Sync Media is another worth considering feature of Cloudinary, where you can synchronize the available media if any present before the plugin installation.

  • Cloudinary Media Library
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Cloudinary Media Library can be accessed while importing images into WordPress. You can use media directly from here using the UI. The option is available along with the Upload Files and Media Library option.

  • Pricing Plans

The pricing package of the Cloudinary ranges from Free to Advanced. After the Free basic version at $0, you will have a Plus plan starting at $89 per month. The next Advanced project is priced at $224 per month. After the Advanced Plan, you can also avail custom packages as per your needs. Here, you need to contact the team for a purpose.

This is all about the usage of the Cloudinary Video and Image Management tool, as discussed above. I Hope you admire all the steps and decide better regarding the simplicity of features. You can also read our ShortPixel review as a better comparison.

Essential Factors Slowing Your Website

There could be several factors that slow down your website speed, including poor image compression. As we all know, the website's speed matters a lot, so you must look into the bottlenecks slowing the site down.

  • A load of media files

Maybe a lot of media files are present on your website. This can happen if you are not using any optimal image compression or image optimization tool. Media files can include both videos as well as images. So, make sure to compress both of them for increased load times of the website.

  • Poor or no optimization of CSS

CSS ensures the styling of pages on the website. So, if it is poorly optimized, it could result in the slow loading speed of websites. Thus, it's essential to ensure the optimization of CSS files. You can replace external CSS with an internal one or combine few CSS files into one.

  • Render-blocking JavaScript

JavaScript can actually block or slow down the loading of web pages if not optimized. It happens because JavaScript files are first loaded on the website before other things. So, you can either defer JavaScript to get a load or use inline JavaScript than external data.

  • Use CDN

The absence of CDN can slow down the website because your site's media is not available on global servers. The Content Delivery Network is beneficial and ensures you have media is also available on servers around the globe.

Conclusion

Managing videos and images simultaneously may look a bit fascinating, but you must also check for the user-interface. Cloudinary is a tool made for users who want to transform pictures and videos on the go. What we feel is like that it's more of a transformation tool than a compression plugin. And, you may find its premium account out of budget also. Keeping in mind all these concerns, we’d like to share our ShortPixel Review as a better alternative.

Article written by dk2lx1z

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