Shopify CRO QuickTip #5—Kill The GIF Superhero
Have you ever wanted to spice up your website? Have you tried using animation? I guess it crossed your mind, at least once. A moving image is worth 1 million words, after all.
What you need paragraphs of text for (which most people online won’t read) can easily be explained with a short video clip.
Sadly, most store owners still call on the GIF superhero to help them with that.
Yes, GIFs are simple, but they also slow down your website.
Forget About Using GIFs On Your Website
There are plenty of problems with this 30-year-old image format:
- poor image quality—the file format reduces images to 256 colors which look unnatural. This ruins the perception of your brand.
- poor compression—creating a 2-3second video and putting it in a GIF will result in an enormous file. That big file hits the speed of your site hard, forcing your visitors to download megabytes of data for a simple 3-4 second animation.
Do you want that on your Shopify store in this day and age?
The GIF’s Stunt Double
Since GIF’s inception, many more formats have been created. The most notable is mp4 video—playable on all browsers and smartphones produced in the last 10 years.
Mp4 is far better suited to handle your “moving image” needs, be it short or long.
Exporting short clips as mp4 video will result in files 10x lighter than the gifs. You’ll also get a “full color” moving image in the end.
MP4 videos can be added to the page and configured to autoplay and loop, completely mimicking the GIF behavior you are used to.
Go on, take GIFs out of your toolbox and look into using mp4 videos on your store.
If you’ve read this far, I believe you’ll benefit from my “No Code Shopify Speed Optimization” guide! It is a quick read that’ll help you get the right mindset towards your Shopify store customizations.