Jetpack Photon module is a feature of multi-talented Jetpack plugin from Automattic – the parent company of WordPress. Photon is an image accelerator you can use to speed up the load times of your Website images. Photon uses WordPress.com CDN servers to speed up your images load times.
Jetpack Photon is a great, easier and free option to speed up your Website load times by using super fast WordPress.com CDN servers. Unlike other CDNs, it won’t host all of your static files, just images. It caches every image you upload in posts and pages content.
Activating Jetpack Photon Module
To activate Photon, you need to install Jetpack plugin, authored by Automattic – the parent company of WordPress. After activating Jetpack, go to Jetpack > Settings > Performance and scroll down to Performance & speed options and then toggle on the option Enable site accelerator > Speed up image load times.
After activating Photon, images uploaded to your posts and pages are duplicated to a super fast content delivery network hosted on the WordPress.com servers. Photon works on every pages on the activated Website.
Photon uses WordPress.com cloud servers to serve uploaded images in posts and pages. Cloud servers are systems that use a network of servers to deliver static files to people around the world faster. They mostly provide their speed benefit by being closer to people.
And for you, as a user, that means that it’s pretty fast, pretty secure and if a server goes down for some reason, it doesn’t mean that your Website is just going to disappear off the Internet in the process. Photon caches images for life. If you want to clear cache for an image, you must re-upload the image with new name.
SEO Benefits of Using Photon
Although Photon improves page load times, many people think that Photon accelerated images are bad for SEO because images url is linked to WordPress.com servers. A Photon cached url looks like this –
They think that Search Engines will not index those images as they are serving from wp.com servers. But people are wrong at this point. Like other good CDNs, Jetpack Photon includes a link to the canonical image with each response. Seach Engines uses canonical url when indexing a file/page.
By canonical url Google and other Search Engines will always know where the original image lives and will index that one. So Photon accelerated images are not bad for SEO and it is good for SEO as it improves load times. Photon can load page 2.5 times faster and search engines love fast load speed.
There is no bad impact of using Photon. We recommend to use Photon for every website. That’s we have learned by using Photon. If you have learned something different, please comment us describing your thoughts.