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Why you should avoid using AVIF images in WordPress

Why you should avoid using AVIF images in WordPress

Google Search still does not accept the AVIF picture format, despite WordPress 6.5 adding support for it.

WordPress waited to add support for WebP photos until several years later, when it became a widely used image format, much like Apple did with Safari.

WordPress is once again behaving like Apple, but this time in the opposite way. Long before most image editors, such Adobe Photoshop, even handle it natively, they are adding support for AVIF, a more recent picture format. What's even more worrying is that Google Search isn't compatible with AVIF.

What's confusing is that Google does not support AVIF. Google Search renders pages using an evergreen headless version of Chrome, and Google Chrome supports AVIF. AVIF images appear flawlessly in the screenshots that Google Search Console and Rich Results Test generate when you examine sites that contain them.

Google does not support AVIF photos, despite the fact that they can be rendered. AVIF is expressly excluded by Google from their official list of approved picture formats.

The following image formats are supported by Google Search: BMP, GIF, JPEG, PNG, WebP, and SVG.

The inability of Google to support AVIF prevents them from showing up in search results. Google Images, for instance, will not index them. When the video thumbnail image is in the AVIF format, it gets even worse. Google looks at the video thumbnail before analyzing it. They won't evaluate the video if the picture is invalid. This implies that they will stop evaluating and indexing the video if the thumbnail image for the movie is in the AVIF format.

Why Google does not support AVIF is unknown. It's possible that Google is attempting to cut costs because the AVIF format requires more computing power. However, it's also possible that internal priorities haven't been given to supporting it. Nevertheless, until Google formally allows it, websites who wish their photos to show up in Google Images or have their movies examined by Google should refrain from utilizing AVIF images in WordPress.

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