How To Add a Loading Animation to Your WordPress Website

In this guide, you'll learn how to add a loading animation (preloader solution) to your WordPress website easily and for free

Updated on August 21, 2023
How To Add a Loading Animation to Your WordPress Website

Waiting for something to load can be tedious, especially on the web. Loading animation is a useful way to manage wait times for the user. So if you are looking for a WordPress solution to keep users happy while waiting, here are some cool methods for creating animations during page loading. In this guide, you’ll learn how to add a loading animation (preloader) to your WordPress website easily and for free.

Why Add a Loading Animation?

Before we dive in, it’s essential to understand the benefits:

  • Enhanced User Experience: A loading animation keeps users engaged, hinting that the site is working on fetching the content.
  • Professional Aesthetic: Quality animations add a touch of professionalism, setting you apart from competitors.
  • Decreased Bounce Rate: Visually engaging users during load times makes them less likely to leave your site prematurely.

How to Add a Loading Animation to Your WordPress Site

Adding a loading animation is easier than you might think. There are several options on how to add one to a WordPress site. From easy-to-use plugins to adding custom code to the site. Since there are so many choices, I’ll list them here so you can look around and find which one works best for you.

Numerous animation styles exist, from spinning wheels to progress bars. Your choice should resonate with your website’s design and branding. In this guide, you’ll learn how to add a loading animation (preloader solution) to your WordPress website easily and for free.

Best WordPress Plugins Add a Loading Animation

A plugin is the easiest, most straightforward way to add an animation. These are especially helpful if you don’t feel comfortable messing with code or don’t have the time.

Here is a list of some of the most versatile plugins for loadings. Some of these are free, and others are premium. Sometimes, the same plugin has a simpler free version and a more robust pro version for adding a preloader animation to WordPress.

Loftloader Loading Animation for WordPress

Loftloader has a free and a pro version. You can try out a few preloaders in the free version and customize them to match the site and brand. Moreover, the pro version has more options and more granular controls.

Flat Preloader

Flat Preloader is a simple free plugin with limited colorful loading animations. This plugin is perfect if you need a quick fix for a preloader and don’t need to customize the colors or the image with a Preloader animation guide for your website.

Page Loader: Add Loading Animation in WordPress Websites

Page Loader is a premium loading animation plugin with many customization and branding options. As a result, It’s one of the favorite preloader plugins on the market.

Loading Animation Without a WordPress Plugin

If you want to avoid using a plugin, plenty of free and ready-to-use animations are available. As well as some advanced tutorials which provide the code snippets you need to add.

PixelBuddha with Multimedia

The guys at Multimedia published a simple tutorial with two free sets of loading animations from PixelBuddha and the code you need to set them up on your site.

CodePen For Loading Animations

In this Medium article by UX Planet, the author rounds up a lot of loading animations in different styles. There are simple ones and more complex ones. Firstly, most of them are embedded from CodePen and you can get the HTML and CSS snippets from the widget. Moreover, you’ll need to insert these into a complete code set for an animation setup.

SpinKit: Add Loading Animation in WordPress Websites

Tobias Ashlink has a SpinKit with a nice collection of loading animations with the code available through GitHub. These also need to be added to a full code set for a preloader setup.

Loading.io

Loading.io is a collection of loading animations with lots of different options. There are CSS preloaders, GIF preloaders, buttons and more. So, look through their site to find all the options and the instructions on how to add them to your site.

Pixelvars

Finally, The guys are Pixelvars wrote a handy tutorial with all the code you’ll need to set up your loading animation. You can even use their code and the CodePen or GitHub animations above. This option does seem a bit more advanced for some people. Go with this if you are a developer with good coding knowledge.

Honorable Mention (Outdated or No Longer Working)

Best Preloader

Best Preloader is a free one-option loading animation plugin that fits any website style. In addition, it comes with one animation with some customization controls.

WP Smart Preloader

WP Smart Preloader is a free and open-source plugin with full customization options. The animations are not very elaborate but will match any website style. You can customize the colors and the settings quite easily.

Testing and Optimization

Once implemented, test your website on various devices and browsers to ensure the animation works seamlessly. Tools like GTmetrix or Google PageSpeed Insights can help gauge if the animation impacts load time. If it does, consider optimizing the animation or choosing a more straightforward design.

Conclusion

Loading animations can significantly enhance your WordPress website’s visual appeal and user experience. Whether you opt for a plugin or custom code, the key is to keep it consistent with your branding and ensure it doesn’t negatively impact site speed. With these steps, your website will look more professional and keep users engaged during load times.

Note: Always back up your website before making any changes, especially when adding new plugins or editing theme files. This ensures you have a safe point to return to if something goes awry.