Animated GIFs have gained significant popularity in recent years, as they are an excellent way to add engaging and dynamic content to websites. WordPress, one of the most widely used content management systems, is a preferred platform for many website owners. However, some users might encounter issues with animated GIFs not working correctly on their WordPress site. In this article, we will discuss the possible reasons behind this issue and provide practical solutions to resolve it.

Understanding the Issue

The primary problem that users face with animated GIFs in WordPress is that they appear as static images instead of playing the animation. This issue might occur due to various reasons, such as improper file format, large file size, or incorrect media settings in WordPress. Understanding the root cause of the problem is essential for finding an effective solution.

Check the File Format

Before attempting any other solutions, ensure that the uploaded image is in the correct GIF format. Some image editing tools might save the animated GIFs in a different format, such as PNG or JPEG. In such cases, re-save the file in the proper GIF format using an image editing tool, and then re-upload it to your WordPress site.

Optimize the File Size

Large animated GIFs can be a significant reason behind the malfunction. Heavy files take longer to load, which might cause the animation to freeze or not play at all. To resolve this issue, optimize the GIF file size using online tools like GifOpt, GifRun, or other image optimization software. Reducing the file size will not only help the animation play smoothly but also improve the overall site performance.

Verify WordPress Media Settings

By default, WordPress might generate multiple image sizes for each uploaded media file, including animated GIFs. In some cases, the platform might be displaying a resized version of the GIF instead of the original file, causing the animation to become static. To fix this, navigate to your WordPress dashboard, go to Settings > Media, and check the image size settings. If you find any additional sizes enabled, disable them, and try re-uploading the animated GIF.

Use a Plugin or Add Custom Code

If the issue persists, you can try using a WordPress plugin that enables proper display and handling of animated GIFs. Plugins like WP GIF Player or GIF Animation Preview can provide better control over GIFs on your site. Alternatively, you can add custom code to your theme’s functions.php file to ensure that WordPress uses the original file instead of the resized version.


Animated GIFs can significantly enhance the visual appeal and engagement of your WordPress site. However, it’s essential to address any issues related to their display and functionality. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can effectively resolve the animated GIF issue in WordPress and provide a seamless browsing experience for your visitors.

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