Have you noticed that a majority of WordPress themes support some sort of image slider functionality? So, why are website owners and users crazy about image sliders? We believe that it is a matter of first impressions. We cannot deny that images and graphics are more engaging than text, and moving images through sliders makes your website way more interactive and dynamic. When you make an effort to make a strong first impression, your site visitors and users are likely to spend more time on your site thereby, reading important content and buying products and services.
Similar to the best WordPress website builders, the image slider plugins are add-on for WordPress sites that let you add multiple images to a website and show them in the form of a sliding gallery. A slider presents a single large picture at a time with beautiful transition effects while moving one image to another. Going beyond displaying pretty pictures, image slider plugins deliver a memorable and interactive experience to visitors. These advanced solutions can be used to improve navigation by providing links to a top content, integrating shortcode functionality from other plugins, and playing videos.
We will be running through the 5 best WordPress image slider plugins that appeal to all budget levels, including free and premium versions. Go through the list to select the right plugin for your website.
Soliloquy is a robust and responsive slider plugin for WordPress with a unique range of features and drag-and-drop functionality. It is an easy-to-use, lightweight, and beginner-friendly solution to create a new slider. Another notable feature of Soliloquy is the image carousel that allows you to rotate pictures in a slider as users click through them. Created by the expert team of WordPress, Soliloquy uses high-quality coding, follows the best practices, and adopts the latest technology to deliver optimized experience. The plugin blends seamlessly with the WordPress admin and leverages the native WordPress media uploader to create sliders. You can embed a slider in your pages and posts with a block editor. This solution also comes with a simple and user-friendly interface so you can create and configure sliders easily.
Soliloquy offers over 100 configurable hooks and filters to enable users to create any type of sliders. It is SEO-friendly and doesn’t compromise page speed. Its additional features are lightboxes, thumbnails, and mobile-responsive designs. If you are still using the classing WordPress editor, then all you need to do is add sliders via a button in the editor or using a shortcut. The plugin integrates easily with WooCommerce so you can create amazing product sliders for your e-commerce store.
MetaSlider is a widely used WordPress slider plugin that comes with an easy option to create stunning sliders using images directly from the WordPress media library. It is a simple yet powerful solution that you can use to create fully responsive slideshows within no time. You just have to drag and drop images that you want to add to the slider section, insert the link, and complete SEO settings for every image. Using MetaSlider, you can select slider themes and styles, different slider scripts, slider SEO titles, and much more. If you are a beginner, ignore these setting options and add a slider anywhere on the website easily. Use shortcuts instead- WordPress block, template tag, or slider widget. The plugin combines the power of four plugins- Nivo Slider, Coin Slider, FlexSlider, and ResponsiveSlides. So, you can choose any option as per your preference and use its features in one plugin.
Moreover, its impressive set of features includes thumbnail navigation, video sliders, animated layer slider, post feed slides, etc. Use the provided shortcuts and templates to embed slideshows on your pages and posts. MetaSlider is compatible with all the popular WordPress themes and plugins and you have the option to preview slides before making them live on the website to test the exact look. This will reduce the chances of any conflicts and errors from the plugin. Choose from a variety of effects and styles, such as layer, carousels, videos, or product slides. MetaSlider offers free and premium versions and you can go for a free trial to assess its usability before subscribing to a paid package.
Smart Slider 3
No doubt that Soliloquy and MetaSlider have a big fan following but if we talk about presentation and user-friendliness, then Smart Slider 3 certainly is the winner. It is a powerful image slider plugin for WordPress that gives access to an extensive library of templates that you can use as a starting point for slides. You can use its free version to create responsive sliders that are SEO-optimized and fully responsive so that you have a great start without any investment. Also, you can use a dyna
mic post slider that comes with the free plan to highlight recent or featured posts. You can work on unlimited websites and create as many images as you want for slides, adding blog posts, videos, and static overlays. The plan also gives you access to 11 templates and you can upgrade to the Pro version to get access to over 180 templates.
Smart Slider 3 also has an impressive configuration page and it provides you with full control over each aspect of the image slider, including thumbnails, arrows, bullets, etc. Along with defining the size of slides, you can also adjust alignment, animations, and the way slides are loaded. The solution also offers 6 unique layers and a drag and drop tool to customize sliders as per your needs. Its other cool features are image optimization, tech support, background image support, etc. Subscribe to the Pro version to edit your slides just like the page builder plugin. You can use hundreds of templates to set up WordPress sliders with just a few clicks.
LayerSlider is another high-quality option among image slider plugins for WordPress that boasts highly customizable and easy-to-manage options and a range of useful templates. It is one of the best plugins on CodeCanyon that includes several WordPress themes on ThemeForest. Its other powerful options include animated landing pages, sliders, full website, image galleries with effects, page blocks, etc. LayerSlider allows you to create and edit image slides through the drag and drop tool. You can copy and paste layers and use over 200 animated transition effects that are available, which include filter transition, looping, and parallax. Also, an extensive collection of pre-made slides is available in the solution with certain designs that are specifically made for mobile devices.
Thanks to its drag and drop interface, you can learn to use the plugin within a few days. It also offers a timeline view, real-time previews, Google Fonts, and a transition builder for custom animations. Its built-in lazy load options ensure that the slider doesn’t affect the loading speed and time of the website. You can use its 13 built-in skins for sliders and also choose from 3 navigation styles and multiple slider styles. Use LayerSlider to create professional pop-ups with slides and find a perfect design for almost everything to meet your personal requirements, professional needs, and creative work.
Slider Revolution was launched in 2012 and is by far one of the biggest selling image slider plugins for WordPress on CodeCanyon. It is a widely popular solution and if you have ever used premium WordPress themes, then you must have probably heard about Slider Revolution. Its visual editor lets you create custom image sliders for your website easily, you can insert videos and images and add multiple layers of content along with editing icons, fonts, colors, animations, backgrounds, and much more. The plugin offers a wide range of high-quality features, making it the most powerful WordPress slider builder. As it is a fully responsive plugin, your slider can adapt to any screen size. It offers true multimedia support so you can create sliders easily, including social media feeds, video sliders, post, and custom post sliders, etc. Animation is another stand-out feature that brings your image sliders into life and a lot of presets make the task simple.
Its pre-made 200 templates make sliders look amazing with easy customization and cutting-edge designs. You can access videos, images, pre-made layer groups, and icons and add 20 effects too, which include distortion, particles, paintbrush, etc. However, Slider Revolution has a few drawbacks too, such as its poor loading speed and lack of user-friendliness. Having said that, you can still create beautiful and highly responsive sliders using this plugin.
Adding image sliders to a website is an excellent way to grab visitors’ attention and highlight the content that you want to be seen. It lets you display videos, images, and posts on your site while displaying important content in an attractive way. The above-mentioned plugins are some of the best options available in the market. As you select the right image slider plugins for WordPress site, make sure that its functionality aligns with your business goals and needs.