Performance YouTube Player Block for WordPress (Gutenberg) adds a new block to the WordPress Block Editor that lets you embed YouTube videos while keeping your site fast and performant. Get better scores on Lighthouse/PageSpeed Insights and offer the fastest web experience to your users.
- An essential plugin for web performance optimization
- Make embedded YouTube videos load without render blocking, FOUC or CLS
- No cookies! GDPR compliant and privacy focused
- Made especially for the WordPress Block Editor (Gutenberg)
BLAZING FAST! Forget lazy loading and jQuery replacement hacks, Performance YouTube Block uses the very latest Web Components technology to load a YouTube embed fast. If you want to make the fastest website possible and want to include YouTube videos, don’t let YouTube ruin your Lighthouse/PageSpeed Insights/GT Metrix scores with a slow video embed.
IMPROVE CORE WEB VITALS! The Performance YouTube Player is rendered on the Shadow DOM, letting the browser focus on other parts of the page render so you get fast loading times. No flashes of unstyled content (FOUC), no CLS issues (Cumulative Layout Shift) and no render blocking time.
PRIVACY FIRST! Load YouTube without the cookies – no tracking, no cookies, GDPR compliant. Inline with the regulations laid out by the European Union, Performance YouTube is General Data Protection Regulation compliant, and only sends cookies once the user interacts with the video.
WEBP THUMBNAILS WebP is a newer compression algorithm for images – the average WebP file size is 25%-34% smaller than a JPG. This means your video thumbnails load quicker. WebP image format is now supported by all major browsers.
RESPONSIVE & ACCESSIBLE Performance YouTube Block is responsive by default (the video resizes for mobile/desktop) and offers many video options over and above the standard WordPress YouTube embed, including looping and hiding controls. Performance YouTube Block is also accessible and SEO friendly.
Performance YouTube Block Features:
- Blazing fast YouTube Embed – get best possible Lighthouse/PageSpeed scores
- Fully responsive 16:9 – works on mobiles, tablets, desktops and adapts to your website size
- No cookies, tracking or GDPR worries on load
- Supports wide and full width block alignment
- Optionally set custom video start time
- Optionally hide controls after initial start
- Optionally loop video
- Accessible via keyboard, customise ARIA and alt text
- Starts preloading video when scrolling in to view
- Loads webP thumbnail with JPEG fallback
- Option to turn off webP thumbnail if required
- No API keys required
Using the Performance YouTube Block
Open the Block Editor, add a new block / use the Block Inserter and search for Performance YouTube block under Embed category. You can also insert it directly from the editor by typing a “/” slash and then Performance YouTube.
Performance YouTube Settings
There are no global settings for the block, each block can be customised as you need.
Available settings are:
- Alignment – content width, wide width, full width (Theme setting dependent)
- Video Title – add the title for accessibility and SEO purposes
- Video Start Time – set a YouTube video start time in seconds
- Controls – hide the controls for the video once it is playing
- Loop – loop the video after it has finished playing
- Thumbnail – turn off webP thumbnail (Older YouTube videos may not have a webP thumbnail)
The plugin was inspired by Paul Irish’s Lite YouTube Embed, forked from Justin Ribeiro’s Shadow DOM web component version of the same code. I’ve updated it, fixed a few problems and fully integrated it in to WordPress Gutenberg, so it just works.
Instructions for Install
Download the plugin zip file.
Go to WordPress Admin > Plugins > Add New Plugin > Upload Plugin, and upload the plugin zip file.
There are other ways to install the plugin, please see the WordPress documentation here (http://codex.wordpress.org/Managing_Plugins).
Once installed, Activate the plugin.
The Performance YouTube block will be available in your block inserter.
The plugin is for WordPress, so requires WordPress to be installed. As it is a Block for the Block Editor (Gutenberg) then you should have WordPress 5.0 or above.
The plugin will not work with Classic Editor installed (as this disables Gutenberg Block Editor)
Q: My video thumbnail displays as a grey YouTube error thumbnail
A: The video you are embedding doesn’t have a webP thumbnail. You can either edit the video on YouTube and resave the thumbnails to generate new thumbnails, or you can use the Disable WebP option in the Blocks settings to display the JPG version. Not all videos use webP images for thumbnails, so older videos need to have their thumbnails regenerated to generate a webP thumbnail.
Q: Can it autoplay the video?
A: This plugin is designed for performance and autoplaying videos ruins performance. It’s also annoying! You do not want to autoplay videos for your users if your focus is on performance.