I hope this is not a far-away topic from this platform.

I plan to create a WordPress site, but I thought that maybe instead of hosting images on my own WordPress installation, I thought that if I just upload the images to a 3rd-party service like Imgur and then just insert them as linked images in my posts that would be a better idea?

My reasoning is:

  • These 3rd-party services like Imgur already have a CDN, and they are faster in loading than my website.
  • I won't have to buy/install some image optimization plugins, because images are hosted somewhere else and they already optimized there.
  • Over time, I won't have to worry about storage/size issues because of the large number of pictures.
  • Some services have been there for 10, 15, 20 years... So they are trusted to not disappear over night.

Of course, there might be some concerns about creating a backup just in case my pictures get removed or the 3rd-party service goes down... Is the idea generally good?

Is there anything else I have to worry about?

  • This is off topic here. For a typical website using a CDN is overkill and will cause more problems then it solves. I would start with everything on a WP and then branch off if you get massive volume. The minor inconvenience of image optimisation (which you would probably have on a CDN anyway) is way less then the difficulty of 'doing CDN properly for images' with WordPress.
    – davidgo
    Aug 11, 2020 at 10:53
  • @davidgo Where do you think i should put the question? I've already removed from ServerFault for same reason.
    – Madno
    Aug 11, 2020 at 11:13
  • Being off-topic here does not intrinsically make it on-topic elsewhere. (I often have questions I'd like to ask here because of the wealth of relevant knowledge that is off topic). I don't participate significantly in wordpress.stackexchange - but it might be that if you refocus your question (ie What are the practical implications of using a third party services for image storage in Wordpress and how do I implement it). Doing this makes it less opinion based then "is it a good idea", and focusing on WP makes it more on-topic there... but I'm guessing as to their rules.
    – davidgo
    Aug 11, 2020 at 11:29
  • imgur.com/tos "Also, don't use Imgur to host image libraries you link to from elsewhere, content for your website, advertising, avatars, or anything else that turns us into your content delivery network. If you do – and we will be the judge – or if you do anything illegal, in addition to any other legal rights we may have, we will ban you along with the site you're hotlinking from, delete all your images, report you to the authorities if necessary, and prevent you from viewing any images hosted on Imgur.com. We mean it."
    – fuxia
    Aug 11, 2020 at 14:54
  • "For a typical website using a CDN is overkill " - proof, please.
    – Putnik
    Aug 11, 2020 at 18:44

3 Answers 3


Depends on lots of factors.

But for a simple answer if you have a low budget website and do not have that many pictures (less than 1k) it's better to optimize your image and host them on your own server and use the money on more important aspects of your site.

You can always migrate your images to a 3rd party when ever is needed with ease.


Leaving legal question aside (there are services which do allow to use their resources this way), technically it is possible, but practically you'll have to spend much more time on managing all of that.

If you have heavy traffic due to your static assets then you should leverage caching, including CDN. There are even free options, just google it. And by "static assets" I mean not only images but much more like js, css, even fonts and sounds if you use them.

If the traffic is low and you can fit with your GBs hosting plan - stick there, you can move images somewhere else later or buy additional space.

If you have low traffic but a lot of images (GBs, TBs) then consider something like AWS S3-backed static site hosting which a) will be reliable b) will be cheap because it is for static assets only. Anyway be ready for management burden. Maybe you'll find a plugin which will help you with that, I personally cannot suggest any.


No from an SEO point of view.

Get a good web host that can handle the little traffic you're getting now and with the small images and thumbnails you have, the site will be fast with little effort or complication.

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