How to Download and Save Animated GIF Files from Websites

Animated GIFs have become an integral part of online communication and internet culture. From expressing reactions to illustrating instructions, GIFs add a fun visual element. Knowing how to properly download these animated files can help you build up a collection to use anywhere or share with friends and family.

Methods to Download GIFs

There are a few easy methods to save GIFs from websites:

Right-Click Save As

The most straightforward way is to right-click on the GIF, choose “Save Image As”, select a download location, and click save. This will download the file in its original GIF format to use anywhere.

Browser Extensions

Extensions like Download Manager can detect GIFs and provide a download button instead of having to right-click. This allows quick saving without extra steps.

Inspect Element

If right-click saving is disabled, you can inspect the page element, find the GIF URL in the code, and paste that link to download the file.

Online Converters

Upload a video or image file to a site like EzGif which will convert it to an optimized GIF to download. Useful for files that won’t save properly.

Where to Find GIFs

Popular websites to browse and download GIFs include:

  • Giphy: Largest collection of reaction GIFs, meme GIFs and more. Easy to search and directly save.
  • Tenor: Focus on GIF keyboards, has options to upload your own GIFs.
  • Gifer: Simple interface to search entertainment, sports, and trending GIFs.

These all allow downloading GIFs through right-click saving.

Optimizing GIF Files

GIFs can produce large file sizes, especially for animations. Here are some tips to optimize quality while reducing file size:

  • Crop: Remove extra empty space around a GIF to condense physical dimensions.
  • Reduce Colors: Decrease color count for more compression – too many unique colors increase size.
  • Lower Frame Rate: For animated GIFs, reduce FPS to condense file size.
  • Remove Duplicate Frames: Delete identical consecutive frames and extend duration of remaining frames.

Aim for an optimal size between 15KB to 1MB depending on intended use.

Uses for Downloaded GIFs

Once downloaded, GIFs can be:

  • Added to presentations, documents, emails that support embedded images
  • Posted on blogs, websites, social media platforms
  • Sent directly to friends/family via messaging apps
  • Set as live wallpapers or reactions on smartphones

Having a personal collection makes sharing and expressing yourself with the perfect GIF easier than searching every time.

Step-by-Step Guide to Download GIFs

Follow these simple steps to save GIFs on both desktop or mobile:

On Desktop

  1. Right-click on the desired GIF file
  2. Select “Save Image As” from the dropdown menu
  3. Choose folder location and file name
  4. Ensure file extension reads “.gif”
  5. Click the “Save” button to download

On iPhone/Android

  1. Press and hold finger on the GIF
  2. Tap “Save Image” or “Download Image” from popup menu
  3. Access downloaded GIF in device Gallery or Files app

And you’re done! The GIF file is now saved locally to use anywhere or share however you want.

Making Your Own GIFs

Beyond downloading existing GIFs, you can create your own unique animated images using free software:

  • GIMP: Open-source image editor similar to Photoshop with animation package.
  • Piskel: Browser-based pixel art and sprite animation editor.
  • GIFMaker: Simple Windows 10 app to build GIFs.
  • Kapwing: Online creative studio for GIFs, videos, images.

These tools allow combining images, video clips, adding text, artwork, and effects to build custom GIFs.


Whether you want reactions to send friends or animated images to spice up websites, downloading GIF files is fast and easy. Follow the guide above to grab great GIFs from top websites using right-click saving, extensions, inspect element, and online converters. Reduce colors, crop, and optimize as needed then access your new GIF collection anywhere.