How to Automatically Compress Screenshots on Mac

If you take lots of screenshots and frequently send them online, you must have wondered if they could be compressed automatically before sending or uploading online. Well, you are in luck. Clop is the perfect solution that can not only compress screenshots but also videos and pdfs. Read on to find out what else it does and how.

I write online. I make detailed how-tos and guides to help readers solve a particular problem, but as the medium my thoughts get through to the reader is primarily text, I rely on screenshots, gifs and images to convey my ideas better.

But, I often have to tread a fine line between including too few images and too many. If I skimp on images, my points may get muddled or unclear, but if I throw in too many, it’s like my articles balloons up and takes forever to load. Therefore, I had to continuously mess around with compressing my screenshots and gifs manually.

Describing this workflow as a hassle doesn’t even begin to cover it. Here’s what I had to do: I’d snap a screenshot, save it on my computer (maybe even bother to name it), then jump through hoops with online image compression tools or whatever free tools I could find just to shrink them down before uploading to my blog.

Also read: How to Change the Default Fonts in Excalidraw

What I really wished for? Snap a screenshot and boom, it’s instantly compressed and saved to my clipboard, ready to paste wherever I need it. If you work with blogging and online content creation, you must also have been itching for a tool that could automatically compress screenshots.

Thankfully, I came across an app called Clop (short for Clipboard Optimiser) that does exactly this and a lot more. It primarily works on three media types — images, videos and pdfs.

This app is a Swiss-Army knife for compression and packs numerous other features, so it’s probably a good idea to learn about them point-wise.

How to automatically compress images/videos on Clipboard

Clop comes with clipboard monitoring (after all, it’s in the name). You can set it to monitor your clipboard for any videos, or images, and it will compress them automatically.

Turning this setting on makes for a lightening fast workflow because the images or screenshots you copy and paste are compressed without you ever realising if anything happened to them in-between.

How to automatically compress clipboard contents on Mac

However, keeping this setting turned on may interfere with your work on other applications, such as professional image or video editing, so I recommend you turn it on purposefully.

Also read: 4 Awesome Tricks to Save a Clipboard Image as JPG/PNG File

Here’s what I suggest instead: keep this setting turned off. When you want to compress something on your clipboard, simply hit the default keyboard shortcut Ctrl + Shift + C, and voilà! Whatever’s on your clipboard will get compressed. No need to open any tool or click around. Just make sure the Clop app is running in the background to catch and recognise this keyboard shortcut.

Remove EXIF Metadata from photos

The photos you take from your camera and mobile phones often contain some identifying details, such as make and model of the camera, its aperture, shutter speed, ISO, date and time of capturing the photo and in some cases, GPS coordinates. This metadata is called EXIF, which stands for Exchangeable Image File Format.

If you upload your photos online on Facebook or Instagram, it’s a good idea to strip them of any details which could reveal your location or any other detail you’d rather want hidden.

Clop can help you with that. It can automatically strip the EXIF data if you allow it to. All you have to do is toggle this setting on:

How to remove EXIF Metadata automatically on Mac

Drag and drop into the Drop Zone to compress images and videos

Compressing images and videos couldn’t be simpler than this. All you have to do is switch on the drop zone setting. This enables an area on the right side of your screen where you can drag images, videos and pdfs you want to compress. This zone is activated as soon as you start any of these files.

It takes a few seconds (depending on the file size) and the compressed file becomes available to you floating in a window. You can then drag and drop it to any application to paste it.

Also read: 17+ Awesome Excalidraw Tips for Insane Productivity

Oh, and here’s a little bonus tip: if you hold down the Command (⌘) key while dropping your files into the drop zone, it kicks things up a notch with aggressive optimisation. I tested it out, and it can slash the file size of an already optimised image by a whopping 50%. So, if you’re really aiming to shrink that file down (even if it means sacrificing a bit of quality), aggressive optimisation is the way to go.

Automatically compress the contents of a specific folder

Here’s a cool thing: Clop lets you keep an eye on a folder and automatically compress its contents using your own custom rules. When I’m knee-deep in a hefty article or project, I stash all my visual assets in a folder on the desktop.

With Clop doing its thing, it effortlessly compresses everything based on the rules I set. I get to decide which-sized images get a pass, what file types to ignore, and which ones get the aggressive compression treatment. It’s like having a personal compression assistant tailored to my preferences!

How to automatically compress images and videos in a folder on Mac

Compressing images and videos in bulk has never been easier. Simply drop them into the watched folder and let Clop take care of the rest. They’ll be automatically compressed and renamed according to the rules you’ve set. Easy as pie!

Automatically convert images & videos

As you might have probably guessed by now, so much automation opens the doors for Clop to automatically convert images and videos from watched folders. In the GIF above (👆), you can see all the formats in which Clop can convert images and videos.

To be specific, you can set Clop to convert the following image formats to JPG and PNGs:

How to automatically convert images and videos between different formats

Similarly, Clop can automatically convert the following video formats:

How to Automatically Compress Screenshots on Mac

One of the useful features that I found in the settings is the option to remove audio from videos automatically while optimising. If your workflow involves stripping videos of any audio, give Clop a try. You will thank me.

Supports keyboard shortcuts

On top of all that, Clop comes full-fledged with support for keyboard shortcuts. You can customise the modifier keys to your liking. With the help of these shortcuts, you can optimise or aggressively optimise the current clipboard content, pause Clop for next images, downscale images and do a lot more.

Also read: How to open 4 tabs side-by-side on Mac


Clop offers two of its features for free, while its premium features are reserved for paying users. You can see the difference between the free and pro features in the screenshot from their website below:

Clop Pro vs Free version

For those interested in unlocking the pro features, the plan costs just $15 as a one-time purchase, and it even includes a generous 14-day trial period.

Additionally, Clop is available on SetApp. If you’re already subscribed to SetApp, you can easily download Clop from the SetApp store.

SetApp is essentially like Netflix but for Mac apps, priced at $9.99 per month. Currently, it boasts a collection of over 240 apps in its store.

What’s neat about SetApp is that you don’t have to pay for each app individually. Many popular Mac apps like CleanshotX, CleanMyMac, Bartender, Permute, and more are included in the subscription, which is a steal considering their individual costs far exceed the SetApp subscription price.

To sweeten the deal, SetApp also offers a 7-day free trial for those curious to explore its offerings before committing.

Click here to try Clop on SetApp for FREE.

Wrap up

And there you have it. Now you know how you can automatically compress your clipboard contents without much sweating.

If you’re someone who regularly shares or posts images, screenshots, or videos online, Clop is your go-to app. Not only does it seamlessly optimise whatever’s on your clipboard, but it can also convert less common file formats into more compatible ones. With its support for keyboard shortcuts and streamlined automation, tasks that used to eat up 3 to 5 minutes of your time now take less than 3 seconds.

Thanks for reading.