Do You Optimize Your Images For SEO
How To Optimize Your Images For Ranking Purposes
I have had so many questions asked of me this week about images. From where to access them to how to insert them into articles, and should I describe them. As far as I was concerned that was the most important question of them all.
Image SEO is so important. Why? Simple, Google does take your images seriously when ranking your site, so the time you spend optimizing them is a great investment of your time and effort. However, it seems that members of WA, especially the newer ones don’t realize that they can use images to drive traffic to their website.
Choosing The Right Image
Always try to use original images if you can. If you run an online store, then you’ll definitely need unique images of the products you're promoting. Google likes unique.
Does this mean that Google dislikes non-original images? Well, yes and no, but your rankings can suffer if you use an image that is found on sites all over the internet.
Therefore avoid overused images. There's an easy way to find out if an image is already used on other sites. Find related images with the reverse image search feature on Google.
In Chrome, it’s even easier: right-click on any image online and choose “Search Google for image”. You’ll see all the instances where it appears on the internet. If there are many, choose something else.
So, you’ve got your image. Should you go and post it on your site just as it is. No. You should resize it first.
First make it as small as you can. Why? Because page speed is now a ranking factor for both mobile and desktop searches on Google, and a heavy image will slow your page down.
I would advise against trying to make it smaller with CSS. You have to actually scale it.
You can use any image editor that has the scale/resize feature. I personally just use Paint because it comes as standard with Microsoft. Decide how small you want it in pixels and scale it down to that size.
Describing Your Image
Google pays attention to filenames, so choose a title that describes the picture. Not image 1, image 2, image 3, etc etc. That's just plain stupid, but I have actually come across those as well.
Here's a good tip when naming an image. Never use underscores? Why? because Google understands hyphens as separators between words, but it’s blind to underscores.
Google’s favourite image format is .WEBP. It’s great for compression, it makes your pages faster, and it’s being developed by Google.
Now you have your image in your Media Library and you want to add it to your site.
Lets start with the Alt Text. It’s called “alt” because it will be used as an alternative if the actual image fails to load.
Google learns a lot from the alt text, so it should describe your image clearly and keep it under 120 characters.
You can add keywords, but the text should still read naturally and make sense.
Research has shown that people read captions more often than other parts of your page. What’s more, search engines read them as well, so add them!
A caption should refer to the image, and add useful information if possible.
The same applies to your Description. Make it relevant.
Finally, Google is particularly attentive to the text that’s close to images. So make sure to place your picture next to the paragraphs containing your keywords that are relevant to the image.
Its been said that by next year, voice and image-based searches are going to make up at least 50 percent of all searches. What does this mean for you as a website owner?
That images will soon become your key source of traffic – as long as you know how to use them.
Take note of my tips and advice above and you will be a step ahead of your competition.
Have a great day folks and be successful.