Think about the last time you uploaded an image to your site. Most likely, you downloaded it from a photography site, uploaded it to the back end of your site and inserted it into the page.
This is a brilliant example of Seo image optimization, right? It’s not like that.
He added a giant bowling ball weight to his site, slowing down the page speed. And search engines cannot read your images without alternative text.
Let’s change it
More than 20% of all web searches in the US. They are made in Google Images, according to 2018 Jumpshot data.
SEO professionals and fans know that image optimization for your site is worth it.
Dan Morgan of WebSpection got one of his photos to be ranked no#1 in Google Images as “best person in Cardiff” in less than four days, optimizing your image.
Robbie Richards generated 150,732 visits by adding alt image tags, compressing images and some other SEO tricks.
Without proper image optimization, you are wasting a valuable SEO resource.
It’s as if search engines are distributing Oreos and milk for free. But you only take Oreo. When in reality, Oreo is much better soaked in milk.
Image optimization creates many advantages, such as better user experience, faster page load times and additional sorting opportunities. And it is becoming an increasingly important role.
As Matt Southern noted, Gary Illyes’ statement about finding images in a recent Reddit chat:
“We simply know that media search is way too ignored for what it’s capable doing for publishers so we’re throwing more engineers at it as well as more outreach.”
But what factors are most important to ensure that your images are localizable and do not slow down your site? Also, Check Seo Trend 2020.
Here are 11 important image optimization tips you should know.
#1. Choose the Correct Image Format
Decoding all the various image formats may seem like your first purchase at Taco Bell. However, before you start adding images to your site, be sure to choose the best type of file.
While there are many image formats to choose from, PNG and JPEG are the most common for the web.
- PNG: Produces better quality images, but comes with larger file size.
- JPEG: You can lose image quality, but you can adjust the quality level to find a good balance.
For me, PNG is the unknown hero of the image format. Usually, I only use JPEG for larger and more visual images taken by a true photographer. But for my daily use, PNG is the way to go.
#2. Compress Your Images
Yes, hell is not furious as a swollen web page after loading an image that is not compressed.
Search engines will see your website as if it were a big Crisco repository: you can’t seriously consider putting this on your site, right?
According to the HTTP File, images average 21% of the total weight of a web page.
That’s why I recommend compressing your images before uploading them to your site. You can do this in Photoshop or you can use a tool like TinyPNG. TingPNG also has a WordPress plugin that you can also use.
However, I prefer WP Smush as my WordPress plugin. Reduce image file size without eliminating quality. Regardless of the plugin, you use, look for one that compresses the images externally on your servers. Reduce the load on your own site.
Increasingly.com improved site speed by 33% / 2 seconds by compressing images.
I mean, there is something sexy in the fastest page speed when you compress your images.
If you are not sure how your images are affecting the speed of the page, I recommend using Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool.
#3. Create Unique Images
You want your photos to appear on your site. If you fill your site with stock images, it won’t look original, like thousands of other sites that don’t stand out.
Many websites are full of generic photos.
Think of a corporate website, a consulting company, a company that prides itself on its customer service. All these sites use virtually the same image as a smiling businessman.
I’m sure you’ve seen something like this:
Although you can have your perfectly optimized stock images, they will not have the same impact or potential SEO benefits as a high-quality original image.
The more original photos you have, the better the user experience and the greater your chances of ranking in relevant searches.
#4. Beware of Copyright
Regardless of the image files you choose, make sure there are no copyright conflicts.
If Getty, Shutterstock, DepositFiles or another photo provider owns a used image and does not have a license to use it, you are risking expensive action.
According to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), you may receive a warning if you violate any copyright problem. If the owner of a part of the content sees the content on his site, he can issue a DMCA removal that he must comply with.
Google Images allows you to filter the results based on those available for reuse.
#5. Customize the Names of the Image Files
When it comes to SEO, creating descriptive and keyword-rich file names is absolutely crucial.
Not customizing the name of the image file is like getting a burrito with nothing. It just stinks.
Image file names alert Google and other crawlers on the subject of the image.
Usually, file names are similar to “IMG_722019” or something similar. It’s like ordering from a menu in a different language. This does not help Google.
Change the default file name to help search engines understand your image and improve your SEO value.
This requires a bit of work depending on the length of your media library, but changing the default image name is always a good idea. Take this chocolate picture, for example:
You could simply call it “chocolate”, but if you sell chocolate on your site, all the images could be called “chocolate-1”, “chocolate-2”, etc.
I called this image “coffee with dark chocolate” to allow users and search engines to understand the image.
#6. SEO Friendly Alt Text For Image
Alt tags are an alternative text to images when a browser cannot represent them correctly. Similar to the title, the alt attribute is used to describe the content of an image file.
When the image does not load, you get an image box with the alt tag present in the upper left corner. Make sure that they fit the image and that the image is relevant.
Paying attention to alt tags is also beneficial for the overall on-page SEO strategy. You want to make sure that all other optimization areas are in place, but if the image is not loaded for some reason, users will see what the image should be.
Also, adding appropriate alternative tags to images on your site can help you get better search engine rankings by associating keywords with images. Even Google commented on the value of the alternative text in images.
Provide Google with useful information on the subject of the image. We use this information to help determine the best image to return a user’s query.
The United States Disabilities Act requires an alternative text for people who cannot see their own images. Alternative descriptive text can alert users to exactly what is in the photo. For example, suppose you have a chocolate picture in place.
The alternative text could read:
<img src=”chocolate-1.jpg” alt=”chocolate”/>
However, a better alternative text that describes the image would be:
<img src=”chocolate-1.jpg” alt=” dark chocolate coffee flavored bar”/>
The alternative text is visible in the cached text version of the page, which helps benefit users and search engines. To get more SEO value, the alternative text can act as the anchor text of an internal link when the image is linked to a different page on the site.
#7. Image File Structure
In 2018, Google updated its Image Guidelines. One of the main updates they revealed was the use of the path and the file name to classify the images.
Repeat: the path and filename are a real ranking factor.
For example, if you are a multi-product e-commerce brand, instead of placing all product images in a / media / generic folder, I recommend structuring your subfolders for more topics related to the category such as / shorts / or / denim /.
#8. Create the Title and Description of Your Page
Google also revealed that it uses the title and description of the page as part of the image search algorithm.
The Google support page says:
“Google Images automatically generates a title and snippet to best explain each result and how it relates to the user query… We use a number of different sources for this information, including descriptive information in the title, and meta tags.”
All the basic SEO factors of your page, such as metadata, header tags, page copy, structured data, etc. It will affect how Google classifies your images.
It’s like putting all your ingredients in your burrito. It tastes much better with guacamole. So be sure to add guac to improve the ranking of the image.
#9. Define Your Dimensions
If you use AMP or PWA, you must define the dimensions of your image in the source code.
However, if you are not using it, it is still a good practice to set the width and height. It provides a better user experience.
It also allows browsers to scale the image before loading CSS. This prevents the page from skipping when loading.
#10. Mobile-Friendly Image
Ah, mobile SEO. In the worst case, it can offer a high bounce rate and low conversions. But, at best, it can offer more rating power and better user participation.
The problem is, how do you optimize your images for the first mobile index?
You create receptive images. This means that the image will be scaled to the size of the site, regardless of whether the user is using a computer or a mobile phone. It adapts to the size of the device.
#11. Add Images To Your Sitemap
Whether you are adding your images to your site map or creating a new site map for images, you want images somewhere in your site maps.
Having your images on a site map greatly increases the chances of search engines tracking and indexing your images. This results in more traffic on the site.
If you are using WordPress, Yoast offers a plugin sitemap solution.
Key Strategies For Image Optimization
Then, before you start uploading your image to the site, follow the rituals for optimizing previous images.
Most importantly, make sure the image and alternative text are relevant to the page. Other main topics:
- Choose the correct file format. PNGs are my favorite screenshots.
- Reduce the file size to speed up page loading speed.
- Make sure your SEO elements on the page (metadata, structured data, etc.) match your image.
- For traceability, create an image site map or make sure the images appear on your site map.
Optimize images is no joke. With advances in voice search technology, the media is increasingly important and the entire site will benefit from the previous steps.
Image Credits: Shutterstock
All screenshots were taken by the author