While most website owners focus a lot on content SEO and stats regarding visits and behaviors, image SEO is sometimes left behind. Image SEO contributes a lot to a good user experience, which is one of the important factors Google and other search engines take into account when ranking websites.
If you are not sure how to tackle image SEO and what tasks you need to check for it, read on. We have compiled the easiest and most essential actions to take if you want the images on your website to show up in the search results, and not get in the way of SEO altogether.
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Why Do You Need Image SEO?
Adding images and videos to your content is a wise way to complement it, highlight the areas of importance, and provide an engaging experience for your visitors. Not only that, but images that are optimised for SEO will help your website show up in both web and image searches, and keep your website’s performance high when done right.
Ideally, the images that you put on your web pages should be of high quality, compressed without compromising that quality, resized to fit the page, and performance-optimized. Additionally, they would have to be identifiable, relevant, and visible for search engines.
Further on, we will learn how to optimise images for SEO.
Adding a relevant image name for every image that goes on your website is important, as it will show in the browser tabs and windows, and Google will acknowledge it when ranking it for searches. Include keywords that will help your content be more relevant, either one word or several ones that would go in long-tailed keywords.
Don’t overstuff the name image and separate the words in the image name with underscores, hyphens, or dashes.
Alt text (alternative text) is attached to an image, describing it in the most accurate and concise way possible. This element is meant to aid people with visual impairments, who would need to use text to speech software or other means to read the text.
Alt text is also used in SEO because Google and other search engine crawlers don’t process images, just text. For this reason, it’s necessary to have a text description of your images if you want them to show up in search results. For online stores, for instance, it’s very important to have descriptive alt texts for product images, as many people use image search when browsing for products.
Using schema.org markups offers Google and other search engines structured data when crawling images, allowing them to better understand what the image is about and what type of content it’s complementing.
Adding the right images to the right content is good from the user’s point of view, but also the search engine’s point of view. Good content should never be overlooked in the context of SEO, even when we talk about images.
As a side note, SEO is all about combining all possible elements in order to make your website easier to navigate, relevant for the search queries, performant, fast, and engaging. As you optimise all these different aspects, they will work together to make your website reputable and authoritative.
Going back to content marketing and how it helps SEO: match the keywords used in the text with the keywords you are using in the alt tags of images, titles, and so on.
When it comes to user experience, page loading speed is an important ranking factor. This is why it’s important to pay attention to file sizes when uploading images and video to a web page, as very big ones will slow down the page and affect the core web vitals.
Keep the image file as small as you can, without compromising its quality. Finding the balance between quality and compressed size is the best way to optimise your images for SEO, from a technical point of view.
The image formats that can be easily compressed without losing their quality are JPG, PNG, JPEG, or GIF. It’s recommended to stick to these formats for the web, as they are most commonly recognised by Google and other search engines.
A very useful function when it comes to high-resolution images is to use lazy loading. This way, big images at the bottom of a page will only load when the user scrolls down, delaying the need for it when the page is first opened.
Together with keeping image sizes low by compressing images, this trick is useful in keeping a low load time, but it’s not necessary unless you do have huge images at the bottom of a page.
Add Social Media Buttons to Your Images
If the images on your website are more than stock photographs you add for a little bonus to boost your content, seriously consider adding social media sharing buttons to all of your images. While social media shares are not one of the factors Google considers when ranking images or web pages, getting shares on social media helps you build your brand and notoriety, encouraging people to click on your links and seek your products or services in search engines.
When dealing with SEO, it’s easy to get lost in details and lose track of all the things you need to do. But including certain practices in everything you do, considering SEO with every action will eventually help you build an effective routine as a content marketer, SEO, or a business owner.
Do You Need Help With Your Image SEO?
Our digital experts at Australian Internet Advertising are ready to do a health check of your website for free and suggest the best digital marketing solutions for improving its performance. We are able to boost the user experience and technical aspects of your web pages, allowing search engines to rank them higher in the search results.
All these efforts are meant to take you to the finish line: better revenue. We work for this goal and our clients are happy to see results after hiring us. Contact us for more information on our advertising, SEO, and web development services. Then let’s discuss your needs and objectives and we will design an effective strategy that will help your business grow.