Images, like content, have an impact on your web page’s ranking in the SERPs. In the United States alone, Google Image accounts for 20% of all queries. Adding any arbitrary image to your webpage, on the other hand, will sabotage your current content marketing approach. In the end, you’ll miss out on a considerable number of potential customers.
You can help by ensuring sure your photographs and site are optimized for Google Images, according to Google. It went on to say that they should adjust their standards in order to boost their chances of appearing higher in Google Images search results.
However, how should photos be prepared for SEO? How do you ensure that your company stands out among the millions of others?
When ranking your photographs in Google Image Search, the following elements are taken into account:
1. REDUCE FILE SIZE BY COMPRESSING YOUR PHOTOS
The speed with which a website loads is a significant SEO ranking criteria. In a Google Webmaster video, Maile Ohye examines website loading time and says, “Acceptability of eCommerce websites is measured in seconds. We aim for less than a half-second at Google.”
For a competitive advantage, you should do the same!
But did you realize that photographs account for a significant amount of the weight of your website? The enormous size will cause the page to load slowly, causing users to become frustrated and move on to other websites. This will boost your site’s bounce rate, which is a key indicator of your credibility in Google’s eyes.
Your visuals must load quickly to avoid this problem.
Compressing your image files before uploading is the best technique to reduce their size. Compression reduces the weight of a photograph without affecting its dimensions, quality, or visual attractiveness.
To decrease the weight of your files, you can use SEO plugins like WP Smush. After you’ve optimized your photos, use Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool to run a speed test to evaluate how quickly your site loads.
2. ALT TEXT FOR IMAGES THAT IS SEO-FRIENDLY
Your image’s alt text helps Google figure out what the picture is about and whether it’s relevant to the search phrase. They’re also useful for visually challenged people because screen readers read them out loud.
Google prioritizes alt text optimization, stating that “understanding the image’s subject matter” is critical.
Google, for example, provides an example of both awful and good alt text:
Image Alt Text that is SEO Friendly
Alt-text can also be used to quietly add keywords, allowing you to acquire traction in Google Image Search results over time. Avoid jamming keywords into your alt text, though, as Google actively opposes this approach.
3. USE APPROPRIATE FILE NAMES
When considering how relevant your page is to a given phrase, search engine algorithms also analyze the file name.
Using the subject’s name as the file name is the easiest approach to do this.
Many marketers overlook this factor and leave the file name to a default title. When your photographs are titled something generic like ‘IMG1234.jpg,’ Google is puzzled.
Change the file name to a relevant term instead of a random label. Google bots will be able to read and interpret your file names more easily as a result of this.
As a general guideline, file names should be between 1 and 5 words long. For simple identification, Google also recommends that photographs “should be titled descriptively.” If your site displays pants, for example, you can name your photographs ‘Blue-Trousers.jpg’ or ‘Black-Pants.jpg.’
Specifying the file name aids Google in comprehending your content and helps you rank higher in Google Image Search results.
4. ENSURE THAT THE IMAGES YOU USE ARE OF HIGH QUALITY.
When it comes to visuals, it’s all about the quality. People enjoy looking at beautiful photographs and, if they are interested, will click on them. Google, on the other hand, adores it and will give you a higher ranking if your images are of great quality.
However, not every company can afford to hire a photographer to create engaging photos. In that scenario, stock photos are a fantastic and cost-effective solution. Several websites offer low-cost stock pictures in a variety of categories to fit your brand’s needs.
The point is to use high-quality visuals to give your customers an excellent user experience. This will help you acquire more clicks while also signaling to Google’s algorithm that you are relevant to the search.
5. AVOID BEING SUDDENLY SUED
The most important aspect of your image optimization technique is this. You can go to great lengths to ensure that your photographs are Google-friendly, but if you utilize copyrighted images without permission, you will be sued.
For example, when a postal service exploited the images of another company, they were sued for $3.5 million for copyright violations. As a result of the brand’s allegation, the DCMA issued a notification to the postal service.
The same thing can happen if you utilize images that you don’t have permission to publish on your website. Make sure you’re following the terms and conditions when you use a photo, even if it’s a stock image.
If you are detected exploiting copyright content, you will face a Google penalty and the possibility of being sued.
6. CONSTRUCT AN IMAGE SITEMAP
Sitemaps are typically used to organize web sites. They are, nevertheless, required for the image files. Consider creating an image sitemap and submitting it to Google via the Google Search Console if your site has a lot of images. WordPress’ plugins will generate one for you automatically.
Sitemaps essentially aid Google’s crawling of your website. Sitemaps might help Google crawl your site if you have a lot of photos that are tough to crawl.
Furthermore, anyone looking for an image will be able to find it quickly because it is linked straight from Google’s Image Search results.
7. MAKE MOBILE-FRIENDLY IMAGES
When you think of mobile-friendliness, the first thing that comes to mind is page speed and design. Images, on the other hand, should be responsive, so that they load at the highest possible resolution on a variety of devices.
If you’re using WordPress, you’ll find that it’s completely responsive. It ensures that your content runs smoothly on any screen size.
If you’re using a different CMS, you’ll need to change the width property’s value. The graphics will automatically change to fit the size of the screen once you’ve integrated the code.
To summarize, optimizing pictures can help your website be indexed by Google faster and rank higher in search results. For SEO and UX, image optimization is a hot topic. As a result, you should understand what it takes to get your photographs indexed quickly while maintaining a user-friendly experience. Follow the tips above to make it easier for your website to get noticed.