It’s no secret today we are a society driven by what we can see. The expression, “a picture is worth a thousand words” reigns supreme. It would make sense for a web page to be appealing, pictures should find their way on that page. So, knowing images are an important aesthetic of any website, how can one leverage images for SEO purposes? We will be talking about how optimizing images for SEO will boost your rankings and give your users the best experience possible.
Does Image Search Matter?
According to MOZ, 27% of all queries are image searches. To put this into more context, the 27% doesn’t even count the other 63% of total queries that happen on Google and Google maps. So, not only do images help the user experience, they can help you get more traffic to your website.
How to Name and Describe your Images
When loading and placing images on your website, one of the last items you are probably thinking about is the name of the file. Rather than keeping the file name, something like “IMG-25,” pop an organic keyword you’re already targeting on that page. If we compare one site to another if one has optimized image titles, and one doesn’t, which do you think Google would be more likely to rank? Here is an example of an optimized image as it looks in the backend of your WordPress website:
In addition to the file name, alt text is a great way to tell the search engines what the image and the page are all about. Since search engines cannot read and understand what images are on a page, it is important to give them an indication of what is found in the image. In the example above, you can see that WordPress offers an easy and intuitive way to do this. Try to avoid using the same organic keyword multiple times on your website since this can confuse search engines.
Aspects of Image Optimization for SEO
One part of optimizing your images that should not be overlooked is the size, format, and dimensions of the image in question. If you have images with large file sizes, it can negatively impact your page load speed, which can affect your rankings. The type of images you use can make a difference too:
- JPEGs – These types of images are usually more SEO friendly as opposed to PNGs.
- SVG – These are the best for high-resolution logos.
- GIFs – These can be used instead of videos but only for simple animations that have smaller color scales.
When it comes to dimensions of images, you need to make sure that they are no wider than most desktop screen resolutions. In most cases, this is less than 2,500 pixels. It is important to browse your website on a mobile device and your desktop to ensure it looks natural and is responsive to both platforms.
Auditing your Images
Chances are if you hired a professional SEO company to develop your website, all of the above tasks have already been completed. Unfortunately, it can be a daunting task to audit your website and find the missing opportunities. Luckily, there are plenty of third-party platforms that can do all the hard work for you. Once you find out which images need your attention, you can use all of the tactics above to ensure you are not missing out on any opportunities when it comes to optimizing images for SEO.