How To Optimize Images for Better Search Engine Rankings
Images are used to visually represent the external form of any person, things, sculpture etc. Images not only grab user attention on a web page but could also be a source of organic traffic if properly optimized for Image Search Engines. It is recommended by majority of SEO Professionals to use subjective images on your web pages. There could be seen so many bloggers and webmasters who fail to use images in a proper way or often use images that do not support their article’s key message. There is an early Chinese proverb, “A picture is worth more than ten thousand words.”
When you are going to add a picture in your article you should have taken care of two basic things, The first one is, Your reader could easily extract the key message and don’t forget to employ the basic optimization effort for better ranking on search engines.
First of all lets have a look the Google Image Search Results (see screen shot below).
As you can see in above screenshot the three basic things that google shows under the images.
- Image Title
- Image URL
- Image description
There you can also notice the image resolution. Adding all of these is always a good practice but do you still think Google depends upon these factors to rank your images, No probably not. The most vital factor for images in context of Image Search Engine is ALT Attribute aka ALT Tag. However, the ALT tag is an attribute of the image tag and used by browsers as an alternative text for images. If you have ever experienced the early days the slow speed of internet you definitely know what I am talking about. ALT tags displays before the image is loaded. Anyone who knows the basics of web accessibility knows well why images need Alternative texts. Its all because screen readers are not capable to understand images but rather they read aloud the ALT tag assigned to them. Search Engines also give importance to ALT Tag and it’s the best practice to always assign an alternative text for all your web images. Its quite simple and one blogging platform like WordPress adding an ALT attribute is much easier.
If you still use Internet Explorer you can see the alternate text for any image just by hovering your mouse over image. Now lets have a look at the HTML of ALT Tag.
<img title=”Image Title Goes Here” src=”image-name.png” alt=”Alternative Texts Goes Here”>
Some people use the same piece of texts for Title and ALT attribute, Never do that, always use unique texts for both. According to Google Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, “The ‘ALT’ attribute allows you specify alternative texts for the image if it cannot be displayed for some reason. The Content of the ‘ALT’ attributes provides information about the the picture to the search spiders as well as web browsers.”
The other advantage of making use of the ALT attribute is, if you are using an image as a link, the ALT text will be served as anchor text for the link.
In short, If you are adding an image to your article or web page never forget to assign a unique file name to your images along with subjective ALT attribute. It helps search engine spiders to better understand your images. These were some simple but effective tips to properly optimize your images in order to gain more organic traffic from image search engines. How do you optimize images on your blog/website for better search engine rankings? Do let us know by leaving a comment below.