eFeeders Tech

6 Tips to Optimize Images For Search Engines

August 30, 2022

There’s no denying that search engines are getting wiser by the day. If you’re smart with your website’s SEO, you don’t have to worry about your content appearing in relevant searches. Your site’s context, quality, and optimization practices will ensure search engine crawlers take it to the top.

But what about your images’ search engine optimization? Are you simply inserting images into your website without optimizing them? If so, you might be losing significant traffic.

Image SEO is crucial for a site’s visibility and user experience. Both these factors ultimately lead to increased traffic and better ranking. Since users are gradually shifting to visual searches instead of typing their queries, you can get a nice bit of traffic from integrating image SEO.

We have listed some actionable image SEO tips you can implement and show Google your optimized digital space.

So, without any ado, let’s get to business!

1. Choose SEO-Friendly File Format

Most marketers upload images to their websites without looking at their format. However, your site’s loading speed is a ranking factor and considers the format you have used.

Generally, you’ll come across three image file formats: JPEG, PNG, and GIF. Here’s how you can pick one:

● Say you have a digital photograph with a heavy file size. In this case, you should use the JPEG File format to keep your website from weighing down.

● Use the PNG file format if you have a reasonably small image size but can’t risk losing its color transparency. This format is best for images that include both text and images.

● Want to add a moving image or animations to the website, go for the GIF format. But avoid using the format if you need more than 8-bit color images.

2. Compress the Images When Needed

After selecting a file format, the next step is to resize or compress the images you want to upload. Say you have a stunning picture and don’t want to compress and ruin its look. But if you upload it as is, your website’s loading speed will reduce, and its bounce rate will go up.

According to Unbounce, around 70% of consumers will factor in the page speed when buying from an online retailer. But Google says website owners can significantly fix page loading speed problems through compression.

Inserting large images resulting in increased loading time is a considerable risk. Smaller images, on the other hand, provide a two-fold benefit. They increase the speed and also require less storage space.

So, instead of compromising on the website’s speed, make sure to compress the pictures to achieve optimal size. Several tools like jpeg.io and JPEGmini enable you to quickly resize images and bring them under the optimum size bracket.

You can utilize Google PageSpeed Insights to check your site’s loading time and alter the variables accordingly.

3. Add Context to the Images

Sure, Google’s algorithms are pretty intelligent and can usually analyze the context accurately. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t provide them with assistance. In fact, adding relevant tags to your images will offer a more detailed analysis.

Here are three context forms you must add with images to rank them better:

Image Title and Captions

When your readers’ attention span is short, you cannot expect them to read lengthy text. Instead, leave a little leeway so that they can glance at an image and know what it’s about.

Descriptive image captions are good for your website’s SEO because they have the potential to convert visitors into readers. Make your keyword part of the image caption and keep it brief for the readers to understand.

Alt Text

Alt text is the written information about an image if it fails to load on a webpage.

Let’s say a reader’s internet is relatively slow, and they quickly want to know if your website image is what they’re looking for. Instead of keeping them waiting, the Alt-Text will appear in place of the images to offer them a better understanding. Alt-text is also helpful when someone uses a screen reader to scour through the data.

4. Create an Image Sitemap

A sitemap records everything you post on your website and organizes your content. If you use WordPress, your visual content will automatically save in the main sitemap. But if you are using another CMS platform, create a sitemap for your images and videos to keep things organized. They will help the search engines identify what you’re sharing and give its crawlers some context.

But, make sure that the information is correct and complete. An image sitemap requires information like URL, license, location, image name, alt text, etc.

5. Don’t Ignore Image Copyrights

Sure, a quick Google search brings a plethora of images in front of you, but you cannot use just about anything on your site. Abiding by copyrights and choosing high-quality pictures are two essential aspects to take into consideration.

While taking your own images is best, not everyone has the time or budget for that. You can opt for affordable images from various stock photo sites. Resizing and compressing them will be easier because their color contrasts are exceptional. These images will add value to your website and provide context to Google crawlers while they index your content.

Moreover, understanding the risks associated with surpassing copyrights is equally essential. Picking an image off Google and uploading it without checking its copyrights or legal status can ruin your reputation and bring in hefty penalties. Your website can also be penalized. So, being careful is the key when selecting images for your webpage.

Also, double-check the quality when selecting photos. Though stock photos are relatively cheap and easily accessible, they are not always the best. Some stock photos are overused. Visitors who see these typical photos on your site can question your reliability.

All you need is to act smart. Pick up unique photos, check the quality, and make sure they are relevant.

6. Use Mobile-Friendly Images

Mobile SEO is inevitable for your website, no matter your business’s scale. Since most users surf the online world from their mobile devices, slow-loading images will negatively affect their user experience.

‘Srcset’ is a helpful HTML code you can use to adjust pictures according to different devices and retain their original form. This tool will show the same picture quality on a 5-inch mobile screen and a 28-inch computer.

It's Go Time!

Image SEO can be fruitful for your site ranking and indexing goals if done correctly. Since a considerable percentage of websites don’t optimize their images, you can stand out by making a difference.

If you follow the above-listed tips, your visual content won’t slow your site’s speed and will provide search engine spiders with better context about your content. Good luck!

Posted in UX/UI