Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, is one of the most recommended and used techniques to improve website traffic. However, most business owners don’t really dig deep into the variations of this technique and simply work around the text to optimize their site in order to make it searchable.
Surprisingly, there’s one highly underrated element, of an effective SEO practice, that goes under the radar. It’s image optimization.
Yes! You read that right.
Images, anyway, are very crucial for a website’s visual aesthetics and its entire UI/UX design plan. But, when you understand that you can do a lot more with your website images than simply putting them on your page, you’ll realize the potential of correct image optimization.
“Did you know, more than 20% of all U.S. web searches happen on Google Images?”
Taking this into consideration, here are some very simple ways you can optimize your website’s images to make them Google image search compliant.
Check the filename
At the end of the day, the Google search function works on codes and programming, so they can only be so much smart. Google won’t be able to understand the image unless you tell it what the image is, and that means giving the right file name to your images.
When you are naming your images, think about what someone looking for this image might search. Is it a product shot? Is it a photo of a person? Use your filename to describe exactly who or what the image portrays.
Also, consider the contextual role the image plays on your website. Are you illustrating a blog post? In that case, it might make more sense to name the image something along the lines of the title of your post.
Typically, file names will look like “IMG_3458” or something similar. Google will not be able to understand such a name and won’t be able to match it with the search query.
Make sure you compress
The page loading speed is one of the primary performance metrics for a website that every website owner should comply with.
It’s simple; users don’t have the patience to wait for your website page to load so they can check it out. So, it is imperative that you ensure your website loads faster (not more than 3 seconds). And, compressing the images used on your web pages is one such optimization technique that helps in this regard.
However, it is also important to make sure that while compressing the image, you should check the extent of the compression rate so that the quality of your image doesn’t get affected.
There are a number of free design tools available online that you can use to execute compress and optimize your website images without losing out on the quality.
Pick the right file format
One can argue that there’s no one correct format for the images used in a website design. Typically, it depends on the kind of image you are using and its characteristics.
As an experienced graphic design agency, we always recommend to:
Additionally, it is highly advisable to make sure to check whether your preferred format is supported by the browsers that the majority of your target users use.
Use the right text for the Alt-text
While this may sound hardcore technical, it’s a pretty simple process to add a relevant alt-text to your image.
When you upload your images to a CMS like WordPress, it will often give you the opportunity to add several descriptions. In WordPress, for example, you can provide a title, caption, alt text, and description. This information is called meta-data.
Similar to the image file name, the alt-text is used to describe the contents of an image file. Adding appropriate alt tags to the images on your website can help your website achieve better rankings in the search engines by associating keywords with images.
Add images to your sitemap
Indexing your website pages in a sitemap is a must-do process in order to make your website searchable and help improve its ranking. Creating a similar sitemap for images does the same thing.
Site maps are an important part of SEO because they tell search engines about all the pages of your site. To ensure that search engine crawlers notice every image – an infographic, meme, photo, video thumbnail, etc. – include them in your site map.
Now, you may have a visually rich website so maybe don’t want to include each and every image used on your website in your sitemap. However, you should consider adding important images, like your logo and infographics, to an image sitemap.
Choose the right image
Finally, but of course equally important, is to ensure you are using relevant and unique images in your website design.
If you fill your website with stock imagery, it will look like thousands of other sites.
The more original pictures you have, the better experience for the user and the better your odds are of ranking on relevant searches.
If imagery plays an important role on your website, and you optimize your images for it, you can actually get a decent amount of traffic through image search engines.
GraphicsZoo has worked with several new and established businesses on their graphic design projects to ensure effective ROI.
If you too are looking for professional design partners, then simply get in touch with us today at firstname.lastname@example.org