Gone are the days where people read full articles and get excited over play of words and interesting topics. These days, social media has fueled the advent of images to convey messages and capture the attention of readers. I’m sure you are also part of this generation that feels unsatisfied if you don’t see photos or images attached to articles and blog posts. In other words, images have formed part and parcel of any writer’s output.
For writers and bloggers, putting up a huge image in front of the article will immediately get the interest of potential readers. Unfortunately, big pictures have large file sizes that can make your website crawl. Any SEO company will tell you that this kind of issue spells big trouble for your site’s Google rankings, because the updated search algorithms discourage slow-loading pages.
This is where site image optimization comes in handy. Did you know that you can take simple steps to make your images load faster? Again, faster loading means higher rank on search results, so you better spruce up the loading of your images before considering uploading them onto your pages.
Here are some search optimization tips to make your website images appear better on search engines:
1. Aim for fast loading images
You may approach this issue in many ways. The easiest method is to reduce the dimensions of your image. If you don’t need to post a very large image that occupies the browser’s entire width, then resize the image to a comfortable width and height. You should also know which file format works best for your images – JPG for most photos, PNG or GIF for illustrations and non-photographic images. Alternatively, you can also use existing plug-ins and programs to compress your images.
2. Make your site images readable to search engine spiders
Site visitors don’t normally see the filename of your images, but search engine spiders do. When you upload images, try to use descriptive words as filenames. For instance, use the filename “christmastree.jpg” instead of “DSC1001.jpg”. When embedding the image on your pages, place an ALT tag on your image with a description or information related to the article.
Based on what I have discussed above, there are two ways to optimize your site images for search: improve loading time and inject keywords. As mentioned earlier, search bots love websites that have short loading times, and will definitely place your fast-loading website on top of search results. Meanwhile, keyword injection ensures that the spiders can understand what your picture is all about. That way, the search engines can index your images in the correct keywords and channels for better access by search users.
On a final note, here are two more tips to improve your image search optimization. First, install a plug-in that allows your site images to be easily pinnable and shared on Pinterest. Second, while injecting keywords will improve your site SEO, it’s also not advisable to cram too many keywords on a single image. After all, search algorithms can also smell and get discouraged over websites that overstuff their contents with keywords.