How to Improve Your SEO With Image Optimisation
There are loads of features to SEO, and some of the smaller steps to optimising a website often slip through the cracks. Image optimisation is one of those small steps as taking the time to optimise your images can result in a greater ranking on SERPs, more traffic and better results.
When we think about SEO, we often think about just text and targeted keywords, but images are crucial too. Image optimisation is one of the many little things that businesses either forget or overlook, yet it can be very beneficial for the websites that do.
Images make your web pages more attractive, they a big part of how your users experience your web pages.
Search engines cannot identify the content of an image, they depend on the text associated with the images to gain an understanding of what the image is about and its relevancy to the webpage. Here’s how you can optimise your images to help with SEO and raise your ranking on result pages.
1. Naming Your Image
Image file names inform search engine crawlers the subject matter of the image. Usually, image files save themselves as a default number like, “IMG_1294853” but this doesn’t tell search engines anything about your image.
To improve your image optimisation, change the file name from the default to something relevant, ideally one that features your keyword.
2. SEO Friendly Alt Text
Alt tags are a text alternative to images when a browser is unable to load then. Just like the title, the alt attribute describes what the image is all about.
If your image doesn’t load (maybe because of the page loading speed or because the users internet connection is slow) the user will be shown the alt text where the images was supposed to be. Your alt text provides Google with valuable information to determine the ranking of your page on search engine result pages.
3. Choose The Best File Type
There are 3 main image file types, and it’s down to you to choose the best one for your image:
JPG: is the most common file format and it uses small file sizes. But because the file sizes are small, the image quality isn’t always as good.
PNG: are high resolution and support transparent backgrounds. But typically, the file sizes are larger than JPG.
GIF: While this format does have a limited number of colours, it can be an excellent choice for simple images. Like JPG it supports small file sizes and like PNG it supports transparent backgrounds.
4. Include a Caption
If you think it’s relevant, add a caption to your image. They can be crawled by search engines, so users using keywords associated with your caption could find your web page in the search results.
If can’t think of a relevant caption don’t put one. Misleading or irrelevant captions will only increase your bounce rate and will be looked upon negatively by search engines for misleading your web visitors.
5. Keep File Size on The Small Side
Reduce the file size of your large images to reduce your page loading time – which is vital for mobile viewing and keeping your audience engaged.
Each millisecond your page takes to load, the more likely the page is to generate a high bounce rate due to your users becoming impatient. Try sites like JPEG-Optimiser and Optimizilla to reduce your file sizes.
If you think your pages load too slow, then check out our previous blog posts to help:
The Bottom Line
Achieving a good ranking on search engine result pages can be a challenge, but image optimisation will take you one step further to maximising your organic traffic.
As far as SEO goes, image optimisation is one of the pretty easy parts. Dedicate a little extra time to your web page content to optimise your images and give your content a boost when it comes to search engine rankings.