Content Marketing Search Marketing SEO

October 23, 2014 at 2:22 am

Optimizing Image Files for Better SEO

Do you ever wonder how images actually contribute to the success of your SEO Philippines strategy? More specifically, do you wonder which image file type is the most suitable for optimization purposes? And what about those file names and alt texts? Should they be on each image on the site? Do not let image optimization intimidate and overwhelm your SEO IQ. Here’s how to optimize images properly.



1) Use descriptive file names

You should have known by now that Google cannot read images, but it can read alt texts and captions. This makes all the more important to let Google know what the image stands for by naming the image better. For instance, gone are those days of Image001.jpeg. What’s in right now is optimizing-image-files-for-better-seo.jpeg. With this, the image itself, with its proper name, may contribute so Google can figure out what the page is about. Nonetheless, don’t put too long a name. Avoid keyword stuffing.


2) Use alt texts

You need to make sure that the alt text you put is keyword-rich as well. Alt text, from its name, is the text alternative of the image. If, in case, the browser cannot render the image properly, the alt text will appear as a substitute to the image. This is especially true when the browser isn’t able to load the image because it is too heavy. The goal of putting alt text is minimizing the likelihood of bounce rate even when the images cannot load. Just make sure that the alt text is true to the image. Meaning, it should accurately describe the image.


3) Monitor page load time

You must take advantage of Google Analytics tools and features. For instance, you can determine site and page load speed. Typically, heavy pages tend to load slower perhaps due to the existence of equally heavy images. By analyzing load times, you can distinguish whether a particular page has too many and too heavy images. So you’d know, the rule of thumb is 3 to 5 seconds load time. Remove unnecessary images.


4) Reduce image file size

Better yet, you can consider reducing the file sizes of the images if you deemed each image as important. You can either crop the images or compress them. There are many tools that help you with this. One example is Paint wherein you can reduce the size by pixel. With this, there is no need to sacrifice the quality of the image. The same goes with sacrificing the quality of user experience (UX). Fundamentally, users want to see images along with the texts especially when the texts are too long; images are also breakers. However, they do not want to see inconsistent and poor quality images.


5) Use commonly supported types of image files

Know that the recommended image file type in the web is JPEG and PNG. Anything beyond these two might be a compromise. Thus, if it is possible to find and use JPEG images, then do so. Using PNG should only be your second choice.


6) Contextualize

This is a common mistake that you might be doing right now. It will certainly help Google in comprehending the entire page and website if the image is closer to the texts that directly relate to it. Ensure that the image is close to the relevant text otherwise Google will be confused. Google assesses the image on a page based on the text that surrounds it. This is how Google dissects images especially those that do not include captions, descriptions and alt texts.


Remember that aside from pleasing Google, all of these points to one important thing: UX. Great contents build traffic, but it is the images that come with it that give it context for better comprehension of the written content. So, if you are not yet optimizing your image files, now is the right time to do so. Just follow the points given above.


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