Six Steps to Optimize your Images for SEO


Everyone is trying to make their website SEO friendly. But don’t forget to make your images SEO friendly – these two go hand-in-hand! Luckily there are a few easy steps you can take to make sure all your images add (and not detract) to your site’s SEO.

As well as adding to the online visibility of your website, images can also rank in Google’s image results page, which is another great way to attract traffic to your site. So whether you’re a blogger or business owner, these steps will apply to you! Here’s six things to do to every image to optimize it for SEO:

Check the Image’s File Name

Firstly, let’s talk about your images’ file name. It needs to change. Images taken on a camera will have a default bunch of numbers for their name. Changing the file name will help you identify it, as well as help google identify what the image is. To change the file name of an image, you’ll need to do this before you upload it to your website.

Google’s algorithm can’t ‘see’ your images, but they do gather data from it’s name. When you name your image, remember to add hyphens between words. This translates to google as a space between the words. Examples include home-office-setup.jpg as opposed to homeofficesetup.jpg.

Add an Alt Attribute

When placing your image on your page, the alt attribute is what appears if your image cannot load. It’s also used to help people on your website that may be visually impaired and is something search engines will take into consideration. The alt attribute should display what the image is, and it should relate to your page. A simple example could be ‘This is my home office setup’.

Add Keywords to your Alt Attributes

Don’t forget to add in your page’s keywords to the alt attribute. This is another way to boost your image’s SEO and Google also takes it into consideration when ranking the page, too. Be aware that keyword stuffing applies to images too. If you have a lot of images on the page, their alt attributes should be different and shouldn’t all have your keyword in it. A good SEO plugin can help you manage things like this.

Add a Pin Message for Easy Social Share buttons

This is a feature of Easy Social Share Buttons which allows you to input an image description for when people choose to Pin the image to Pinterest, or share your page to other social media platforms. It’s a great way to optimize the image for social platforms such as Pinterest with keywords you want it to rank for. It allows you to make the Pin description rather than relying on the user to do it for you, meaning you can optimize it how you’d like. A user can still update the description, but generally if there’s already a description displayed, they won’t be bothered to.

Check Resolution and Image Size

For web, images don’t need to have a higher resolution than 72 dpi and it’s best to reduce them to the smallest size possible. Large images slow down page speed and take a longer time to load, which can hinder overall SEO and user experience. Aim to keep your images around 100kb each.

Remember that any text placed on an image can’t be read by Search Engines

Put any important text in your post itself or in the image alt tags, so it can be picked up by search engines. It’s still ok to use text on images, like you see on infographics. These are a great way to create Pinnable and shareable images that break up the text in a post. Just remember to make sure that any important information isn’t only on the image and no where else on the page.

With these six steps you can easily optimize images for SEO. These steps are good practice for websites and bloggers and don’t take long to do. If you haven’t been doing this to your images, start now and work your way through your site to make these changes. It will be worth it!

For more SEO advice, read:

3 Unspoken SEO Ranking Factors your Website Needs

Ultimate Guide to SEO for Small Business.

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