How to Optimize images for SEO


image-optimization-for-SEO


Image Optimization is one of the most important factors that you need to consider because a lot of people search for popular images and if the images you use on your blog start ranking, then you can get a lot of visitors.


Why Do You Need to Optimize Images?

There are many reasons for optimizing the images. The images that you use in your article improve the SEO score, make your article more search engine friendly and it also plays a huge role in the page loading speed of your blog.
Benefits of Image Optimization:
  • Photo-sharing sites like Pinterest can drive huge amounts of traffic.
  • Photos show up in search engines and since the competition is much less in the images section, you can easily get your image ranked higher with proper optimization.
  • Improves your blog’s bounce rate and increases the SEO score of your article.
  • If you create custom images, then you can also get backlinks when some other blogs use your image in their articles and give you a source/credit link.

How to Optimize Images for SEO?

1) Choose the Right File Name
Before uploading a new image to your article, you will have to check the name of the image before uploading it. I have seen many bloggers selecting file names that have nothing to do with the content of the article or names that don’t make any sense.
You have to rename the image with a name that you want the image to rank for. Because by choosing a keyword-rich name for the image, you will make it easy for search engines to rank that image higher in the SERPs.
For example, if you are writing an article on how to find long tail keywords, name your image as “find-long-tail-keywords.jpg” or something like that.
It should make sense to both your readers as well as to the search engines.
However, make sure that you add dashes between two words and don’t write everything without spaces. It shouldn’t be like this - “findlongtailkeywords.jpg”. There is nothing wrong with this format but it’s better to stay safe and choose a format that is legible.
2. Image Size and Compression
The next thing you need to take care of before uploading the image is the size of the image and the dimensions. You don’t need to upload big images to your article because it will put a huge load on your server and as a result increase the loading speed.
Page load time of your website is an extremely important factor from SEO point of view and you don’t want to increase the time by adding huge images.
Image Size:
According to me, the size of the image you upload should be minimum 200 x 200px so that it gets picked up by the social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter and Google+.
However, you can insert a much smaller image or a large image as well in your article depending on your requirements. The above dimensions are only mentioned because those are the minimum requirements for an image to be picked by social networks.
When dealing with large images, make sure you take the content area width of your blog into consideration.
Most of the blog themes come with content area width of 600-700px or maybe less or more depending on the theme, so make sure you know the content area width to create a perfect image.
The above section tells you the proper image dimensions but what would you do when you download a stock image that is too large in dimensions?
If you have downloaded a stock image and it’s too large in dimensions, then it is better to resize it and then upload it. Don’t upload the image in its original size and resize it using the height and width parameter in your post editor.
If you upload the original image and then resizing it from the post, then you are doing no good. When the page is loaded in the browser, the images will load to its original dimensions and size and then it will be resized. This will only increase the loading time of your page.
There are online tools like PicResize and PicMonkey that you can use to resize your images before uploading them to your article.
Image Compression
When you use stock images of high quality, you will be adding a lot of pressure on your server to simply load the images. The higher the quality of the image, the more will be its size.
If the image you want to upload is in triple digits in KB or it is in MB, then that’s because the quality of the image is too high.
It is possible for the dimensions of the image to be around 500 x 500px and still be large in size. At such moments, you can’t simply resize the picture; you need to compress them for lighter weight.
There are tools like TinyPNG that helps you in compressing the images to reduce the size. Even after compressing the images, it won’t affect the image quality much. The image will still look good and it won’t be distorted or pixelated.Most of the blog themes come with content area width of 600-700px or maybe less or more depending on the theme, so make sure you know the content area width to create a perfect image.
The above section tells you the proper image dimensions but what would you do when you download a stock image that is too large in dimensions?
If you have downloaded a stock image and it’s too large in dimensions, then it is better to resize it and then upload it. Don’t upload the image in its original size and resize it using the height and width parameter in your post editor.
If you upload the original image and then resizing it from the post, then you are doing no good. When the page is loaded in the browser, the images will load to its original dimensions and size and then it will be resized. This will only increase the loading time of your page.
There are online tools like PicResize and PicMonkey that you can use to resize your images before uploading them to your article.
Image Compression:
When you use stock images of high quality, you will be adding a lot of pressure on your server to simply load the images. The higher the quality of the image, the more will be its size.
If the image you want to upload is in triple digits in KB or it is in MB, then that’s because the quality of the image is too high.
It is possible for the dimensions of the image to be around 500 x 500px and still be large in size. At such moments, you can’t simply resize the picture; you need to compress them for lighter weight.
There are tools like TinyPNG that helps you in compressing the images to reduce the size. Even after compressing the images, it won’t affect the image quality much. The image will still look good and it won’t be distorted or pixelated.
3. ALT Text
The main purpose of the ALT text is to provide a description to the image file. If the images are not appearing for whatever reason, the ALT text will appear in its place describing the content of the image.
The other use of the ALT text is to tell the search engines that an image is present at its place. Search engines are unable to read the image and if you don’t use the ALT text on the images on your blog, you are missing out on a lot of traffic.
Search engines use ALT text to determine the best images to return for a particular search query. Most of the people try to get to the top position of a search engine but they ignore the image search engines that can bring a lot of traffic as well. So, by adding an ALT text in the images, you make sure your article is perfectly optimized which helps you in getting an SEO edge over your competitors.

Best Practices for an Optimized Image

1. Image Format - JPEG, PNG or GIF?
There are different types of image formats available like JPEG (JPG), PNG and GIF. Mostly, we all use JPEG file format but sometimes we tend to use PNG and GIF as well.
  • JPEG format – JPEG format is best used for digital photography and is the most widely used format.
  • PNG format – PNG is a lossless format and offers amazing compression. Even if you edit the image multiple times or resize it and compress it, it won’t lose any data or degrade in quality.
  • GIF format – GIF format is popular mostly because it supports small size images.
Of all the image formats, the best image format that you can use is JPEG. The reason behind this is very simple. JPEG formats are comparatively smaller in size which means the images will load faster and since you don’t need to edit the images a lot, JPEG format is the best to use in your posts.
2. Use Captions in the Image
Captions are the text description that appears right below the images in your article. You can use the caption area to describe the image or give credit links.
The captions are available to you so that you can tell your readers what you are trying to imply by using the image. Sometimes, the readers might get the wrong idea and jump to the wrong conclusions and it’s up to you to provide them with all the information and details before they jump to any conclusions.
By using intelligent and creative captions with creative images, you will spark the readers’ interest, and they might end up spending more time on your site reading the complete article. This will reduce the bounce rate, which in turn will improve your SEO score and increase the chances of the image getting a higher position in the search engine results.
3. Use Image Sitemaps
We all know the importance of sitemaps and the first thing we do when we create a new blog is to build a sitemap and add it to webmasters tools account of various search engines.
When you add a sitemap, you tell the search engines that there are some new pages that need to be crawled and indexed and in this way, you make sure that the search engine spiders are able to crawl each and every page of your site and index it in the search engines.
You create sitemaps for your articles, then why can’t you create image sitemaps as well and increase the chances of the images getting indexed?
Creating image sitemaps is extremely easy as you can use Udinra All Image Sitemap plugin to create one for the images on your blog and submit it in your Webmasters Tools account. Once you have submitted the sitemap, all the images will be crawled and indexed in the search engines.

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{picture#https://plus.google.com/photos/116258869433881638604/albums/profile/6443768328931686658} I am youngest passionate blogger from Pakistan. I love blogging about SEO, earn online, blogger and wordpress {facebook#YOUR_SOCIAL_PROFILE_URL} {twitter#YOUR_SOCIAL_PROFILE_URL} {google#https://plus.google.com/116258869433881638604} {pinterest#YOUR_SOCIAL_PROFILE_URL} {youtube#YOUR_SOCIAL_PROFILE_URL} {instagram#YOUR_SOCIAL_PROFILE_URL}

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