When thinking about SEO you need to look at all the elements of your site that can tap into this technology. Not optimising your images could mean you miss out on valuable traffic that Google could be sending your way. Google can’t index images, but you can add data to your images that is useful for search engine ranking.
Use Descriptive Names for Your Images in SEO
If you are using an image name of 0045.jpg, it tells your visitors or the search engines nothing about what the image is of and what the page it is on might be about. But if you change that image name to green-apple-ipod.jpg, you make it really clear what your image is and what your page is all about.
It’s a problem that many e-commerce platforms give images meaningless names the moment they are uploaded to the system. However, many of these systems make it possible to modify settings or to change each image name once it is loaded into the system.
Don’t Forget the Alt Tags
Another really good way of helping the search engines is to use lots of lovely alt tags. The more you can describe about your image the better and it’s a great idea to use keywords or other information that the search engines can use.
Another way you can give search engines clues about what’s contained in your images is to use descriptive alt tags. Google Image Search seems to prefer descriptions that are in sentence format as this is most likely to contain more descriptive keywords than a two word description.
Add More Weight with Good Anchor Text
Always use good anchor text that describes your images well. You might use the same keywords that are used in your alt tags, but this is fine. Just remember not to ‘keyword stuff’ as Google doesn’t like that and may rank you lower.
Larger Images Are Better
We have read in a few reports that Google Image Search prefers larger images. Most users will be more inclined to click on a larger image, but we’re not sure if a larger image actually helps your ranking – probably not. The clearer the image and the higher the quality will ensure it attracts more attention than a badly formatted image however.
Focus on the Page
Make sure that your images are relevant to your page. There is no point putting lots of pictures of fluffy cats on a page that is all about lizards for example! That one we just plucked out of thin air, but you get the picture (no pun intended).
Focus on your on-page SEO as much as you can including content, images, meta data and keywords. The more you can do to optimise, the more traffic will come your way.