Image SEO – Rarely when writing a blog do I have as much fun as I did with this one. OMG, I had a riot searching for images for this blog. I must begin here by telling you never to use copywritten images for your blogs. There are plenty of royalty-free websites and images you can use. https://pixabay.com/ immediately comes to mind, so please check them all out.
In today’s world, we have become image intensive. There are cameras everywhere, security cameras, public cameras, drones, cell phones cameras, traffic cameras, google earth satellites and the list goes on and on. Arguably the most popular or rapidly growing Social Media app is none other than Instagram. Which is built to convey a message of emotion using primarily an image alone.
We could dive deep into the history of cameras and glass plates for film, but I want to focus on images themselves, and why Google cares so much about them. It has been said many times that “A picture is worth a thousand words.” Nothing truer has ever been stated as fact. Pictures make us happy; they make us cry; they make us wax nostalgic; they are a memory frozen in time. They truly have an impact on the human psyche.
Google can SEE
Google and FaceBook sponsor a competition every year. It is called the Large Scale Vision Recognition Challenge. The competition is organized by Stanford University, The University of Michigan and The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. With the involvement of Google, Facebook, and these top universities you know that excellent results will be achieved.
The test yields impressive results and is getting better and better every year. In this competition sponsors happily pick a winner, then award a cash prize and bragging rites for the next year. They also get the algorithm, let me say that another way, they will then own the algorithm, that sees and understands what an image ultimately is a photograph of.
Therefore, image SEO becomes overwhelmingly important. I am speaking primarily of still images. Google can see images, and understand what they are. When you apply an alt. tag to an image if you misstate what Google and Facebook will see, they will punish you. If you correctly state what the image is about, they both will reward you accordingly.
For the sake of this blog and as mentioned earlier, I am referring to image SEO, for still images only. e2 Total Solutions is a full-service SEO and Marketing firm. We would be a little remiss if we neglected motion or video images. That is a topic for another day. However, I can tell you that you can “Rank” a site using nothing but video. It is complex and tricky, but it can, and is being done.
Back to image SEO. Here are several tips for optimizing your images for SEO:
1 – Add a descriptive file name. Do not use “Image.123.jpg” as a file name.
2 – Do use a brief “Alt Tag” search engines do read and reference them.
3 – Build text links to your images, ie. “For more info about skiing in Utah CLICK HERE” it is also helpful to bold text links.
4 – Add context to your images. In short, the image should reflect the on-page content, and the on-page content should coincide with the image.
5 – Include Meta-data, If you create an image use EXIF (exchangeable image file format) data for your images. Google has stated it reserves the right to consider EXIF data.
6 – Image Size; this goes without saying and is “Image SEO 101.” Size matters. The ultimate screen resolution is 72dpi. Do not overload your bandwidth with image SEO that is too large, and load slowly. That kills your image SEO.
There is much to consider when building Images, that will benefit your SEO. Do not discount the benefits of properly controlling your SEO via the images. Just like the image below, what you did last night or yesterday effects your image today.
And as always, if you need some clarification for Image SEO call e2-Total Solutions.