Image Optimization, should be of prime importance for any website owners or bloggers.
Rather, it’s a key element of on-page optimization.
Wise usage and application of images on our blog will convey the context of your content in a fraction of seconds, and, have an impact on visitor and its improper usage would have adverse effects.
According to Raven Tools, 78 % of SEO issues are directly related to images. It’s a crucial technique and we must thrive hard to ensure images on our sites are well optimised
So, what are the best ways to optimize images for web?
How do we ensure we have SEO friendly images on our site?
Here on, we would learn image optimization techniques to reap its rich benefits and endless traffic from search engines.
- Know The Correct Convention for File Name
- Why ALT & TITLE Tags Significant?
- What are Various Image File Types?
- Why Load Time Important?
- What Are Image Site Maps?
1.File Name – What Is Correct Convention to Name the Image?
As we aware, search engines, don`t have mechanism and intelligence as-of-today, to know kind of image we have used on our sites.
The only way they can figure out the image is on the basis of the file name of the image. Hence , we have to ensure we name image with main keyword in file .
If in case, there are multiple images on sites, name other images with long tail keywords. This way, we are indicating the search engines the type of content associated with images which in turn becomes easier for them to comprehend.
2.ALT & TITLE Tags – Why They Are So Significant?
Search Engines emphasize and provide high importance to ALT (means ALTERNATE) and TITLE tags.
Basis these tags search engine like Google would interpret and understand the relevance of your IMAGE and content associated with it .
As a best practice, always have the ALT tag as descriptive as possible. Example –If its image of a product, have a complete name of the product in ALT tag. If it is a blog post header, have the title of you blog post in ALT tag.
ALT tag not only useful from SEO point of view it also helps in event where your image is not displayed correctly
For TITLE tag, include the main keyword in text and make it to the point and short.
Basics of Image Optimization.
Image Optimization Dos and Don’ts.
Syntax to add HTML based ALT and TITLE Tags.
<img src=’your-file-name.jpg” alt=”Descriptive” title=” to the point and short ” />
3.Image File Types – Know the Correct Usage
It is vital to know few basic file types you would want to use on your sites as each of the file types has its own pluses and minuses. Our objective should be to use correct File Type without sacrificing the quality and comprising the visual impact.
Most commonly used file types are- JPEG, PNG, and GIF. These are most accepted file types for web usage as-of-today.
Let’s quickly run through its applicability.
JPEG: These are most widely used file types as it provides better outputs for complex images taken from basic to high-end DSLR cameras. JPEG tend to diminish in quality when compressed. They are also not preferred choice when it comes to graphics and logos.
PNG: PNG by nature, hold more colours in the image hence, are of superior quality. The image quality of PNG files is least affected when compressed. Only negative point would be its size. PNG files are 3X larger than JPEG files.
For any high-end graphics or LOGO, PNGs works best.
It is advisable to use PNG file cautiously as it will impact the performance of your site. These days, Google keeps a close watch on the sites load time to rank or de-rank it in search results.
GIF: GIFS are of smaller size and generally for animation effects. The image quality of GIF files, when compared to JPEG and PNG, is lowest in the lot.
4.Site Load Time – Very Important
These days, the load time of your site have key role in SEO.
End User experience is being given highest priority. A visitor would not wait and hit the back button if a website takes too long to load and render.
As just stated above, Google would give higher marks to sites with speedy load time and rank them at the top in search results. Load time of 2 to 3 seconds is considered as a decent load time.
For this to happen, we would need to evaluate and analyse images used on our sites. Knowing the applicability of the image and its purpose is a must. Always compress your images and reduce the image file size wherever required. No point in the embedding picture of 1000s of pixels when there is no need.
5.Image Site Maps
Image Site Maps are used to feed search engine crawlers with more information about images which may not get traced in normal crawling.
To achieve this, we need to append the additional information in our existing sitemaps or we can create exclusive image site maps for our pages.
Here is the illustration of image sitemap for sample page sample.html
Suggested read to generate sitemaps : SitemapGenerators
Have tried my best to cover all possible techniques on Image optimization.
Do come up with your own inputs and aspects which i may have missed.