Search engine optimization (SEO) is important to the success of a digital marketing campaign. However, there is much more to a successful SEO campaign than just building links. There are other aspects as well, and one of the most overlooked is image optimization. To make your SEO campaign more meaningful, you will have to optimize your images so that they fulfill the twin objectives of being relevant to your content while also resonating with your visitor.
We caught up with Paul Linton, a consultant that works with a Los Angeles SEO agency, and asked him to give us some tips on better SEO image optimization. Here are the top tips he gave us.
Your Images Should Be Unique and Relevant to Your Page
Because of the high affinity users have for images, they are likely to react to the images on your page before they read the actual text. It’s just part of human nature, which is why you should look for the most attractive and relevant images that just blend in with the topic of your page. The more the images leave an impression, the more compelled the users will be to share that information. Try to avoid stock photos and go for the most unique and original images. It certainly helps your SEO.
High-quality Formats Are Winners
Google and other search engines will favor the highest quality formats and resolutions they can find when it comes to images. When the quality is low, or the format is incorrect, the appearance of your image on a mobile screen will be hurt, which will end up selling your content short. You want to avoid that at all costs.
To start with, go for JPEG. It is the best format around, especially for e-commerce applications. GIFs should also not be used for large products due to the file size. They are best for small thumbnails. PNG is best for decorative images, although PNG-8 can also be a good alternative to JPEG if you can’t get a JPEG photo.
Keep the File Size Low
Google favors sites developed with a mobile first approach. Part of that means optimizing your images for fast loading on mobile screens. If your page takes too long to load, then you’re going to suffer a high bounce rate. Go for smaller image files with a higher resolution to ensure your pages load quickly for your users. You can always give them the option to view an enlarged image.
Optimize Image Organization
It’s not just about the images you place on your pages ― it’s also about how they’re organized. You want the user to view them in the correct order and in a way that enhances their journey. This is especially important for product images or images of real estate, where logical order helps the user to understand the product better.
Caption Your Images
Captioning your images helps to make them easy to understand for search engines. You want the captions to utilize keywords so that anyone searching for those keywords will find your page. You want the caption to be relevant to both the image and the page. If the caption is misleading, you can expect your bounce rate to go up, and your ranking to go down.