Tips for Optimising Images

Photo Frame

A picture is worth a thousand words. That is no less true online. The right images can capture your visitors’ attention and imagination. But are those images also capturing the “attention” of Google’s bots? About 60 – 65 percent of people are visual learners. Google, though, is not! It depends on code to decipher your website and serve it up to searchers. When your images are not optimised, they are invisible to bots. How can you ensure your images really are worth 1000 words?

Optimising images is not difficult or time-consuming:

  • Remove the bloat. There is a lot of information attached to an image that is useless as far as your web visibility efforts go. You might have information about the camera model, the date, the colors, etc. To remove this, use an image compression tool. Try Smush It, PunyPNG, JPEGmini, Caesium, or Kraken, all available online.
  • Use image alt text. The image below means nothing to Google. Adding alt text gives the search engine the information it needs. You would just add a line to your image tag:

<img src=”dogs-playing.jpg” alt=”Dogs Playing” />

A Springer and a Golden 1

  • Choose a file name that includes a keyword or keyword phrase that describes the image accurately, and for which you would like to rank.
  • Use descriptive captions. Google doesn’t as yet take this into consideration, but they do look at bounce rates. If your captions do not accurately describe your image or give searchers what they expect, they will click out. Your bounce rate does influence your rankings.
  • Size appropriately. Select a size that is as small as possible but does not impact quality. This will keep load times reasonable and provide visitors with clear, sharp images. You can once again turn to tools, such as Dynamic Drive’s Image Optimiser, to help you size or even convert the file format.

Images can be incredibly powerful. Make sure they appeal to users and are accurately described, and then make sure they appeal to Google’s algorithm-following bots.

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