5 SEO tips for image optimization

Five SEO Tips for Image Optimization

Unoptimized images can throttle your website’s loading speeds and drive customers away from your business. A staggering 45.4 percent of people say they are less likely to purchase items from slow-loading sites.

The drawbacks of unoptimized images don’t end there, though. They may also hurt your search engine ranking and decrease your website’s organic visitor numbers.

If you would like to keep your customers happy and maximize your online sales, you’ll need to optimize your images. Here’s how:

1. Select the Right Format

Almost all images on the web use one of the following formats:

  • JPG
  • PNG
  • GIF

When adding product pictures and other images to your website, take some time to decide which option is best.

In most cases, the JPG format is the right choice. This file type is typically easy to compress, which leads to high-quality images and small file sizes.

However, if you want an image that won’t degrade during re-saves, a PNG file might be a better option. The tradeoff: PNG files are generally quite a bit larger than JPGs, though.

For thumbnails and decorative images, you might want to consider using a GIF. This format produces manageable file sizes and supports animation.

2. Compress Your Images

Large pictures will slow down your website. Compress your images before uploading them if you want pages to load quickly.

To compress an image on a Windows computer, follow these steps:

  1. Right-click on the image you want to compress.
  2. Select “Open with” > “Photos”.
  3. Click “…” in the top right corner.
  4. Select “Resize.”
  5. Choose a size.
  6. Save your compressed image.

Be sure to avoid over-compressing your images. If you push your pictures too far, they may look pixelated and discolored on your website.

3. Use Descriptive File Names

When uploading images to your website, it can be tempting to use default generic file names like: 

  • IMAGE001.jpg
  • DSC0558.png, or
  • SitePic236.gif

However, if you want to maximize your online sales, it’s generally better to use titles that describe the contents of the image, such as:

  • Blue2022HondaAccord.jpg
  • Collision-Center-Exterior.png, or
  • FinanceDepartmentStaff.gif

These descriptive file names will make it easier for search engines to gain an understanding of the contents of your company’s site. As a result, your rankings will increase, and you’ll attract more organic visitors.

4. Add Appropriate Alt Attributes

Alt attributes provide alternative information about an image if it does not render or the user is otherwise unable to view it. They are also used to improve web accessibility for the visually impaired.

Whenever you upload an image to your website, add an appropriate alt attribute. It is generally best practice to:

  • Be Descriptive: As with file names, your alt text should describe the contents of the image. Use model names or stock numbers where possible.
  • Keep it Short: Your alt text should be as concise as possible. One or two sentences will usually suffice.
  • Avoid Keyword-Stuffing: Insert keywords into your alt attributes in a natural way. Google may penalize you for keyword-stuffing.

Taking the time to add alt attributes to your images will boost your search engine ranking. It will also show the visually impaired community you care about them and their business.

5. Use an Image Sitemap

An image sitemap is a guide search engine algorithms can use to find and review all the pictures on your website. It can help you improve both your ranking and your visibility on Google and Bing.

You can create an image sitemap in minutes using the free automated tool from MySitemapGenerator.

You can submit your image sitemap to Google by following these steps:

  1. Log into the Google Search Console.
  2. Click “Index” in the left navigation pane.
  3. Select “Sitemaps.”
  4. Paste your sitemap URL into the box marked “Add a New Sitemap.”
  5. Click “Submit.”

Once you have submitted your image sitemap to Google, it will verify the data, and its crawlers will begin reviewing your images. This process can take anywhere from a couple of days to a few weeks.

Need Help Optimizing Your Site? Contact FZA Digital Today!

Whether you need help optimizing images or any other aspect of your company’s website, you can count on the experts at FZA Digital. We have been building state-of-the-art, high-converting websites for years, so we know what it takes to climb to the top of the Google rankings.

To find out how we can help your organization, all you need to do is give us a call at (424) 232-0810 or fill in our short online contact form. Our friendly representatives will be more than happy to answer all your questions!