Simple And Easy Image Optimization With Semalt

Images play a big role in creating quality and engaging content. You can only imagine how boring it would be if you opened a web page only to be met with a big chunk of text. Infographics, photos, illustrations plus a host of other image files make your content appealing to the eye. In addition to this, they have the potential to reel in more traffic (obviously via an image search result).

However, Lisa Mitchell, the Semalt Customer Success Manager, reminds you that all this can be possible if you optimize your website's images for Google and other search engines.

Choosing the perfect image

Step One: Make sure it is relevant – All webmasters must ensure that their websites are relevant and engaging. Bad user experience will definitely lead to a high bounce rate, so choosing a relevant image, you are on the right path.

Choose your blog and website's images using the following guideline:

  • Ensure that the images relate to your niche or topics
  • Choose images that emphasize points you'd wish to drive home.
  • Your images must enhance the viewing/ reading experience rather than disrupt the same.

Besides, be sure to avoid using stock images. These make your web pages look generic, boring and not engaging at all. As much as it may be expensive to get quality photos, it may not be a bad idea to hire a professional photographer.

Step Two: Getting free images

Trust me; you wouldn't ever wish to be embroiled in a copyright lawsuit. As such, it is always a good idea that you use your own images. Here are some tools you can use to customize your images.

Canva – includes a library of stock images plus illustrations and vectors, which you are free to use to make your graphics. Canva also has filters as well as a handful of features for image editing.

Freepik – this tool is akin to an image search engine. It will crawl through hundreds of thousands of images to give you one that fits your search best. Freepik is a great resource for PSDs, illustrations, icons, vectors, and photos.

Google Images – this resource is perfect but be careful with copyrighted images. For this, modify the search results by selecting 'labeled for re-use.'

Flickr – in this case, use an attribute license, a nor derivative one or a non-commercial one to avoid copyright infringement.

Getting image file names right

Once you have created a custom image, then the real work begins. Image optimization begins with choosing the right filename. Why? Well, they boost your SEO ranking. Here are the best image file naming practices you should put to use:

  • Use a hyphen as a word separator – never use the underscore because they are not recognized by search engines at all. For Google, there is no difference between 'image_file.jpg' and 'imagefile.jpg.'
  • Be concise and descriptive – put as many details as you can.
  • Always use keywords naturally.

Titles and the alternative attribute

The alt text or alt tag refer to attributes that go into the image tag. Use these to provide more details about your images specifically those that were not included in the file name.

Image size

Maximize your website's speed by scaling down your images to the smallest size possible. Adobe Photoshop, ImageOptim, JPEGmini and PunyPNG are cool tools you can use for this. Do not forget to try Google's Page-Speed Insights for identifying pics that drag down your page's loading speed.