Optimizing the images properly makes it easy for the search engines to identify the image and to display it whenever a relevant search happens. So, let us discuss some best practices of image optimization that could help you to make your images search-engine friendly.
Whenever you are publishing images follow the things listed below:
Good quality images that load quickly
The very first thing you need to consider when publishing images is to use good quality ones that appeal to the users. At the same time, make sure that they are not affecting the page load time, which is an important factor in SEO. When using big images, scale them down and compress optimally so that they load faster.
Search supported formats
Right format is always an important factor to get indexed by search engines and accessed by users. Some examples of search supported formats are JPEG, BMP, GIF, GZIP, TIFF, etc. Of all the formats, JPEG is the most widely used and recommended as it shows colored details clearly, which are essential when your prospects/users view images.
Give a descriptive file name
Assign a descriptive file name to the image instead of giving something which looks like a code. A code does not help the search engine or the user (if he saves the image) to know about the image. For instance, instead of using something like IMG200056.jpg, try a phrase more informative like ‘Used-Nissan-Altima.’ Use hyphens to separate file names instead of underscores as search engines consider hyphens as word separators and underscores as word combiners. This helps search engines identify the image easily and to display it for a relevant search query.
Alt and title texts
Alt and title texts help to describe the content of an image. They help search engines to know what the image is about so that it can display it to a relevant search query. If no alt tag is furnished, your image will be left unindexed because search engines cannot read an image; they read the text and understand the image.
Make sure that you are using relevant keywords in the alt and title texts, but don’t fill them with too many keywords which result in a negative user experience and could be perceived as spam.
Image captions further explain the image to the search engine. They also help human readers learn more about the image. You can include a commentary or provide context to the image using an image caption. For instance, if you have added a newly launched car to your website, you can add something unique about it in the image caption, so that it helps the visitor to know quickly about the car, without reading other information.
Submit image site map to search engines
Site maps in websites are important because they make navigation easy. For images in your website, you need to create a site map with specific tags. Submit the site map to search engines. This makes it easy for search engines to crawl and discover all the images on the site.