There’s a way in which you can optimise images on your website in order to achieve higher rankings on search engines – if your not sure why you would want a higher ranking, then check out our recent post explaining the benefits of SEO.
Having great relevant images on your website is pretty important. Many visitors will be drawn in by visual aspects of your website as well as your content, and images can easily set the tone of your site at a glance. However, this isn’t the only way in which images can help your business – if you optimise them in the right way, images can increase your chances of being found via search engines such as Google, and help to keep visitors on your website once they’ve found you.
Search engines send out automated programs, known as spiders or Web crawlers, that browse the web in order to update their indexes so users can search more efficiently. They gather data from
websites, such as text, images, and keywords – but they can’t tell what the images are about unless you help them. This, in turn, will then help you by increasing your ranking in results.
There are 3 elements of an image that spiders will pick up on:
‘ALT’ tags – these provide a text alternative in case the image cannot load.
Image file name – the name the image is filed under. For example, ‘stellasoftlogo.jpg’.
Image caption – visible text that describes or is relevant to the image.
Providing these elements will give the spiders more to work with and will therefore improve your performance in search engine results.
Give the Spiders Something to Work With
Ensuring that you’re providing these 3 elements is pretty simple. However, if you want to reap all the possible benefits from your images, you need to give the spiders a little more to work with.
Put keywords in your ‘ALT’ tags – the spiders will read this tag to determine what the image is about. Try to throw in some keywords to improve your performance in the search results for those words – however, make sure you don’t take advantage of this too much. Search engines can penalise websites that overuse keywords, so keep it simple and include only the main words that you want to target.
Put keywords in your image file name – when saving the images that will be uploaded to your website it’s a good idea to include target keywords here too.
Spend more time creating great image captions – the captions attached to your images are visible to all visitors on your site, so make sure they are simple and appropriately explanatory. It also wouldn’t hurt to include some keywords – just not too many otherwise it could come across as unnatural and insincere.
The Bottom Line
Optimising your images in this way can lead to an improvement of your website’s performance in search engine results and additional traffic from services such as Google Images.
For more information about how SEO can help your business, feel free to get in contact with us.