Consider the last time you updated your website with a picture. You probably got it from a stock photography site, uploaded it to your site's backend, and then incorporated it into the page. Isn't this an excellent example of image optimization? That's not the case.
You've put a huge bowling ball weight to your site, which is slowing it down. Furthermore, without alt text, search engines will not be able to understand your photographs. Let's make a change. According to Jumpshot data from 2018, Google Images accounts for over 20% of all web searches in the United States. Both SEO novices and experts agree that optimizing photos for your website is time well spent.
You're squandering a vital SEO tool if you don't optimize your images properly. It's as if the search engines are handing out free Oreos and milk. You, on the other hand, only take the Oreo. In actuality, the Oreo is far superior when dipped in milk. Image optimization has numerous benefits, including improved user experience, faster website load times, and increased ranking prospects. It's a function that's growing increasingly vital. But, in order to ensure that your photographs are searchable and don't slow down your site, what variables are most important?
Decoding all of the different picture formats can feel like ordering Taco Bell for the first time. However, before you begin adding photographs to your site, be sure you've selected the best file format. While there are several image formats to pick from, the most popular for the web are PNG and JPEG.
According to HTTP Archive, graphics account for about 21% of the total weight of a webpage. As a result, I strongly advise compressing your photographs before posting them to your website. This can be done in Photoshop or using a program like TinyPNG. You can use TingPNG's WordPress plugin as well. WP Smush, on the other hand, is my WordPress plugin of choice. It decreases the size of the image file without sacrificing quality. Make sure that any plugin you use compresses the images externally on their servers. It alleviates the strain on your own website.
When it comes to SEO, it's critical to have descriptive, keyword-rich file names. It's like getting a burrito with no filling if you don't change the name of your image file. It's just plain bad. The picture file names inform Google and other search engine crawlers about the image's subject matter. The file names will usually be something like "IMG 722019" or something like that. It's the equivalent of ordering from a menu in a foreign language. It's not going to benefit Google. To help search engines comprehend your image and boost your SEO value, change the file name from the default. Depending on how large your media library is, this may take some time, but changing the default image name is always a good idea.
When a browser is unable to render images properly, alt tags are used to provide a text substitute. The alt attribute, like the title, is used to explain the contents of an image file. When an image fails to load, an image box appears with the alt tag in the upper left corner. Make sure they go with the image and add to the overall impact. It's also a good idea to pay attention to alt tags as part of your overall on-page SEO strategy. All other optimization areas should be in place, but if the picture fails to load for any reason, users will see what the image is supposed to be. Individuals who are unable to examine photos themselves must use alt text, which is mandated by the American Disabilities Act. Users can be alerted to what is in the photo by using descriptive alt text.
Oh, SEO for mobile devices. It can result in a high bounce rate and low conversions in the worst-case scenario. However, at its best, it can provide you with increased ranking power and improved user engagement. How can you optimize your photos for the mobile-first index, though? Fortunately, Google provides guidelines for image best practices. In a nutshell, you want to make photos that are responsive. This ensures that the image will scale to fit the site's size, whether the user is on a desktop or a mobile device. It adjusts to the device's size. Mozilla provides a detailed explanation on how to use the size properties to supply extra source pictures to the browser, allowing it to show the same image content resized for the device.
Image optimization is no laughing matter. With developments in voice search technology, media is becoming increasingly important, and following the methods above will help your entire site.