How to Rank Images in Google Image Search

The latest studies that I have read confirm the importance of having a site that performs in SEO especially if it is dedicated to e-commerce. It goes through a lot of parameters like the server response, the number of js and the size of the css etc but we forget that most of the time the most important factor is the size of the images


Why optimize SEO images?

Getting a good position in the results with a sales image linked to your business is the assurance of acquiring qualified and potentially important traffic.

For certain categories of websites, a good positioning of the images is essential today, it is the case for:


  • E-commerce sites,
  • Portfolios of artists, graphic designers,
  • The image banks,
  • Travel agencies and tourist sites,
  • Printers,
  • The web agencies,
  • The photographers, …


Adapt your image to its frame

It is known, a picture is worth a thousand words. You will have a multitude of images on your site. But if these images are too “heavy” and / or too big, beware of the loss of speed on your website. And that says the loss of speed, for sure means loss of SEO.


The first thing to do is to adjust the size of your media. It is not useful to have a high definition image of a size of 5760px by 3840px for an article header. The higher the size, the higher the image will be.

Nowadays, with high definition, the photographs are overweight. That’s right, a beautiful image in HD is always a plus for a site. Nothing like a pixilated photo to scare away your visitors and readers. How to do ?

Today there are software or websites and plugins that can compress images without loss of quality. So, use them to boost your site speed and without losing quality.


The names of the images

Google cannot read an image; it’s up to you to indicate what is in your image or your photo. For example, if you want to reference photos of the white cat, avoid image names like IMG6725.jpg and prefer white-cat.jpg, admit that it will be easier for Google to position your photo with relevance by placing a few keywords in the file name.


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The alternative text or tag “ALT”

The alternative text or attribute “ALT” is a text read by the search engines, so it is essential to optimize the referencing of images. In addition to the name of the image, the tag “ALT” also improves the SEO of your site since it allows accommodating additional keywords that will be interpreted by the engines, being careful not to stuff your keyword image (Keyword Stuffing). Keywords placed in the ALT tag will replace the image if the browser cannot display the image.


The format and weight of images

Preferably use JPG, GIF and PNG formats even if some engines are able to read other formats. Also, specify the height and width of your image to tell search engines how big your image is. Ideally, the native size of your image should be the same as the display size, this will reduce the weight of your images resulting in reduced loading time of your pages.


The content and the context around the images

The context and content (including the caption and title of the image) on the page where the image to be referenced provides search engines with important information about your image.

For example, avoid embedding a business card picture in a kitchen recipe page, and send a confusing message to the search engines about the subject of the visit-card.jpg image.

Search Console Help Center Guidelines: Make sure you place your images near a relevant text as much as possible. We also advise you to assign titles and descriptive captions to your images.

The title of the image

The title of the image (title attribute) is a text that is displayed on mouse over, the information of this attribute has no effect on the referencing of images, it is against a plus in term of accessibility and user experience.


A specific sitemap for images

Once all your images are optimized, you can submit a sitemap for images via the Google Search Console interface. This will help you a lot to get some rank for your pictures so you can drive traffic with it


The legend of the image

The legend of the image corresponds to the text displayed under the image; the legend does not bring any direct added value in terms of reference. It can be useful for the user experience if you write some content around the image; the legend helps to heal the context.


The long description

Like the caption, the long description of your image is not read directly by Google, but it is very useful for attachment pages. This is also a great SEO lever for portfolio sites or sites dedicated to photography

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