Lori Meloche
image optimization for SEO

Here’s a little secret: people all around the world are currently looking online for – and buying – products and services just like the one your business offers. If your Search Engine Optimization techniques haven’t placed your website on the first page of the search results, you’re at a severe disadvantage.

Search engines direct most traffic online. Even if a person knows the URL of a website, there’s a large possibility that they’ll simply type it into Google or another search engine rather than directly into their browser. If you want more customers, and you want them to find you, start by optimizing your site.

Notably, we’re not talking about just including keywords into your blog posts. This is about meta-data: the information that search engines register and that users rarely see. For example, consider alt-tags. This is basically a description of an image on a website. It is showed when a browser incorrectly loads the website. Although the picture is missing, the user still sees the description or alt-tag.

Image optimization is one of hundreds of factors calculated in search engine algorithms. If you want to maximize your competitive advantage, you’ve got to optimize the alt-tags and images on your website. But don’t just stuff keywords that are totally unrelated to the picture. As with everything in SEO, the key is to use just enough. Overdoing it will appear unnatural and could result in a penalty or loss of rankings.

Although SEO is an ever-changing industry, a general best practice is to simply describe the image. For example, if you’re a contractor and you have a picture of a newly remodeled kitchen, an appropriate alt-tag could be, “remodeled kitchen with granite countertops, wood floors and stainless steel appliances.” This description includes several keywords that could potentially lead visitors interested in remodeling to your website. It describes the image and is a natural description.

For comparison, a bad alt-tag would be “kitchen remodeling, remodeled kitchen, how to remodel a kitchen.” This description provides no useful information to a reader if the page was to load improperly and they saw the alt-text. And it won’t help with search engines, since they penalize out-of-context keyword stuffing.

Remember, you want to use keywords to describe the images. You can also save the file name of the image as a keyword, and specify the URL to include a keyword as well. For more information and tips on image optimization for SEO, get in touch with us or post a comment below.

SEO Expert
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