Does Image Optimization Matter?

It’s no secret that if you want to drive organic search traffic to your website, your SEO game needs to be on point. However, many people overlook one crucial resource for ranking in all of that organic traffic, Google image search, and in order to get that traffic you need to know about image optimization.

So how much potential does Google image search have to drive traffic to your website? Data suggests that on websites with well-optimized images the resulting traffic from Google image search can translate into 20% to 60% of all Google traffic. That’s huge. So how can you optimize images to drive traffic to your website? Here is everything you need to know.

Choose the Right Image

Your images should let the reader know that they are in the right place and should be appealing enough to make them want to stick around for a while and check out the rest of your site's content. When visitors spend more time on your page and click on links and images, all of that sends signals to Google that lets the search engine know that people enjoy your content. Which in turn will help you improve your rankings in Google search and in Google image search, as well.

When it comes to picking your images it is important to note that if your pictures are too generic or are overused, your readers are unlikely to stick around. Your best bet for optimizing images on your posts is to choose images that will appeal to your readers, and in most cases, unique images do the best job of this.

Uploading Your Image

If you want to be the best at image optimization, it starts with the name you give your images. Keywords should be worked into your images names from the start to maximize SEO. If you are using more than one keyword when naming your image, it is important to know to use hyphens instead of underscores. There is a difference in how Google treats hyphens as opposed to underscores when reading text, if you were to choose the wrong one it could actually negatively impact your images SEO. This is because when Google sees words separated by hyphens, it assumes the words are separate; however when Google comes across words separated by underscores, it assumes they are all one word. And remember don’t just use keywords for the name of your images, use them in your alt text, as well.

Another consideration when uploading your image is that size really does matter. It is important to pay attention to the image size, the larger an image is the longer it will take to load which could negatively impact your image’s SEO. The key to making sure your images are not too small but also not too big, is to select images that exactly the size that you need.  

Integrating Your Image

Images can do more for your site than just convey information and more your content more visually compelling. Images can also make your post more readable as well. Images can help improve your page’s appeal, as well as decrease your bounce rate by breaking up text to make it more readable. That’s why it is so important to place them accordingly. A good rule of thumb is that as someone is scrolling through your post, they should never reach a spot where there is only text and no pictures on the page. This can usually be accomplished by posting at least one image per 500 words.

So long story short, image optimization does matter. If you are looking for more resources to help you get the most out of your SEO strategy, contact the professionals at Red Shark Digital today!