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Gift Your Business Higher Traffic and Search Rankings With These Actionable Image SEO Tips

Remember the campaign #TheDress, also referred to as “What color is the dress?” launched by Caitlin McNeill in late February 2015.

The Tumbler post included an image of a dress. And guess what within two days, the post crossed more than 400,000 notes.

Buzzfeed published the same post asking its users the same question. More than a million users responded to this poll and gave their views.


The excitement did not end here. Some Reddit user shared the same image and gained more than 2700 votes with around 3600 comments.

It became like a new found viral sensation on almost every social media channel.

That’s how powerful an image can be.

digital marketer

I am sure that you are not willing to let go of such amazing organic traffic.

Again, a renowned digital marketer confirms that articles with images have approximately 90% more views.

And the reason is pretty simple.

People share data. That too lots of data and on the other hand, user attention span decreasing at an exponential rate. So, using a monotonous way to present data might be off-putting.

ALSO READ- Want to rank higher in Google? These SEO tools can help

Let’s dive in and gather some insights for ranking your website higher in SERPs.

But, first, let us understand how Google looks at any image.

Google looks

Did you see?

Unlike what many marketers assume, Google understands images as well. We confirmed this by using Google’s Cloud Vision API.

Here, we uploaded an image and Google could infer that image was of a cat with 100% accuracy (As you can see we did not mention any tags in this particular image).

So, does image SEO hold any importance when Google can clearly understand them?

That would be a definite Yes.

But, why invest so much in image SEO when Google can understand them well.


Let’s move on with some actionable tips and tricks. And while we will be doing that. We will make sure that you get an answer to this question.


  • Give Appropriate Name For Your Images


Well, this is basic.

Like everyone likes to have a name. Same goes with website images as well.

But, why is it important?

Let’s take an example first.


Can you see the image?

It shows that Google assumes it to be a cheese product.

Well, in reality, it is “Butter”.

So, you must understand even though Google uses advanced technologies. But, still, it can not perceive things correctly.

To make sure that Google understands any image used by you in a blog or website correctly.

Start naming images as a part of image SEO strategy the way you want to Google to interpret them.

So, using butter.jpg will be better than going with 1 or any number.jpg.


  • Use Eloquent Alt-tags and Captions


Alt tags describe the context of an image. It is basically what a browser shows to its users about the displayed image.

Here’s How Google shows an image while it is rendering.


alt tag

See the HTML code including the alt text.

Alt tags are important to make search bots understand about the content and context of any images used in a blog or any website.

Avoid stuffing keywords and use content wisely to make it work in your favor.

A study by Poynter Research proves that the right captions and content result in 15% more readers.  

ALSO READ- 6 Killer Ways to Bring More Visitors to Your New Blog


  • Choose The Right File Type


Images usually are available in the following types- jpeg, png, gif.

And unlike what may marketers think, all these image types have different compression protocols as well.

So, technically, each kind of input will have a dramatically different size as well.

I am sure, you have already an idea of loading speed. And that it is an important ranking factor as well. So, you would never want to reduce your website’s quality.

As you can see below, JPEGS is one of the most preferred inputs that take up less of the space. So, prefer using JPEGS whenever embedding a visual content in your blog or website.


So, using different compression tools such as Photoshop, PicMonkey and Pixlr will be helpful in reducing the final image output. Hence, improving image SEO effectively.


  • Go For Vector Graphics


Well, this is not applicable everywhere.

Many marketers use vectors when creating a logo or some elements. And SVG is usually the preferred format used.

This is a perfect format for such images irrespective of what web browser or device a user uses.

However, experts advise compressing these images to ensure your website loading speed is as per the official recommendations.


  • Opt for Responsive Images


Images look differently whenever there is a change in devices. So, it’s essential that your image loads clearly.

Here’s the HTML code for creating responive images.

<img src=”image.jpg” srcset=”image-medium.jpg 1000w, image-large.jpg 2000w”>

The first part of code is basic image tag. Other part includes the responsive sizes.

Reason being, Google shares the most efficient image to its user. So, providing different sizes will help to engage different users.


  • Create and Publish Image Sitemap


This is like giving a road map to Google regarding the type and number of images present all over your website.

A simple way to do such a thing is adding image information into the already existing XML sitemap via an “image-sitemap.xml”. This will help to alert Google to crawl a particular image.

Google to crawl

In case you have a WordPress site, you can install an image sitemap plugin, Google XML Sitemap for Images. This will automatically do the task that you had to do otherwise.

A better chance to index your images right away.


  • Using Schema Markup For Products and Recipes


Schema markup is something that acts like a badge for an image and let’s your customers understand the relevance of any image to the search query.

Here’s an example to justify that.

Schema Markup For Products

Using structured data on different pages will help Google understand the context of an image.

The more you make it clear, the more will be the chances of showing your image for the right search query.

So, adding appropriate markup using different image SEO strategies will help to rank a particular image in Google image search results.


Irrespective of files you choose, make sure there are no copyright issues. So, prefer using free stock images or websites that provide image subscriptions to avoid any legal implications.

To summarize, ranking higher on SERPs is a challenging job but worth the effort. As it will help gaining the right leads and hence conversions.

So, following these basic steps must always be on the top of your priority list to establish a fact that your website is worth showing as search results.


One response to “Gift Your Business Higher Traffic and Search Rankings With These Actionable Image SEO Tips”

  1. Anna Kieu Avatar
    Anna Kieu

    Hello. Great job. I did not imagine this. This is a excellent story. Thanks!

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