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One of the most common mistakes that bloggers make is ignoring the optimization of Images for SEO. If you are struggling with slow images then this post of Image SEO is definitely for you.
Optimizing Images for SEO indicates a better score and it can grow your blogging business quickly.
Powerful Image SEO for Bloggers
Before we begin, I want to say that web hosting servers play a major role in optimizing your website for higher SEO scores. I always recommend using the best web hosting providers to improve your website speed. Having fast web servers can take 60% of the speed load and transfer the images and other blog content at a blazing fast speed.
I use Hostinger since it puts your data on its Litespeed Server. It also has custom QuicCloud CDN that improves your WordPress speed. You can check the speed of your site at GTMetrix to find the loopholes.
Let’s get back to Image SEO and 7 Easy Steps to Optimize Images for SEO scores.
WHAT IS IMAGE SEO?
Performing Image SEO is optimizing the images on your blogging website for Search Engines. Several search engines and web algorithms have set a standard for best practices for using images inside your content. So, optimizing Images for SEO can boost your SEO Rankings and draws a lot of Organic Traffic.
It looks unimportant but is very effective for WordPress SEO. According to studies, if your page opens in less than 3 seconds, then you’re in a safe zone. But anything more than that can cause serious damage to your online business. Taking this stat as a benchmark, the images on your blogging website take the maximum time to load.
You cannot remove the images but you can modify and boost the flow of images from the server to browsers with some simple tricks. The question is…
WHY IMAGE SEO SHOULD BE PRIORITY?
Good question. Suppose, you’ve written a masterpiece but the user has a slow internet connection. How will you showcase your content when the Internet speed is not letting the user load your unoptimized images?
Now let’s suppose that your user has a high speed internet connection.
Will Google consider your blog on top of other high-speed blogs or websites? A big ‘No’ from Google and from me too. In order to get on the first page of search results, you must follow the SEO guidelines. There’s tough competition in the blogging industry regarding SEO and you’ll need to adapt to the trends of search engine algorithms.
There are 3 important factors that directly relate to the Image SEO level on your WordPress blog:
Website Speed: Optimized and compressed Images can boost the speed of your blogging website. Since the size will be low, the transfer rate of data will be faster.
Organic Traffic: Image SEO has an upfront benefit of ranking your images in the search results. Chances are someone can land on your blog from relevant images.
Server Load: As the size of the Images are compressed for SEO, the load on your web server will be less. More accurately, a perfect content delivery network can resolve the http requests easily.
So, by now, you’ve realized that using a good optimization tactic of Image for SEO can bring a whole lot of change to your blog. Follow these simple steps and rock the Internet world.
POWERFUL IMAGE SEO TIPS
In no time, you’ll have the secret strategy to optimizing your blog images for best SEO practices on the internet. I’ll share the exact steps that I use to achieve the best Image SEO scores for my blog. Some tweaks can be done without any third party plugin but I highly recommend using these plugins to make your WordPress smoother than ever.
Here’s the tips to Improve your Image SEO score with 7 easy steps.
USE CDN OR IMAGE CACHE SERVICE
This is one of the easiest methods for improving your site speed. Using a Content Delivery Network, you store a copy of your WordPress website on local servers around the globe. So, the nearest server sends the data to the user for the instant transfer of the data (blog post and images). It gives a remarkable boost to the user experience.
Now, for the images, you need to verify if your Web Hosting Company provides a CDN and Image Compression feature.
With Hostinger, I get QuicCloud CDN and Litespeed Image Compression service for free. And I, obviously, use this feature to host my files on QuicCloud CDN and have automated image compression management.
If your web hosting company doesn’t provide CDN management, then consider Cloudflare for free CDN with limitations.
Along with that, you can use Shortpixel for an automated image compression mechanism. It is free to join and you can always upgrade. That will unlock more features.
This is something that your WordPress must handle. Now, we will look at some of the manual Image SEO practices.
RENAME IMAGE FOR SEO
Okay, we have to start from the basics. Whenever you click a photo, it get’s a numerical name like ‘3456834058.jpg’ which is difficult to understand by the crawlers. Changing it to something like ‘Christmas-Yoga-Pants.jpg’ can make a huge difference.
You got my point?
I cross-check every time before uploading any image to my blog. This little effort can save you from unwanted SEO errors. It ensures that your image will be ranked for the correct phrase in the search results. This is proper Image SEO strategy. If you are performing Pinterest Marketing to drive traffic from Pinterest, then this simple activity can boost your Pinterest analytics with viral pins.
MANUAL COMPRESSION WITH TINYPNG
I love TinyPNG. This is a free image compression service where you can reduce the size of your images by 80% without losing the quality of the image. The smart compression technology helps receive crystal clear small-size images within a few clicks. And it’s free.
Simply, go to the site and upload your image files. You can bulk upload them. Download the processed version of your files as a single or zip format and use these images for the blogging. It saves a lot of space on your server.
The only limitation with the free service is that you can only upload an image with 5mb size. If you want to exceed this size, then you must upgrade to a pro plan. And that won’t be an issue since you can find plenty of stock files under 5mb. Compressing can help create perfect Image SEO for your blog.
JPEG or PNG?
This has been the biggest struggle for any blogger to decide whether to choose JPEG or PNG format for their blog. Let me put an end to this debate by providing criteria for the usage of both files.
PNGs are used for a transparent background and hold high details as compared to JPEG. That’s it for the PNG. If you want a particular result for the looks then use PNG, otherwise use JPEG wherever possible.
A little tip is to use PNG clip art over a white background and then convert it to a JPEG. This is because JPEG can have better compression levels.
POWERFUL ALT TEXT
This needs no introduction if you are already using WordPress or have a little knowledge of Image Alt Text. Just for the newbies, let me share that Alt Text (alternative text for image) is what a crawler like Googlebot can read. In simple words, Google will show the images with similar Alt text to the search term.
Leaving alt text empty can create a massive SEO error and your SEO rankings can be affected by it. The best practice is to use your target keyword as the alt text of your image. You can add alt text to any image within the Media Dashboard of your WordPress dashboard.
Now, the smartest blogger on the earth will say, “Everything Image in the Blog Post is an HTML Banner!”. I can explain if you wait for a second. What I actually mean by ‘HTML Banner‘ is the process of using the assets provided by various companies or using an image hosting service for outsourcing the content.
Images on your server will transfer from your server to your blog. But, images on other’s servers will transfer from their server to your blog. This creates less load time for your server and it will show faster results on the screen.
For example, the above graphics are hosted by the merchant company. But does that make any difference? You can use free image hosting sites to outsource the image files.
IMAGE WEBP AND SVG
Asking about the best image format (or extension) for the Internet? Here’s your answer. Digital Media has a set standard for the best image type for faster content delivery. Using WebP or SVG image type can reduce the stress on your current hosting plan.
Let’s look at this example on how it effects the creation of the images’ sizes:
You can use free image converter tools to achieve your results. My QuicCloud CDN converts WebP format for my blog automatically and I use SVG image type for the Logo. It helps in maintaining the quality of the logo on any screen since it consists of scalable vector data.
(+Bonus) FEATURE IMAGE & OPEN Graph
This is a silly Image SEO mistake that bloggers often do to prove that they still need to learn the basics of blogging. I don’t want to sound harsh, but how can you forget to set the feature image?
When you select a featured image for the blog, it is automatically added to the Open Graph of your blog post as an Image Tag. This Image Tag is useful when people share your content on various social media platforms like Facebook or Twitter. If you ever run a site audit at Woorank, you’ll notice that it indicates an error of improper open graph settings for the web page.
As a solution, always select a featured image while publishing a post. It will boost your Organic Traffic since your blog post is configured with the proper Image SEO guidelines.
I highly recommend you Image SEO for the best blogging experience. It makes no visual changes but technically, it creates a great impact on your SEO strategy. In my Pinterest for Bloggers Course, I’ve shared how using HTML tags in images can impact your Image SEO for Pinterest. It is must-read content and you’ll receive a lot of information about Pinterest Marketing.
I hope this post will help you understanding how Image SEO can be done with a few tweaks. Share it with your friends and Keep reading good stuff!