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how to do Image Search OptimizationIf you have been following my articles over the past few months or so you will notice that I talk a lot “the conversion funnel” or how to better convert visitors into leads – how you get people to your site and funnel them through the site to the end goal (check out, sign up, phone call, etc…). Another method you may have either forgotten about or have never thought of is using Google Image Search. With images, just like the rest of your site, you need to do some Image Search Optimization.

Why Image Search Optimization

First let me explain why you should care about this. The same way that you have to carefully plan out and set up your website so that it will rank well in search engine results, you have to optimize your images. You ought to care about this because there are about 1 billion image searches a month! Therefore, if you can optimize your images so that they rank well for your key terms or their descriptive terms, then you increase the ability to bring visitors to your site.

If you have spent all of this time on your site making it work effectively, you might as well spend sometime on this avenue as well, make sure you have all of your bases covered.

How to do Image Search Optimization

There are six aspects to consider looking at when you approach image optimization

  • Alt Text
  • File Name
  • Surrounding Text
  • Page Title
  • Anchor Text

Alt Text and File Name

These are the two most important aspects of making your pictures the most effective for your purposes. These two things give the Search engine crawler all that it knows about the picture. You need to make sure that you have an alt text that describes your picture well AND is a keyword you are trying to rank for (i’ll explain this more in a minute). The File name has the same basic effect (for our purposes) as the Alt Text. This allows the crawler to know what it’s looking at.

Surrounding Text

The crawler looks at your site from a high level to determine the legitimacy of your site relating to what you supposedly talking about. This being the case, you need to make sure that you picture relates to the subject matter of the rest of the page. Make sure then that the alt text and file name match up to this.

Page Title

As i’ve already said, you want to make sure that everything aligns together and that it’s really important the picture is relevant to your keyword strategy. Since your title (I will assume) contains your pages keywords, the crawler will look there and at your pictures name and text to make sure match up. (I think you are probably beginning to see the homogeneity is the word).

Anchor Text

When you are using an image as a clickable link you need to have a relevant anchor text. You can use the name of the picture, a keyword from the page you are going to, or a keyword on your website. Whatever you do, just realize that you have an opportunity with the anchor text to optimize, don’t pass it up.

In the end, none of these things are very hard to do and can end up making a difference in two ways. You will see your pictures rank higher in an image search (which will bring you traffic) and these are part of good SEO practices, so it will also serve to improve your websites ranking. So, get to it!

Jamie Bates
Online Marketing Director