It’s nice to have a website with some nice images, whether video or static pictures, the images as well as stand alone graphics make your page look good and perform several functions. However, if your images aren’t optimized, you’re putting yourself in jeopardy and losing out on traffic and rankings and revenue.
Image optimization is a key factor in getting your site listed higher in the search engines. Make no mistake, just slapping an image or video on your site to make it look good without optimizing it is like baking a cake without any icing. It may still look good but it could look better.
The first step is in regards to how to tag, label, pics and videos and graphics. If you have a picture of a lake that’s in your business area, just don’t label the pic “lake” when you could use a more descriptive term that would allow the search engines to really get a grip on your page and see that things are being done professionally. Instead, name the pic something like “Smith Lake, Smith, New York” or whatever location you’re in. That will allow for better and more precise indexing as well as boost your local SEO which you should never underestimate nor neglect.
The same goes for the videos and graphics. Don’t get too complex and don’t keyword stuff. Use the alt description well too. Get as much pertinent and relevant info you can so that even those people with disabilities can take part in them. This helps with Google big time and you win out in the short and long term.
Quality of your pics is second here. Your pics can’t be some generic looking stuff with no interest value. If you’re not good at taking pics, hire a photographer. Get the best quality that you can because people will engage with it more on social media. A beautiful pic, with action and humor in it can write its own viral ticket all over the web again and again. One pic from your site being shared means all the pics have a chance to get picked up and shared.
Image size is also important. Don’t let them slow your site down, especially for the mobile market. People will get frustrated and/or bored and pass you by. Google has tools for you to test the loading speed of your site and it is wise to use them.
Using an image sitemap and semantic markup is essential as well. Schema is good for this and shouldn’t be ignored nor underestimated.
Overall, look at image optimization as carefully as you would text. The surfer needs to know that there are images on the site and what they pertain to. Also, update your images and have a gallery with more descriptions for each image. You might as well cover as much ground as you can and not look spam my to the search engines.
Finally, use good, common sense. Don’t overwhelm the surfer, just give them a taste or two of what you have and make sure the layout and content are accommodating. Make them ask for more. In other words, put on a good show with your image optimization SEO.