There is a popular proverb, “The first impression is the best impression”. When it comes to content marketing, images can create a good first impression. They play a crucial role in making the content more attractive and persuading the audience to spend some time with that content. Experienced affordable digital marketing services utilize images effectively to bring increased traffic to the website.
According to the 2018 data from Jumpshot, about 20% of US web searches are based on Google images. This shows the importance of image optimization on a webpage. Do you know what image optimization is? Well, it is the process of creating and delivering high-quality images in an appropriate format, size and resolution to enhance user experience. In other words, it is the process of reducing the file size of the image without compromising its quality.
One of the important factors which make the audience stick to the page is its loading speed. Image optimization improves the loading speed. However, there are even more advantages to utilizing images in the content. These include:
- Provides contextual information
- Improves page optimization speed
- Enhances user experience
- Improves search engine ranking
- Enhances the accessibility of the site
According to studies in the field, about 78% of Americans look for product images on online stores and about 93% made purchases according to the image of the product uploaded on the website. This shows the importance of images for business websites, especially in their online stores. An experienced digital marketing outsourcing company can be the best partner when it comes to optimizing images and other web page components as part of your online marketing strategy. However, if you are planning to perform the optimization in-house, there are certain effective tips you can follow.
Tips for Optimizing Images
1) Resizing the Image
Resizing the image is an important process in image optimization. An image with high resolution and larger dimensions often slow down the loading speed of the web page. Always aim to upload an image with a balanced size and quality. Compressing images help you to achieve this. There are tools like TinyPNG, Kraken, ImageRecycle and so on which you can utilize effectively for compressing images.
2) Use the Right File Format
People are often confused between file size and image size, taking these to be the same. However, these are different from one another. The image size is the dimension of the image whereas file size is the space needed for storing it. Choosing the right file format is very important. There are certain file formats you can make use of such as WebP, PNG, SVG and JPEG. Each of these formats has its own specialities.
- JPEG: Suitable for large photos and illustrations. It would provide color and clarity even for a small file.
- PNG: Preserves background transparency in the image.
- WebP: Better than JPEG and PNG. It produces high quality images even for small sized files.
3) Appropriate File Name
The file is another important aspect. Appropriate file name helps to improve the ranking of images in image search results. Before uploading the image, give relevant and descriptive keywords to make it more effective. Add target keywords at the beginning and separate the rest with hyphens. Always remember that search engines do not recognize underscore. Thus, avoid using underscore. Another important factor is that the file name should make sense to both humans and search engines.
Always remember that the file name would give more contextual details about the image and is also visible on the site code. Thus, make use of short phrases which describe the image. It enables easy accessibility of the image. Always remember to give a unique file name with SEO elements to enhance SEO power.
4) Right Compression of Images
The right balance of image size and file size would make it easy to upload a good quality image on your website. In business websites, the clear images on the page would make a huge impact. If you compress an image too much, it might negatively impact the quality of the image. On the other hand, if you compress the image at a smaller rate the quality of the image would be too high. Thus, the right compression rate is very important for uploading the good quality image.
5) Mobile-friendly Image
Today, most people utilize mobile phones to surf the internet. Half of the internet traffic comes from mobile devices. Thus, the images along with the content should be mobile-friendly as well. The right file type and compression automatically make your image accessible for mobile users. Make sure that the image used along with the content does not slow down the loading of the webpage on mobiles.
6) Use ALT Tags
ALT text or alternative text is a written description of the image and also helps the readers understand the purpose of that image. It also helps Google to determine the relevance of that image in the search query. In other words, alt text helps the search engine to understand the image and its purpose. In the absence of alternative text, the search engine cannot index the content of your image. Other advantages of using good alt text along with image include:
- Allows screen readers to read the information about images out loud to users
- Helps to maintain high ranking even though the images are slow loading or fail to load
- Brand- relevant words help to boost visibility
7) Utilize Unique Images
There are a lot of images available in different pages which you would find apt for your content. There is nothing wrong in using stock images. However, those images won’t help you to increase the ranking of your website content. It is because many people may be using the same images you select for your content. Thus, it is always better to use unique images for your content which in turn helps you to increase the SEO ranking and visibility. Tools like Photoshop, Canva and others can help you create fresh and unique images that are apt for your content.
8) Be Aware of Copyright
There are a number of images flaunted around in the digital space and many may be suitable for your content. However, before using them in your content, check whether the particular image is copyrighted or not. Stock photo websites like Getty, Shutterstock, DepositFiles and so on have copyrights for their images. If you don’t have a license to use their images, they can file a lawsuit against you. They can even demand a hefty fine under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). If you violate copyright law, the DMCA would issue notice. If the owner of the image happens to see their image in your website, then he can file a lawsuit against you for using them in your content without any prior information or permission.
9) Include Images in the Sitemap
A sitemap is a list of the contents of a website that makes it easy to navigate to a particular webpage. It is an essential factor in a website. You can even add images into those sitemaps. It increases the chances of search engine crawling and indexing images. As a result, it increases the traffic to the site. It is better to add tools like Yoast SEO as it automatically adds images to the sitemap of your website.
Tools for Image Optimization
There are certain tools for image optimization that help ease the optimization process. Some of these tools are:
- EWWW Image Optimizer
- Smush Image Compression and Optimization
- JPEG Optimizer
- Image Recycle
- Compress Now
The proper use of images would help increase the ranking of your website. The above tips would prove useful while optimizing images on your website. At the same time, companies outsourcing digital marketing services handle this task with high professionalism and expertise. Consider hiring a reliable digital marketing service company for quality image optimization solutions and the best outcome.
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