Dukeo » SEO » Image Optimization: On Page SEO Basics

Image Optimization: On Page SEO Basics

Steven 5 responses SEO

This post is a follow-up of last week post about SEO: On Page SEO: Semantic structure. I invite you to read this previous post as well. If you would like to have a whole picture of my SEO guide, you can check the series from the very first post: Comprehensive introduction to SEO.


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The ALT Attribute

You should ALWAYS put some Alt attributes on your images. It must be a small description of the content of the image, or at least the Title of your article. This text is used for the visually disabled to know the content of a website and it is also displayed in the tooltip in Internet Explorer when your hover an image.

The TITLE Attribute

Do not mistake it for the Title Tag of your page. This attribute is used to define the links and the images. It is showed in the tooltip in FireFox and Chrome when you hover an image.

At the time when this report is written, it looks like it is ignored by Google and Yahoo but potentially used by Bing.

The File Name

If your website system does not automatically rename the files when you upload them, take good care of your filenames.

Name them with keywords linked with the image content, separate the keywords with dashes “-“ and don’t let any space between the words.

Image Caption

When possible, include a short caption above or under the image. Search Engines are analyzing the semantic context of the image to determine its content. This caption will help them understand the content of the image.

Avoid using JavaScript pop-ups to display your images, they wouldn’t be read by Search Engines and thus wouldn’t improve your WordPress SEO.

Tip: There is no form to get images indexed in Google Images, there is no Sitemap system for images, you have to wait for Google to index them automatically. But you can log into Google Webmaster Tools and manually activate the Image Search Function for a given site.

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  1. If your website system does not automatically rename the files when you upload them, take good care of your filenames.

  2. Earl Grey

    There is nothing wrong with creating a sitemap for images or leaving your directory indexes open.

    For offsite seo just get links to your images and you are good to go.

    1. I generally do not let my directory indexes opened because it makes it too easy for people to just download all your pictures at once. I guess it depends on the nature of the picture and you might want to allow it for some projects.

      The keyword-rich filename part is generally overlooked by webmasters and that’s a shame since it’s the same as having keyword-rich urls for your pages.

      Images sitemaps sounds like a good plan, I need to find a way to automate that.

    2. Earl Grey

      But sitemaps will allow people to just rip all your images and you are worried or need to protect them you can base64 them which is good to stop many people.

    3. All images are not sensible so I might take a look into that for some projects. ty for the heads up about base64.