Images on a site attract additional traffic. They affect page load speed and behavioral factors. If optimized well, they can improve your site’s search engine rankings.
Why is it so important to optimize images
A man often does not read or stop his attention on the text, he usually “scans” the pages. Often pays attention to graphic elements. Based on this behavior, search engines have a number of criteria by which they analyze images.
They come down to improving the quality of content in search results and user satisfaction. Therefore, in addition to the presence of images on the site, it is important that the images are fast-loading, attractive, informative and of high quality.
After the appearance of advanced snippets in the SERPs of Google, it became very easy to get to the first page with pictures. And there are often situations where a picture is shown along with the content of a competing site.
There is a chance to increase the visibility and recognition of the site with images. To get in such results, you need to perform a comprehensive optimization of images. It is important to help search engines properly analyze picture content.
What are the basic requirements for creating images
In general, the basic requirements for creating images come down to the following parameters: format, quality and size of images.
Google can index image types in BMP, GIF, JPEG, PNG and WebP formats, as well as SVG.
JPEG – use this format for photos;
PNG – for graphics, simply put, anything the designer drew;
SVG – for vector images.
New formats have also appeared, such as WebP and JPEG-XR. Their advantage is that they do weigh less, but unfortunately not all browsers support these formats yet. For example, JPEG-XR only supports IE, while WebP is supported by Chrome, Opera and Android.
When optimizing images for Google, you should find an optimal solution between the size and quality of the graphics, because, above all, the content is intended for the user. Make sure that the graphics are clear and visually appealing.
An image that does not correspond to its description or is positioned near unrelated text is also considered low-quality.
This image came up in the search results for “white dogs,” which does not correspond to the actual content due to the incorrect description and content of the text of the article. More on how to properly write a description of the image will be described further in this article.
Image size and weight
Image size affects page loading speed, which in turn affects page ranking. If you use a lot of images on a page, it can significantly slow down its loading. There are many tools and ways to compress photos without losing quality. Be careful when using them – check the original picture and the compressed one.
Images should be created in the size in which they will be presented on the site.
Browser will be easier to scan the content pages, if you write in CSS width and height of the image. For retina displays, add images in 2x size and adjust the display of different sizes of the same image for different screens. Otherwise users who open the image on a retina display will get a visual quality loss of all the images
To properly link images to your site store them on your domain or one of the subdomains. Otherwise users who use image search will not be able to get to your site: they will see the address of the resource where the image is stored, even if it is on the page of your site.