11 Ways to Optimize Images for SEO

Do you want to improve your site’s search engine ranking? If your images aren’t optimized properly, you may miss out on traffic, user engagements, and sales.

Google considers more than 200 elements when ranking websites for a particular search term. However, an optimized picture won’t necessarily boost your site’s chances of appearing first in search results; it can improve your page’s visibility among competitors who aren’t optimizing their pictures.

The good thing is that image optimization isn’t particularly difficult. A few tweaks to your current image processing could improve your site’s performance and lead generation results, resulting in more sales.

Why is Image Optimization Important?

Image Optimization

Optimizing images for search results helps websites gain more visitors from Google search. There are many reasons why optimizing images is essential, but here are some of the most common ones:

➢ Improve User Experience

Images that are well-optimized improve user experience (UX) by making your site easier for visitors. For instance, large images may take up the whole screen or even obscure other elements on the page, so they need to be optimized.

➢ Faster Website Speed

Speed matters when it comes to SEOLarge images or incorrect formatting can slow down your site and kill your ranking.

➢ Make Your Website More Accessible

Optimization techniques, including alt tags to images, can help people using assistive technology (like screens) better understand your content. And web accessibili­ty isn’t just suitable for people – it helps improve your Search Engine Optimization, too!

Related: Learn How To Optimize Your Content For SEO With This Complete Guide

Here are 11 ways to improve your image quality so they’re optimized for Search Engine Optimization and help your website get better results in Google searches.

11 Ways to Optimize Images for SEO

11 Ways To Optimize Images For SEO

1. Alt Tags

We should focus on optimizing our image files by adding appropriate ALT tags (alternative text). ALT tags are HTML attributes added to the img tag, which is used for displaying pictures on a webpage.

You must use both image titles and ALT tags (alternative text) to get better results from Google Images Search. The difference between these two elements is quite significant from an SEO perspective.

The most up-to-the-minute and modern search engines can identify images and visual material. They still depend on website owners to explain them, whether in different terms or not.

Using an alternative text (or ALT tag) for images helps them rank better because Google looks at it as more relevant. The overall Google algorithm also uses alt tags.

If Google understands the picture, your chance of ranking higher goes up.

Don’t bother putting any images into your content if there isn’t any alternative text for them.

Here are the main differences in image titles, captions, and alt text:

➢ Main Differences

Difference Between Alt Text and Title:

Image alt texts or tags are used for SEO purposes, and in Google, titles are just a means by which WordPress allows images to be categorized and searched.

Difference Between Alt Text and Captions:

The alt text describes an image for SEO purposes, whereas captions describe the image for the reader.

2. Image Sizing and Compression

There are still many questions surrounding the proper use of size and compression when optimizing images for websites. Using an online image optimizer tool is essential for SEO-friendly images.

You don’t need to worry about choosing an image optimization tool; pick one and start using it.

Uploading images that aren’t adequately optimized can cause significant problems. Not only do they take longer to load, but they also make your website slower. Google continues to punish websites for slow loading speeds. That means it’s essential that you optimize your images before uploading them.

There are many aspects to optimizing images for SEO. You need to use many of them simultaneously to get the best results. If you don’t have an optimized picture file format for web usage, Google will bounce your page lower in search results even if its content is good.

Poor-quality web pages often cause slow-loading websites. Poorly designed web pages may include poorly optimized images, which can cause slow page loads. To improve the performance of your website, optimize your images using an online image optimizer.

3. Relevant and High-Quality Images

Sometimes you have a fantastic image prepared for your website, but it doesn’t fit into the context of the article. That isn’t good! You can try to make it work, but it won’t be easy. In such cases, you might consider replacing the picture with something else.

Adding irrelevant images to your website will harm you in both Google search engine optimization (SEO) and Google Images. Not only that but adding irrelevant images will lower your page ranking in Google.

Make sure you upload high-quality images. If you’re using a low-resolution image, resizing it may harm your site rather than improve its appearance.

Image quality plays an essential role in Google searches.

4. Use the Correct File Types

You may already be familiar with several file formats for videos and images. But choosing the correct format for SEO-friendly images can be essential.


JPEG, PNG, GIF, and SVG are the most common image file formats. Focusing on JPEGs and PNG files, they offer high-quality images, even when compressed and scaled down.


Usually, the JPG/JPEG format is best for high-quality photos and web graphics that don’t need a transparent back­ground.

➢ PNG:

PNG files are best for images that need to have a transparent background, such as icons and logos. They can also be edited significantly after being created using good image editing software.

5. Don’t Overuse Stock Images

Using too many stock photos isn’t suitable for SEO because many websites use the same stock photos you use.

Google begins to understand that the images found on your website are similar to those found on thousands of other websites. You can only improve them in so many different ways.

Try to balance originality and stock photos. You can adjust the styling and colors of an image. You can also brand your image, so it stands out from others.

6. Copyright Issues

Make sure you have permission to include an original photo. You may find one online or purchase one from a reputable source. Do not copy photos without proper permission. Doing so could harm you in both legal and SEO ways.

Don’t worry so much about this; there are plenty of great websites where you can find high-quality, royalty-free images.

7. Image Captions

Alt text isn’t as crucial as captioning images for SEO purposes. However, alt text is still helpful for image optimization. According to recent research, images attract readers’ attention by up to 16%.

Captioning images help tell the story behind them. It can also be used to explain parts of an overall story.

If readers get involved, they’ll stay around and spread your content via social networks.

8. Add an Image Sitemap

If you have a website, you should be familiar with sitemaps. A sitemap helps Google’s crawler index your pages more efficiently.

If you want Google to index and understand all the content on your site, including its image content, then you need to add an image sitemap.

Sitemaps are an additional tool for encouraging the usage of SEO-friendly pictures on the website.

9. Organize Images Properly

You don’t like it when visiting a website or reading articles with unorganized images. It is challenging for readers to stick with the content and finish reading it if they do not understand the material.

Make sure that your images are correctly organized so that they help tell your story. Give readers and search engine spiders a straightforward way to understand the content.

A picture says a thousand words. If they’re correctly arranged, pictures can support the text’s topic.

10. Image Attachment Pages

We’ve all experienced it and keep seeing it; clicking on an image takes us to the attachment pages for that image. There’s no reason for it.

If there is little to no text on the attachment page for an image, then it is considered very thin by Google’s criteria. This can cause you to be ranked lower than you would otherwise be.

Suppose you think about disabling attachment pages for pictures. In that case, if someone clicks on an image, it doesn’t do anything, appears more significant within the same web browser window, or links to another relevant piece of information on your site.

You can use the Yoast SEO plugin to remove images from page attachments automatically.

11. Host Images

There are several reasons why hosting your images on third-parties sites isn’t ideal. One reason is that too many images may overwhelm visitors. Another reason is that some third-parties sites don’t allow for easy sharing.

If they cannot display your image at any point during the loading time, your site looks terrible. Your overall SEO suffers because of this.

Instead, look for a reliable, high-quality webhost that you can rely on to store all your images. A good webhost is an essential part of optimizing images for search engine optimization (SEO) reasons.

And this doesn’t say anything about being at the mercy when using a third-party hosting service. If the other provider uses a slower server or hosts too many websites, it could slow down your site and hurt its ranking in search results.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does image optimization mean?

Optimizing an image for web use means ensuring that Google and users can easily see and read the image on a website. When optimizing an image, examples of things to consider include compressing the file size, so it loads faster and adding alt text to help Google better interpret the image.

What is the best image format for SEO?

There isn’t any one particular image format that is best for SEO. You generally prefer smaller images while keeping as much information as possible. I recommend using PNG if it doesn’t slow your site down too severely.

How does image SEO work?

Image SEO works by helping Google better understand your photos and make them more valuable to your viewers. Adding alt text helps Google understand your photo’s content and makes it easier for screen readers to navigate your website.

The Bottom Line

Images play an essential role in SEO. They’re used for both visual appeal and content presentation purposes. Sizes, compressions, alt tags, and captions are some of the ways they’re used.

Follow these above 11 ways when optimizing your photos for SEO. They will help you create and present the best SEO-friendly photos possible.

Get Started Today With SEO Bea

If you want to hire someone to manage your SEO or digital media campaign, contact us to see whether we can help. We’ll also tell tou about our various services to know what we can offer and how we might be best suited to meet your needs.

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