Optimization of images is also a part of onpage search engine optimization. It is not just only a part of search engine optimization (SEO), but also a very important aspect on blogging. You may think what I should do with images; I don’t know how to edit images. Don’t worry I am not getting you down. I will show you how to optimize your images without working on softwares like Adobe Photoshop. But first we should know why it is so important to optimize your images.
Images considered as an essential part of a blog/website. Sometimes you may use them just to decorate your blog. But these images play a significant role on your blog. Just think you are going to post an article with 10-15 high quality images. After posting just try to load your post, how long will it take to load? If I am correct it takes longer time than a normal post with fewer images. Have you ever think why this is happening? Sometimes you may, sometimes you may not. This is because every image will generate separate HTTP request for loading. It takes time.
I think it is easy to put all those image optimization tips under point form. So check the list below. I have described all the points briefly;
1. Select images related to your content
This is the first and most important point in image optimization. The images you selected should appropriate and relevant to the content of your blog. As an example if you are writing an article on Samsung Galaxy S2 mobile phone, you must select an image of that particular mobile phone instead of any other mobile phone like Nokia Lumia 800. This is a simple example to stress you the importance of image selection.
2. Name your image appropriately
Most of the webmasters are doing this mistake. They are finding images for their blog through Google and just publish them on their blog without even seen the name of the image. Imaging you are going to write a review on “HP pavilion lap top”. You searched for an image of that particular laptop. Unfortunately the file name of that image is “hp-tech-house”. Then you publish without changing it. Once somebody searched for the “HP Pavilion Laptop”, your image will not popped up since you have a different file name on it. So you need to change the name of your image appropriately.
3. Use small images
The quality of an image is very important, but it should be balanced with the size of the image (The size means the number of megabits it has). Here I am not taking about the photo blogs. Because those photo blogs require high quality images. Here we are discussing about the general business blogs. So the using small images make it easy to load the web page. Faster websites become more popular among the readers. That’s why we need to use smaller images as much as possible.
4. Use CSS sprites to combine template images
CSS sprites is a technique that allows you to combine all the template images into a one image. Once you do this it will load just one image without loading all the images. I know this it bit complex. Imaging that you have a template which consists of 10 images. Now you need 10 HTTP requests to load all these images. But now you are going to combine all those images in to a one image using CSS sprites. Once you did it there will only be a one image instead of 10 images. Then you only need one HTTP request to load all the images. Is this clear? By reducing HTTP requests you can speed up your blog. As I earlier said, fast blogs are becoming more popular.
5. Add “alt” tags to all your images
The next most important point is “alt” tag on each image. Most people forget it to add. This tag is very important in search engine optimization. You must add “alt” tag to each of the image by describing the content of your image. Why you should do this; because Google or any other robots will not read the content inside the images. So your image will become a waste if you not described it clearly.
6. Add precise height and width tags
This is another big mistake done by most of the bloggers. They just post images without adding height and width tags. Why these are important; because some browsers requires height and width tags to load them correctly. Otherwise your images become disfigured on those browsers.
7. Use images only if appropriate
Yes, this is a good trick to reduce the loading time of a blog/website. Use images only if they are required. The pages without images load faster than the pages with lot of images.
8. Keep image text ratio
Text is the most important content for Search engines. Therefor you must add more text than the images. Always keep a good ratio between text and images. This will help you to get a good rank from search engines.
Well those tips are more than enough for you to optimize your images for search engines. It in turn increases your position on SERP (Search Engine Result Page) and therefor you will receive significant amount of traffic from search engines too.