In my mindset, every marketing effort taken should be made with the ROI in mind – “Return On Investment”…
Time and money are two things that disappear quickly, so I want to make sure every second and every penny is used wisely. And to do that, I utilize Organic SEO – “Search Engine Optimization”. I get leads, and book photo shoots, with customers that are HOURS away, even across state lines – and I’ve done it all with SEO. I taught myself SEO tactics, and implemented them myself. I jokingly call this flow of inquiries my “passive (income-ing) leads” because with just a little bit of maintenance, you can nearly set it and forget it.
SEO can go into a bazillion deep topics, many of which we’ll get into another day… but for today, the focus is on one technique – how to optimize your images… Continue reading to learn 5 Tips To Make Your Photos Web Friendly!
1. Uniquely Your Photos
You know how google doesn’t like repeated content anymore? Robots can now match pixels, and google (and likely other search engines) doesn’t like seeing one website use the same photo as another website. When the search engines see something they do not like, it can hurt your ranking in the SERPs – “Search Engine Return Pages”.
It’s becoming more and more important for everything you use to be uniquely yours. That means you either take the photos yourself, or hire a professional, a friend, or a team member to take custom photos for your website and other digital marketing needs.
2. File Naming Conventions
Your photo and image file names should be descriptive of what is pictured. Search Engine Robots cannot read images – they can only read text. The robots use the file name to learn more about the image and how to categorize it for search results. When writing content for marketing purposes, “keywords” are a necessity – image filenames are equally as important.
Google Image search your company name, or your name, to see the impact of proper file naming (or lack thereof)… when I google image search my name and/or company name, tons of my photos pop up. Yours should do the same. A common file name I might use is “Kelly-Heck-Photography-Maryland.jpg“.
3. Alt Tags & Title Tags
Where your filenames may come short, “Alt Tags” and “Title Tags” can fill in the blanks.
Alt Tags stands for “alternative”. This tag is for textual data about your image to help robots further understand your image’s purpose. Alt Tags are only visible in the code-behind, and are namely for robots. Title Tags are the little blurbs that pop up when you hover over an image or hyperlink with your cursor – these are secondary but still helpful. Both can include further details about you, your company, your geographic location, your target audience, the type of service or product you offer, and more.
4. Optimized Image Files
The goal in image optimization for web is to reduce your final file size as much as possible without harming the integrity of the quality of the image. A smaller file size will upload and download faster, giving your website faster load times, helping keep visitors engaged instead of enraged!
There are techniques you can implement that may not impact much now, but could benefit you in the future. As of now, there’s not much proof that image metadata is being used by the search engines, but I use it anyway.
An image can hold meta data for all kinds of details… including but not limited to a title, author, date taken, copyright, caption, image dimensions, image size, image resolution, camera details, lens details, and more. Who’s to say one day the robots will not pull info from the title, author, and caption metadata? SEO guidelines and algorithms are always changing – having your info affixed to every image uploaded to the web can only help you.