Images are worth 1,000 words and they are worth even more to a website. With the right optimization, you can get your images listed high on the Google Image Search. This can lead to plenty of traffic. Here are some of the ways you can properly optimize your WordPress images.
Metadata in Dashboard
When you upload an image to WordPress (within a post or page) you get the opportunity to fill in metadata. This includes four sections: Title, Caption, Alt Text and Description. Each of these is important to your image optimization.
Your image title will generate from however it’s saved on your computer. However, it can be changed and should be, if the title on your computer isn’t already in the right format. The image title should provide a keyword to describe the image.
You don’t have to use an image caption to properly optimize it. However, if you want to use it, you should create a caption that will catch the attention of readers. It should also include a keyword from your page or post.
The Alt Text shows up when an image doesn’t load properly or when you hover over it. It should include a keyword from your post or page and may match the title.
Using the description section of the metadata will help you land higher on the Google Image Search. You can describe the image and use longer keyword phrases within it, as long as it remains relevant.
Optimizing with Plugins
Along with the metadata, WordPress users should use a few plugins to optimize images. There are several choices, which will help to make images load faster without losing any quality. You want to make sure you choose one of the plugins to help optimize the speed of your images or you may slow your site down by using a large number of images.
Another type of plugin, which you must have if you want to keep your site loading fast, is one making images formatted for mobile devices. Google will penalize you if your images don’t show up correctly on mobile devices. Make sure you use the right plugin for this task, as well.
Image Relevance Matters
No matter what you do to optimize your images, they still need to make sense with the content. If you post a picture of balloons with a post about animals, it won’t really fit. You cannot just take that image and use keywords from your post to optimize it for Google.
Make sure the images you choose are relevant for your content. Then, use the metadata to optimize the image by describing it with keywords from your post or page, while keeping everything relevant. It’s actually better to naturally describe images than to worry about keywords compared to over optimizing or using non-relevant images.
If you optimize relevant images correctly, you can gain traffic from the Google Image Search. You will also gain better overall SEO and make it easier for your readers to digest your content.