Find out how to optimize images for your blog posts to improve your visibility in search, user experience and page speed.
This is a step-by-step guide that will teach you everything from choosing the right image format and size, to saving them in the correct way!
Table of contents
- What is image optimization?
- Why do you need to optimize images on your blog?
- How do you optimize an image?
- What are the best-sized images to use on your blog?
- How to optimize your images for SEO?
- 1. Use descriptive filenames
- 2. Complete the image alt text
- 3. Use a caption for your images
- 4. Have a featured image
What is image optimization?
Image optimization is a process that involves reducing the size of an image as much as possible without compromising its quality. This can be done by compressing images, adjusting their resolution, and ensuring that they remain sharp and clear while still being small enough to load quickly on web pages.
Why do you need to optimize images on your blog?
It’s important to optimize images because large or unoptimized images can slow down the loading time of webpages, which can negatively affect user experience.
This low loading speed will harm your SEO.
How do you optimize an image?
To properly optimize an image, it is best to use a specialized tool like tinypng (or a image optimizer plugin).
Tinypng is a free online service that allows you to easily compress JPEGs and PNGs without losing any quality.
It uses sophisticated algorithms to identify unnecessary data in order to reduce file sizes while preserving image quality.
All you have to do is drag and drop your PNG or JPEG onto the webpage and it will compress the file sized.
BONUS TIP: Check that other images on your blogs are optimized for speed by using Page Speed Insights.
What are the best-sized images to use on your blog?
If you’re posting graphics or icons then these should generally be kept between 10-30kb while photos should stay below 500kb so they don’t slow down your page load speed too much.
Additionally, if you’re looking for more granular control over image optimization you may want to consider using a plugin such as ShortPixel or WP Smush for WordPress sites which will allow you to adjust compression levels for individual photos on your blog or website.
How to optimize your images for SEO?
Now you know how to optimize images for your blog, here’s how to ensure that your images are also search engine optimised.
By optimizing your images for SEO, it will help your image to be returned when a user enters their search term.
1. Use descriptive filenames
Google uses the information in the title and meta tags to help rank images so the words you use in your image filename is REALLY important for ranking and visibility.
By adding more context around images, results can become much more useful, which can lead to higher quality traffic to your site. You can aid in the discovery process by making sure that your images and your site are optimized for Google Images.Google Search Console
Filenames should be descriptive and include your keywords.
An example of a good filename would be importance-of-file-names-for-blogs.jpg and not IMG2984617.jpg.
2. Complete the image alt text
Alternative text is essentially descriptive text for visually impaired people and will describe in detail what is going on in an image.
However, it is also useful for search engine bots as well.
Google Image search has become incredibly popular for searchers, and having alt text descriptions for your image will help.
When you are uploading, WordPress displays a section in the sidebar menu for “Alternative Text.”
If you use Squarespace, then you add alt text by adding a caption to your image and then hiding the caption.
3. Use a caption for your images
A caption can just add some context around your image and more explanation about why you have put it there.
If you want to get more unique images then try Shutterstock or Depositphotos.
If you are using Wikipedia Creative Commons, then there will be details of how to credit the photographer.
4. Have a featured image
In WordPress and Squarespace, you can set a featured image. These images are your blog post’s thumbnail image and don’t appear inside your blog post. This is the first image people see when they share your blog, so you need to have a clickable, eye-catching image.
This image will appear on your blog’s front page also.
In Wix, it is called a cover image.
This also needs to be a nice, high-quality image that is enticing.
By optimizing your images and other aspects of your blog, you can help to improve your SEO, drive more traffic to your site, and get better results from Google search.
If you want to optimize your images for blog, be sure to follow these tips: use high-quality, relevant images that are optimized for size; compress your images using tools like Tinypng or JPEGmini; include your keywords in the file name and alt text; add a caption and set your featured image.
With these strategies in place, you can help improve the performance of your blog and drive more traffic to your site.