Image searching is now an effective tool to answer our queries and in 2016, the second most popular type of search were those conducted through Google images! As a result, an SEO Dubai specialist should now be focussed on the optimization of webpage text and images.
The first page of Google is the Holy Grail for business owners, and simply being there can have a significant impact on your bottom line. The first page of Google attracts 71% of clicks, which has been reported as high as 92% in recent years; whereas the second page of SERPs accumulated a paltry 6% of click share. This substantial percentage drop off illustrates the importance of effective SEO.
There are now more websites than ever fighting for their spot on the first page and the intense competition means you should give yourself every chance to rank as highly as possible. This is where image optimization comes in. In this article, we’ll discuss how to use the optimization of images as an effective ranking tool.
Appealing to Window Shoppers
Window-shopping has taken on a new meaning with the emergence of e-commerce as a powerful driver of consumer goods and services. Interested shoppers now have the ability to browse a vast treasure trove of products using a variety of means. If an item isn’t available on a shopper’s favourite e-commerce website, they can easily hop over to Google images and look for the item there.
If you’re an owner of an e-commerce website, your images present you with an opportunity to attract customers. High-quality images that are shown with the best and most informative angles, good lighting and with as much context as possible will attract more customers than images that haven’t been optimized. The level of competition coupled with today’s savvy, well-informed customers means your images really need to look the best.
Gathering and Delivering Data
Infographics are a modern solution to data gathering and deliverance and benefit both the data provider and the researcher. Infographics cut down research time by removing the need to read extensive pages of text from various sources across the Internet, and increase user engagement as they consolidate massive amounts of information in an eye-catching an appealing way.
Researching Local Businesses
Think of this as a try-before-you-buy type scenario. Nowadays, customers who have an idea of what they want but aren’t 100% sure will conduct research of their local area for a business that appeals to them. This can be anything from B2B to B2C and a shrewd business owner will have SEO in mind for these likely encounters – particularly with regards to their images.
Typing: ‘best bars in Dubai’ into Google images will show you a collection of extremely high-quality images that will lead you to their respective websites. Businesses do this to sell the experience, leaving nothing to the customer’s imagination regarding the overall feeling and ambience of their location. SEO in Dubai is particularly important when you consider that most industries are already saturated with competitive world-class establishments.
The Four Steps of Image Optimization
1. File Size & Type
As we discovered in, ‘Examining the Negative Impact of Slow Loading Time’, slow page loading speed can be fatal to the growth of your business, as the average customer will typically leave a website if the loading time exceeds three seconds.
Make sure your image file sizes aren’t unnecessarily large and choose a file type that compresses well – this can dramatically impact loading speed by increasing or decreasing web server pressure depending on your level of attentiveness.
2. Consistent Colouring
The colour of your images should be a consistent and true representation of your brand’s theme. What this means is, if your brand caters to an audience who prefers neutral tones and minimalist design, don’t suddenly upset your design flow with an unannounced palette overhaul. A good example is Apple’s decade-long commitment to sleek imaging.
3. Unique Content
Studies have shown that attractive images boost engagement. Using images alongside your written content is definitely encouraged to help you stand out in a highly competitive environment. It may not be in everyone’s budget, but in an ideal world, unique images are preferred to stock photos. You run the risk of duplicating another website’s content and demonstrating a lack of creativity by using the latter approach.
Your image metadata should follow the same SEO rules as your written text; whereby, clear and concise labels are used for optimal search engine indexing:
- Select an accurate file name.
- Use image alt(ernative) text if a title isn’t necessary.
- If appropriate, add a caption.
- Use < srcset > if possible.
- Add structured data to your images.
Do the Most with What You Have…
Optimizing your images is just another design commitment under the extensive SEO umbrella, and one that should definitely be leveraged if you’re serious about bringing more viewers and potential customers to your website. If utilizing images is already part of your content strategy, go the extra step and optimize to reap the rewards.