When it comes to doing SEO, many people think that all that matters are your backlinks, on-page content and the technical factors of your website. However, that’s not true and you actually need to do SEO on the images on your site. Alt tag images in SEO are the words that come up in the event that your image doesn’t load. There is also something called the image title tag and these are the words that come up when you hover your mouse over the image. Now, you may be wondering what is the importance of these tags and why they are necessary.
The alt tag for your images is extremely important, because web crawlers don’t actually “see” the images. While humans can easily see and identify what the contents of images are, Google cannot. As a result, the alt tag was created so that you can add in a description of the image so that the web crawlers can understand what the image is about and factor it in the ranking process. Machine learning has improved drastically, however, it is a long time before crawlers are able to identify what images contain without these alt tags.
Now, when you create alt tags for your images, you may be tempted to write a very descriptive text. However, when it comes to SEO, it is best to make it brief and use keyword rich words. For example, if the page that the image is on is targeting golden retriever puppies, then a good alt tag for the image would be “golden retriever puppy playing”. A not so great alt tag would be “puppy” since it is not descriptive enough and does not contain your main keywords. On the other hand, you should not keyword stuff your alt tags and an example of a bad alt tag would be, “dog, puppy, terrier, golden, retriever, dogs, puppies.”
You may be wondering, exactly how and where do you add the alt tag text onto your images. If you’re using WordPress, this can be done when you upload the photo. There is usually a couple of text boxes where you can input the title, caption, alt text and description. The alt text refers to the alt tag and the title is the image title tag.
It is important that you choose the correct file format when you upload photos onto your website. There are basically three different formats that you can use and these include png, jpeg and gif. Jpeg photos are lower quality and png photos are high quality but they typically have a large file size. The gif photos are for small looping animations. When you upload an image onto your site, it is essential that you compress the file so that it is under 100KB while retaining a good quality. This will ensure that your page loads quickly which is good for the user and your rankings.
In closing, we have just looked at alt tag images in SEO. Be sure to always add optimized alt and title tags to your images and this will go a long way in helping you to get better rankings in the SERPs.