Hope you’re already aware of Image Optimization. Designers out there may immediately think about the gif format and image compression, but this is clearly not anything related to reducing image size.

SEO and images are a bit old school I agree. Gone are the days when you had to insert keywords into your ALT tags and get a better rank than your competitor.
In fact, Google has changed it’s algorithm to filter out these “weeds” who’d do anything and everything from stuffing keywords to title spamming to get a better rank.

Though I agree that Search Engine Optimizing your images won’t give you any edge to directly push you over the top of the SERPs, I stick to the idea that they are not completely negligible.

Why do you still need Image Optimization then ?

- Accessibility
- Better end user experience
- Valid code
- Helps the overall impression on your site

Accessibility is one crucial factor many of us ignore while designing websites. And may be..it’s completely fair from our perspective. But coming back to design basics, if you are not taking care of it, you are not doing things right. It’s like leaving the html tags open, and you may still argue that your text is showing up on the browser, so why should you close it? You know that a good code must have the html tags closed.

Better user experience - Imagine you block all the images on the browser because you want to save some bandwidth and cut down your internet bill, and you visit cnn.com only to see that you can’t see the images in there. Instead everything appear all white. You won’t be able to even make out what the content or story is all about. Had the images carried an ALT tag, users could easily make out what the image is all about, even if didn’t load on the browser.

Valid code - As the first point said, valid code is essential for SE optimized pages. you have to follow a W3C compliant structure, in order to get the trust form search engines. Now for that to happen, there is no way you leave image optimization unattended.

Helps the overall look and impression of your site - You like flowers and colors, and everyone else does too. You like websites that has images to decorate it while a few others prefer to remain plain and pale. If you want to look good - be good.

Now, if you are thinking that you don’t have the time to go edit all ALT tags on your pages and add Title tags in it, here’s a wordpress plugin that will help you do it in a click. It’s called SEO Friendly Images.

Here’s what it does.

- Adds ALT tags acording to your preference on all articles.
- you can select whether to add the post title OR the image name OR both as the ALT tags OR Title tag OR both.
- Ensures W3C valid code for the images.

To see it in action hover your mouse on the image above.

Download it here.

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  1. Hmm..
    I already tag my pictures. So I guess I don’t need the plugin. Anyway, thanks for the tip.

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  2. i too do use alt and title attributes with img tags.

    The plugin is also useful only when you have named the images appropriately…

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  3. great post

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  4. Excellent to know about this. Thanks.

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  5. I do not agree with your view about basic image optimization not getting traffic. I use very few images on binaryday. still I get a good number of users from google image search. Important point is none of the images are original and I do not do anything other than alt and title tags.

    look at the rise in the use of images in blogs and you will realize the importance of google image search.

    [Reply to this comment]

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