How to Optimise Images for SEO

November 22, 2023

Are your website's pictures not doing well in search results? This could be a problem since about 21% of searches are just from looking at pictures on Google. 

In this article, we're going to show you some simple ways to make your images better for SEO. Optimising your images is a smart move to help your website rank higher. We'll guide you with easy steps to get it right for SEO. So, let's go!

Key Takeaways

  • Image optimisation is important for SEO because it makes your website faster and more user-friendly.
  • Choose the right image format, compress images for faster loading times, and use relevant alt text and captions to optimise your images for SEO.
  • Utilise responsive design techniques and structured data to improve the visibility of your images in search results.
  • Leverage backlink opportunities by creating high-quality and unique images that others will want to link to.

Why Image Optimisation is Important for SEO

Image optimisation is key for SEO. It makes your site fast and user-friendly. Search engines love sites that load quickly. Images can slow down your site if they are too large.

Alt text on images helps search engines understand the content. When we optimise images, we use alt text to tell search engines what the image is about. This boosts our SEO score.

Optimised images can also show up in image searches. This means more people might visit your site based on an image search result.

Keywords in file names and descriptions of images help too! They make it easier for search engines to find us.

So, optimising your images should be a key part of your SEO plan.

Tips for Optimising Images for SEO

Choose the right format, compress images for faster load time, use relevant alt text and captions, use responsive images, and utilise structured data.

Choose the right format

Choosing the right format for your images is important when it comes to optimising them for SEO. By using the correct file type, you can ensure that your images load quickly and don't slow down your website.

For example, JPEG is the best format for photographs, while PNG works well for graphics with transparency. It's also a good idea to consider WebP, which is a newer image format that offers high-quality compression.

By selecting the right format for each image on your website, you can improve site speed and provide a better user experience.

Compress images for faster load time

To make your website load faster and provide a better user experience, it is important to compress your images. Compressed images have smaller file sizes, which means they take less time to load.

This is especially crucial for mobile users, who may have slower internet connections. By reducing the size of your images without compromising their quality, you can ensure that your website loads quickly and keeps visitors engaged.

To achieve this, use tools or plugins that can compress your images automatically while maintaining their visual appeal.

Use relevant alt text and captions

When optimising your images for SEO, using relevant alt text and captions is essential. Alt text is a description that you provide for an image, which helps search engines understand what the image is about.

When writing alt text, make sure to use keywords that accurately describe the image's content. Captions, on the other hand, can provide additional context to your images and further optimise them for SEO.

By including descriptive captions that contain relevant keywords, you can improve the visibility of your images in search results. Don't forget to keep both alt text and captions concise and informative to enhance user accessibility and boost your website's overall SEO performance.

Use responsive images

To optimise your images for SEO, it's important to use responsive images. Responsive images automatically adjust their size and dimensions based on the device or screen they're being viewed on.

This ensures that your images look good and load quickly on both desktop and mobile devices. By using responsive images, you improve the user experience and make it easier for search engines to crawl and index your website.

So when optimising your images for SEO, don't forget to use responsive design techniques.

Utilise structured data

Structured data is essential for optimising your website's images for SEO. By using structured data markup, you can provide search engines with additional information about your images, which can improve their visibility in search results.

Structured data helps search engines understand the context and content of your images, making it easier for them to index and rank your pages.

To utilise structured data effectively, consider implementing schema markup on your image elements. Schema markup provides a standardised way to tag and categorise different types of content on your website.

For images, you can include relevant information such as the image file name, description, copyright details, and more.

By incorporating structured data into your image optimisation strategy, you are increasing the chances that search engines will recognise and display your images in relevant search queries.

Best Practises for Image SEO

Use original images with unique and descriptive file names and descriptions to ensure high-quality image optimisation. Ensure mobile friendliness, leverage backlink opportunities, include images in sitemaps, and consider copyright considerations when selecting the appropriate image file type.

Use original images

Using original images on your website is crucial for optimising them for SEO. When you use unique and authentic images, it helps improve your website's visibility in search engine results.

High-quality and relevant images also enhance the user experience, making visitors stay longer on your site. Additionally, using original images can prevent any copyright issues or penalties that may arise from using copyrighted material without permission.

So, make sure to create or source high-quality images that are specific to your business and align with your brand identity. This will help boost your website's SEO performance and attract more organic traffic from search engines like Google.

Write unique and descriptive file names and descriptions

To optimise your images for SEO, it's crucial to write unique and descriptive file names and descriptions. When you save an image on your website, give it a meaningful name that accurately describes what the image is about.

For example, instead of using generic names like "IMG001.jpg," use keywords related to the content of the image. This helps search engines understand what the image is showing and improves its chances of appearing in relevant search results.

Similarly, when adding alt text or captions to your images, be sure to provide detailed descriptions using relevant keywords. Alt text is essential as it provides information about the image to visually impaired users and search engine crawlers.

Descriptive captions also help engage readers and offer additional context for your visuals.

By following these practices, you can enhance both user experience and SEO performance by ensuring that search engines easily recognize and classify your images based on their relevance.

Ensure mobile-friendliness

To make sure your images are optimised for SEO, it's important to ensure that they are mobile-friendly. Many people use their smartphones and tablets to browse the internet, so your images need to look good and load quickly on these devices too.

To do this, consider using responsive design techniques, which automatically adjust the image size and layout based on the user's device. This will help improve the overall user experience and make it easier for search engines to crawl and index your site.

Don't forget that a great mobile experience can also lead to higher conversion rates and better rankings in search engine results pages!

Leverage backlink opportunities

To improve your image SEO, it's important to leverage backlink opportunities. Backlinks are links from other websites that point to your website. When reputable websites link to your images, it signals to search engines that your content is valuable and trustworthy.

This can help improve your search engine rankings and increase visibility for your images. One way to encourage backlinks is by creating unique and high-quality images that others will want to use or share on their own websites.

You can also reach out to relevant industry influencers or bloggers and ask them if they would be interested in featuring or linking to your images in their content. By proactively seeking backlink opportunities, you can enhance the visibility of your images and boost their SEO performance.

Include images in sitemaps

Including images in your sitemaps is an important step in optimising your website for SEO. By including images in your sitemap, search engines can easily discover and index them, improving their visibility in search results.

This means that when potential customers search for relevant keywords, your images will have a better chance of appearing. Including images in sitemaps also helps to provide important information about the images, such as their location on your website and any captions or alt text associated with them.

So make sure you include all of your website's images in the sitemap to maximise their SEO benefits.


In conclusion, optimising images for SEO is crucial for improving your website's visibility and attracting more organic traffic. By following the tips and best practises outlined in this blog post, such as choosing the right format, compressing images for faster load time, using relevant alt text and captions, leveraging structured data, and incorporating high-quality images into your SEO strategy, you can enhance the user experience and increase your chances of ranking higher in search engine results.

Don't overlook image optimisation; it's an essential part of an effective SEO strategy.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is SEO image optimisation?

SEO image optimisation means making your images search engine friendly through techniques like alt tags, unique images, high-quality image names, and captions for images.

How can I reduce the file size of my images?

You can reduce the image file size by using methods such as image compression. This makes your web page load faster and enhances search engine optimisation.

What are some best practises for naming my files?

Image file naming is important for SEO. Use relevant keywords for image optimisation in your file names and make them unique to rank higher in search results.

Why should I use alt text with my images?

Alt text optimisation helps search engines understand what an image is about, creating a better user experience and helping improve your website's SEO score.

What type of files should I choose when saving an optimised picture?

Different types offer different benefits. JPEG or PNG formats are commonly used due to their balance between quality and file size reduction.

How do responsive images improve my SEO?

Responsive images adjust to fit different screen sizes, ensuring a great user experience on all devices. This adaptability can boost site performance and user engagement, factors that positively impact SEO rankings.

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*FYI, parts of this blog post were drafted by artificial technlogy. But rest assured, it's been thoroughly researched, edited, reviewed and me & my team.
Author Fahad Zahid
Co-Founder @ Social Gravity

As a passionate Digital Marketer & YouTuber, Fahad Zahid, co-founder of Social Gravity, is known for helping home service & construction companies shine on the web with Paid Advertisement & SEO.

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