Everyone using Google images to find relevant images for blog post and websites.  But very few webmasters are using Google images as one of traffic source for their blog and website.  Google images are most popular image search engine and it can send a good amount of traffic on your website as well.

There are several examples where websites are getting 20% to 50% traffic from google images.  One such example is found at moz.com, where a user asked question “How Popular is Google Image Search?”, this question received several replies, one user replies that

One of our clients in the travel vertical generates almost 20% of their traffic from Google Images. They post a lot of images on the site each tagged/optimized properly. Image search in our opinion should be a part of an overall SEO strategy for clients.”  

Let’s take another example where Expo-max.com published a report for Google Image Search Analytics with expo-MAX, according to this report they are getting  48.97% visits from google images. These are incredible numbers.

While searching for google images statics, I found some very interesting facts about google images,

Which I am sharing with you.

One Quora user asked question “What is the ratio of Google Image traffic to Google Web Search traffic?”

In reply to this question, I get some facts about google images

10.1% of all Google traffic is for images.google.com. Since 55% is for google.com, and 24.7% is for mail.google.com, that shows you how big of a traffic chunk images are receiving.

Daily pageviews of Google Images is greater than 1 billion! That tidbit comes from Benjamin Ling, Director of Search Products at Google. And get this. That number is seven years old! If we were to plot the growth of that number corresponding to the relative growth of Google over time, we could safely assume it’s way higher today.

Google Images has indexed over 10 billion images. In 2010! Again, over the past seven years, the number of indexed images has probably mushroomed.

These numbers are just for google images, but images are also shown in SERP when you do an ordinary search as well.

Here I want to point out that images of your blog or website can also bring tons of organic traffic from google images as well as a simple google search.

I am very much sure that most of you didn’t consider google images as a potential traffic source.

But, after reading this post you will give equal importance to content and images.

Image Optimization

To get the first position for your image in google images search, first, you need to optimize your image so that Google’s crawler can find your image for a relevant search query on Google images.

If you are familiar with search engine optimization then you probably got my point.

Image Optimization is very similar to web page optimization. Google provided some guideline for image optimization for google images like it has for simple google search.

Let’s first discuss Google Images search result page.

As you can see in the image given above, images are shown in rows (unlike text search result page where websites are shown vertically)  and the first image at the left side is considered as Rank #1.

4 Images are shown in each row of Google images search result page.

Infinite scroll is enabled for search results, that means images of next search result page will automatically load when you scroll down.

The images which are relevant to the search query and of good quality, have more probability to attract users.

So, from here we learned two things

First, tell google that your image is related to which topic or keyword.

Second, your image should be excellent quality.

Google Images Optimization Guidelines

Google says,

“With image search, just as with web search, Google’s goal is to provide the best and most relevant search results to our users.”

Google has given 5 best practices (listed below) that can be used to increase the visibility of your image in google images search.

These are 5 guideline, you should use for every image.

  1. Filename of image
  2. Alt attribute
  3. Anchor text
  4. Content of web page
  5. Meta data of image file

 

1) Filename of Image

Tell as much as you can about your image to google.   

The filename of the image is one the most important deciding factor image ranking.

The filename can give Google clues about the subject matter of the image.

Try to make your filename a good description of the subject matter of the image.

The filename will help Google if it doesn’t find suitable text on the web page where the image is found.

The default filename is given to every image when you take an image from camera or mobile phone.  Default filename looks like IMG0001.JPG or DC_00001.JPG.

You should change the filename of the image according to the subject matter, for example, an image with filename seo-optimization.jpg  provide a lot more information than IMG00001.JPG.

Descriptive filenames can also be useful to users.  So, always use descriptive filename for every image which is used for website or blog post.

Now,  if you are using two or more image for the same subject then always use numbering system like seo-optimization.jpg   seo-optimization1.jpg , seo-optimization2.jpg  and so on.

File size

Image file size should be as small as possible,  Tools like Compressor.io or Optimizilla.com will help you minimize the storage size while retaining image quality. (Image)

2)  ALT Attribute

Peoples which SEO knowledge must be familiar with an ALT attribute, It is HTML attribute which is used with <img> tag. The alt attribute is used to describe the contents of an image file.

It provides Google with useful information about the subject matter of the image. Google uses this information to help determine the best image to return for a user’s query.

Many people for examples, users with visual impairments, or people using screen readers or who have low-bandwidth connections—may not be able to see images on web pages. Descriptive alt text provides these users with important information.

ATL Attribute Best Practice

Not so good:

<img src=”seo-optimization.jpg” alt=””/>

Better:

<img src=” seo-optimization.jpg ” alt=”seo”/>

Best:

<img src=” seo-optimization.jpg ” alt=”SEO optimization guidelines”>

To be avoided

<img src=” seo-optimization.jpg ” alt=”SEO SEO optimization guidelines best seo guilines seo guideline for webmasters”/>

Filling alt attributes with keywords (“keyword stuffing”) results in a negative user experience, and may cause your site to be perceived as spam.

Use text only web browser Lynx to test alt attribute and website content.

3)  Anchor Text

External anchor text (the text pages use to link to your site) also plays an important role for ranking of the image of your web page in google images search result because reflects how other people view your pages.

It is impossible for you to control, how other are linking your web page on their website but you can make sure that anchor text you use within your own site is useful, descriptive, and relevant.

For example, my blog post “11 Limitations of Google Analytics Tracking” is very popular among the webmasters if they are giving reference to this post on their blog post they should use anchor text “Limitations of Google Analytics Tracking” it will my blog post as well as images of this post to get good ranking.

4)  Content of Web Page

The web page the image is on, and the content around the image (including any captions or image titles), provide search engines with important information about the subject matter of your image.

Because, If your page has content about google analytics and you are using the image of SEO optimization then it will create confusion for the user as well as for search engine.

Wherever possible, it’s a good idea to make sure that images are placed near the relevant text. In addition, we recommend providing good, descriptive titles and captions for your images.

5)  Meta Data of Image File

Like copied content never get high ranking in google SERP same is true for Google Images search as well, copied images never get a high ranking.

So, Try to use original image for your website or blog, it will help your image to get good ranking in google images search.

Because  Google knows the original source of the image from meta data of that image.

If you downloaded any image from the internet and want to use it on your blog or website then first alter its meta data so that your website becomes a source of that image.

When an image has been created, a file of that image contains some basic information like created and modified date, file type, size, height, width, author name, copyright, rating etc these are called meta data for the image file.

You can change few of them, to change meta data follow given steps

Right click on the image file (Windows)

Click on properties

Now click on “details”  tab

Here you need to change everything which is given in “Description” and “Origin” segment, these all are editable.  (Image)

Change Title, Subject, Give rating, insert relevant tags, provide comment about image, give author name,  give copyright information.

After changing above given details, the source of that image will become your website.

Conclusion

Google images can drive tons of traffic to your website without putting any extra efforts, you just need to google images promotion guidelines given above.  Make your images available under a license that requires attribution, such as a Creative Commons license that requires attribution. It will help you to get backlinks when other will use your image.  If you don’t want search engines to crawl your images, we recommend using a robots.txt file to block access to your images.

Images which provides better user experience, rank high on Google Images search result.  You can use following practices for better user experience.

Use high-resolution images, never use any low quality or blue images.

Always put images high up on the web page, so that user can see it without scrolling.

Consider structuring your directories so that similar images are saved together.

Specify a width and height for all images.

Use the comment box to ask any question related to above topic.

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