How to Rank Well in Google Image Search

How to Rank Well in Google Image Search

Having good eye-catching content can be a major factor in increasing the rank of your website but did you know that visual graphics can make your website rank better?

Just as optimizing content for your website, optimizing images can make a huge impact on the increase of traffic and popularity of your brand. Adding an attractive image to your content and optimizing both in a user-friendly manner makes users spend more time on your website. But that doesn’t mean stuffing images and visual aids that aren’t relevant. You might be familiar with how to optimize your content, well, here is how to do the same with images.

Types of image size

Before we hop into the main part of optimization, are you familiar with the different types of image sizes?

The size of your image can have a huge impact in respect to the site speed of your website. Images that go way beyond the perfect pixels can slow down your website slow as a snail. Uploading and inserting pictures that are not larger than the user will see, can slow down your website which can be of no benefit to you or the user. Knowing how to optimize images on your page to increase the site speed can be of great help.

Did you know PNG, GIFs, and JPEG are the three major file formats that make up 96% of the internet’s image traffic?

  • JPEG uses lossy compression to optimize and make the file size small. You have the advantage to adjust the quality of your image file with a compression ratio between 0% to 100% for a good balance.
  • PNG is a lossless image format. Even though it produces higher quality images the file size of images is comparatively larger. Although you can benefit by not losing any data and quality during the process of compression.
  • GIFs have a limit of color palettes of 256 colors. It uses lossless compression which produces an exceptionally larger image file size.

Elements to rank images in Google search:

There are certain ranking factors for Google in order to decide which keywords in images are to be ranked and which don’t.

Here are a few elements that are required to rank your images for google:

  • Image file name: Whenever you try to save a file, keep in mind to rename the file with the contents of the image rather than names like img01 and DD001.
  • Image Size and Dimension: It is better to insert images after compressing them. With a compressed image, you can have better loading speed which can turn out to be a great user experience. Also, it is vital to keep the images between 75kb to 100kb.
  • Image Metadata: This is one of the most crucial elements. After you insert an image, try to fill in the title, meta description, and alt text for the image which can help to rank your website better. Although you may not find these while posting on social media, it’s better if you do when you insert images to your website.
  • Image engagement: The more the click and views, the more chances to be ranked in Google.
  • Hosted page elements: When inserting the image, make sure to include the appropriate keywords in the page URL, page title, and description as it will help Google to determine the relevance of your image which will help boost up the image to rank with the right keywords.

Optimize to stand out from competitors

Now that you are familiar with the different types of image formats and the elements, let’s discuss how to optimize your images to stand out from competitors.

Differentiating from competitors with respect to content, images, and even format is important as the users expect to see something different or special that they haven’t seen before. But in order to attract those visitors, you need to optimize your images.

Here are a few steps to optimize your images:

  • Track your image-based traffic: Routine check on how many visitors you get through google image search. You can track your image traffic in the google search console and analytics. In GSC, lookup search results in underperformance and change the type of search to the image.

Image source

In analytics, you can look it up from the referral report.

  • Usage of relevant images: Make sure to insert and upload images that are relevant to the whole page or at least the part of the content where the image is to be uploaded.
  • Using proper file format: Use image formats that search engines can index as it can affect the quality and download speed.
  • Create alt attributes: Giving alt attributes can help google to understand what the image is and if it is relevant to the content. Use relevant keywords for the content and images.
  • Use proper image title, caption, and description: Create an attractive title, caption by describing the image and description including naming the photo with the appropriate keywords.

Looking ahead

Google is now optimized for a better user experience. With well-optimized content and images (videos and infographics too) the quality of your website can increase to a level that will meet Google’s standards. Implement these techniques and leg up on the competition with more eyeballs on your website.

Post By Faheem Hussain (8 Posts)

Faheem works at Techwyse. He is a worker by day and a gamer by nightfall. You can find him in his free time either on the road for a solo drive or with his family in the living room.

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28 Comments

  • avatar

    Great blog! this is so interesting topic and keen on implementing it to see the results. Thank you for sharing the knowledgeable content.

  • avatar

    Awesome and helpful post! Thanks for sharing this post. Nice tips shared

  • avatar

    THANKS FOR THIS AWESOME TIPS

  • avatar
    souqhurghada. com 

    on 

    Thank you nice Info

  • avatar

    Hey. Good blog post you had written. In my sincere opinion, you have explained all the fundamental pointers and I’ve even write them down for future usage. Thanks and thank you for telling the stunning knowledge!

  • avatar
    Prashant saxena 

    on 

    Its really good article, i have optimized many of my blogs for image search results and get around 15% of my traffic from it..

  • avatar

    I actually do not see the use of getting an image of yours ranked unless you are an artist who needs exposure. When it comes to internet Marketing I am not sure how that will bring traffic to your site. Does the person get redirected to your site once they click your image and doesn’t your image have to be original before you can get some kind of traffic from it? You said above that one will have some difficulty ranking with duplicate content but isn’t the actual truth be that you will not rank at all? Google might even de-index that image just because of duplicate content.

  • avatar
    Rakesh Pherwani 

    on 

    Unlike stated in the posting, I have found that Flickr posted images show up in Google search almost immediately. Furthermore, they often rank very highly within the first couple of days and later settle in to their more natural ranking.
    I have not, as of yet, been able to get other popular photo sites (photobucket, etc) to show up as readily on Google search.

  • avatar
    Hosting Hrvatska 

    on 

    Very helpful information…Thanks

  • avatar

    As with everything else, Google rewards those who take user experience into consideration.

  • avatar

    Time also matters, so if you are the first to use a stock image it may be looked upon as the original and thus rank well in Google Images.

  • avatar

    Very informative. I never tried for image optimization. Will try it from now on with your valuable observation.

  • avatar

    Very nice article, however I still work out one of my blog page. It’s indexed on Google, but the nice photo doesn’t appear at all on google image search result. I’ve put alt tag on that photo and even use descriptive filename for that photo…hmmm..weird…any help mate??

  • avatar

    Great article Chris ! Some great tips to remember especially with Google Image becoming more and more popular 🙂

  • avatar
    Anirudh Bahadur 

    on 

    I have a lot of images that I use on my blog. I mean I own them as I clicked them. I also watermarked them. But I didn’t rename the files, they are still named as DSC099 etc. Also I never cared to use the ALT text. I guess I should be doing all this now. Thanks for the informative post.

  • avatar

    I thought one important tip, which you forget to mention is to use image wordrpress plugin.

  • avatar
    ashish gupta 

    on 

    Very helpful information…Thanks

  • avatar

    Hi, you can try Pocket Image Search for Android, is a cool widget for searching images.

  • avatar
    Geoffrey Hale 

    on 

    Ah, this is very helpful! I’ve been wondering why we get so much traffic from some of our images. Thank you!
    Regards,
    Geoff

  • avatar

    Quote: “Google frowns upon duplicate content and this includes images”. I constantly find copies of my images, used illegally and usually on junk blogs, appearing ahead of my originals in Google image search.
    Last week I reported two blogger sites to G that were using images illegally simply because the “stolen” pics were appearing in image search ahead of mine. Rec’d quick response from G that pages had been taken down, but I simply don’t have the time to send a DMCA notice every time I find my images being used illegally.
    End result is I’m losing a lot of traffic that used to find my site via images and doesn’t seem much I can do about it.

  • avatar

    Very good article.
    I all too often use image search to track down what I want, and they often take me to sites not shown on the main page.
    Is there any info on how much an image can be changed to get it as a unique result?
    Thinking of paid for content – if I stick my site name in a corner of the image will that include it as a separate file?
    If I scale it to 90% will google still view it as the same image?
    Although I guess if the same image is in the results I have a lower chance anyway of someone choosing mine!

    • avatar

      Those are some good questions. With regard to scaling the image, I think Google will likely consider it duplicate. You can test this by dragging and image into the Google Images dialog box. Not sure about your question regarding URLs, my guess would be no.

  • avatar
    Maureen McCabe 

    on 

    Outstanding content!
    #6 If images not original, difficulty getting into Image Search results. Is an example a stock art image that is purchased? Pictures we take ourselves are better?

    • avatar

      Google has the ability to recognize that an image is 100% unique or a duplicate. Stock images will fall into the latter category. Time also matters, so if you are the first to use a stock image it may be looked upon as the original and thus rank well in Google Images.

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