How to Optimize Photos on Your Blog

optimize photos

While the words themselves are a crucial part of blogging, the photos that accompany the words hold just as much importance. Photos, in addition to a strong post title, are what may initially draw readers to your blog. Photos that are relevant and of high-quality are important, but so is the optimization of these photos. Applying just a few SEO (search engine optimization) techniques to the photos on your blog can make them rank higher in search engines and allow people to find your blog easier through an image search. Read more to learn how to optimize photos on your blog.

Change the Default File Name of Your Photos

When uploading an image from your camera, the images are typically named something like “IMG_8091”. A simple way to optimize your images is to rename them when saving/editing them before you post them on your blog. Use descriptive keywords to make your images more searchable. For example, if you are posting a photo of your trip to the Liberty Bell, rename the photo to something like “liberty-bell.jpg”.

Resize Your Images to a Reasonable Size

I like to size all my images to fit the width of the content area of my blog. Images that are too small or too large not only look bad, but can make your blog hard to read. Properly sized images will improve your blog’s load time, which has many benefits since Google takes into account your site’s load time and page speed.

Use Keywords in the “Alt Text” Field

The alt text you choose should describe the image using popular keywords. Think to yourself, “What words would someone search for if they wanted to get this particular image?” and use those. Adding keywords to the alt text field (as well as editing the image title and description) can be easily done in WordPress and Blogger in the pop-up box that appears after you’ve uploaded an image.

Add a Descriptive Caption

If applicable, add a sentence or two of a caption underneath your images describing what is going on in the photo. Using keywords describing the photo as part of the text of your blog will increase your chances of ranking in search engines.

19 Comments

  1. I usually size my photos to about 600 pixels wide, but I think the content width is a little more than that. I feel like they’d be too big if I did 700 pixels though. Can you tell me honestly if my pics should be resized?

    1. My content area is 640 I think, but all my photos are 600- just like yours. Personally, I like the little bit of white space on the sides that your blog has and I think 600 pixels wide is the perfect width. I wish my content area was a little larger so I could have some extra space between the sidebar and the content.

  2. These are some great tips! I didn’t know what that “alt text” was in photos, but now I’m going to use it to my advantage.

  3. I have to thank you for this post! I never thought of using SEO techniques let alone how to incorporate them into my pictures. Love your blog, following you now!

  4. These are such great tips. I never would have thought to rename all my images, it’s such a simple thing to do too. I have no idea what alt text is, but hopefully a little bit of gooling will fix that.

  5. Hi Rachel, I was wondering if you’d be interested in re-posting this as part of 20SB’s Blogging 101 series. You share some great tips that I think our community could really benefit from. We’d also include a headshot and short bio at the bottom of the post. If you’re interested, please email jennb[at]20sb.net. Thanks!

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