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How to Use Technical SEO to Optimize for Image Packs
Technical SEO Recommendations for Optimizing Image Packs for Google
Google's official Guidelines state that they expect great user experience from websites. High quality and intelligent image practices are critical to pleasing Google to get featured in image packs of SERP.
Follow the SafeSearch Guidelines
Before you start anything, you must read the SafeSearch guidelines of Google. Google comes with a filter than blocks explicit content. If your images have any indication related to sexual, violent, or graphic, Google Algorithms might hide them from search results. As a result, it will only be visible when the user turns off their safe search filter.
If you have any NSFW images, you must structure them separately in the URL structure. Add metadata like <Meta name=" rating" content=" adult"/> to your pages.
Use Lazy Loading
Lazy loading is a practice of delaying the loading of images and other elements on a page until the user reaches the location.
For example, if you have a webpage with 20 images, loading them all at a time can delay performance. Users have to use it for more time until the page is fully loaded to view the site. However, with lazy loading, people don't have to wait. The page will first upload all the textual components. Then it will gradually upload the images as the customer scrolls through the page.
Benefits of Lazy Loading
It reduces the initial load time.
It helps in saving bandwidth of consumes.
It saves resources for both server and the client.
However, you must ensure to use image placeholders on the webpage. Otherwise, the image may load in a different layout and disorient users.
You can use tools like Native image lazy loading or manually add the code below −
Add the code lazyload class to the IMG tag. Then specify the placeholder and the image in the src and data-src attributes.
<img class="lazyload" src="placeholder.jpg" data-src="image.jpg" alt="image description">
Use Images in Multiple Ratios
It was Ok to use a single-resolution image on a webpage. However, things have changed over the years. Google encourages site owners to load pictures in several aspect ratios for different screen sizes.
Use can use the srcset attributes to specific aspect ratios, including the thumbnails. Google will index the page with the Src attribute, while the srcset attribute allows browsers to load a different version of images as per the screen size.
<img src="image.jpg" srcset="small.jpg 500w, medium.jpg 640w, big.jpg 1024w" alt="image description">
You won't probably need to go through it if you have a responsive website. CMS like WordPress, Magento, and Drupal 8 has several themes that can do the task without going through messy codes.
Add Appropriate Keywords in Your Image alt, title, caption, and filename
Keywords are still relevant in SEO, although not as much as before. It can still improve your images to rank in image packs.
Try to add your primary keyword in your alt text. Google won't consider an image as vital if it doesn't have the alt attribute.
The title text appears at the top of the page. It is not a crucial part of SEO, but Google recommends o use alt attributes anyways. Adding the keyword in the title is fine as long as it makes sense. On the contrary, you can write text that perfectly adds context to the image.
A caption is not that important. However, you can use it to add credit to the photographer or Photography Company.
Follow the site structure in your image URLs. For example -
Search engines scan the text of the image filename. So, do add your main keyword in the filename. Separate each word with a hyphen. For example, boots-for-men-NYC. The name should be a description, but keep it short.
Use Scheme Markup for Specific Contents
Scheme markup helps you add labels to your images. You can optimize your images within a page with specific content. This includes images related to a product, recipe, or something specific. Each image comes with a label displayed in search results.
Optimizing your images on pages with specific labels allows users to quickly find what they are looking for. You can add schema markup through plugins like Schema App Structured Data. You can also add the schema code manually to your site. Choose JSON-LD as your scripting language over Microdata, as Google prefers JSON-LD.
Go to Google Structured Data Helper, and follow the 3-step process. It provides you an easy-to-follow instructions.
Choose the content type of your page. Insert the image and fill in the required field.
Add the generated code to your webpage's search code.
Use Open Graph Protocol to Set the Ideal Image for Social Shares
When you share your page on social media, an image gets displayed on the users' page. If the image is appealing, users will definitely click on it to visit your page. Open Graph Protocol can help you use a particular image of your choice. This picture will be displayed on every social share.
Optimizing images for SEO by improving site speed, structured data, and alt text will help improve your online presence over time. Additionally, creating personalized visuals that cater to user behavior is key for optimizing for image packs. With optimized visuals and a good understanding of technical SEO, you can help your website rank higher in SERP's and acquire more traffic from users searching through google images.
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