Images and search engine optimization (SEO)

Optimal scoring of your website in search engines like Google depends -in addition to proper text writing- also on the attention paid to the images on the website. Whereas SEO factors are often the responsibility of (technical) developers or marketers (linking with social media channels), in this case you are mostly in control yourself.

Most people are very visually oriented , and a nice bonus is that an image makes your article even more appealing. Successful content almost always includes good images. And images make your article or page more likely to be shared because these days they are automatically loaded with posts on Facebook and Twitter, for example. This in turn affects search engine rankings.

Use the alt text

You can give the image a description with the alt text (also called the alt attribute in HTML) if you are logged into the CMS. People with visual impairments can have software read it when they visit a Web site, but search engines also read this alt text to discover what the subject of the image is. Should the image also contain a link, this alt text is also the name of the link. Then make sure this alt text also includes a description of the destination page. Clear for the visitor, but also essential for Google. Therefore, in your CMS, create a descriptive alt text with relevant words.

Clear file name

Also, give your images a clear name that describes what the image is about with hyphens. This also allows Google to figure out what the image is about and link the relevance to the title of your page or the topic of your article. Again, don’t overdo this: 3 to 4 words to an image is enough. For example, mill-holland-polder.jpg


Don’t make images too large

Impatient as we are, we are not waiting for websites that load slowly. Especially not when we visit a website with our smartphone. Saving images correctly is again part of this. Make sure your image is no larger than necessary on the Internet. Often 2000 pixels wide is already good enough for fullscreen. Unless you’re the lucky owner of a 4k or even 5k monitor, because then we’ll go to resolutions of 5120 x 2880 pixels. Through websites such as
you can optimize images even further. Professional programs such as Photoshop also allow you to save images for screen, removing unnecessary and therefore incriminating information.

Proper extensions

Various file formats can be selected when saving images. For best optimization, save images for web as:

  • JPG (or JPEG) for photos.
  • GIF for line images, logos and moving images (animated gif).
  • PNG is intended for images that contain transparency.

Text is not an image

A text converted into an image is no longer searchable by search engines. Only correctly entered alt text gives search engines information. It may be too much to say, but make sure relevant text is typed and images are pictures. Infographics are the exception to the rule here.

Mobile websites even more important

Google is going
mobile first
: good mobile websites are now better indexed than websites available only for larger screens. So if you have a mobile website, good content (and images) become even more important. Writing well for the Internet is a skill and is becoming even more of an issue. Write for the target audience and be brief, but powerful. Images tell more than words, so your texts can be shorter. Now it is important, however, that your images are not too heavy. As mentioned above.

Real people, real stories

has made its rise in recent years. This method of communication translates into the images and photography we are going to encounter on Web sites. We are going to see even more handmade illustrations and poignant, raw, often slightly overexposed photography featuring real people. Onwhile, all these authentic stories of authentic personalities and brands are starting to look more and more alike. How real are they? Does that actually matter? Otherwise, choose a highly imaginative world in which expectations and meanings are constantly played with. And hooray! The animated gif is back. Where it first seemed like the animated GIF would die a lonely Internet death, it is back and wildly popular, especially among young people. For example, Snapchat and Whatsapp use this form and it is hot again. In the form of
we find the mature animated GIF in our interfaces. You can make them yourself in Photoshop or with

We hope these tips will get you on your way to better image display and, of course, a better ranking in Google! Will you let us know if you’ve made something really cool that scores well? Would be cool.

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