We live in a visual world that is full of color, from our television shows to the glossy spreads in our favorite magazines. We are drawn to images that tell a story, make us think, make us cry, and remind us of our humanity. The professional blogger knows that giving readers some great eye candy is an outstanding way to increase readership.
This infographic by MDG Advertising shows some pretty amazing stats on images including the fact that on the average, articles with relevant images receive 94 percent more total views than those that do not have images. Blogs and articles with photos get more views, more shares, more comments, more everything! Here’s how to get the most out of your article and blog images.
Finding Truly Free Images
Next time you need an image for your blog check these sites and don’t forget to give attribution and a link back to the site.
BETTER: FreeImages (Formerly StockXChange)
BEST: FreeDigitalPhotos.net –This site has smaller, web-sized images for free and larger formats for sale.
Searching For Images
Don’t confine your image search to keywords about your post. Use keywords that provide imagery to your post. Think beyond your written words and use visual terms to find the best images.
One image is good but, for longer pieces, two or three can be better. The more images, the more additional opportunities to optimize your piece and draw more traffic.
Try these four optimizing tips with the images on your next post and watch your readership soar!
- Naming – Your filename matters! Before uploading your image, give it a relevant, descriptive filename (if it happens to be a keyword, all the better).
- Captioning –Your caption should speak to the post or article, not the image itself. It should be brief but descriptive.
- Sizing – Page load times impact your SEO. Large images cause your page to load slower which is not a good thing. Microsoft Office Picture Manager has a resizing option in their editing tools. For an online option, Picnic has a tool that works well. DO NOT resize the photo after it is uploaded by changing its size tags. When the visitor loads your page, the larger image will load first, then the small one. You are just shooting yourself in the foot. Resize your photo to around 640 x 480 (give or take) before uploading it to your site.
- Alt Text – You can really maximize your search engine content by adding alt text. Alt text gives another SEO layer to your post or article because it describes the photo to the search engine. Add it to your image text (alt=“image description for alt text”) and you are good to go. It is just that simple.
So when you sit down to write your next post, take a few minutes to pick out an image or two, optimize them and watch the traffic roll right on in.
Stephanie M can turn out lovely lines of prose that will cause you to ponder the mysteries of the universe, bring you to tears, and cause you to rethink your entire position on the meaning of life. And if it’s content you need, she’s your gal; delivering polish, depth and quality – Every. Single. Time.