Reducing the size of a website’s images as much as possible without their quality loss is an important factor if you want your site to work well, load faster and be SEO friendly. That’s why both product and decorative pictures should be maximally optimized in order to work in your advantage. How to do it right? Here are some of the most valuable tips you should bring to life.
1. Choose the right file format
You can choose from three most popular file formats: JPEG, PNG or GIF. Remember that each of them has its own characteristics:
- JPEG – although it’s used quite commonly, it can reduce the quality of an image depending on your settings. It also doesn’t support transparent backgrounds. On the other hand, the format is supported everywhere and the files are relatively small.
- PNG – it’s used as an alternative to JPEG images, having a better color range and supporting the transparency option. Its disadvantage is the file’s size which can be quite big.
- GIF – it’s a kind of bitmap image which is usually used for simple art or animations. It supports transparent backgrounds and has a small size, but its color range is limited to 256 types. It’s usually used for logos and other small images within a website.
2. Name your images
Forget about naming your image “IMG_5678” or some other random digits and letters. Your picture’s name should be descriptive and rich with keywords. It’s a valid knowledge for Google or other engine crawlers informing them about your image’s subject. That’s why it’s a crucial factor when we’re talking about SEO positioning.
3. Don’t underestimate the alt attributes
Naming your image doesn’t end at point 2 of our list. To make it SEO-perfect you need to give it a second alternative name. It’s the text that’s seen when the picture is not properly rendered or when it’s rendered just fine but a user hovers over it. The alt attribute should also be descriptive and composed of valuable keywords.
4. Pick the right size
Every image’s size should be properly optimized finding the balance between its size and resolution. Large images with great resolution will make your website load longer which won’t be good from the UX perspective.
5. Take care of the thumbnails
You should make your thumbnails as small as possible not to overwhelm your page load time. They have to be resized and appropriately compressed. Since they’re usually small, you don’t have to pay that much attention to their quality.
6. Create image sitemaps
7. Make your images mobile-friendly
Mobile SEO is getting more and more important every year and it’s a big mistake not to take it seriously. That’s why all the images on your website should be responsive which means they should be able to adjust their size to different desktop and mobile sizes.
8. Don’t overload your site with decorative images
A decorative image is simply an image that doesn’t have any particular purpose on your site – it doesn’t present any products and it’s used purely to look nice. It’s better to reduce the number of such pictures in order to reduce an overall image size on the website.
9. Organize your images file structure
If you have an e-commerce business and you gather your images in files, you should remember about naming them according to products they stand for, e.g. jeans, jewelry, etc.
10. Pay attention to the copyright conflict
Don’t use random images from the internet because they are not yours. Pick some pictures from stock photo providers and have a valid licence that allows you to use them. You can also prepare your own graphics and photos.