How to optimize images ranking on Google image (The Ultimate Guide)

If you’re a blogger or writing articles for a magazine or online newspaper, do you need to use images to embellish your articles, but do you know how to benchmark these images on Google Image? Images could be a source of visibility, so it’s have to be a part of your SEO Strategy.
That’s exactly what I’m going to show you in this guide!
The images make articles much more vivid and can help to improve the referencing of your article.
In this article, I would like to present you the different steps to be taken to optimize an image for purposes of referencing.
When you optimize an image, make sure you reduce it as much as possible in terms of download size using the correct image compression.
An optimized image also means that it must be equipped with an appropriate name and an alternate text (< img alt = “…”), in order to be optimized for search engines.

Using images in your articles and posts

The images, respecting certain criteria, will help to better understand your article.
” An image is worth a thousand words. ”
Yes, maybe not for Google, but it will surely revive 1000 ternes words.
Show the message you want to transmit with a graphic or simply make your publications on more attractive social networks.
Here is a simple recommendation: use images for each article you publish to make it more attractive.

Finding the right image

If you have the opportunity to create and add your own image, do it.
The page dedicated to your team needs photos from your team, just as your article needs an image that has the same theme as your article.
Logic, huh?
If you want to use an image to only use an image for purposes of referencing, you have everything wrong.
The image must reflect the theme of the publication or be added for illustrative purposes within the article.
From a natural referencing point of view, an image that is surrounded by text with the same theme as the image is better for the keywords with which it was optimized.
You can look at the images I use for my articles (those with titles, at the top).
I do so for a number of reasons:

  • They highlight the title or topic of the article;
  • They encourage visitors to read the publication, since the first overview is not only the text;
  • These images are used in the OpenGraph and Twitter Cards tags, which will add the image when sharing on social networks.

Most of these “presentation images” are created thanks to the free online tool.
If you are unable to use your own images, there are many alternatives to finding unique images.
For example, is a good source of images, as explained in this article: How to use creative images from the public domain from Flickr.
I also like images provided by sites such as

Discover more image sources here.
You should avoid too superficial photos, and choose those that seem (at least slightly) more authentic.
Images containing people tend to think about images from image banks, unless they have been taken by you.
The obvious alternatives for photos could be illustrations, as we often do on our blog, or graphics, of course.
Finally, let’s not forget to mention animated GIF, because they are increasingly popular nowadays.
Animated GIF are very popular nowadays, but don’t go anywhere!
They will make reading your publication much less attractive since it will be interrupted by the movement of the image.


GIF GrabberAvailable for Mac, GIF Grabber allows you to create many GIF free of charge.
You can capture everything you have on your desktop or computer screen, then resize and cut the image.
Awesome screenshotThis is a Chrome extension that allows you to take screen shots (partial or total) from your browser window very easily, and you can also make annotations before downloading it on your browser.
PiktochartOne of the most popular data visualization tools, Piktochart, is free, easy to use and offers beautiful creative and flexible models.

How to optimize the images of your article

When you found the right image to use, whether it be an illustration, a graphics or a photo, the next step is to optimize this image.
There are a large number of criteria to be considered:

Choose the right filename

Image referencing starts with the correct filename.
Of course, this is the first location where the keyword will be used.
Without even looking at the image, you want Google to know what the image is.
It is simple: if your image is a sunset in Paris with Notre Dame, the file should not be named DSC4536.jpg, but rather… “notre-dame-paris-coucher-de-soleil.jpg”.
The main keyword should be Notre Dame, since this is the main topic of the photo, so I added it at the beginning of the file name.

Change the image size to be referenced

Loading time is a very important user experience factor and, therefore, an aspect of important SEO also. The faster the site, the easier the page is to visit and index.
The images can have an impact on the loading times, especially when you put heavy images and they display in tiny, such as images of 2500 × 1500 pixels to display them with a size of 250 × 150 pixels. The entire image must be loaded… Redimensionnez the image with the size of the display you want. WordPress helps you by offering the image in different sizes after it is online. Unfortunately, this does not mean that the file size is also optimized, this only affects the size of the image.
If you use a Mac, resize is an easy task. Open the image, scroll to “Tools” and select “Adjust Size”. You can also use Photoshop if you have it or use one of the many tools available online, such as Picresize. If you use a PC, you can use Paint. And yes, this good old MS Paint. Open Paint, click Open, select the image you want to resize and open it. Then, on the “Home” tab, under “Image”, click “Resize”.

Reduce the size of file

The next step in referencing the image is to ensure that the resized image is loaded with the smallest possible file size.
There are tools for this. Of course, you could simply export the image and test the acceptable quality percentage, but I prefer (especially with Retina and similar screens) use images with a 100% quality. You can always reduce the file size of these images by removing the EXIF data, for example.
I recommend that you use tools such as ImageOptim or websites such as JPEGMini or PunyPNG.
After putting the image online, tools such as YSlow can tell you if your image optimization is successful.

Attention to the use of images created with an IPHONE

If you put pictures taken with an iPhone on a WordPress site there is a bug that can become very painful. When you take a picture with your iPhone, it can appear in landscape once your article is online. It doesn’t happen to everybody and everything depends on the generation iPhone you use and your WordPress template. You can avoid this error by only taking pictures in landscape (with the volume adjustment button downwards) or different resolution options are available on this forum.

Add the image to your article

Do not place it anywhere. I have already indicated that it is preferable to place it within textual content. It helps a lot. This ensures that the content is relevant to the image and vice versa.

Legends & Descriptions

The image legend is the text that accompanies the image. Like most images of this article, it’s the text in the gray box just underneath. Why is this text also important for image referencing? For those who use this text when travelling through an article. After titles, people tend to quickly browse the image and also take into account legend. In 2012, KissMetric even stated that “The captions under images are read on average 300% more than all the content itself, so do not use them, or use them incorrectly, means missing an opportunity to hire a large number of potential readers”.
Do we add captions to all images?
As I have already indicated, some images simply have another purpose. Decide whether the image proposed is an image you want to use as part of your referencing process or not. Avoid sur. You should add a legend if it makes sense for the visitor. First think of the visitor, don’t add a legend only to the image referencing.
The description can be used to add many additional details, such as how the photo was taken, when it was taken and any other interesting elements.

Attribute ALT of an image and title

the ALT attribute is added to an image so that there is a descriptive text when the image for some reason does not appear on the visitor’s screen.
In situations where the image is not available for the reader, perhaps because it has disabled the display of images in its browser or uses a screen reader because of a visual impairment, the alternative text guarantees that no information or functionality is lost.
Make sure you add a textual alternative in the ALT attribute and that this text contains your SEO keywords and is linked to the image.

Here is the complete HTML tag of an image:

< img src = “image.jpg” alt = “short image description” title = “image title”/>

The textual alternative describes what is on the image and image function on the page.
So if you have an image that is used as a button to buy a product X, the ALT attribute should mention: ” button to buy product X “.
The ALT attribute is used by screen readers, the browsers used by blind and visually impaired, to tell them how the image is.
The title is displayed as a infobulle when you pass on the element, so in the case of a button image, the button could contain an additional action, like “Buy product X now for 19 €! ‘.
Each image should have an ALT attribute.
Not only for purposes of referencing, but also because, if not, the blind and visually impaired cannot what the image is.
The title is not mandatory.
It can be useful in most cases but not adding it is not a problem in itself.
When you go on an image, Internet Explorer displays the textual alternative as’infobulle ‘…
Chrome displays the text of the title.
The title of the title, when used and often identical to the contents of the ALT attribute.
Moreover, more and more people are not using them.
What is he using?
The title can be really useful, in some cases to provide additional information but is not taken into account for the referencing of an image.

What happens if an image has no particular purpose?

If you have images in your article that are purely added for aesthetic reasons, you make a mistake, because these images should be in your CSS and not in your HTML.
If you really cannot change your code, leave its empty ALT attribute, such as: < img src =» image. png» alt =»/>. So the screen reader will ignore the image.

ALT and SEO attribute

Google, in its article about images, has a title “Creating a relevant ALT text”.
It is no coincidence, Google places a relatively high value on alternative texts to determine what is on the image, but also to define the theme of the surrounding text.

The ALT attribute and title in WordPress

When you put an online image on WordPress, you can add a title and an alt text. By default, it uses the name of the image file for the title it duplicates for ALT text.
It’s better than writing nothing, but it’s just as poor. You should really take the time to develop an alternate text for each image you add to a publication.
Don’t be lazy. Your (image) referencing will really improve if you add all these little details correctly and visually impaired users will appreciate this all the more so.
I mentioned the use of the image for sharing on social networks. If you add the right image to your section < head > as this:
< meta property = “og: image “content =” “/>
This will ensure that the image is included in your partition on Facebook (more OpenGraph is also used by Pinterest).
The Yoast SEO Plugin for WordPress has a social networking section where you can configure and see this image.
Make sure you use a high quality image, since images with higher quality/larger images tend to be used more often by social networking platforms.
If your configuration is correct, and it doesn’t work, try deleting the Facebook caches in the Debugger URL.
Twitter Cards do the same thing for Twitter and can also be generated by the SEO plugin of Yoast.

Plans for the XML (sitemap) site of the image

If you are a web developer, you probably ask yourself one or more questions about the XML site plans of the image.
I would rather say the images in the site plans.
Google is very clear about this:
Information on sitemaps for images allows us to identify images that may not be taken into account otherwise (e. g., images accessible through JavaScript code), and indicate the images of your site that you want to see us explore and index.
Adding images to your XML site plans helps Google index your images, so make sure you do it for better referencing of your images.


Image referencing is the sum of a number of criteria.
Thanks to Google’s ability to better recognize the elements of an image, it makes sense to ensure that the image and all its criteria contribute to user experience as well as to referencing.
It would be ridiculous to try to fool Google.
Take these different criteria into account when you add an image to an article:

  • Use a relevant image that corresponds to your text
  • Choose the correct filename for your image
  • Make sure that the dimensions of the image match the size of the image as it is displayed
  • Reduce the file size for faster loading
  • Add a legend for a simpler path of the page
  • Use text alternative to the image, the title of the title is optional
  • Add OpenGraph and Twitter Card tags to the image
  • Use images in your XML site plansIn addition to user optimization and improved user experience, images can also play an important role in terms of conversion!

Images used without your agreement

Sometimes you can feel the need to check that your own images are not widespread on the Internet without permission and without credit mentioning you.
You can do this using an automatic reverse search tool, such as Image Raider.
Simply add your images to the catalogue, then you will receive an alert whenever another site uses your image.
If the site did not mention that you were the author of the image, you can contact the owner of the site and ask him to add a mention.
However, don’t be rude and intimidating, it certainly was done in error.