Images are used on websites to provide more engaging experiences for users, while also presenting more information around a topic. While positive for user experience, images can cause issues for a website’s SEO and performance. Our Hangout Notes cover more insights into the impact of unoptimized images, as well as best practice recommendations from Google.

Implement Material Design Icons Using a Code Point Rather Than Text Element

September 6, 2019 Source

If you are implementing material design icons using the i text element with a specific class, Google will see this as text on the page and will try to index and display it within search results. John recommends specifying these icons using a material design code point, which Google will read as a character, rather than text.

Use Alt Tags as Anchor Text when Linking with Images

August 9, 2019 Source

When using links within images, make sure the alt attribute is being used in order to provide the anchor text that you want associated with the link.

Embedding Images From Other Sources Can Impact Image Search Traffic

August 9, 2019 Source

Embedding images from other sources via iframes makes it more difficult to index an image alongside a particular page as opposed to an image embedded normally in the HTML. On top of that, sources like Instagram add noimageindex within the embed code which will prevent images from being indexed.

Use the Mobile Friendly Test to Check the Implementation of Lazy Loading

July 26, 2019 Source

If you are using JSON or JQuery to retrieve images for lazy loading, using the mobile friendly test will allow you to see if these are able to be successfully loaded or not.

When Optimising For Image Search Focus on The User Journey

July 12, 2019 Source

Rather than just optimising images technically, John recommends focusing more on how a user will search for the visual content on your site.

Google Uses Alt Attribute as Part of Anchor For Linked Images

July 9, 2019 Source

For linked images, Google sees the alt attribute as a descriptive part of the page it is on, but it is also used as part of the anchor for the page the image is linking to.

For Image Optimization Check Indexing, Deferred Loading Method & Discoverable Links in DOM

July 9, 2019 Source

For images John recommends looking out for which ones are being indexed, double checking the method for deferred loading and checking links can be discovered by Googlebot in the DOM.

Google Has No Preference Between Text Links & Image Links

June 28, 2019 Source

Google has adapted to handle all sorts of different organic links, and doesn’t see text links as better than image links.

Decorative Images Don’t Need to be Indexed

June 28, 2019 Source

Decorative images like stock photos don’t need to be indexed because they won’t provide a useful path for users coming to your site from image search. Instead, focus on images that have value for your business such as product images.

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