We all know that high-quality images are important in telling your property’s story, and grabbing the attention of travel shoppers as soon as they hit your website. Images are an incredibly powerful way to create an emotional connection with consumers, which is important because a whopping 50% of purchases are driven by emotion.
We also know that Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is critical to your digital marketing strategy. You may have the most visually-stunning website out there, but if nobody can find it, then it’s pretty useless.
In this article, we bring these ideas together and explain how to optimize images for SEO to drive more organic traffic.
How Images Affect SEO
Images play an important role in the overall health of a webpage. At a high level, they make your website more appealing, which improves time on site and overall usability; two important factors in SEO.
More directly, images support the content on a page, and help make it more relevant to the search terms people are searching for. According to Yoast, “an image that is surrounded by related text ranks better for the keyword it is optimized for.”
Images can also be a great way to drive organic traffic to your website from image-based search engines (e.g. Google Images). Searches done via Google Images are on the rise, and so is the engagement of those using it.
According to Hoosh, only 17% of Google users scroll down the traditional Search Engine Results Page (SERP). While 35% of users scroll down the Google Images results page. Furthermore, 63% of users who click on an image in this results page then visit the website. So don’t discount the importance of image-based search on driving organic traffic.
All of these are good reason to optimize your images for SEO. Here are a few simple tips on where to start.
Add Alt Text Descriptions
While Search Engines are robust, at the moment they are not able to read an image and determine what it contains. Instead, they use the surrounding text to determine what it is and why it might be valuable. That’s where Alt Text descriptions come in.