Using Alt Tag and Title Tag Optimization to Your Advantage
There are many different ways you can use SEO to help you achieve better results. Fortunately for you there are plenty of people who aren’t using it to their advantage and this gives you the chance to sneak in front of them in search engine ranking terms.
Have you given any thought to the images you use and how you tag them? Chances are you haven’t, but you really should. So few people pay much attention to this and it can really make a difference.
It is very important to use images with any content you post. It breaks up the text for a reader and it is a very good SEO practice. The image alone won’t do much, you need to choose good alt and title tags to go with them to achieve true search engine greatness.
Search engines such as Google help their users with images. If there is a duplicate image it removes it and leaves only the most relevant ones available in its searches. This means it’s important whenever possible to choose a unique image, possibly by creating your own. The image, coupled with the tag texts, will add value to that piece of content in Google’s eyes, and therefore will gain better position on Google’s search pages.
Just what are alt tags and title tags though? Both are essential and both are easy to write text for.
An alt tag contains the text that will be used by search engines to identify and classify an image. It should contain a brief and concise description of the image as this tag is displayed whenever the image is not available. It is also read aloud to any blind users. A good example of a simple alt tag would be a picture of a dog which could read ‘dog’ or ‘Yorkshire terrier’. It really is as easy as that.
The title tag is displayed to a user who uses the mouse to hover over an image. An accurate title is essential yet again as it will also be read aloud to blind users. Both texts can be similar, but should not be identical. They are after all describing the same thing.
The alt tag and title tag should contain an accurate description of what is shown in the image. The above example of ‘dog’ could be seen as being a little bit under descriptive and could be expanded upon a little bit. For instance, you can include any keywords into these tags to help out. One keyword per tag is generally enough and it should be implemented in as natural a way as possible. Never overload your tags with keywords and don’t make it appear to be spam-heavy.
So ‘dog’ could be changed to ‘dog grooming products for sale’ or anything similar which pertains to your brand or business. An SEO plug-in will tell you when you’ve hit the nail on the head with your tags, which is very helpful while you master this skill.
Any image you choose should of course be relevant to your content. As mentioned above it should be unique if possible and there’s no better way to ensure this than to provide your own original images.
If you are unable to do that then there are a number of websites of stock images, many of which can be used for free. Often the only condition to using a free image is that you credit the creator for it. You can of course purchase an image but be aware that others may have used the same one you choose. In order to check whether this is the case, try an image search to check that your chosen image isn’t among the hits. If it’s not, then you will have a much better chance of ranking higher with that particular image. If your chosen image is there, then it’s best to choose a different one.
All images should be placed in the text in a natural way and in a way that makes sense when compared with what the text says at that particular point of your content. The alt and title tags should be perfect too and then you should see your content fare much better on search engines.
Sometimes you gain some information that can be seen as invaluable. This is one of those times. The fact that alt tags and title tags are so important and yet, so few people are either using them properly or using them at all means that correct usage will see you become a winner.
Make sure you follow the tips outlined above and you will definitely do much better on search engine results pages and your brand or business will become more successful.