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Yesterday, one of my main blogs are receiving a huge spike of traffic – the blog is regularly getting 2,000-ish pageview a day and that one particular day, it’s getting 4,000 pageviews. The 100 percent jump excited me (well, who isn’t?)
I thought the traffic is coming from one of my latest posts. I assume the posts are getting picked up by bigger sites or news sites. But I was wrong (I wish I was correct!) Instead, the traffic is coming to… one of my blog posts’ image. Yes, one image.
For some reasons, the image displayed as the first 3 results in Yahoo! image search for a particular search term. I was surprised, because I never done any link building to the image. At the end of the day, the image – and the blog post where the image is found, grabbed nearly 2,000 visits!
Then it hit me; I know very well that images can deliver organic traffic to my blog; that’s why I ALWAYS use images on my blog posts. But I never knew that images can deliver thousands of traffic; imagine that if the image is keyword-targeted, and share the same theme as the blog post, that’s laser-targeted traffic!
Those lead to the next question: How to optimize your blog post images for search engines? From my experience, here are some tips for you:
Always use your targeted keyword as the image file name; always include your keyword in your ALT tag; don’t forget to include the keyword in the title tag. However, you shouldn’t spam: Use the main keyword and long-tail keywords relevant to it. This will help build the theme of your image, and make things easier for web surfers to find your image via image search.
Okay – images from free royalty image sites such as iStock and BigStock are great, but they often look too “generic” – they help you making your point in your blog post. However, images that are “shareable” are those that are catchy, funny, and awesome. Choose the ones that will draw your readers’ attention – and link to it 🙂
Following up what I mentioned in #2, you should bookmark your image on social sites. Post to Pinterest; post to Flickr; post to Facebook; and so on. If your images are interesting enough, people will visit the URL, bookmark the images, share the images to their friends and followers, even link to it. This way, your images get the “votes” via the backlinks they receive – and get them ranked well.
I read somewhere that placing your image inside the heading tags ( <H1> – <H6>) can help your images rank well on search engines. However, be sure that you use <H2> – <H6> to avoid suspicious on-site SEO (remember Google’s over-optimization penalty!)
Use your post images in a gallery can work out well. One of my blogs’ templates is having this nifty feature: Rolling over an image will pop-up 2 options: To open the blog post or to open the image actual size in an image gallery. This will naturally cater two types of readers: Blog post readers and readers interested in fancy images.
So, there you go – I’m sure there are dozens of tips that can work out well. Please share your tips by leaving a comment below.
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