Social Media Images. If you have been hiding in a bush you might have missed the whole Shift to Visual Social Media that has been happening of late. But if not, and you are using images in your social media marketing, let me ask you this: Are they working for you, or are they just getting lost in the noise?
In this post, we look at a couple of quick tips for optimising your images so that they don't get “lost” on the net – and so they show up in search. And most importantly, so that when they are clicked on, all roads lead back to your website, products and services.
Here are 5 easy ways you can optimise your “source” so that images lead to where they are meant to lead…and your “ownership” of them is never lost:
5 Easy Ways to Optimize the Source of your Image
#1 Give Your Image a Relevant File Name (Blog/Website)
Search Engines can't “read” images, so it is important to give them some information about the images in your blog posts. Start by giving your image a file name that describes the image and where possible contains key words (no key word stuffing allowed though, so it has to be relevant!)… it should describe what the image is about.
For more information about Image File Names (let's face it, I am not a techy person so it's best to refer you to the experts) check out this great post by Derek Halpern at DIY Themes. As well as explaining how to optimize your image by setting your title, it also describes the ins and outs of Alt-Text (see below) and optimal image size.
#2 Include the Alt-Text for your Image (Blog/Website)
By providing some simple information called “alt-text” you are describing the image for the search engines (as with the File Name above). To get a great overview of how Alt-Text works, check out this post by Code it Pretty. It has some fabulous descriptions of how it all works and what to write as your alt-text. In. Plain. Non-techy. English.
#3 Add a Watermark to your Image
Whether your image will be shared on Pinterest, Facebook or Google+, a simple watermark (it can be faint or obvious) “brands” your image and allows it to always be traceable no matter what happens to the other information that identifies it. This is particularly important for original images – protect them as your own.
#4 Enter your Source URL Correctly (Pinterest)
Firstly, Pinterest is “searchable” under Boards or individual Pin names, so make sure that you enter a relevant pin name that will show up the search for your preferred keyword. Also think about your “Board” names in terms of keywords that they may be searched under. Also be sure that you:
- Include relevant keywords in your Board Title, Board Description & Pin Description. Calling your Boards by cutesy titles may be fun, but they are less likely to be found on search in Pinterest.
- Your Source URL should be entered for each pin (under “Edit” your pin) as well as on the Pin Description. This will auto-populate if pinning from your website but it is always best to click Edit and check that all the source information is correct. Did you know that the link on the Pin Description is also “clickable” as a hyperlink? Be sure to enter that too.
- Link to the specific post or page on your website that you want the pin to be sourced to – try to make the landing page relevant to the pin (ie the blog post that it refers to or the product page that the product image is able to be purchased from). As a default you can use your website homepage.
Remember that what happens when a person clicks through on your image to your site, depends on what they find, how your site is set up and whether you have optimized your content to keep them there (but that's for another day).
#5 Add Price Labels to your Pins (Pinterest)
If the pin is about a product or products, add the relevant dollar sign and the price in your description and a banner with the price will populate in the top corner of the image/pin. This is part of Pinterest's functionality, so they want you to showcase the prices on items for purchase! It also makes your pin stand out as something that people can purchase…as well as listing your pin on the “Gifts” section of Pinterest, at the appropriate price range.
Do you optimize your images? Any new ideas here or do you have some to share? I would love to hear your feedback in the comments below.
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