Have you ever done an image search for specific makes and models of the new and used inventory on your website and wondered why none of the photos show up? Well, chances are that your vehicle images may not be optimized. Yes, image optimization is also an important aspect of SEO! While search engines do not read text on images, there are still pieces of information that they use to decipher what your photos represent and to determine their placement in image-based search results.
- One of those pieces of information is the image file name, which is often neglected with something generic, like “001678t_gh.jpg.” The problem here is that your consumer audience does not search for the random numbers and letters that you’ve saved your files under. People search using natural language, so instead of naming your next vehicle photo “001678t_gh.jpg,” save it using 3-5 keywords that actually describe it, for instance, “skid-steer-loader.jpg.” You could even include your state’s abbreviation, like so, “skid-steer-loader-tx.jpg,” which can help the images show up for people searching in your local target area.
- Another piece of information that search engines use to rank images is the alt text, which is a short line of information describing the photo. Although there isn’t much weight placed on the alt text, search engines can still use it to understand what your images are. It’s also beneficial to people using browsers that have trouble loading your pictures, because when the image fails to load, at least the alt text is displayed.
You might be asking yourself how an image search will help your business get more online leads. Just know that while not every user looking for pictures of a “highway truck” will be ready to buy one, there are still some who are. Often times, people who are searching for vehicle images on the local level are ready to buy soon.
To learn more about optimizing your vehicle images for SEO or to share your thoughts, feel free to ask or comment below!