When someone loads your dealership’s page, the first thing to catch their eye is your imagery. Whether photo or video, the visual elements you incorporate are essential to having quality digital content.
But that’s not all. You also need to write alt text for these images, if you want to rank in local search. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves.
First things first, you should only ever use images you have the rights to use. Your website should only feature content that you’ve created in-house, contracted or purchased. And remember, there are various free and paid sources like Shutterstock, Adobe Stock, and even auto manufacturer media centers from which you can access images that come with the rights to publish.
Within the pool of images that you have rights for, you should look for one, or a few, images that are relevant to the written content’s topic. It’s not rocket science. If you have a piece of content talking about the C8 Corvette, you want to find the best available images to create a sense of excitement around it.
You also should make sure the background of an image matches your content’s keyword. It’s a commonly overlooked rule, but you wouldn’t want palm trees in the background if the keyword was “winter tires for sale.”
That would be ridiculous – but definitely wouldn’t be the first time it has been done! Lastly, before making the final decision on an image, you want to make sure it’s presented in the proper size and resolution. This will ensure that it isn’t too big to load quickly on the page, or appear pixelated.
Once you find an image that fits all of the criteria we have laid out, you can add it to your content to publish. But don’t forget to add alt text!
Alt text is a short sentence written in HTML code to describe an image. It will show up on the computer or phone screen if an image isn’t loading to tell users what image should be there. However…it has other, more important purposes.
The primary purpose of Alt-Text is to ensure accessibility. Visually impaired users often use screen readers, which interpret the alt-text on an image then explain its content to the user. But in the interest of accessibility, Google also sets rigid standards for the inclusion of alt-text.
They sure do! And if the alt text is fully descriptive and includes the target keyword, you are more likely to rank on the first page of search results for said keyword. Search engines don’t SEE the images, so the alt text is important if you want them to understand what is on the page.
To best optimize your images you should try to use a full sentence that describes the picture and uses the keyword (if possible). This way, you’ve optimized it for both human accessibility and search engine understanding.
Both of those things are essential to good image practice. In fact, they are just as important as the image selection itself! Quality, relevant image selection and fully optimized alt text are essential to creating successful, meaningful content.
So, make sure you are doing both!