The short answer to this question is “absolutely yes”. Now if you have been around the online marketing game for a while, you already know this.
But exactly what does it mean, and how do you capitalize on it?
Well for starters, Google cannot understand what a picture is about just by “looking at”. (I am aware that a software system does not have eyes, I just mean that it cannot tell what is in a picture by deciphering the pixels within it.)
So the only thing that search engines have to go on is the textual representation of the picture.
The common fields are “title” and “alt” text within the html that produces the image.
Take a look at this picture:
Now, the code that Google and other search engines see, is this:
<img class=”alignnone size-full wp-image-1728″ title=”Home for Sale by the Lake” src=”http://www.realestatelicense.org/wp-content/uploads/home-for-sale-by-the-lake.jpg” alt=”Gorgeous House for Sale by the Lake” width=”540″ height=”355″ />
Notice 2 things, the part that says title=”Home for Sale by the Lake”, and the part that says alt=”Gorgeous House for Sale by the Lake”. These are the 2 primary things that search engines use in order to find out what in the world the picture is about.
Now if you have links to the page where this is located, and perhaps links directly to where this picture lives, that will help as well. But still, the search engines give quite a bit of weight to the alt and title texts.
So use them wisely, and host your images on your own site. After all, if a user does find your image through an image search, where do you want them to go? To your site, or a free site online where you store your images? I don’t know about you, but I want folks to come to my site when searching for images that I have.
So use images, use them wisely, and good luck with your online business! Let me know if you have any comments or questions by leaving them for me below.