SEO your Images!

SEO your images

SEO your images

How to SEO your Images

In my previous article, SEO: Image Alt Text vs Title, Lumpy Dog and I tried to get through the message that your images’ alt text are important to you. Together with the image title.  But the former more than the latter.

Don’t throw away your images’ SEO power!

The question is how do you add these “semi-invisible” (to readers) image attributes?

In this article, I will be talking specifically about WordPress sites. Nonetheless, the theory will be applicable to whatever site or platform you are on. For every image you use, there are (hidden) attributes called alt text and title associated with every image.

Images in WordPress

I think that the best way would be to do a walk-through on handling WordPress images.  There are many ways to insert, upload, edit your WordPress images.  I will just deal with probably the most used and easiest way.  And probably the most familiar to WP (WordPress) users.  (Note: I am using a self-hosted WP.  If your WP is hosted by, it may not be identical.  I imagine it would be very similar.)

Adding Images in WP page/post

Tip: Name you images the SEO way. According to Matt Cutts, head of Google’s webspam team, the name of your images may not be so important as alt text, but they still can play a row in telling Google what your image is about.  In other words, give Google as many relevant ways to find you as possible.  So name your images wisely & relevantly (without over-stuffing them with your keywords).


In WP (WordPress), when I am creating or editing a page or post, I can insert an image via Add Media.  And that will pop-up the Insert Media window.

WordPress Add Media

WordPress Add Media


When you have uploaded a new image or selected an image from your Media Library, take a look at the Attachment Details panel to the right of that pop-up window. It will look something like:

WordPress Media Attachment Details

WordPress Media Attachment Details

Alt Text 

WordPress gets a bit confusing here, so just hang with me for a sec. I want you to concentrate first on the Alt Text field, which is the most important. You can’t see my full Alt Text in the image, but it actually reads:
Quirky Shop Online – ClearlyHelena via Lumpy Dog illustration

Remember, you want to use your image alt text to describe what the image is about. At the same time, to judiciously add in some relevant keyword that may be associated with the page you are working on.

Title (field)

The “Title” field in the Attachment Details window is by default, the name of your image file (minus the format extension be it .jpg or .gif or .png).  So you see that if you name your image files appropriately before uploading them, you can save some work here and still be ok.

Unfortunately this field is sometimes picked up by some plugins and displayed on screen.  So you don’t really want gibberish names for your image files anyway.

Note!  This WP “Title” field is NOT the image’s title attribute.  This is the label applied to your images in your Media Library (so you can easily find them).  A bit confusing I know. But hang in there.


WordPress Caption

This is where you enter text if you want your image to display, on screen, with some text below the image.

Image Title Attribute

So where exactly is the image’s title attribute?

After you have inserted your image, it will appear on your page (in edit mode).

To be able to find the image’s title attribute, you need to edit the image.

Click on the image >> click the pencil icon
WordPress Edit Image

WordPress Edit Image

The Image Details window will pop up.

WordPress Image Details window

WordPress Image Details window

  • Caption field: You will see the Caption field (with whatever you might have filled in before.  Or you can fill in/edit it here.)
  • Alternative Text (Alt Text): just as you filled it in before (or enter/edit it here)
  • Image Title Attribute: this is where you can get to the title attribute.  By default, it would have the name of your image file. (Mine was lumpy dog.gif originally)

Remember that you want to use the image Title attribute to describe the image in context.  And maybe add in a relevant keyword.  (No keyword stuffing please!  Google no likey!)

In my example here, my alt text is equally relevant and appropriate as my Title attribute as well.  (Oftentimes, that is the case).  So I can just copy from the alt text and paste into the title attribute.  Easy!


via HTML Code

For those of you who are familiar with the HTML coding, you can go directly from Visual to the Text mode.

WordPress in Text view

WordPress in Text view

You can see that the image attributes (title= and alt=) are there.  Edit directly from there.

Summary to SEO your Images

If you do nothing else after this, just do your image’s alt text.  You spent hours with them.  Let them be found! May the Search be with You!





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