Thursday, August 20, 2009

Increase Google Traffic With Descriptive Image Titles

Blog Optimization and Promotion

Google traffic is one of the most significant forms of traffic to my sites and while I don't get massive amounts, I do get a significant amount and this is largely due to image google searches.

I've written about this simple technique to increase traffic before, but it's worth elaborating on. At this point, because of using descriptive image titles, I receive more image search traffic than I do regular google search traffic, so using this technique is definitely worth it.

Be Descriptive

Getting more google image search traffic is simple. Instead of naming your images with a vague name like "image-1.jpg" actually describe WHAT IS IN the image and use that as the image title.

For instance, the image above is of a new recipe I made of toasted almonds with garlic-rosemary oil so I named the image "toasted-almonds.jpg" I separate words with dashes and this insures that anyone using google to search for "toasted almonds" will see my image in the image search result.

Again, simply title the image using a description of what is in the picture, and separate words with dashes and you'll start seeing increases in google image search traffic!

UPDATE: There have been a few questions about the use of dashes to separate the keywords in the title. I'm not an SEO expert but I've done a bit of research on the subject and there isn't clear agreement on whether this is beneficial or necessary. The sources that I trust do suggest that titles using dashes to separate keywords DO rank higher than those that don't. Here are two sources for you to look at

SEO for Images - eWritings

SEO Images: Optimising For Google Images - Foliovision

Again, there isn't clear agreement on this, but I trust these sources and I've had great success with formatting my images this way. Anyone out there an SEO expert that could shed some light on this? Would love to hear about it in the comments.


  1. Do you think it's better to separate words with dashes? I just title my images with 'toasted almond' (no dashes) and I get quite a bit of traffic from Google searches. Is it better to separate with dashes???

  2. Rina,

    There is lots of conflicting advice about this...I think the idea of the dashes is to separate keywords so that the google spiders will recognize it as two words....I say if no dashes have been working for you then stick to it.

  3. Hrmm... would it be prudent to do a keyword search first to make sure your image name is something people actually search for?

  4. Stephanie,

    You could do that...I search for keywords but only to decide the best phrasing....I just make it a matter of habit to make descriptive image only takes a few seconds and it really cant hurt.

  5. Thank you for all of the great hints and tips about improving food blogs. I spend so much time creating recipes, cooking, washing dishes, taking pictures, and writing - the time you spend to help me get people to my blog is so very appreciated.