How to Optimize Images for Web Content

How to Optimize Images for Web Content

Images create significant impacts on the online world. Whether you’re running an online store or creating valuable content, pictures make everything better. 

Uploading optimized images can do wonders for your site. They can help you attract shoppers, rank higher on Google, and even reduce your site’s loading time. Basically, including good-quality images can totally change your game in the digital world. 

So how do you optimate images for the web, and where do you start? Continue reading this guide to find out!

Understanding Image Optimization

Before we dive deeper into steps on optimizing images, let’s define what image optimization is. 

Image optimization is all about image file size reduction. That is, of course, considering you don’t sacrifice the quality of the photo. One of the most significant benefits of optimizing your images is to reduce your website’s load time. 

You may think it’s complex, but it’s not. Optimizing images has become more accessible today. Let’s thank the countless image optimizers, tools, and plugins everywhere. These tools can help you compress your web images by at most 80% without compromising quality. 

So how does this work? Image optimization involves a compression technology like “Lossless” or “Lossy.” The said technology will reduce the overall image file size without a noticeable quality loss. 

Benefits of Image Optimization

A study by HTTP Archive revealed that images contribute to more than 21% of a site’s weight. Photos are more significant than your site’s fonts and scripts. And image optimization is easy and fast to implement. But most website owners don’t give it much importance. 

Optimizing your photos on your site has several benefits than you know. Here are its best advantages:

  • Make your website pages load faster, preventing visitors from getting tired of waiting.
  • Can help improve your website’s SEO and rank higher on search engines
  • You can create backups faster and without a hassle.
  • Because file sizes are smaller, they will use lower bandwidths.
  • Optimized images need less space on your server storage. 
  • Improves user experience and customer engagement because your site will look more modern

Successful Strategies for Image Optimization

Every business owner should prioritize optimizing the images on their website. And to help you out, here are some of the most successful strategies you should use. 

Descriptive Image Names in Plain Language

Images also deal with SEO. Search engines don’t just hunt texts and articles on your webpage. They also crawl the file names you choose for your web images. And one way to optimize your images is to name them using relevant keywords. 

These keywords can also help your site to rank well on search engines. The key to good image optimization is creating keyword-rich and descriptive file names for your photos. 

Let’s say you’re using your DSLR to shoot your web images. We totally get how easier it is to retain their file names assigned by your camera. But, always think about the image SEO. Don’t forget that users also search for images on the web using valuable keywords and phrases. 

You can also determine keywords your customers follow and search for through website analytics. Based on what you find out, use them to name your web photos. 

But if you’re not a fan of going through your website analytics, always go for helpful and relevant keywords when renaming your photos. Descriptive words work too! 

Alt Attributes Optimization

So, what are alt attributes? They’re alternative texts to your images when your browser cannot render them properly. And they are also important for web accessibility. 

Moreover, you can also see alt attribute texts when hovering over rendered images. But this would depend on the settings of your browser. 

How important are the alt attributes? Like image names, they can also help with your site’s SEO value. When you add relevant keywords to your alt attributes, you’re also helping your website rank higher. 

In fact, if you own an eCommerce store, alt attribute texts can help your products show up frequently in Google Image Search. To help you further, here are helpful tips for creating alt attribute texts:

  • Use plain language in describing your images.
  • Include serial or model numbers on your products if there are any.
  • Don’t overstuff alt attributes with keywords.
  • Don’t over-optimize decorative images by avoiding alt attributes.

Moreover, you should check your webpage regularly. View its source and check all alt attributes. Always make sure that they are correctly filled out. 

Setting Up Product Angles and Image Dimensions

When you’re selling products online, it’s common for you to want to show several product angles. Doing this is the best way for interested buyers to see all the features. You want to have different shots, such as the following:

  • The overall product shot
  • Zoomed in shots for more details

With different product angles, it’s best that each angle shot has a specific alt attribute. What you can do is use your base alt attribute and add more descriptions. This can help more searchers land on your site. 

Also, we know you want to include more views for your audience to appreciate your products. While doing this can improve your site’s user experience, you should still be careful.

If that’s the case, never place huge images on your website and then shrink the dimensions on the source code. Or else, you’re increasing your site’s load time because of the large image file size.

A better way to address large images is to compress them. Then, provide another option for users to view a bigger image through a separate webpage or a pop-up. 

Image File Size Reduction

About 50% of consumers leave an eCommerce site that takes more than three seconds to load. And the average load time for web pages continues to increase globally. 

If you want to reach more customers, slow page load time should never be your goal! Here’s the thing, the larger your image file sizes are, the longer your website will load. Except when you use Shopify for your store, it will compress the images automatically. 

What you can do is decrease the image file sizes on your webpage. This will help with making your page load faster in seconds. 

Your next question probably is: What’s the ideal image file size? Images on the eCommerce store should have below 70 kb for their file sizes. But we know it’s easier said than done. 

Fortunately, several image optimizer tools are now accessible for compressing image file sizes. These include the following:

  • Adobe Photoshop
  • JPEG Mini
  • GIMP
  • TinyPNG
  • ImageOptim

Choose The Ideal Image File Size Type

The most common file size types for images posted on your site are PNG, GIF, and JPEG. 


PNG is generally a lossless image format. It can produce high-quality photos but in larger sizes. It’s a great alternative to GIFs because PNG can support more color options. Plus, PNG photos don’t degrade with multiple resaving. 

JPEG (.jpg)

JPEG is one of the oldest file types for images. In fact, it has become the standard image file type on the internet. 

The best thing about JPEG is that it allows considerable compression. And it won’t compromise the image quality. 


GIF uses 256 colors only. And this file type produces lower quality images compared to JPEG and PNG. That’s why GIF is only used for simpler images, like logos and decorative photos. But you can also use this to support animation. 

For image optimization, GIFs are better for simple and plain images on web pages with few colors. 

Useful Tips

Now that you know the main file types for images on web pages, here are useful tips to remember:

  • JPEG is your best option, especially when running an eCommerce store. It gives you the best-quality images in the smallest size. 
  • Don’t use GIFs for large images. 
  • PNGs are great alternatives to GIFs and JPEGs. 

Don’t Forget Your Thumbnails

Most eCommerce stores use thumbnail images. They work best at showcasing your products. 

But you must be aware that thumbnails are silent killers. They can make your page load slower, driving customers away. 

So, what actions should you undertake? For starters, you should make thumbnail file sizes small, even though the image quality will be compromised. This can enhance the overall impact of your site’s thumbnails.

It also helps when all your alt attribute texts are different. This prevents your thumbnails from being indexed rather than the larger images on your web page.

The Caching Technique

Caching makes serving content faster. This technique stores image files through a browser cache or a proxy server. Through browser-side caching, application and download requests are significantly reduced. 

The caching technique establishes storage for web images on various point of presence servers. These servers are then distributed all over the world.

Depending on your location, photos are served from the nearest server. The caching technique can greatly speed up page load times. 

Image cashing services are also a thing. They can also speed up your website’s loading time by creating cached tiles distributed for images. 

The image caching service is responsible for preprocesses done on your web images. And it’s a common technique for status images such as low-performance formats and backgrounds. 

Final Thoughts

Now, you’ve got all the tips you need for successful image optimization. Remember that optimized images cannot only reduce your page load time but improve your SEO ranking as well. 

Follow everything in this guide, and your eCommerce store is on its way to success. 

If you need good SEO for your web content, CJ Content Co is your best bet. Check them out today to know more. 

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