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Image Naming Conventions | Tips and Importance for SEO

Last Updated : 15 Nov, 2023
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Image Naming Conventions for SEO refers to the way we name pictures on websites to help them show up in search engines. By naming images with clear, specific words that describe what’s in the picture, we improve the chances of people finding them online. This involves naming files clearly and concisely rather than ambiguously, such as “IMG_001.jpg,” using names like “red-apple.jpg.” A website’s exposure in searches is increased by selecting appropriate names and adhering to particular guidelines, making it easier for people to discover and use those images.

Why are Image Names Important for SEO?

Image names are important for SEO because search engines like Google use them to understand what images show. When you name images with specific words that describe what’s in the picture, it helps search engines figure out what the images are about. This means when someone searches for something related to your image, there’s a better chance they’ll find it if you’ve named it well. Using clear names also makes it easier for people to know what the images are without actually looking at them. This helps your website show up more in searches, making it easier for everyone to find and use your images.

  • Improved image search rankings: You assist search engines in understanding the content of the pictures by including appropriate search terms in the titles of your images. By doing this, you may raise the ranking of your pictures in image search results, increasing website traffic.
  • Better user experience: It is simpler for visitors to locate the pictures they are seeking for when you utilize descriptive image titles. You may improve user experience and encourage people to visit your website more often by doing this.
  • Increased engagement: Utilising descriptive picture titles increases the likelihood that viewers will click on your photos. This may result in more people engaging with your content, which will aid in achieving of your marketing objectives.

Why Does the Image Name Affect SEO?

Because search engines cannot “see” photographs the way humans can, the name of an image has an impact on SEO. When you name an image with words that describe what it shows, search engines understand it better. This helps them show the image in searches when people look for something similar. If your image has a good name, it’s more likely to appear in search results. Therefore, giving your photographs descriptive names makes it easier for search engines to understand what they are about and increases the visibility of your website for image searches.

Effective image naming may boost search engine visibility by giving search engines context about the image’s content, which improves the overall relevancy and discoverability of web page content.

Tips of Image Naming Conventions for SEO

1. Descriptive Filenames:

Descriptive filenames are names you give to your pictures that tell people what the image is about. Instead of using generic names like “IMG_001.jpg” that don’t explain anything, it’s better to use specific names like “beach-sunset.jpg” if the picture is of a sunset at the beach. These names should be comprehensible and relevant to the image’s content; they should employ words that convey the image’s meaning. When you give images these kinds of names, it helps search engines like Google understand what the picture shows. This means when someone looks for a specific image, they have a better chance of finding yours if you’ve named it well. Not only may descriptive filenames help search engines display your photos more easily, but they also make it easier for website visitors to figure out what these images are without having to view them. This way, descriptive filenames play a crucial role in making your website more user-friendly and discoverable.

2. Hyphens Over Underscores:

When you’re naming your image files, it’s better to use hyphens (-) instead of underscores (_) between words.The hyphens divide the words in a filename such as “mountain-view-sunset.jpg,” for instance. Using hyphens helps search engines like Google read the name better. Because they interpret the hyphen as a gap between words, it is simpler for them to comprehend the subject matter of the image. If you use underscores, like in “mountain_view_sunset.jpg,” search engines might not recognize the separate words, and the file name might look like one long word to them. This could make it harder for search engines to figure out what’s in the image. By using hyphens, you’re making it simpler for search engines to read and display your images, improving the chances of your pictures showing up in relevant searches. It’s a small change but can have a big impact on how easily people can find your images on the internet.

3. Avoid Generic Names:

It’s important to avoid using common or uninformative names for your image files. Instead of names like “pic123.jpg” or “image1.png,” go for names that explain what the picture is about. For example, if the image is of a cat, name it “cute-tabby-cat.jpg” instead of something vague. It is easier for search engines and users to grasp what is in the picture without actually seeing it when titles are clear and explicit. When you use generic names, it’s harder for search engines to know what the image shows, and they might not show it to people searching for that particular thing. By using descriptive names, you increase the chances of your images appearing in searches related to their content. This not only helps your pictures get noticed but also makes your website more user-friendly. People can understand what the images are about just by looking at their names, without needing to open them. So, giving your images descriptive names is a smart way to improve your website’s visibility and make it easier for everyone to find and use your images.

4. Keep It Concise:

When you’re naming your image files, it’s good to keep the names short and to the point. Choose names that are straightforward, concise, and accurately depict the image rather than ones that are lengthy and complex. For instance, rather than using a name like “beautiful-sunset-over-the-horizon-at-beach.jpg,” you can use “sunset-beach-view.jpg.” Shorter names are easier for people to read and remember. They also help search engines quickly understand what the image is about. Long names can be hard to manage and might not display properly in certain places. You can help search engines and users alike understand what’s in the image without having to look at it by giving the names succinct but informative titles. Because the name is short and to the point, it will be more likely to appear when someone searches for anything associated with your photograph. So, using short and meaningful names for your images is a great way to make your website more user-friendly and boost the chances of your pictures showing up in searches.

5. Image Format and Extension:

When you save your pictures, it’s important to use the right type of file and its extension. File types like JPG, PNG, or GIF are common and work well for images. These different formats have their own benefits. For example, JPG files work well for photos because they maintain the quality of the colours while maintaining a modest file size. PNG files are great for images that need transparent backgrounds or higher quality. GIFs are used for simple animations or images with fewer colors. The file extension, such as “.jpg” or “.png,” identifies the sort of file that is on the computer. When the format and extension match the image content, it helps search engines understand the picture better. It makes sure the picture shows up appropriately when someone searches for a related term. Choosing the right format and extension for your images is crucial for making sure they look good and are easy to find online. This way, your pictures can stand out and show up the way they should in search results, making it easier for people to discover and use them.

6. Contextual Relevance:

Contextual relevance means making sure the names of your images match the content or topic they’re related to. If your website talks about travel and you have pictures of famous landmarks, it’s smart to name those images with details that connect to the specific place or scene. For example, if there’s a picture of the Eiffel Tower in Paris, a name like “paris-eiffel-tower.jpg” is very helpful. This kind of naming helps search engines and users alike understand the purpose of the image and its proper place on your page. When images have names that match the context of the website or the specific page they’re on, it improves the chances of those images appearing in related searches. It’s like guiding both visitors and search engines to understand how each picture fits into the larger story your website tells.

7. Consistency in Naming:

Consistency in naming your images means using a similar style for all your picture names across your website. Maintaining consistency in naming conventions, such as hyphenating words or selecting keywords, aids search engines in comprehending your material. For instance, if you name a picture “sunset-beach.jpg” on one page, keep using similar names for other similar images, like “sunrise-mountain.jpg.” This consistency helps search engines know what your pictures are about and how they relate to the information on your website. . When search engines see this uniformity in your image names, it can improve your website’s chances of being found in searches because it’s easier for them to understand and organize the images. Keeping a consistent naming pattern for your images is a simple but effective way to enhance your website’s overall visibility and organization.

8. Alt Text for Images:

“Alternative text,” or “alt text,” is a brief caption that is added to website photographs. It makes the visuals easier for those who are blind to grasp. When an image doesn’t load or if someone uses a screen reader due to visual impairment, the alt text describes what the image is about. For example, if there’s a photo of a cat, the alt text might say “Grey cat playing with a ball.” Including alt text not only assists visually impaired users in understanding your content but also helps search engines comprehend and index your images. When writing alt text, describe the image accurately but keep it concise. Your website’s accessibility and SEO may be enhanced by using pertinent keywords and maintaining the picture content in the alt text, which will make it simpler for users to comprehend and interact with your material.


In conclusion, giving images clear, specific names helps your website a lot. When you name pictures in a way that describes what they show, it’s easier for search engines to understand and show them in searches. Using simple and direct names, using the right file types, and keeping things consistent all contribute to making your website more visible and user-friendly. Don’t forget about adding alt text to help everyone understand your images, even if they can’t see them. By following these simple practices, you can boost your website’s chances of getting noticed and help more people find and enjoy your images. It’s a small effort that can make a big difference in how your website appears and how people engage with it.

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