Google has stated that a fast loading website is now a ranking factor for SEO.
What does this mean?
Basically Google likes to see fast loading pages, and gives a ranking preference to websites who have a faster loading time then others.
Your can boost your site speed by optimizing your images, decreasing the file size and as a last option switching to a faster hosting environment.
Here we are aiming to get a website loading in under 4 seconds. This is maximum amount of time you have to ensure your reader stays on your site and views your information.
Using a content delivery network for image optimization
What is a CDN?
A content delivery network is a network of servers that are situated around the world. Website owners can upload partial aspects of their website such as images to a CDN network, which will then accelerate the speed at which content is delivered to the end user.
For this example we are going to look at how you can optimize your images on a CDN to improve the loading speed of your blog.
This is one of the most popular CDN services we have found for Wordpress.
You can download this plugin and install it to your Wordpress website and connect your server to one of the most reliable CDN providers currently available.
Cloudflare also offers some other features you can use if you apply your domain name to their DNS.
CloudFlare is one of the most popular CDN services for WordPress. Besides its excellent CDN feature, the CloudFlare plugin offers other useful features like total protection from spammers and detailed information about the comments on your contents.
It providers performance improvements, security features, increased reliability and an insight into how your website performs in terms of speed. It basically protects you from things like spam attacks on your website.
With this plugin you can easily integrate the services of jsDeliver on your website. This is a service which provides a CDN to host all of your websites CSS, Website scripts and Image files in one place.
Compression for your websites image size
Here are a few more important image optimization factors that are important for Wordpress websites.
Quality Images: I know that you’re sick and tired of hearing about “quality images”.
Even though search engines have no direct way of determining quality, they have plenty of indirect methods, such as:
- Image size
- Image description
- Relevance to the webpage
- Image alt tags
In other words, great images definitely won’t hurt you. So there’s no reason NOT to publish awesome images every single time.
Once you have an image ready to be uploaded you can compress it even further with WPSmush.
Large image files may be slowing down your site and you may not even know it. This plugin will cut all of the unnecessary data without slowing down your site.
It can smush your image size when you upload your files or it can bulk smush them from the Wordpress media panel.
Adding Alt tags to your images
Alt tags are a way for the search engines to understand what your image is used for.
The text in the alt tag is displayed in place of the image if the image can not be shown or is taking too long to load. The alt tags is also used by browsers used by the visually impaired people, to tell them what is on the image.
It is best to use a high quality, related image for your posts. Use an alt tag which describes the image and choose a keyword related to your landing pages main focus keyword.
It may be best to talk with a search engine optimization company if you need further information on how to do keyword research and build a highly targeted landing page for search engine traffic.
How to easily allow users to share your images with social media
If you have a high amount of image on your website or blog post, why not get some social love and link backs by allowing users to easily share them.
This is a plugin that will show social media icons on hover the post images on your site.
This plugin has a few alignment features allowing you to select which social networks you would like to present to your users and where they should be seen.
This plugin currently supports Facebook, Twitter, Linked, Google+ and Pinterest.
By focusing on a few features such as image size a CDN and social sharing you can make a few minor tweaks to your website that will increase traffic and decrease your user bounce rate.