SEO for Authors Part6 - Image Optimization

In Part 6 of SEO and the Author Series, we'll learn that SEO doesn’t stop at text, it’s a part of everything you do online, including your images.

While the search engines can’t READ an image (not yet), you are able to provide that image with keywords and a description in WordPress. It’s this optimization that gives the search engines more details about your post.

Unfortunately, Blogger doesn’t have this capability and I’m not sure which of the other free website hosting platforms do or don’t.

So, this article will deal with WordPress.

The first step – finding an image.

The first thing you want to do is find an image that is perfect for your blogpost. When finding an image, be sure it’s royalty free, public domain, and/or creative commons.

Sites that offer free images include:

You’ll also want to get images that are ‘free for commercial use’ and possibly with ‘no attribution required’ (this is a personal preference).

For much more information on finding and using images, go to:
Where to Find Royalty Free Images

Please note – you need to read the information on these sites to determine for yourself if the images are royalty free and FREE to download.

The penalties for accidently using a copyrighted image without permission can be steep, so be careful.

Creating your own images. 

I create about 95% of my own images, including my website header and social media banners. For the other 5 percent, I buy images from BigStockPhoto.

I started creating my own images a few years ago because I read an article about how two savvy sites were hit with penalties . . . in the thousands.

Here are the articles:

Bloggers Beware: You CAN Get Sued For Using Pics on Your Blog - My Story

(Read the comments also for tips on safe images)

How using Google Images can cost you $8,000

I figured if they could make a mistake like that, I didn’t want to risk it. So, I attended a webinar for Logo Creator software and became hooked.

I even created an image using the software to sell on BigStockPhoto. I love creating images and when I have the time, I’ll get more up there.

The second step – optimizing the image.

1. Image optimization begins with the filename you give the image when you save it to your computer library.

It’s needs to be keyword effective.

So, when I created the Image for this post, I titled it SEO3.

I should have titled it SEO and the Author. But, I’m always in a rush and I have two earlier SEO images titled SEO1 and SEO2.

2. Next, you will upload the image to your website - WordPress or other content management system (CMS).

- Go to your Dashboard then to your Media File.

- Click on Add New.

- Click on Select Files.
- Find the file you saved and upload it.

3. Once you upload the image, you’ll be brought to an optimization page.

If you’re not automatically brought to the optimization page, click on the image and it’ll take you there.

This is what you should see:

If you notice, I filled in the Alt Text and the Description. This is how you optimize your image.

Note: I should have created a more keyword effective title when I created and saved the image to my laptop.

I might have used Not All Blogging Content is the Same.

The reason you want to create a keyword effective title for your image from the get-go is because that’s what WordPress will use as the title it gives the image in your WP Media File.

This is basic image optimization.


Royalty free – copyrighted images that are free of royalties or license fees.
Public domain – Images created in the U.S. prior to 1923.
Creative commons – copyrighted images that under the creative commons license are free to use commercially. You can modify and build upon these images.
Free for commercial use – you can use these images for any kind of business purpose.
Attribution required – you must give credit to the author and the site that’s offering the image.


Karen Cioffi is an award-winning children’s author and children’s ghostwriter and rewriter. She is also the founder and editor-in-chief of Writers on the Move and author online platform instructor with WOW! Women on Writing.

If you need help with your author platform, check out Karen's e-classes through WOW:


Karen Cioffi said...

Hope you find this post helpful in your book marketing efforts!

Carolyn Howard-Johnson said...

Well, you've succeeded in scaring the beejeebees out of me. Up til now, I have solved the problem by not using an image (shame!) or by using images of my own photos--just simple ones of my how-to book covers, my headshot, etc. That is, I use them when is in the mood to accept them! Ahem!

Karen Cioffi said...

Carolyn, LOL. Being kind of scared is good in this case. Using copyright free images is essential. But, using your own photos is a great way around this. And, you don't have to worry about optimizing images on Blogger - they don't have this feature!

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