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Image ALT Text + EXIF, XMP, and IPTC data for SEO?

Discussion in 'White Hat SEO' started by aDeeznutsense, Aug 10, 2017.

  1. aDeeznutsense

    aDeeznutsense Newbie

    Aug 10, 2017
    Likes Received:
    Part-Time Mall Santa
    Where The Wild Things Are
    I did an experiment on one of my old site's and have a theory that is contrary to popular belief.

    Firstly, as I have read and have been told - Photographic Metadata (such as EXIF, XMP, and IPTC) contained within images is not used directly by search engines for SEO or otherwise.

    I disagree with this to an extent, and maybe I am onto something here or maybe I am just wasting my time and everyone elses, but I have marginal proof that Photo metadata, if done correctly, will get your image/product/site to show in the first page of a G search, or at the very least the first page of a G image search.

    Here's what I was doing first: Just uploading my image's to my site, sometimes changing the alt text, sometimes just leaving it as is.
    Results: Poor rankings, never showed up in any image search within the first 1-100 images.

    Here's what I did/changed (for every image on my site):
    Firstly I utilized the organizational features of Adobe Bridge, which is a digital asset management application and I believe it comes packed in with Photoshop on the Creative Cloud. From there I mimicked my website structure with the corresponding page(s) images and organized it as if the folders/new folders were the links on my site. Once I got all of that out of the way, I changed each of the file names of the images to follow the same scheme, no matter if it was an icon or a header image, or a product picture or what. I also made sure that each page had the same file extension/image type.

    About 95% of my images were .jpeg to begin with, however there were a few transparent .png and a couple animated .gif's that you can't really do anything about. So, whatever page those anomaly files were on, I converted every other image on that page to that format regardless of how it would be used.
    In addition, I made sure that every image was the same size or size ratio as it's counterparts.
    ex: Product images were all 600X600, icons were all 200X200, and so on and so forth.

    The File naming scheme was this -
    Products: BrandName_Name(orUPC)_Optionvariant_01
    Ex: Nike_Shirt_Black_01.......Nike_Shirt_Black_02.......etc...

    From there created profiles for each image type with regard's to its use, in the metadata editor.
    In every category/option I pointed the image to either reflect the product that was being sold, the image subject, the keyword I was using for the image, or the http:// link to my website.

    Depending on the selected file, the following types of metadata will show up:

    File Properties
    Describes the characteristics of the file, including the size, creation date, and modification date.

    IPTC (IIM, Legacy)
    Displays editable metadata such as a description and copyright information. This set of metadata is hidden by default because IPTC Core supersedes it. However, you can display IPTC (IIM, legacy) metadata by selecting it from the Metadata options in the Preferences dialog box.

    IPTC Core
    Displays editable metadata about the file. The IPTC Core specification was developed by the International Press Telecommunications Council (IPTC) for professional photography, especially news and stock photos.

    IPTC Extension
    Includes additional identifying information about photo content, including rights-related details.

    Lists the fonts used in Adobe InDesign files.

    Linked Files
    Lists files that are linked to an Adobe InDesign document.

    Lists CMYK plates specified for printing in Adobe Illustrator files.

    Document Swatches
    List the swatches used in Adobe InDesign and Adobe Illustrator files.

    Camera Data (Exif)
    Displays information assigned by digital cameras, including the camera settings used when the image was taken.

    Displays navigational information from a global positioning system (GPS) available in some digital cameras. Photos without GPS information don’t have GPS metadata.

    Camera Raw
    Displays settings applied by the Camera Raw plug-in.

    Displays metadata for audio files, including artist, album, track number, and genre.

    Displays metadata for video files, including pixel aspect ratio, scene, and shot.

    Edit History
    Keeps a log of changes made to images with Photoshop.

    Displays information about images saved in the Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) format.

    Mobile SWF
    Lists information about SWF files, including title, author, description, and copyright.

    While most of those are obscure, if I could manipulate the data to relate/point to my product or site - I did.

    Next, I uploaded my images to Google Photo's to host and utilized them via html or whatever way I could that functioned best for its specific purpose.
    Once everything was tweaked/fixed so that it all corresponded and functioned properly, I let google do the rest and followed the same process as you would when first submitting a site to google (as far as indexing goes).

    Time passed...


    Then suddenly it was like someone flipped on a light switch to my website. Organic Traffic was higher than it ever had been before, orders were being placed, phone's were ringing and e-mails were coming in significantly higher than it did before. When you searched for even the most basic, item related keyword for my product's/content, I was first page regardless of variable's in the search terms. Image search was showing at #2 , #3, #5... with my secondary images for whatever the content was, in the top 10-15.

    So my theory is that Image ALT Text + EXIF, XMP, and IPTC data for SEO - like anything else, won't be the breadwinner for your website alone. But if used in conjunction with solid organization and seamless application, that data is the difference maker between you and 99% of the competition in Google's eyes.

    Surely it all depend's on what Niche you are involved in and what competition you are up against. But the market I was in is on the larger end, and has a significant number of multi-tiered corporations bombarding the consumer with cheese all day long. But, this is the cheddar and has worked in my favor significantly since.

    Feel free to voice your opinions or correct me on anything, I don't know my ass from a hole in the ground when it comes to SEO, and should be considered a newby at best.