Technology offers several free ways for building a web presence and creating buzz for your practice. But figuring out how and where to spend your time and money to maximize your ROI (return on investment) requires some planning.
Last week I sent you some helpful tips on Google My Business (you can find a recap on our blog here). Today, let’s focus on Google Image Search, another free tool from our friends at Google.
Google Image Search
I don’t think I need to remind you it’s a visual world we’re living in! Today’s consumers are more engaged with visual content over text. When people search through Google (or any other search engine) the Search Engine Results Page (SERP) is divided into sections – map listings, video results, and image results. You can win far more in image search as the space may not be as crowded as a regular search. Many savvy ODs have created user-generated photos by encouraging selfies with glasses and check-ins to spread the word through visual content. According to a 2017 study by Mavrck, user generated content is 7x more likely to create more engagement, and hence more exposure of your practice to new patients.
There are several places where you can post photos so they may appear in search results – Your Google My Business page, Facebook Page, Yelp, Instagram (publish once through Instagram and syndicate to Flickr, Facebook, Twitter & Tumblr), etc. We built a platform where you can post one image to your social networks and 70 other directories, as easy as 1-2-3. If you have not already done this, definitely request a demo of the Surefire Cloud (simply reply to this email and I’ll make it happen). Photos also carry geotags and location information and can add to the location information for your practice. If you take a photo of your practice and add it to your Google My Business page or Yelp. You are also adding metadata about your practices’ location. You now have a better chance when your neighbor’s search for ‘Eye doctor near me” by adding more relevant local content.
How to add your image to Google through your website?
Add images to your website: When people visit your website they would love to see a preview of the experience they will get upon arrival. Do you have a well-designed reception, great variety of eyeglasses, the latest equipment? Here is advice directly from Google about images.
1. Include descriptive text. Include text somewhere near the image, like an “alt” tag or a caption. This helps Google understand what the image is showing and what searches it relates to. While placing the images add descriptive titles and captions to your images.
2. Use the name of the image to your advantage: The filename can give Google clues about the subject matter of the image. Try to make your filename a good description of the subject matter of the image. For example, my-new-black-kitten.jpg is a lot more informative than IMG00023.JPG. Descriptive file names can also be useful to users: If we’re unable to find suitable text in the page on which we found the image, we’ll use the filename as the image’s snippet in our search results.
3. Create a descriptive “alt” attribute: The alt attribute is used to describe the contents of an image file. This is done while uploading the image to the website. It’s important for several reasons: It provides Google with useful information about the subject matter of the image. We use this information to help determine the best image to return for a user’s query. Many people—for example, users with visual impairments, or people using screen readers or who have low-bandwidth connections—may not be able to see images on web pages. Descriptive alt text provides these users with important information.
4. Upload high-quality photos. Great image content is an excellent way to build traffic to your site.
5. Linking images. if your images link to a resource or another page of your website, you could be descriptive about the text on the link.
If you are a Surefire Local customer we take care of the optimization for you. Set a goal for adding images to the web, about 5-8 per month (happy customers, new styles of eyeglasses, etc.) You can syndicate images by posting them on your website and then sharing them on social websites.
I will be back next week with more tips on using other Google tools. In the meantime, do you use Google Photos?