Automatic web image optimization
There are a number of tools that optimize images for websites. Most of them run on your web server and optimize images after you upload them.
But what if you could take images that are linked to product data in a database and automatically rename them using things like item description and SKU while you optimize them? This would give you additional search Engine Optimization benefits that you can't get from standard compression and web optimization tools.
Why is it important to optimize web images?
These days, when most of the things in life are happening online, it is extremely important to make sure that your web presence works well. And images are an invaluable asset to it.
On one side, images need to look pretty to attract audiences and customers, but they also need to be light enough to make sure that your page loads in less than 2 seconds, even on slower cellular networks.
More importantly, Google needs to be happy with the images you use. There is no need to upset the algorithm so that your page ends up at the bottom of the search results.
There are many ways you can optimize your images. Some of them include plugins on your website, but mostly it is manual work with each image individually. SimpleIndex offers you a way to optimize your web images AUTOMATICALLY!
Probably the most obvious and straightforward task is to make images lighter without losing quality. There are many online services or graphic design programs that will work for that. However, many of them are slowly processing images one by one, while SimpleIndex optimizes images through recompression in bulk quantities, any size of the folder at a time.
SimpleIndex also allows you to automatically resize your images to a standard width or height in pixels.
It also recompresses and changes the format of images to meet more web-friendly standards. By doing this before images are uploaded to the server, you can avoid sending file formats the server can't read, or press-ready image files that are 100 times bigger than they need to be.
Point it to a folder with all of your product images and SimpleIndex will process all of them at once, changing size, compressing images to make them lighter, and changing the image format to a more standard form, while retaining backup copies of the originals.
Names Matter, Too
When you are researching web image optimization, many sources mostly give advice on how to make your images lighter, how to resize them, or how to change their format. However, none of these tools can be used to rename your files automatically using Search Engine Optimized filenames.
For SEO purposes, it is very important that your image file name has a good description, includes keywords you want to use, and looks unique enough. Optimizing file names will give a significant boost compared to defaults like “image1.jpg” that confer no useful information. This will not only put your images at the top of related image searches, the keywords in the filenames also boost the rank of your page in the main search results.
Many programs that help people with disabilities (who cannot see very well) access web pages automatically read the content of your pages and will just say “image1.jpg”. It would be so much better if an image had a descriptive name instead. Accessibility has been an important and growing part of any SEO since 2021. Changing the filenames of your images will give you a boost on the accessibility front and points for better page ranking.
Changing file names, unfortunately, is mostly done manually and is a very tedious process. But with SimpleIndex, you can change image file names automatically!
Let's look at a common example workflow:
- Vendor provides a spreadsheet with a list of product SKUs, descriptions, and associated image files. However, the files are named with arbitrary names like 0001.jpg or Image1.png, etc.
- Product data is loaded into a master database with data from multiple vendors and references to the provided image filenames.
- SimpleIndex imports the images from a folder, then looks up the matching product record in the master database to get the SKU, description, and other details.
- SimpleIndex renames the image using a designated file naming scheme, such as BrandName_SKU_Description.jpg
- Filenames are automatically normalized to remove any special characters not allowed by the webserver. Long descriptions are
- SimpleIndex updates the database record to reflect the new filenames so the link is maintained.
- Product data is exported from the master database to the storefront, now with SEO image filenames.