Best SEO for GIFS: How to Rank a GIF

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Did you know there are more than 600 million websites on the internet? So no matter your industry, you’re going up against a ton of competition.

For this reason, it’s a good idea to stay on top of the latest digital marketing trends. One of these right now is including GIFs on your website, especially if you market to a younger crowd.

But simply including a GIF isn’t enough. You need to optimize it so it will show up in Google search results.

That’s why we’ve put together this guide outlining the top ways to optimize your site’s GIFs. Keep reading for the best SEO practice for GIFs.

The Facts About How  Giphy’s Algorithm Works And WTF Is Gif Seo?

The GIF (graphics interchange format) format was originally established in 1987. Debuted by Steve Wilhite of CompuServe, GIFs improved on the black-and-white images in use throughout that time by permitting the use of 256 colors while preserving a compressed format that might still be packed by those making use of sluggish modems.

And to this day, little has actually altered regarding GIFs. Due to its simplicity, the prevalent support for this format, and the ease with which it can be used to stream video clips, This frame animation feature of GIFs ensures that the format remains popular, in spite of the increase of JPEG and PNG images.

If you are using GIFs on your sites, it’s crucial that you take care to enhance your GIFs so that they do not develop excessive overhead. This article will cover methods to optimize your GIFs, both fixed and animated, and will use an excellent alternative you can utilize to remove the page bloat arising from use of GIFs as animation.

While they are exceptional for capturing your user’s attention and are widely liked for supplying short bursts of details in an entertaining method, GIFs were not developed for animation (regardless of them being frequently utilized for such). As such, use of GIFs results in heavy page weights and poor user experiences arising from sluggish page load speeds.

Some Known Factual Statements About Image Optimization For Seo:

We’ll initially dig into methods to handle static GIFs, and we’ll end by going over methods to reduce the overhead arising from animated GIFs. One of the main approaches for optimizing GIFs is to compress them. There are two techniques of compression that are commonly used: Lossy compression removes some of the information from the original file, leading to an image with a lowered file size.

Lossless compression preserves all of the data from the initial file, which suggests that the compressed file can be uncompressed to gain the initial file. While your file size stays bigger than if you had utilized lossy compression, your image’s quality does not deteriorate with time. In the future in this post, we’ll cover the impact of both kinds of optimization on GIFs.

While the 2 formats are really similar in terms of being great options for displaying simple graphics, PNG files have the benefit of having the ability to compress to a size 525% smaller sized than the comparable GIF file. GIFs were initially created to use a lossless compression method called the Lempel-Ziv-Welch (LZW) algorithm, which was specified in the 1970s.

Such file format conversions are quite simple to do, and there are an abundance of software choices you can pick from, including totally free web-based utilities such as the ones from Picture. io and Convertio. Animated GIFs, while exceptionally popular, can be big files that need lengthy load times. For example, a GIF that is just a few seconds long can be a couple of megabytes in size.

The 10-Second Trick For How To Optimize Your Gifs On Giphy – Smallbizclub

Lossy optimizations work because the human eye does not do an excellent job at distinguishing between subtle changes in color. For instance, an image might contain countless shades of one color, with one pixel revealing as only somewhat various from the ones next to it. Since your eye will not have the ability to separate in between the two tones, the image file can quickly be controlled: Among the colors changes the other, making the file smaller.

By making each private file smaller, your overall file is smaller sized also. One way you can do this is by utilizing a basic software application suite that can immediately carry out such compressions (such as a modified version of gifsicle). While you can minimize the size of an animated GIF, you might still wind up with a file that is larger than it requires to be.

Today, nevertheless, we have another alternative that could possibly make your GIFs approximately 95% smaller: transforming your animated GIFs to HTML5 video. HTML5 video is a catch-all term for a modern-day web browser’s capability to play video content utilizing the tag without needing to use external plugins. When this function was very first released in 2009, there was a great deal of argument over how such videos would be stored and how they would be encoded.

In addition to looking a lot better due to its being created to stream video, MP4 files are much smaller as well: Over 90% of contemporary web browsers support MP4 videos. There are many methods to transform your animated GIF to MP4, such as the popular open-source command-line tool ffmpeg and the web-based utility Cloud Convert.

Let’s Gif It On: Gifs And Seo – Zmags

Here’s the initial animated GIF: Here is the MP4 video that’s developed from the GIF: Unfortunately, your internet browser does not support the video tag. This is a smooth MP4 video of the above GIF, which features Oaken from Disney’s Frozen. Looking at the sizes of the files, we see that the original was 100 KB.

Regardless of these positive functions, GIFs tend to be large files, resulting in page bloat that can negatively affect the efficiency of your web pages and lead to poor user experiences. As such, you ought to consider major optimization of static GIFs, moving far from animated GIFs, and carrying out video clips utilizing more modern techniques such as HTML5/MP4 videos.

Possibilities are if you’re reading this, you understand some basics about SEO, or you wish to find out more about how it can help your website get more traffic and help you make more cash. Today, I ‘d like to speak to you about a different type of search engine the GIF search engine.

GIPHY is the most significant GIF online search engine, and it’s in fact the second biggest online search engine in the world in regards to total searches, only behind Google. GIPHY serves over 10 billion GIFs each day across messaging and social media apps. Google purchased Tenor, another popular search engine in March 2018, though the purchase price wasn’t disclosed.

The Single Strategy To Use For Image Optimization For Seo:

If you can develop and optimize GIF content to rank for keywords that are significant for your brand name, Then you increase the probability of your content being seen and shared across social media apps and messaging. With that would come hundreds of millions of meaningful brand name impressions. GIFs work as a marketing channel best for Consumer Brands as the main metric to prove roi is “views” and the success is determined in expense per thousand impressions (CPMs).

It is a kind of animated image format. You can likewise utilize them to make still images but this format has a special function not discovered in other image formats. You can utilize it to create animated images like the one shown listed below. (Yes, I browsed GIPHY to find it.

They do not have sound and the format wasn’t created for animations however that’s how things worked out. They work because they can hold several images at when and individuals recognize they could load the images sequentially like a flipbook if they’re deciphered a certain way. The format itself was released by CompuServe in 1987 and got its last update in 1989 making it older than about 35% of the US population.

GIFs are becoming popular since they are like means and work for interacting ideas, jokes, and feelings. They work to reveal yourself in a manner that cap locks, emojis, and punctuation just can’t. The most popular GIFs are response GIFs that communicate emotions that are generally utilized in conversations.

The Ultimate Guide To How To Optimize Your Gifs On Giphy – Smallbizclub

GIPHY and Tenor have their own sites and mobile apps. This allows users on the web and mobile to look for in share GIFs. Each platform also has its own application programs user interface (API) and software application advancement kit (SDK) that are integrated with nearly every social media platform and messaging app.

GEO, like SEO, is the procedure of creating and enhancing content to rank highly in organic search results page on a GIF search engine. GIF search engines, like Google, wish to supply their into users with the best possible experience by providing the proper answer to their query as quickly as possible.

GIF online search engine like Tenor and GIPHY works in much the very same way. When are user searches for a keyword, GIPHY serves the user a feed of GIFs to choose from based upon what it considers the most appropriate content. GEO consists of: Looking into keywords appropriate to your brand that have high search volumes and low competitors At this stage, you plan and develop your content to rank for particular long-lasting keywords that are significant to your brand.

Don’t Forget to Work on the Alt Text

When you have an image on your site, Google’s bots aren’t able to see what the image looks like. They can process your body copy and headline, but not the visual components.

Because of this, alt text was created. This is copy that accompanies images.

It shows up in case your images have a hard time loading. Another use case is for the visually impaired. In these cases, a screen reader can process the alt text so the user knows what the image includes

And alt text is also super helpful to Google’s bots because it lets them know exactly what your image depicts. This great for on page SEO for ecommerce brands

Make sure you include relevant alt text for each of your GIFs. Use the primary keyword for the page and some descriptive text about the GIF itself.

When you do this properly, Google will have an easier time understanding what your pages are about, resulting in higher rankings above your competitors.

Customize the Filename

Another important component of best SEO practice for GIFs? The filename.

This is a tip that seems so simple, but many people forget about it. It’s easy to overlook. It also helps with YouTube Video Marketing 

Often, this is because while it’s easy, you have to think about it before you upload your images to your website. Take a few minutes before uploading your GIFs to customize their filenames.

Include one of the target keywords for that page and other relevant information about the picture.

It’s true that most visitors will never see this part of the picture, but search engines will. And the more that a search engine can learn about your page, the better it will rank.

Resize Your File Without Losing Quality

It’s simple: large image files are one of the biggest culprits when it comes to slow site speed. And it’s often a pretty easy fix.

Why does site speed matter? It’s a huge factor when it comes to your page’s ranking. Here’s why.

Google’s goal is to provide its users with the best experience possible. And this means giving them accurate information as quickly as possible. So if your website is slow, this means people will have a negative experience, which causes Google to rank your website below faster sites.

Before uploading gifs, take the time to resize them. It really will pay off.

If you have access to the Adobe Suite, it’s easy to resize your GIFs using Photoshop. There are also free online tools like Pixlr and PicMonkey that make it simple to compress your files.

But just make sure you don’t compress your image too much. This will make it blurry, pixelated, and low quality. It’s all about finding the balance between size and image quality.

It might take a few test runs, so try a few different sizes and see what works best for you.

Don’t Forget Captions

Like we talked about earlier, Google’s site crawlers can only process text, not images. So for this reason, it’s crucial that you do whatever you can to let Google know what your pictures are about.

Another great way to do this is through image captions. So as you add GIFs to your site, be sure to add captions with them too.

Typically, this is the text that appears below the image that describes what the picture is.

It’s also beneficial from a user experience perspective as well. As people are skimming your site, it’s common for them to not read every paragraph.

But when they get to a picture, video, or GIF, their eyes will go there and chances are, they’ll read the quick caption as well.

Host Your Own Images

Last but not least, host your own image files. It will save you a bunch of headaches.

As you probably know, there are lots of sites out there that allow you to host your images on their servers. These include Postimage, Imgur, and many others.

While these can be appealing, they’re not worth the risk.

They’re nice because they can save space on your site, improving load time. But what if the hosting servers get a ton of traffic and crash?

These means all of the images on your site will become broken links, providing a terrible customer experience.

To avoid this, always use your own servers to host your pictures and GIFs. We prefer and a Cloudflare CDN.

Best SEO Practice for GIFs

Now that you’ve read through these best SEO practice for GIFs, it’s time to put them to use. Take these principles and apply them as you’re including GIFs on your website.

You’ll enjoy better SEO rankings, resulting in increased traffic, leads, and hopefully sales. With a few simple tweaks and changes, your pages can quickly see a great improvement in ranking.

Have questions or want to learn more? Keep browsing our blog for more SEO tips and tricks.

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Jared Bauman

Jared Bauman is the Co-Founder of 201 Creative, and is a 20+ year entrepreneur who has started and sold several companies. He is the host of the popular Niche Pursuits podcast and a contributing author to Search Engine Land.