Google Authorship markup for Google Images | RankWise

Google Authorship markup for Google Images

Images that are part of your content for which you have applied authorship markup will be indexed by Google Search and added to your body of work as an author. Images for which authorship markup is applied are recognizable in Google Image Search by the byline in which it says ‘by AUTHOR NAME’. For example see the images provided with this post under the header example of an image search SERP result. When we reason that all content that has authorship markup has some influence on Author Rank then we should be aware of this when using images. But can we use this to our advantage? The answer is: yes we can.

By providing the proper context for an image for the indexing by Google they become usable as an instrument for SEO that we can use as a meaningful instrument in our content strategy. If an image you have placed is relevant for your area of authority, is popular and for example has a high click through ratio then this will add to your authority. To give an image relevant context we need to provide well thought through texts for:

  • The image file name;
  • The image title;
  • The caption;
  • The ALT text;
  • Provide Authorship markup;

Most content management and/or blog software offer the functionality to provide all of the above. If you are using a system (or no system) that does not provide this possibility then maybe you should consider using well known packages like WordPress or Drupal as they offer great SEO and authorship markup support.

If you do not own or have access too a website or something similar then you can use alternative free Google services like Blogger, Google Sites or Picasa. Google recommends these services in the above video but be aware that this is an older video that is still very usable for instructions on how to add images to Google Images. The video does not mention the newer and most effective Google product for publishing images which is Google+ and I recommend that you use it alongside the rest of the mentioned services as Google+ plays a substantial role in the Google Authorship concept and is part of the technology. I also recommend to share images on Google+ as it also contributes to a faster indexing of your content and images. More on this in an article to come.



Using Google Images and authorship markup as part of your content strategy

As part of your content strategy, you can choose to place images online that serve a marketing objective by itself when the image is found during a Google search. Of course this would only be the case as they are viewed by some part of our target groups for marketing or communication. This is also the reason why we should give some thought to choosing a suitable picture, and what it's context should be, when placing it as a standalone image or when it's part of an article or other web texts that we publish. We can place standalone images on the mentioned media or media like Pintrest or Instagram which attract high traffic volumes. The sort of pictures that are usable for this purpose. They should be of high quality and are for example: logos, images with strong branding value or images that are related things like to strong brands and famous or important names / concepts or people that we can link to our own brand in a way that is acceptable to Google and does not break copyright rules.

Example of an image search SERP result

This image has been placed by the author of this article (Daniel Mulder) on the Dutch sister blog of this blog as an example of an image with authorship markup. The original image, the hashtag image and not the screen grab for that image SERP result, can be found with a Google Image search on under the Dutch translation of "Effective use of hashtags on Google+".

Example of image SERP with Google Authorship markup

This is a relevant example here as you can see that this image also has been added to my authorship as it shows the line "by Daniel Mulder" showing also and that it is possible to get high relevant search results (SERP) if we put some effort and thought into it. The choice for and Dutch are part of my content strategy for author rank which I will elaborate on in an article that I will publish in the coming weeks.

The theory behind a content strategy with Google Images 

In above example you have seen some relatively simple but effective SEO results with Google Images by proving relevant context to those images. The thing that makes it easy to incorporate is that the context of the images was derived from the article that they where part of that of course was and still is relevant to the subject of the Dutch sister blog. As the Dutch blog is part of my Author rank content strategy I have already given careful thought to the total context of the blog post. I chose a high quality unique image that I made myself what is a screen grab made with office 365 One Note. Then I provided relevant context for the images by adding the appropriate texts for the image title, alt text and the description in WordPress as show in the following screen grab.

Worpress and image SEO text boxes

When making a choice for embedded or standalone images we need too take in to account that for most embedded images we can add authorship markup but for most standalone image we can't as it is not incorporated in most services that offer publishing features for standalone image. Even thought I can not provide prove here I would advice for you to use as many media that incorporate authorship markup when using images as in my opinion it must have a positive influence on SERP results and this will become more important in the future for SERP results for any content. The above image is an screen grab an example of where to add the correct texts at the correct places for images in WordPress. If one does this with some sort of goal in mind and is consequent in the execution then this is a powerful extra instrument at no extra cost or effort besides being aware.

Also be sure to remember that the text that surrounds the image also provide context for the image so it is best that it it brings across the same message (and uses the same keywords) as the images description that we have filled in. Also note that I don't use the caption text. This is a style choice for my blogs but filling that out would be better although it is not part of any official Google Image standard.

Using infographics with authorship markup

An other example a use is that for instance a lot of people download a info graphic on Apple from your site and then use for themselves or use in their own content with a link to the image  then we assume that the website will become related the subject of the matter in this case being Apple . This is also a form of authority and the tactical use and placement images can be a relevant part of a content strategy as a lot of a little still makes a lot when it comes to images.




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