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How important is it to add a title to a photo?

  1. sallybea profile image98
    sallybeaposted 6 weeks ago

    Will I be penalized if I don't add titles to my images?  My writing consists of mainly of wet felting tutorials.  I have always in the past used titles and explanatory steps for each tutorial.  I want to avoid any unnecessary repetition so in an effort to simplify the layout I would like to edit out the titles. First I want to know if this is accepted practice!

    1. Christy Kirwan profile image
      98
      Christy Kirwanposted 5 weeks agoin reply to this

      Hi Sally,

      It's not necessary to add titles to your images, but we do strongly recommend adding captions explaining what is going on in the image because this is how Google can tell the image is related and how they will make sure it shows up in the correct image searches, which might lead more readers to your article.

      1. eugbug profile image97
        eugbugposted 5 weeks agoin reply to this

        Is it ok if some steps in a procedure in a tutorial type hub are solely photos (i.e no text) with a title on the photo? Sometimes the photo is self explanatory and it's not necessary to add text.

        1. Christy Kirwan profile image
          98
          Christy Kirwanposted 5 weeks agoin reply to this

          Readers may find your images self-explanatory, but if you want Google to know what they are and show them in image searches, a caption is necessary, yes. Search engines can not tell what is going on in a photo without accompanying text.

          1. Jean Harris profile image84
            Jean Harrisposted 4 days agoin reply to this

            Sure they can, and they even include what they think an image is about in google image search results. If you go to the google image results page and perform a drag and drop of an image ONTO the search box of the image results page Google will evaluate the image and take a guess at what it's about, try it out.

            How to do this
            - Open a browser, go to google.com, perform a search and go to the image results page. Leave it there for a moment.
            - Open a different browser page with an image on it. Click and drag that image and move your mouse over the first browser tab to open it... then drop the image on the image results search bar and voila... watch Google work at figuring out what you showed it.
            - Alternative. You can drag an image from your desktop onto the search bar of an image results page and Google will do the same.

            It's pretty interesting actually.

            Did you know that the captcha image checks we perform are actually helping Google learn what is in the images? The practice of identifying images involves what is called OCR and Google is on the leading edge of that technology.

            1. Christy Kirwan profile image
              98
              Christy Kirwanposted 4 days agoin reply to this

              Yes, but as far as Google has disclosed, that technology is nowhere near a point where it would be ready to use to display search results. The advice I gave is for authors who want their articles to have a better chance of showing up in search results, potentially via image searches as well as article and website queries.

            2. eugbug profile image97
              eugbugposted 4 days agoin reply to this

              I hope Google's image identification capability is better than that of Microsofts.
              Some funny examples of how it tags my photos on Onedrive, hailstones on a mat identified as a "crowd" and a hose connector as a "drink" respectively!

              https://usercontent1.hubstatic.com/13868782_f1024.jpg


              https://usercontent2.hubstatic.com/13868783_f1024.jpg

      2. sallybea profile image98
        sallybeaposted 5 weeks agoin reply to this

        Hi Christy,
        On Marisa's advice, I have removed a lot of my titles, leaving just a caption and source behind.   I think the end result is much cleaner and less complicated..  I am very grateful for your input as this has concerned me for ages:)

  2. psycheskinner profile image83
    psycheskinnerposted 6 weeks ago

    I normally don't title images.

    1. sallybea profile image98
      sallybeaposted 6 weeks agoin reply to this

      Thank you @psycheskinner

  3. eugbug profile image97
    eugbugposted 6 weeks ago

    Image titles are stored as an H2 tag in the HTML in the same way as text module titles, so presumably they are important. In a tutorial, if the photo visually describes exactly the same as the accompanying explanatory text module above or below it, it would seem to be repetitious to add the same title to the photo. Sometimes I make the title of the photo somewhat different from the text module so that it covers an alternative phrase which a reader may be searching for. I'm not quite sure what information we should be including in captions and what should be added to titles. Presumably titles should be short and sweet, whereas the caption is for more detailed information about what is going on in the photo.

    1. sallybea profile image98
      sallybeaposted 6 weeks agoin reply to this

      That is what I have assumed for so long and was the reason why I have continued to use them. I tried to make the word different but it is not always easy.   It seems strange to be given a place for a title and leave it out.  I think I need a definitive answer from staff.

    2. CatherineGiordano profile image98
      CatherineGiordanoposted 5 weeks agoin reply to this

      What about if I included text in the image and then used the same text a the title?

      1. Marisa Wright profile image99
        Marisa Wrightposted 5 weeks agoin reply to this

        Catherine, if you look at Christy's official response, she's basically saying don't add titles to photos - add captions instead. 

        The reader is only going to get irritated if you're repeating the same words several times.

    3. sallybea profile image98
      sallybeaposted 5 weeks agoin reply to this

      eubug, this has been my practice up until now but no longer!  I am going to go with one or the other in an effort to clean up my hubs and make them look and feel less complicated to he reader.

      1. eugbug profile image97
        eugbugposted 5 weeks agoin reply to this

        Same here Sally. I've started cleaning up by removing titles and improving captions.

        1. sallybea profile image98
          sallybeaposted 5 weeks agoin reply to this

          smile

  4. eugbug profile image97
    eugbugposted 6 weeks ago

    The thing about adding titles to photos is that it could confuse the Google algorithm that generates FSs even more! I have one hub that produces an FS for a search term, but it screws it up and adds the title of a text module as one of the items in the FS's ordered list.

    1. sallybea profile image98
      sallybeaposted 6 weeks agoin reply to this

      Why then are we given a space for a Title?   What is an FS?  I simply don't understand but I do want to get this right.

      1. eugbug profile image97
        eugbugposted 6 weeks agoin reply to this

        An FS is a Google Featured Snippet Sally. They appear at the top of a SERP in the form of a paragraph or ordered list, sometimes with a clickable photo attached. The content of the FS is harvested by Google's FS algorithm from subtitles, tables and numbered (ordered) or bulleted (non-ordered) lists in hubs.
        Robin detailed some things we should try in order to get an FS here:

        https://hubpages.com/community/forum/14 … d-snippets

        Here's one I made appear by searching for the text shown. It doesn't appear without the feltmagnet bit, but you might get one for other search terms.
        https://usercontent2.hubstatic.com/13817245.jpg

      2. Marisa Wright profile image99
        Marisa Wrightposted 6 weeks agoin reply to this

        If you take a look, you'll see that EVERY kind of capsule has space for a title.  It's there so you can use it as an option, depending on your layout.

        For instance, when you start a new section, you might prefer to show the title above your first photo, OR you might put it above the first paragraph of text.  Not both.

        As Eugbug says, the Title has an H2 tag, which tells Google that it's one of your main headings.  If you look at just your text, then obviously you've got main headings and then sub-titles within those main headings. If you go and put main headings on your Amazon capsules, photos etc as well, then that's confusing.

        1. sallybea profile image98
          sallybeaposted 6 weeks agoin reply to this

          Thank you, Marisa.  I edited the Pixie Hat Hub as you suggested and took out the image heading.  Not sure if it will be moved to FeltMagnet but it should be interesting to see if and when it does if the hubs perform any better.  I definitely prefer the uncluttered look.

          1. Marisa Wright profile image99
            Marisa Wrightposted 6 weeks agoin reply to this

            I think you may have to resubmit it before they will consider it.

            1. sallybea profile image98
              sallybeaposted 6 weeks agoin reply to this

              I have done, will have to wait and see.

              1. Marisa Wright profile image99
                Marisa Wrightposted 6 weeks agoin reply to this

                Good luck!

        2. sallybea profile image98
          sallybeaposted 6 weeks agoin reply to this

          Thanks, Eugbug, that is very helpful.  I will check out the link and do a little testing myself.

  5. Venkatachari M profile image57
    Venkatachari Mposted 5 weeks ago

    Yes, Sally. Do as suggested by Christy Kirwan. That is the best thing to do. Tell about the image below it by adding a relevant caption to it while inserting the photo capsule. That will solve your problem.

    1. sallybea profile image98
      sallybeaposted 5 weeks agoin reply to this

      Thanks Venkatachari Msmile

  6. Jean Harris profile image84
    Jean Harrisposted 4 days ago

    I took a peek at the code relating to images on Hubpages, this is what I found.

    - The title is posted within the code as an H2 tag immediately before the image
    - The title is NOT posted where it needs to be in the image's alt tag

    As such the title we assign an image is not being associated to the image itself. It's still a good idea to do because a reader will see the title, but it's not directly helping Google. I say not directly because Google understands common web issues like this. I've tested this in detail in the past and found that Google tends to associate an image with the text it finds immediately BEFORE the image, or with the last sentence or two of a paragraph appearing BEFORE the image. As the title appears before the image it may be that a title is indirectly telling Google what it's about.

    Hope that helps.

    1. sallybea profile image98
      sallybeaposted 4 days agoin reply to this

      Interesting, thank you Jean.

 
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