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Google image bot - strange criterion

   
12:51 pm on Sep 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



There seems to be very little concrete knowledge when it comes to forcing Google to index your images.
Usually tutorials will suggest same old tactics - wrap your image with relevant text, put good ALT tag, make descriptive file name etc etc.

We've been implementing these steps from day one, but here comes the problem...
Google seems to index images according to site section, not on actual image-per-image basis !

What I mean:
Google decided to like images that come from these sections of our site:
www.example.com/news/
www.example.com/video/

Every single image from news article (hundreds) we publish in these sections will appear in Google image search as well.

But for some reasons when we publish stories and articles in some other sections:
www.example.com/galleries/
www.example.com/music/
etc etc

Articles get indexed very quickly (and rate pretty high), but images - never !
As I have read everywhere, it takes time. But it has been over 12 months now and this is an old (+ 7 years) trustworthy site which Google generally "likes".

So what is to be done here? I'm looking for any suggestions out there, cause I have no more ideas :(

I also tried creating a specific image sitemap, it does indeed index these results, but shows them only in organic web results, not image search.

It's as if Google somewhere deep inside its database acknowledged to publish everything from "www.example.com/news/", but could not care less for images we put on other parts of our site.
If only a few images from other parts of our site were indexed, I would understand that and figured that these images had the best descriptions etc, but NO images ever got indexed from these parts. And we have thousands of great images with "hand written" descriptions for every image.

Any help is greatly appreciated :)
Thank you
3:54 pm on Sep 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member pageoneresults is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



Is it possible you're blocking User-agent: Googlebot-Image via robots.txt or you've not allowed User-agent: Googlebot-Image?
4:02 pm on Sep 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



How you display your images in your site is a major factor.

1) Google doesn't like image galleries, rather it likes full size images embedded in pages
2) Bigger images are better. Google says it likes "image quality". As far as I can tell "image quality" is their euphemism for "bigger".
3) It doesn't matter if you <img src= your image or <a href= your image, google will index it either way. One trick is to have a smaller image (thumbnail) in the page and link that image to the bigger version. Something like <a href="bigphoto.jpg"><img src="thumbphoto.jpg"/></a>
8:16 pm on Sep 24, 2011 (gmt 0)



Also check if you use CPanel and hotlink protection, this will block everyone, I had nearly everything deindexed thanks to that. If you need the htaccess code that works let me know.

Google does seem to prefer handbuilt galleries over ready-made ones, I use Coppermine for some gallerie and they work pretty well but saying that I am just starting a new site and it will have 5,000+ thumbs and enlargements plus all descriptions etc...see you in 2013!

G definitely has a preference how it likes the url and image structure, I wrote this a couple of years ago, it's even more relevant now than ever:

[webmasterworld.com...]
9:21 pm on Sep 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member lucy24 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time Top Contributors Of The Month



Also check if you use CPanel and hotlink protection, this will block everyone, I had nearly everything deindexed thanks to that.

If your images are likely to prove popular with hotlinkers, g### will index them in two seconds flat no matter how small or simple they are. (YMMV. But this is my personal experience-- to the point where I ended up de-indexing two directories.)
9:48 pm on Sep 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member sgt_kickaxe is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member



I know this thread is about getting your images indexed but I wanted to point out the reverse, how to protect them and make sure they aren't indexed or cached. Use a form and set the image to be the link image.
7:43 am on Sep 25, 2011 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



@pageoneresults No, it is not possible.
I created robots.txt myself and everything is in order there.
But if you take closer look at my original post you'll see that the Google does indeed index many of our images. Unfortunately just from certain parts of our website :(
7:52 am on Sep 25, 2011 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Are you a Google News publisher? Might be related to that..
10:30 am on Sep 25, 2011 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



@levo No, we are not publishing on Google news. You think it might help?
10:45 am on Sep 25, 2011 (gmt 0)



If your images are likely to prove popular with hotlinkers, g### will index them in two seconds flat no matter how small or simple they are.


For me being indexed is important, stopping the hotlinkers was the main problem which I've successfully managed. At one point I had one specific image being viewed 10,000 times a day with many linking to it, I was #1 from more than 1.3 billion results.

@punisa - As good as I am with getting images indexed for some reason G doesn't index them all, or simply doesn't show them in the results, even though all my pages are constructed in the same way and this applies, surprisingly, to my less popular or competitive widget images.
11:31 am on Sep 25, 2011 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Well, if you were, it would explain the difference. I, too, get my news/article images indexed ridiculously fast - under 15mins. Do you have separate sitemaps for those sections?