Smaller images load faster.

The best way to optimize images for your website is to use an image editing program like Photoshop or Gimp. Do a “save for web” to decrease the file size. You can also find free online utilities that do the same thing (see a list of free online optimizers).

Facebook automatically optimizes images. We posted a 410k image on Facebook and then we downloaded the image. The original was almost 10 times the size of the Facebook-optimized version with little loss of resolution when viewed at 100%. Images for websites should always be optimized so they’ll load faster, but not everyone owns image editing software like Photoshop.

How to optimize images for the web without Photoshop:

  • First: Post the images to Facebook
  • Second: Download the photos from your Facebook post to your computer
  • Voilà—the images are now optimized for the web and can be uploaded to your website or blog.

Be sure to re-name the image file before you upload it to your site, because it will now have a Facebook designation, like “11890922_464771667027316_n.jpg.”
Search engines favor names that mean something, like “gardening-with-wheelbarrow.jpg”
Always add a few words to the “alt text” so that the visually impaired know what the photo represents (e.g., “woman in garden with wheelbarrow”).