SEO # Does exif data in an image help increase ranking?

In our previous article which was  SEO # What is the importance of comments on a blog for SEO? we discussed what the importance of comments on a blog are for SEO and if you should use them or not. Today we will like to discuss what is the importance of Exif data of an image for google search ranking.

To start the discussion I would first like to explain what an Exif data is?

Exif stands for “Exchangeable image  file format”, is the data which is added to the header of an image by the camera when the photo is clicked. The data varies from manufacturer to manufacturer. The most common data added in the image are: Manufacturer Name, Model, Focul Length and Aperture and more. This dats helps us to know what kind of an image we will be looking at and what will be the quality of the image.

Since quality is always better then quantity in terms of SEO the same applies for image search as well. Google has been known to show Exif data along side an image on their image search engine. This clearly means that they extract image Exif data and store it as well.

But do they use it for ranking is a big question. There is no clear indication from Google’s side if the Exif data is used in ranking or not but since they do extract the Exif data it can be assumed that the data is used in some way or another.

We ran an experiment to know if the Exif data is used or not for ranking. For this we created 2 pages and added images to them one page had a few images which had no Exif data and another page with a few images which Exif data present. After a few days the pages and images got indexed by Google.

The images which had Exif data on the images showed the Exif data on image search on google but there was no real impact on ranking, for keywords some images without Exif data ranked better than ours. This was a clear indication that Exif data is currently not used as a ranking factor. But you can never be sure when Google may decide to start using it as a ranking factor.

So it will be advisable and beneficial to keep the Exif data in an image, but not needed to add the Exif data if it is not present in an image you want to use for image search on Google. The reason is explained above, Since Google is extracting Exif data and storing the data on their servers, they will for sure use it in some form in the near future.

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