An SEO professional was wondering about images they were seeing directly in the organic search results.
Not in the image tab, but directly in organic search.
They could not find anything that they could connect to things like resolution, or size, or ranking position.
They were wondering if this was a test or something else?
John explained that these images directly in the search results are just a type of snippet. It’s not based on any specific markup that the SEO professional would be doing on their pages.
It’s not something specific that you can define on pages.
It’s really just a matter of: Google recognizes these images are on these pages. And, for whatever reason, their algorithms think that for users, showing some images, or these types of snippet images, will help them to decide which results to click on.
However, it’s not like it’s something where someone can say “I want these images indexed. Are these images shown in the snippet?”
It’s more like Google is picking images from the page.
This happens at approximately the 10:57 mark in the video.
John Mueller Hangout Transcript
SEO Professional 4 10:57
I am trying to find out some more information about the images I recently see increasingly in the organic search results, directly in search, not in the image tab. Because there’s no documentation in Google, in search Central.
And I tried to find out some common things about images or some differences. But I don’t see anything connected to the resolution or size or the ranking position.
So is this just a test? Or will there be coming documentation? Do you have any information about these image snippets?
From our side, these are essentially just a kind of snippet. So it’s not based on any particular markup that you’re doing on the pages. It’s not something specific that you define on the pages. It’s really just, we recognize these images are on these pages.
And for whatever reason, our algorithms think that for users showing some images, or kind of the snippet images, would help them to decide which of the results to click on. So that’s from our side, it’s something like, yes, we are showing images in snippets.
And I think in the past, we didn’t do that so much. But it’s not based on anything specific that you can control. Other than, like, maybe deciding you don’t want any images on these pages image index, and you want to use like the, what is it?
Noimageindex meta tag. But it’s not something where you can say, I want these images indexed or these images shown in the snippet. It’s essentially, we’re picking images from the page.
SEO Professional 4 12:49
Okay, it seems a bit random. And I was doubting that Google is doing things randomly. But if there’s nothing to control or to do about
it. How do you mean random? Is it picking bad images? Or?
SEO Professional 4 13:04
No, no, not bad images. But sometimes it takes one, sometimes six, sometimes no images, even though there are images on the landing page. So I don’t see the connection why, or where, this decision happens to show or not to show an image.
I don’t know what we can do to make it a little bit easier to understand. But yeah, maybe we should at least document that we do show images in the snippet and that it’s not something that you can easily control. That’s a good point.