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Does Jetpack's Photon damage Image SEO? (5 posts)

  1. LukeJonGibson
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    As the images are being cached on WordPress's server, would Google images still recognise the images as coming from my site? Or would they appear to be coming from the WordPress servers to Google?

    As my site is hosted on a dedicated server, would I still see an improvement from it? Is is it only better than shared hosting?

    Thanks

  2. Melbourne Cup Odds
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    Yes 100%, Photon does have a HUGE impact on image SEO. You will actually have a hard time getting the images served by photon indexed into Google at all, even if the original image url is provided in a sitemap.xml feed.

    Not a single image hosted by the photon wordpress cdn is indexed in the google database.

    No Google does not recognise the images as coming from your site. If you take a look at a photon hosted image url. You can see your domain has become the subdirectory of the photon root directory, as /wp-content/ is to your site.

    http://i1.wp.com/yourdomain.com.au/wp-content/uploads/image.jpg

    A great way for wordpress to manage their photon cnd index but shows 0 association to your site in Googles eyes. You may as well say that image is photon's property in Googles eyes.

    You may wonder why Google is not indexing your original images since they are listed in your sitemap.xml. "Example image"

    Google obviously have a close look to see if resources listed in the sitemap.xml are associated with the resources listed on the rendered web pages. Google would not see any of the original images your sitemap.xml file lists, on the visible web pages. Due to the image urls on the visible pages changing to photon cdn urls.

    Cannot blame Google for not indexing resources that it thinks visitors don't actually see on the visible pages. Since this appears like a deceptive tactic to get mass images indexed into google, I'm surprised Google isnt penalising sites for this.

    Obviously this is not what webmasters using photon are trying to do but its easy to see how Google would be mistaken by this.

    I can think of one possible solution to this issue and it would allow images to still be indexed into Google and continued use of the Jetpack Photon feature.

    Instead of Photon changing the image URLs on a page in both the src="" and href="" attributes, it should only change the src="" attribute while leaving the href="" attribute as the original image URL.

    That gives Google the visible page/sitemap.xml reference association to allow them be indexed and also get the page load time benefits from having the photon cdn version of the images load and displayed.

    Don't get me wrong, I think Photon feature is great but there are a few downsides to using it.

  3. *Checks really quickly*

    Nah, that's just not true. If it were true think of all the CDN users out there who would be impacted by what you've described. That's all Photon is, it's a CDN for self-hosted WordPress users.

    I've been using the Jetpack Photon module something like minutes after it was released as I thought it was an amazing feature to offer self-hosted users. I just checked and Google is indexing my images that have always been using Photon without any issues at all.

    When you search for a relevant post and you get a hit for your site then Google is associating that IMG source with your installation. That's because it's your installation that is loading and referencing that i.[1-4].wp.com image URL. No hit on search engine results at all.

  4. silfiriel
    Member
    Posted 8 months ago #

    I think it does, greatly, activated Photon a week ago and visits have drooped almost 50%. Switching it off today and I will report how it goes.

  5. Gwyneth Llewelyn
    Member
    Posted 6 months ago #

    One other worry I have is that web analytics software rate Photon-enhanced WP sites very badly because they think that they haven't properly resized images. But the whole point of Photon (besides acting as a CDN!) is exactly the ability to resize images on demand! However, analytics software aren't aware of that, and, as such, they heavily penalize the website.

    As a result, Google PageRank might be significantly diminished on Photon-enabled sites. The irony is that Photon is getting penalized for exactly the reason that it's supposed to fix — e. g. scaling images on demand.

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