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Thread: Naming of pictures (dashes, underscores or spaces)?

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Default Naming of pictures (dashes, underscores or spaces)?

    When I first got started in building websites, I was taught to put dashes between the names of the file I was naming. For example if I was downloading a picture of Eli Manning Wins The Super Bowl, I was told to name the file something like eli-manning-wins-the-super-bowl.

    So I would leave that as the title and sometimes in the Alt Text if I was too lazy to rename the Alt Text. I see a lot of people using underscores as well.

    Lately I watched a short SEO video where the person would rename the title and the Alt text. They completely removed the dashes and said that Google was not looking for dashes in the title and Alt text. I can buy that.

    However, I spend a lot of time renaming everything in my post for better SEO.

    Can I just use spaces between the text on the filename when I am downloading a picture? Does it really make a big difference if it has a dash, underscore, or space? The dashes look like a permalink on the picture and that is the only reason I can think to go through the trouble. Any good SEO people have opinions on this?

  2. #2
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    Never use file names with blank spaces in them (at least in the Unix/Linux/PHP environments). Nothing good can come of doing that...
    That also holds true with your PHP/HTML/ASP file names as well...

    It is best to do it as you have been and revise the ALT Text/Descriptions to remove the dashes (or underscores). I know it's a pain but believe me, better to follow standard file naming conventions than to risk issues down the road.
    Scott, K2ZS
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by k2zs View Post
    Never use file names with blank spaces in them (at least in the Unix/Linux/PHP environments). Nothing good can come of doing that...
    That also holds true with your PHP/HTML/ASP file names as well...

    It is best to do it as you have been and revise the ALT Text/Descriptions to remove the dashes (or underscores). I know it's a pain but believe me, better to follow standard file naming conventions than to risk issues down the road.
    I feel like Steve Martin in the movie "The Jerk" when he says "It's a profit deal". I thought this was an SEO thing but now I see it's a to do with the programs.

    Thanks Scott.
    Last edited by Web4Food; 02-19-2012 at 05:47 PM.

  4. #4
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    Never use file names with blank spaces in them (at least in the Unix/Linux/PHP environments). Nothing good can come of doing that...
    Got to agree with that one, plus I have had issues with MYSQL and file name spaces....

    And just to refresh the title tag is to give additional information to the <a> tag. Where as the alt text is used as the direct replacement of the image should the image not been shown... I do vaguely remember last century that some commercial browsers didn't display graphics and the alt tag had relevance to the web page.

    Just reading Google's info on the alt text, they suggest to be brief and descriptive and in the case of an image link the alt text will be used in a similar fashion to the anchor text.

    Sometimes its good to refresh why we do what we do...
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  5. #5
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    I think it has no problem but 1 or 3 hyphens are enough in picture alt text.

  6. #6

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    That's great after reading this this post now i can able to understand more better about it.

  7. #7
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    I also understand it better now. I'm glad I asked because I know that I am doing the right thing and also why.

    Thanks for the great educated responses peeps.

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