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Increase Discover Traffic with Maximum Image Preview Tag

Increase Discover Traffic with Maximum Image Preview Tag

Google released a new case study showing how using the Max Image Preview Directive can increase clicks to as high as 333%. The directive is a meta tag that is easy to add to a website.

Google Discover and large images

Google Discover is a way to show articles to users who have shown interest in a particular topic. For example, users searching for articles on used car reviews may see recommendations for articles on buying used cars.

Discover is an alternative traffic source that can help attract visitors who are interested in the topic of a publishing site.


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So instead of ranking by search queries, a publisher should make their pages attractive in Google Discover format.

How Max Image Preview builds Google Discover traffic

Google recommends using a meta tag called Max Image Preview to maximize CTR when Google displays a site in Google Discover.

The Max Image Preview meta tag tells Google which image to display in the preview when a publisher’s webpage is displayed in Discover.

This meta tag is a directive, which means that Google is required to follow the instructions in the meta tag.

Google recommends setting the meta tag to tell Google to display the largest image on the page. Large images, when displayed in Google Discover, help the page stand out and result in more traffic.


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Related: 11 Important Image SEO Tips You Need to Know

Max. Sample image settings

This is what the Max Image Preview meta tag looks like:

The part labeled “robots” means that the meta tag is intended for software called “robots” that crawl the web and search for web pages. Robots are also known as crawlers and spiders (because they crawl the Internet).

The part labeled “content” is the setting that tells Google which image to display.

There are three options: None, Standard and Large.

Google interprets each option as follows:

“None: No preview of an image. Default: A default image of an image may be displayed. Larger: A larger image preview, up to the width of the viewport, may be displayed.”

Great is the setting that Google recommends publishers use if they want Google to send the maximum amount of traffic.

The absence of meta tags causes Google to use standard image preview.

Case studies illustrate the usefulness of the Max Image Preview Tag

Google published two case studies that illustrated how a simple meta tag can result in dramatic increases in traffic.

The first case study was about a food blog that was able to increase their clickthrough rate from Discover by 79%.

The second case study was from a Brazilian magazine. Following the implementation of the meta tag, their clickthrough rate increased by 30% and their clicks increased by 333% over a period of six months.


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The case study quoted the magazine publisher:

“The adoption of the meta tag with large image presets resulted in a significant increase in clicks and CTR for us. Initiatives like this make a huge difference in the work we as publishers invest in daily life. ”

Related: Google Discover: 10 Features of Content That Works Best [Study]

Too good to ignore

This tip for increasing clicks from Google Discovery using a meta tag is too easy to overlook for sites that have articles that may be eligible to appear in Google Discover.

The meta tag is easy to implement and the rewards are potentially high.


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Google’s case study on increasing traffic with Max Image Sample Directive
Large images in Discover Improves CTR and increases publisher site visits

Google Developers Page Documentation of the Max Image Preview Directive

Google Search Central Explainer About Discover Explainer
Come on Discover

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