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We launched a new website design late February and since then 99% of our large product images do not show up on Google Image Search. We monitored the Image impressions after the launch of the new design, and the images impressions immediately dropped from nearly 30,000 to now 2,000. The only images that show up in the image search are the small thumbnails and not the full resolution images that the thumbnails link to. We did not mess with the image directories or any page directories... it was purely cosmetic. What could of triggered such drop?

From my understanding Google bots should follow the thumbs href to the full-res image, and index it. Is this correct?

We already made some modifications/suggestions such as adding titles to the large image in the lightbox, made sure ALL images have 301 redirect to make sure they are served as https, and brought back the "View Detailed Images" link which we hid initially on the new design. We have been fighting this for months now, and no one can give us a straight answer.

Here are snippets of the code for the images.

Thumbnails linking to large images:

<a href="http://localhost/tst/images/D/N300_INT_magnifier1.jpg" class="lightbox cboxElement" rel="dpimages" title="TST Industries Kawasaki Ninja 300 Integrated Taillight">
  <img src="http://localhost/tst/images/D.cache.dpicon/144.jpg" alt="TST Industries Kawasaki Ninja 300 Integrated Taillight" title="TST Industries Kawasaki Ninja 300 Integrated Taillight" width="64" height="40">
</a>

Lightbox & Large Images:

<div id="cboxLoadedContent" style="width: 530px; overflow: auto; height: 330px;">
  <img src="http://localhost/tst/images/D/N300_INT_magnifier1.jpg" id="cboxPhoto" alt="TST Industries Kawasaki Ninja 300 Integrated Taillight" style="border: none; display: block; float: none; cursor: pointer; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;">
</div>

Funny thing is, that we have cloned a few products and the thumbnails of the cloned product (for some odd reason) are the actual large images just sized down to thumbnail size. Well, those particular images, for that cloned product, show up in the Google results. BUT, in the Google page speed test, they complain for having such large image in such a small container. You're damned if you do, and you're damned if you don't I guess.

Here an example of the same product but different brands. The Yamaha is the original and the Kawasaki is the cloned.

YAMAHA ORIGINAL: https://www.google.com/search?q=yama...M8zPCJvqcCM%3A

KAWASAKI CLONED: https://www.google.com/search?q=Kawa...GApv2b TRM%3A

As you can see when I search the Yamaha Product only displays the Yamaha's thumbnail - the large images all point to the Kawasaki product. But for the Kawasaki (cloned product) it displays its large images no problem.

The website is - www.tstindustries.com

  • I have used the technique that you are using successfully, but I haven't tested it in a few years. From what I can see, you are doing it correctly. You are putting the thumnail on the page in an <img> tag, and putting the large image into an <a href around the thumbnail. I've always thought that Google might eventually stop making this work so well because users don't see large images easily. – Stephen Ostermiller Sep 25 '16 at 11:52
  • DO you have an Image-Sitemap in tact in Analytics ? If not, kindly try to make and submit one. – Mir Hammad Sep 26 '16 at 11:56
  • I don't have an image sitemap, but it have been suggested a lot these past few days, so I will give that a try. Thank you for your suggestion. If you think of anything else, please let me know. Thank you again. – Sergio Sep 26 '16 at 13:14
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    Can it be something new in your htaccess file or robots.txt blocking that directory of getting crawled? I assume both of those files have changed since the redesign... – norcal johnny Sep 26 '16 at 14:34
  • Have you checked the status code coming back from images? A misconfigured server code / htaccess could be at play. – Squiggs. Dec 2 '16 at 8:28
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You can scan your site or it's development copy with tools like Xenu (free) or/and Screaming frog SEO spider tool (free up to 500 URLS). I think this is the easiest way to check your robots.txt file settings.

By the way, looks like you do not use it right now - https://tstindustries.com/robots.txt returns 404 error page

Did a test scan, got some ideas Try using in your urls not

<img src="http://localhost/tst/images/D.cache.dpicon/144.jpg" alt="TST  Industries Kawasaki Ninja 300 Integrated Taillight" title="TST Industries Kawasaki Ninja 300 Integrated Taillight" width="64" height="40">

but ( without "http:")

<img src="//localhost/tst/images/D.cache.dpicon/144.jpg" alt="TST Industries Kawasaki Ninja 300 Integrated Taillight" title="TST Industries Kawasaki Ninja 300 Integrated Taillight" width="64" height="40">

maybe your problem is about mess with http and https protocols in your URLs.

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