Alt attribute for thumbnail image that links to the original file

I have a wallpaper gallery page that displays small thumbnails, when clicked it opens the original full size image for a user to download it.
Will adding alt attribute to the thumbnails make the original full size photo appear in google images when searched for? or Google will show the small thumbnail photos?
I do intend to achieve the first option. My code is below.

<div class="thumb">
<a href="images/wallpaper.jpg">
<img src="images/wallpaper-small.jpg">
</a>
</div>

The main purpose of alt text is to provide an alternative for those unable to view the image, for whatever reason. You should always keep that in mind when writing alt text.

That said, good alt text can also help Google to index your images correctly. As the text is associated with the image to which it’s attached, I can’t see how alt text on a thumbnail would improve the SEO of the larger image. If Google can crawl and index the large images, it will use any alt text associated with those images. If it can’t crawl the large images, then those images won’t appear in search results.

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Thanks @TechnoBear, so I want Google to index the large images that appear in the URL bar as follows:

example.com/images/wallpaper.jpg

I have read that making those thumbnails link to an HTML page that contains the large images would help, since i could add alt attribute text to them. Is there another way to index those large images?

I’m not quite sure what you’re describing by “making the thumbnails link to an HTML page”. I don’t really see how that would work, if you’re currently using a thumbnail gallery which presumably opens the large image in some kind of lightbox or similar.

Have you read Google’s guidelines for images? https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/114016?hl=en

I have read that article, doesn’t help with my case. Just now I searched on Google images for something, I clicked the photo and 2 main options appear:

  1. Visit page

  2. View image

When visit page is clicked it takes me to the Thumbnail gallery and when View image clicked it takes me to the full size image.

Now I inspect element the thumbnail and it is exactly like my code. Small image in thumbnail that links to the full size image when clicked. And google clearly indexed the full size image for the query i searched for. This is my goal that i cant seem to find out how to achieve.

Note: the search query is the same as the alt text on the thumbnail photo.

Well it sound like you already have what you need.

You have a link to the image, so Google can find it and can index it.

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google cannot read the images so to make that image index by google you need to write its name.

Have you followed the other recommendations, such as file names and context? Every little helps.

by naming the image like "blue-mustang-1969.jpg" without an alt attribute in img tag would show the image in Google when searching for “blue mustang 1969”? that’s what you meant?

Yes I did, apart from the alt tag for the large images. thanks.

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