Photography Portfolio SEO Advice | Crawl, Index, Rank, Repeat: The Photographer’s Guide To SEO
Photography Portfolio SEO Advice | We’ve been blessed with an opportunity to work with some of the most creative photographers and help them bring their ideas to life. And boy, have we seen some breathtaking ideas spring to life, grow, and evolve into stunning visual experiences. However, what majority of photographers fail to realize is the fact that even the world’s most appealing website won’t do much unless people actually visit it. Sure, your friends and family will check out your portfolio website, but in order to get the most out of your investment, you’ll need to get your potential clients to find your website.
Ironically, one of the most effective tools for boosting web traffic is also one of the most overlooked tools, especially among photographers. We’re, of course, talking about search engine optimization, or SEO. There are countless myths, misconceptions, and false information surrounding SEO. To help you get a better idea of what search engine optimization is all about, how to tackle it like a pro, and get yourself booked solid, we put together a list of the best, yet ridiculously simple tips you can start implementing into your routine today. Let’s dive right in!
How Does Google Work | Photography Portfolio SEO Advice
Before we start talking about the ways you can boost your website’s SEO, you need to make sure you know how Google actually works. In a nutshell, Google, as well as other search engines, crawl the Internet and look for keywords on each page. Then, when a user enters a search term in a search engine, it will know exactly which websites to include in the results. However, keep in mind that what worked 2-5 years ago can be completely useless today. In fact, search engines introduce countless changes each year to provide the user with the most relevant results. So, what can you do about it?
Define Your Target Keywords | Photography Portfolio SEO Advice
Keywords can be described as potential terms people use to search the web, and choosing the right keywords can be critical for the success of your marketing strategy. There are a few different types of keywords. For example, “photography” is a short, popular keyword, and your potential clients are more than likely to use it when searching the web, so you should be trying to rank high for it, right? Not really! Since we’re talking about one of the most popular keywords, pretty much every other photographer out there is trying to rank high for it, which makes your job that much more difficult.
Unlike “photography,” keywords such as “New Hampshire natural light newborn photographer” is a long-tail keyword and while it may sound counter-intuitive, it’s a far better option, as fewer photographers are trying to rank high for it. Not only that, but people googling “photography” are all over the county, which means not all of your visitors will be your potential clients, which makes all your work essentially wasted time and effort.
Optimize Photos | Photography Portfolio SEO Advice
Photography websites are notorious for the lack of text – after all, it’s a portfolio website! But that poses a problem – how on earth are you supposed to use your target keywords if there isn’t enough text throughout your website? There are things you can do, like setting up a blog on your website, but you can do more than that – you can optimize the most common item on your website: the photos. Start with the file names on your computer. Instead of leaving the default DSC-0000.jpg file name, rename the files to include your target keywords.
Once you upload a photo to your website, before publishing it, make sure you optimize it by including your target keywords in the ALT tags, meta description and even captions when applicable. In addition to including your target keywords, you can also do another thing or two to boost SEO rankings, like optimizing your photos for better performance, as search engines prefer websites that load quickly! The goal is to have plenty of large photos that have been compressed to ensure small file size.
Links Are Your Golden Ticket | Photography Portfolio SEO Advice
You might be wondering, if two websites have exactly the same keyword density throughout the pages, which one will rank higher. This is why reputation is important. Search engines will look at the reputation of the websites and determine which one would be a better option for the user, and it’s determining the reputation based on the links. Links from established websites are your secret to success, so don’t try to cheat the system and buy a bunch of links on shady websites pointing your way. Instead, try to get a link on influential and established websites – at the end of the day, a single reputable website is better than a dozen of shady websites including a link to your website.
Religiously Update Your Website | Photography Portfolio SEO Advice
We all know by now just how important mobile optimization is for good ranking. After all, even Google updated their algorithm to give higher ranking to responsive websites. However, what many photographers fail to understand is that the work is not done when they set up a website – it’s when the real work begins. Search engines (and Internet users!) prefer regularly updated websites, so make sure you’re uploading new photos worth sharing with your potential clients, as well as haring new blog posts.