Top 12 Search Engine Optimization Tips For Photographers – Optimize a Photography Website Like a Pro

SEO for photography websites is crucial for promoting your business online. Local clients are loving the added benefit of seeing a photographer’s portfolio and getting a feel for them before contacting the photographer and are using the internet more to find a photographer. If you market to tourists visiting your area, your online presence is especially crucial to help potential clients find you.

Search engine optimization can be quite daunting if you have little or no experience in this area. It doesn’t have to be that hard, though. The biggest obstacle is learning how. That takes time – time that you need to put into running your business.

These 12 steps are written especially for photographers and break it down so that you can take a little time each day to work on it without having to spend hours researching before you can get started.

Buy your domain name as soon as possible. Older domain names tend to rank better than newer domain names especially for the first few months.
Place your website on as many photography related and networking sites as possible. It also helps to purchase top placement or additional advertising on these sites if it is an option. Some places specialize in search engine optimization and can help get you noticed.
Use an HTML site over a flash site, or at least have an HTML splash to use for SEO. The splash page acts as an introduction to your site and gives clients the options of entering your site, blog, or perhaps even another site. It is also used to give you a place to put solid content using good keywords to help search engines know what you have on your site. Simple splash pages can be designed quite easily with a little html knowledge. As we said, it is just an entry into your flash site.
Keep in mind when you are placing your link on the internet, quality is more important than quantity. Placing your your website information and link on more established sites with good page ranking are better than ones with many brand new sites with low ranking websites.
Fill your site with good, solid content using keywords for your business. Use words describing the many different types of photography you do (i.e. children’s, senior portraits, weddings, etc.). Also use words telling clients what cities you work. Place this content in paragraph form on your splash page if you have a website.
Do not just stuff keywords on your site with no rhyme, purpose or reason. Also, do not do this in a color that will be hidden on your site. This is frowned upon with the major search engines, and you could risk being penalized for doing it.
Blog, blog, blog! Blogs are highly searchable and search engines like when they are updated regularly. Use really great words in your blog titles and text. For added SEO, use a blog such as WordPress and place it on your own domain for your photography site.
Add a sitemap to your photography website and blog. This makes sure that search engines do not overlook any important pages.
Sign up for Google tools and submit your sitemap. It is free and will give you a little insight into your site and its ranking. It also will make you aware of broken links which can hurt your search engine ranking.
Update your site and blog regularly. It tells search engines that it is an active site with new information. The more you update it, the more often search engines will visit your site for new updates.
When you add your site link to someone’s page, choose your link words and titles carefully. For instance, this would be better “Alexandria, Virginia Portrait Photographer – Jane Doe Photography” than this “Jane Doe Photography. Omit the quotations. To see what I mean, do a search for these two phrases: 1. Alexandria Virginia photographer 2. Virginia photographer
When listing your site on a directory, always think about good solid keywords. If you list your website in a directory, use keywords in a paragraph that will help clients find you in the search engines. Think of all the words that someone may use…description and cities…and include those in a good solid paragraph. Just write this out once and copy and past it wherever you list.

Remember, SEO does not happen overnight. It will take time, patience and perseverance. These are the secrets that are taking the top ranking photographers to the top. Take 1-2 items and work on this list every day.

6 Items For Good Photography Website Design

You love the art of photography. Check. You love the display your photography. Check. You love the opportunity your photography hobby offers. Check. You are the perfect candidate for a free photography website design. As a photographer, you know when something looks good. And, you know how you want to capture a mood or a feeling. Using those instinctual and creative elements, you can create a exceptional photography website design.

Here’s a list must have items for good photography website design:

1. An Intriguing Home Page. This home page is like the start of a blind date. The viewer isn’t really sure if they want to dig deeper into knowing about you or about your skill. So, the home page has to be dressed for the occasion. First impressions are everything! Use your photography skills to capture a moment that will evoke an emotional response. You want the viewer to be impressed enough to want to keep looking. A logo is an absolute necessity! Without it, you have gone on the blind date and forgotten to brush your hair!

2. Create Easy Navigation: Whether you prefer a horizontal or vertical navigation area is not really that important. What is most important is can someone find what they would want to see? For example, if they want to contact you, did you make it easy for them to contact you? Your navigational elements should do that for you with ease. Use commonly terminology for pages like About, Contact, Gallery, Portfolio, Services. If your navigational name sounds weird, chances are your visitor is going to just stay away from it.

3. Share Meaningful Content: To be too quirky or too abstract is distracting and doesn’t offer your viewer any real content about you as a photographer. To go back to the analogy of a blind date, giving obscure and non-meaningful content would be like telling an inside joke that your blind date doesn’t know about. Sure, it works when you have been dating a while and you both “get it”, but for a first timer, it just sounds weird. In order to avoid that “awkwardness”, still to content that is truthful and has substance. For instance, if you have won any awards, you want to tastefully display your achievements. If you have a long list of loyal customers, you want to show them as resources that add to your credibility. Be sure to get permission from your previous clients if you are using images from their place of business or event.

4. Be Organized: Being a photography website, your focus is to have a portfolio of your best photos neatly arranged in different categories. Add descriptions that showcase your work professionally while taking care hitting your objectives. Allow white spaces and use visual elements wisely to lend a professional feel to the pages. The images should showcase your talents and the user should be able to browse them easily. Boast about the diversity of your skills but be specific about the projects that you do. For example, you may have a section under each of these: Nature, Corporate branding, Models, or 40th Bithday Party. Adding testimonials adds to your credibility and builds trust.

5. Ask for An Action: Remember to add the ‘Call to action’ button prominently in your pages if you want your site visitors to ‘Request Quote’ or ‘View portfolio’. And, the contact form must be simple and concise.

6. Keep Connected: Photography website design is not about someone to visit you just once. You want to engage them in a way that is personal and relevant. Using social networking Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, LinkedIn so that you may have a group of friends to share or discuss matters of interest, you can link up with other photographers and potential customers. Adding a blog is another good way to keep visitors knowing about what you are focused on and where your area of expertise lies.