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Thread: Search Engine Optimization

  1. #1
    Senior Member bob williams's Avatar
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    Search Engine Optimization

    For those who have websites and are interested in improving your search engine optimization (SEO). I thought you might be interested in this tutorial put out by Photoshelter. Its got some really good info but does market Photoshelter as well.




    SEO for Photographers
    Bob

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    Looks like good info.....did you make the cross-country trek?

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    Thanks for the tip Bob!

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    Senior Member bob williams's Avatar
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    I have been doing some reading lately in an effort to try and increase search engine visibility for my Zenfolio Website and have learned some things along the way. I put a lot of effort in naming, putting comments, key words etc on my website photos, but haven't had much luck finding my work on the search engines. I have been able to find my photos, but they are usually the result of something I have posted here, not my website. Based on my reading I discovered that if a search engine crawler cant see key words on your homepage, it may not look any deeper. So, I spent some time yesterday and this morning rewording my "welcome message" to include keywords, references and links to other areas of my site. I am also starting to think that the "slideshow" layout is a bad idea for this reason. If you put your gallery thumbnails (with Titles and Discriptions) on your homepage, then there will be more pertinant text for the search engines to find. I haven't done this yet, but I plan too.

    So results of my efforts so far:

    Unitl yesterday, when searching for "hummingbird photo tutorial", The only reference I could find was my "tip" here on the TDP----I went down about twenty pages and couldn't find any reference to the tutorial on my homepage. Today, I referenced the tutorial on my homepage and now I am on page TWO on Google. My Blog is also on page two.

    Now there hasn't been enough time to see if my hit rate goes up yet, but time will tell.


    I will be changing the layout of my homepage so that it includes as much pertinant text as possible---hopefully this will add to the visability.

    I'll keep you posted on what I discover---but keep in mind, that this is a slow process that often takes months to see results.
    Bob

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    Senior Member Rocco's Avatar
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    Bob, that's helpful. I too have been struggling to find any matches that link to my zenfolio page. I still have to go through the tedious task of adding all the seo info to all the various elements, but thus far I'm not in the top twenty pages, even searching for a photographer (all types) with my city and state. There has to be a way to do this with the slideshow as some of the top results in my area had a similar layout.

    With my account being a premium business account I have access to their free chat support.. (I've found them to be articulate, knowledgeable and very helpful.) I'll see if they have any suggestions besides what their seo video suggests, and of course I'll share here.

    One thing I have read is that a large part of what makes a page show up in the first couple pages of results is how long that website has been active, and how frequently changes are made (hence the importance of a blog), and also how many other sites are linking to that site. I believe number of hits also comes into play.

    By chance have you also registered the provided site map file with the search engines?

    Maybe Bryan can offer some insight here? After all, his site being so incredibly searchable is how I ended up here in the first place.
    Adobe, give us courage to edit what photos must be altered, serenity to delete what cannot be helped, and the insight to know the one from the other.
    Canon EOS 7D - Canon EF-s 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM - Canon 100mm f/2.8L IS Macro - PCB Einsteins & PW Triggers

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    Bob,
    I noticed that the website embeds a lot of the pictures in a flash application. Search engine crawlers don't understand flash and don't understand flash, and they don't know that there are images inside.
    Not sure if Zenfolio has a way to work around this, but it could be that the crawlers don't even know you have all these great images on your website. It should find the thumbnails on the index pages like http://rwilliamsimaging.com/p534263534, but I am not sure if they see the full size version.

    Arnt

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    Senior Member bob williams's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rocco View Post
    There has to be a way to do this with the slideshow as some of the top results in my area had a similar layout.
    Your right Rocco, after some more consideration, I realized you can put thumbnails of galleries on your home page and still maintain your slideshow. I chose to put mine on the bottom. Unfortunately, all you can place with the thumbnails are the gallery comments. So now, it has me thinking that I should rename some of my galleries so that they are more search engine friendly.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rocco View Post
    One thing I have read is that a large part of what makes a page show up in the first couple pages of results is how long that website has been active, and how frequently changes are made (hence the importance of a blog), and also how many other sites are linking to that site. I believe number of hits also comes into play.

    By chance have you also registered the provided site map file with the search engines?
    Yes, I have read that as well---infact, for the longest time, the reference I could find to my website was through TDP. I also tried facebook.....but I am facebook stupid and didn't know how to use this tool----so I gave up on that. I still put my LIKE buttons on my site though--Just in case.

    And yes, I have registered with Bing, Google and Yahoo.

    Bob,
    I noticed that the website embeds a lot of the pictures in a flash application. Search engine crawlers don't understand flash and don't understand flash, and they don't know that there are images inside.
    Not sure if Zenfolio has a way to work around this, but it could be that the crawlers don't even know you have all these great images on your website. It should find the thumbnails on the index pages like http://rwilliamsimaging.com/p534263534, but I am not sure if they see the full size version.
    You bring up a good point Arnt. I read on the Zenfolio site that it is better to rename your gallery pages with some url friendly language, such as http://rwilliamsimaging.com/wolves instead of useing a numerical reference----I just took care of that, thanks for the reminder.

    even searching for a photographer (all types) with my city and state
    Rocco, I tried what you did--here is what I found:

    1. When I typed in "Los Lunas Photographer" I couldn't find any reference to my site (within 30 pages), even when I changed the words around.

    2. When I typed in "Wildlife Photographer Los Lunas" I was #1 on the list--Yeah---the Search engine referenced the text in the "About Section" of my Zenfolio site. ---So don't ignore the "about" page and use lots of key words---With that in mind, I now have to rethink my "about" statement as well.
    Bob

  8. #8
    Senior Member Rocco's Avatar
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    Well, I finished the comments, Captions, Tags, and Titles for everything on my page. Still no dice as of yet. Something interesting happened though..


    When searching for "Photographer Ogden Utah" I am on the first page of results.. but it's a post from my g+ account, asking for feedback from my followers and linking my website. Very strange.

    Hey Bob, haven't been to your site in a while.. but if you're like me I went for a clean and simple look. I really didn't like the idea of having captions and photo "titles" with every picture. But that also meant missing out on the SEO opportunity. One of the Zenfolio CSRs suggested I make the text of those items the same color as my background. So it's there, but it's not really there. Here's a link to one of my images so you can see what I mean: http://www.vierimagestudios.com/p979947389#h15ff353f Use your cursor to highlight the area below the photo. Now that I think about it.. I wonder how it looks on the mobile website. hmm..
    Adobe, give us courage to edit what photos must be altered, serenity to delete what cannot be helped, and the insight to know the one from the other.
    Canon EOS 7D - Canon EF-s 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM - Canon 100mm f/2.8L IS Macro - PCB Einsteins & PW Triggers

  9. #9
    Senior Member bob williams's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rocco View Post
    One of the Zenfolio CSRs suggested I make the text of those items the same color as my background. So it's there, but it's not really there.
    I'm Like you Rocco, I like the clean simple look on my homepage. And... That is a great idea to get some non viewable key words on your hompage, but your back ground would have to be a solid color, unless you can make the text transparent---I might give that a try this weekend. Thanks for the idea.

    PS, Very nice website you have there.
    Bob

  10. #10
    Senior Member bob williams's Avatar
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    Just wanted to share something with those that are interested in improving your search engine visibility.

    Some of you may know this but it is fairly new to me: Google Adwords . This was recommended from another source. You use this to develop keyword lists for various topics. For example: If I list "wolf photo" then this page will list many variations of the phrase. Then you can drop them in to and editor and do what you wish with them. It will even show you the competition for each phrase for both world wide and local areas. Looks like a really great tool.

    After a couple of practice runs, I realized my key word lists were very, very weak and completely off target. Hopefully, with a little help from Google, my hit rate will improve.
    Bob

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