As a photographer myself with a website of my own, I spent a lot of time trying to get my work to appear in the top results of search engines. Perhaps you've heard of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) but don't understand what it's about. Perhaps you've never taken the time to fully optimize your site because it sounds too difficult. Well, SEO is often misunderstood, and a lot of people think it is something that only a web developer can do by refactoring some code under the hood of their website. While it is important to have clean, semantic code behind your site, there are strategies that anyone, even an artist, can implement to improve SEO.
Here are just a few things to consider when trying to get your portfolio site to climb the rankings, many of which also apply to selling stock photography:
* Content and keywords
* Domain names and URL structure
* Page titles and Meta elements
* Page structure and tag semantics
* Using internal and external links effectively
* Obtaining inbound links
* Using frames and Flash
* Sitemaps and search engine robots
In case you missed it, we just posted a new article that focuses exclusively on Domain names and URL structure. Every Tuesday we will work down the list above, focusing on one bullet point until the series is complete.
@Jsternig That's the point I was getting at. Your wording could be confusing for people. I personally don't see a point for frames at all anymore. Modern browsers don't have a use for them and they are lousy for SEO. I agree with the Flash though. It is a nice embellishment for sites to add flare (or even "Flash") but not for content. Apple is extremely forward thinking, to a fault, and the decision to abandon Flash support is premature. I guess I should re-think the portfolio I have on my site too.
That bullet seems to be confusing quite a few people. Instead it should probably say something about deciding when and when not to use frames and flash. Obviously flash can be a good thing as long as it's not used for anything vital to the browsing experience. We certainly wouldn't recommend utilizing it for the main functionality of your site though.
@Wowbagger - Yeah, the points are just things to take into consideration when implementing your website. As you'll see in a few weeks when we address that topic specifically, we don't suggest using flash or frames unless absolutely necessary. Not only is flash unsearchable, but it doesn't work on the world's most popular phone (Cough, Cough). ;)
We're also going to begin a series tomorrow morning about forming a strong identity and utilizing it across web, print, social marketing, etc. So for all of you photographers that want to cement your place in the photo industry with a strong brand, we'll have some great reads for you shortly!
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