How you are supposed to react if a client gives you a stock photography site that contains nothing but images and ask you to do the SEO? You are most likely to feel completely shaken because in the Post Panda world, a website without original and unique content is as good as nothing, at least this is online marketing gurus have to say. But photographic website has got little or nothing to do with the content of a website and that means, you will have a hard time making them search engines friendly. However, to make your encounter with photography websites a little bit easier, here we are going to share some tips that may help you save your skins:
Do The Basic: Do not appall at the very thought of sites based on purely images. The basics of SEO also apply on them. For say, you need to create the robots.txt file and create an image sitemap and then place the link reference of sitemap at the end of the robots.txt file so that search engine can find them easily. The proposed robots.txt file may contain the below code unless you have some plans to block some unwarranted pages from getting indexed by search engines:
Once you are done with robots.txt file, you need to concentrate on some other aspects like of basic SEO tasks like setting up canonical to solve duplicate content issues, setting up Google analytics. Next comes keyword research. Since there is not enough content, you need to take some extra pressure and come up with some great keywords that people are likely to use while scoring images online. However, you are free to use Google keywords research tools, but this tool has been blunted ever since Google has started showing encrypted search results to users.
Time for Some Advanced SEO: So, you are done with the basic parts. Now it is time for some advanced things. First of all, you need to make sure that you are using alt tags against each images. However, this is impossible to check this manually, so my humble request is to run SEO software like Screaming frog etc and you will have all the details in your hand.
make sure that the images have proper name. Like if the website is selling an image of a dog, you need to make sure that the url of the image contains the term dog otherwise, search engines might treat it differently.
http://www.example.com/images/dog-barking-and-playing.jpg is more meaningful to users and search engines than a face lace and random numeric no http://www.example.com/images/567373.jpg
Another important thing that you need to consider while optimizing a stock photography site is that the texts that wraps the images are related to the images. This will send strong signal to search engines about what the images are all about. You are free to use caption and image title to make it more easier for search engines. However, you not stuff the alt tags and title with excessive keywords as it will invariably lead to Google Penalty.
Use microformat for rating your photos. Let visitors rate your photos as it will encourage visitors interaction and this might lead to more sales and bigger online presence. However, if you happen to use WordPress, there are zillions of plugins available. All you need to do is take your pick. “Hcard for review” is certainly great and will add value to your website as a whole.
Make sure you are using breadcrumb navigation for presenting information. And of course, you need to use descriptive title and descriptions as there is not enough content that Google can use to relate the page to specific search query.
James Arnold provides extra resources about stock photography in his site www.WeightLossTriumph.com. He has learned a lot about stock photography because he uses stock photos in all the articles he writes. He recommends iStockphoto as a source of exceptional quality, professional, royalty free images that match any blogger’s theme and niche, and he offers a coupon discount.