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- @Ewen LewisGuelph Portrait Photography | Family, Engagement, Glamour, Headshots, ConcertsQ
Hi there, William.
I heard your podcast on PhotoBizXposed. Great interview; thank you for doing it. My question is two fold.
I have been with Zenfolio since September 2013. Their SEO management tools are very limited; I rank horribly after doing all I can with the SEO options. Would I be wiser to:
a) having my homepage WordPress and using Zenfolio as my other pages (galleries, blog, contact, etc.) OR
b) scrapping Zenfolio altogether and going all in with WordPress?
I want to understand how to optimize my website lead generation to conversion flow. Would please point me to practical and effective sources/information regarding this?
Thank you for your time, energy and passion! It is very much appreciated. Please let me know if there is anything I can do for you in return.
Hi Ewen! I'm really glad you heard (and liked) my interview. It was a lot of fun! Regarding your Zenfolio question: Zenfolio is great for what it is, which is Proofing. The website functions are not very good compared to WordPress. So what I would recommend is using WordPress as your website which will have all your pages, (About, Weddings, Portraits, etc) and your blog on it, and then use Zenfolio strictly for Online Proofing. As far as your other question regarding Conversions... It's a bit more complex of a topic. I've studied this for years and there's always more to learn. But ultimately, you want to create a User Experience (often times called UX), that increases the chances of your visitors hiring you. This requires thinking from the point of view of a potential customer finding your site, and not from the point of view of a photographer. It can be very challenging, and it may take lots of trial and error to get it figured out. We're more than happy to help you with that in the event that you think you'd like to look at doing some work to your website. Thanks! William
I hear that google is starting to punish overly optimized sites. I frequently have keywords in the meta data of my images that are on my blog, should I worry that I use the same keywords to much? How do I know when I’ve put to much emphasis on a particular keyword?A
Hi Kari, I wrote little bit about this particular topic on this blog post. https://flauntyoursite.com/stop-the-seo-insanity/ And as far as how to effectively add Alt Text, you can read this response: https://flauntyoursite.com/qa/alt-text/ My suggestion would be to look at using your blog posts as a way to attract really diverse searches, and use what are called Landing Pages to attract the big terms you're trying to rank for (i.e. London Wedding Photographer). Blog posts tend not to have a lot of Page Authority, so even if you use "London Wedding Photographer" a lot of times on that blog post, you won't be able to compete with other pages that have lots of links. And in a sense you end up cannibalizing your own keyword strategy on your site and can screw up which page should really get displayed when someone does a search. You really want the people search for "London Wedding Photographer" to go to a page that has information specifically for them, not a blog post where they wouldn't get the answers to their question right away. Hope this helped!
I am currently located in Austin, Texas and have been focusing my keywords on the Texas area. Now that I am expanding to include Indianapolis, Indiana in my base area for weddings and portraits – what recommendations do you have for adding the additional areas without damaging current Google rankings in the first city?
Hi Anne Marie, What I've been doing to make this work is have a menu item called Areas Served, and then having Pages set up with all the information that people need on that Page. Optimize that page very well for the keyword you want to rank for (Indianapolis Wedding Photography for example), and then begin building links to that Page to increase it's Page Authority. You can rank in multiple cities or areas by doing this. It takes some effort, but worth it :)
I recently tried to move my wordpress installation from a subdirectory to the main, but I ran into issues because Yahoo hosting does not support some of the things I needed to change (htaccess, apache, etc.). Also, there are probably other issues. Do you have any insight? Or do you recommend a host? Thanks!A
From a strict SEO perspective, the host won't impact your rankings. That is to say, which host company you're with isn't a ranking factor. But things like uptime, security (if your site gets malware often), speed of site, etc. are all factors that come into play. And Yahoo I don't know enough about the stability and speed of Yahoo hosting to definitively say how good it is in those areas. But I would be willing to bet if we compared Yahoo to someone like WP-Engine which exclusively hosts WordPress sites, that WP-Engine would be infinitely better. Would your rankings improve? Maybe, but it would be more a result of the higher quality hosting, uptime and speed that you get. And yes, I have a recommendation. You should host with us! :)
For a while, I was the top contender for Austin Wedding Photographers in google maps, but in the last several weeks, you can barely see me. What happened? What is google maps looking for? Thank you for your time!!!A
Hi Nadine, I answered a question very similar to this one here: https://flauntyoursite.com/qa/mapsgoogle-listing-vs-regular-organic-results/ A lot of it comes down to serving people in the immediate area that you're located. So Google is looking for factors that would help those people. Hope that helps, or is at least a starting point.
What do you think are the top three wedding sites to get reviews on (and links back) that will boost one’s ranking in google?
I found your site via the SWPB Forum on Flickr… I just read almost all your blogposts and you are genius!
There is one question left for me when it comes to giving alt and title tags to the images. Does it make sense to use the same phrase for the title and the alt tag – or would you use one title tag for the whole blogpost? I get the idea what to do with the alt tags but I’m not sure what to do with the title tags…
Thank you in advance.
All the best
Hi Thomas, Glad you're finding the site useful! I actually don't use the Title Attribute anymore for images. The Alt Attribute is enough. Title Attributes don't actually carry any SEO value with them, and are mainly used for Screen Readers for blind users of the internet to let them know where links take them. The only reason you would see Title Attributes on a photo is if it was a link to somewhere. Hope that helps!
Hi , Thanks for creating such a helpful site, these Q&A’s are awesome. Two questions, (both super rookie), Firstly how important is it to use standard text symbols in online company branding / SEO? (we use ± in our name instead of the more traditional ampersand &). Secondly, apart from Google what are the other big search engines you would recommend uploading / listing business on?A
Hi Nathan, Since your company name is a branded name, it will have lower search competition. If the symbol was in a very highly competitive term, the symbol may have an impact over someone using an ampersand or the word "and." But this can easily be figured out by doing a search and seeing what happens. When I search for "dodge and burn new zealand" your site pops up in the number 1 rank. So you're solid. :-) For your second question, I don't really know. I've heard that Bing is not even used in NZ and OZ, and even here in the States, Bing accounts for around 15% of search traffic. So it's not that big. So not sure if you need to focus anywhere else. It would really depend on what's most used with your target market.
Sorry, this is the most basic question!
I keep seeing “no follow” links mentioned. What on earth does this mean? How do I know whether my link or someone elses is no follow or not?A
No-Follow means that you don't vouch for the site that you're linking to. It also doesn't allow your Domain and Page Authority (the strength aspect to your site) to pass along to that site. The No-Follow designation was born out of Comment Spam getting out of control. So if someone left a comment that was a link to a Viagra site, the No-Follow wouldn't reward that site with greater Page Authority. So when you're building links, finding websites that have No-Follow disabled are your friends because they will pass along Page Authority. To find out whether a site has No-Follow disabled, you will need to get an extension for Chrome or Firefox. These extensions will highlight No-Followed and Followed links so you can tell which is which. By default WordPress sites have them set to No-Follow. You can remove this by using a plugin. There are a few out there, and some work better than others. If you do remove the No-Follow from your site, feel free to submit it in our list of sites that remove No-Follow so people can come comment on your site. https://flauntyoursite.com/followed-photography-sites/
I’ve recently been trying to move up on google page ranks and I’ve been keep track of it almost daily and have been slowly moving up. My main goal is for someone to search “Houston Wedding Photographer” and to show up on the first few pages, which is I know is not an easy feat. I’m trying to post something weekly just to keep my content fresh. Last week I created a post on what to wear to photo shoots. Once google picked it up I moved down 10 pages on google. Is this because my last post didn’t contain anything specifically pertaining to weddings or are there are forces at work here?A
Hi Brent, Yes, there are definitely other factors involved. There are about 200+ factors to bear in mind. It's easy to get into the trap of thinking that something you did was the cause of something else that happened ( i.e. I did X, and my rankings dropped). On top of that there are other sites to consider. Lots of variables. That said, if your home page is a blog, then your site's content is changing with each new blog post you publish, and that changes up the density of the keyword that Google is thinking you want to rank for. So it may very well be that your last article changed the dynamic of the page enough that Google no longer thinks you're focusing on "Houston Wedding Photography." Hope that helps!