In the world of SEO there are countless techniques to get ahead of competition in search results. SEO is an ever evolving thing and constant updates to search engine’s algorithms make keeping up with white hat SEO (ethically right) strategies somewhat difficult. One thing I see a lot in the photo industry is photographers over using keywords in their descriptions, titles, and content. This is commonly refereed to “keyword Stuffing.” 10 years ago this would have worked wonders for your website, but now, this will damage your SEO efforts worse than ever.
Google defines keyword stuffing as:
“Keyword stuffing” refers to the practice of loading a webpage with keywords or numbers in an attempt to manipulate a site’s ranking in Google search results. Often these keywords appear in a list or group, or out of context (not as natural prose). Filling pages with keywords or numbers results in a negative user experience, and can harm your site’s ranking. Focus on creating useful, information-rich content that uses keywords appropriately and in context.
Using the keyword once or twice, maybe even three times is perfectly fine. However, using the keyword over and over and using it for Alt tags and meta titles, descriptions, etc then you risk getting penalized by Google. Below is a short clip of Google’s Matt Cutts explaining a bit about keyword density.
Here are a few suggestions to help you with your SEO efforts without over using keywords.
- Use Related Keywords – Instead of using the same keywords over and over, try using keywords that are related to your main keyword. So if you are optimizing a post for a wedding you shot at a specific venue you can use the name of the venue, but also try to use a relatable keyword. For example, your main keyword may be “The Grinhall Wedding Venue”. A related keyword you could use could be something like “Places to get married in Chicago”.
- Stop Worrying About Keyword Density – Yes, you mention keywords and maybe some relatable keywords, but when writing an article your focus should be on good content and not just putting keywords together to try and rank your website. I have always stuck to the saying Content is King. Having great content will put you higher up than if you just mention a bunch of keywords. Try to always include at least a 300 word description if you are posting just images. Get in to detail about the venue and your experience there. There is so much to talk about. Do it.
Using these quick tips and eliminating the overuse of keywords will help you out a ton in the long run. SEO is an essential part to ranking high in search engines, but you want to make sure you do things conservatively. Overdoing anything in SEO will always pull your efforts down.