The best keywords for photographers

(Last Updated On: September 3, 2010)

Goldpro3Here is the 2015 version

After looking at my website analytics, and learning that someone landed on my site in search of the best keywords for photographers, I decided it’s time to tackle this issue head on.

Where to start?

The best place to begin is not with who you are, but with what you do, the type of photographs you create or the services you provide. If your website  only states your name or the name of your company, you have a search engine optimization, or SEO, problem.

Vanity searches are not impressive. They mean very little when marketing for new clients. You want to attract the people who don’t know who you are. You need to draw the people who are looking for what you offer.

One of the first stops when researching keywords is to do what I did for this post. Look at your analytics and search for key words on which to focus. These are the low-hanging fruit. If people are finding your website with specific, valuable keywords even if you have not optimized for them — It should take little effort to improve those results.

Next use tools such as Google’s Insights for Search and Keyword Tool, which is found in AdWords. Both tools offer excellent insight into what keywords people are submitting to search engines.

Take a look at the source code and tags of  successful websites using your desired key words. Find out what  your competition is doing.

In most cases I recommend making your site location specific. As I’ve crowed about over the last few weeks, I’m ranked No. 1 on Google for keywords, people photographer. That’s great, but most of my work comes from Detroit people photographer or Michigan people photographer.   You want to rank based on where you live. Make sure those keywords are part of your SEO plan.

It is important to test. Early on I learned a valuable lesson when I focused on the keywords: Michigan photography. I was able to place well in the rankings, but people bounced off my site quickly.


Eventually, I realized that people searching Michigan photography were looking for pretty pictures of Michigan – not my people, food or interior images.

Be specific. Focus on one theme per page. Google indexes web pages, not websites. So every page is an opportunity to focus on a new desired set of keywords. Optimize every page.

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