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How can a photographer’s image-focused site gain PageRank?

How can a photographer’s image-focused site gain PageRank? - answered by Matt Cutts

Matt's answer:

Matt Cutts: Today’s question comes from a Land Lubber in Colorado. Who asks, “How would a photographer gain any significant PageRank for his or her site when the subject that really matters-images-has no anchor text? Often, the photos alone will sell the photographer to his or her clients. How can we overcome this challenge?” That’s a fantastic question because Google doesn’t really understand the content of images yet. We’re getting better. We have Google Goggles that can take a picture of a landmark and recognize it as a landmark. But understanding in general, what an image is, is one of the hardest problems in computer science. So, the advice that I would give is look at ways that you can incorporate data around the image. It could be in the meta-information within the image. It can be the title. It can be the name of the image. It can be a paragraph of text around the image. It can even be characteristics of the webpage like the title of the webpage that has that image. So, there are a lot of places to put text. One tip that I would recommend is introduce a place where people can leave comments, because if you think about something like Flickr. If you have a picture, we might not know what that picture is, but then you’ve got 30 comments down below it, and people will say, “Aw, that is a beautiful portrait”, ” Aw, that woman is so pretty”, or “Oh, I love the light shining in from the side on the barn door”, or whatever. And just in the process of users talking about the picture, you’ll often end up with the keywords. Whether it be portrait or woman or barn door or sunlight that you would like to show up for any way. So, if you have the time to label your images or maybe label the images that you think are the best, maybe not all of your images, but put some time in on just the images that you’d really like to rank for, that can make a difference. And then introducing a functionality, where people can comment on images can be another way where you can attract textual content that the search engines can understand. Of course, this doesn’t change the fact that as a photographer you can always promote yourself in all kinds of different ways. From having shows, to talking to reporters about your work, all of that is way to get links to your website, and then the more links you have to your website can direct around within to the various photographs. But naming your galleries, having descriptive names for images, all these sort of tricks are ways to-not really tricks just techniques to introduce more textual content so that search engines can kind of understand what’s in the image and you can, sort of, show up a little higher in search engines.

by Matt Cutts - Google's Head of Search Quality Team


Original video: