Camille Fontz, Destination Wedding Photographer, photographing a couple in Old San Juan.

Understanding the Basics of SEO for Wedding Photographers

June 11, 2019 / Raul Colon

Understanding the Basics of SEO for Wedding Photographers

Over time Search Engine Optimization for photographers has become an art to master; it's not any different with SEO For Wedding Photographers. Here are some of my thoughts when it comes to my No Bullshit SEO Approach as an SEO Specialist who works with top industry Destination Wedding Photographers and make their websites deliver results.

Understanding the Importance of SEO for Wedding Photographers

Building your online presence for your wedding photography business via Facebook and other Social Platforms use to be more accessible. Those who choose to focus on building their audience on their Facebook Page, for example, end up with subpar leads as opposed to those who for years have worked on making sure the SEO for their Wedding Photography Website is up to date with the times.

When most people search for a service, it's less likely they are going to search for it on Facebook or Instagram. Those who are more determined to purchase a service, usually jump on Google and type "Wedding Photographer in Puerto Rico" or "Wedding Venues in Puerto Rico".

You can spend a lot of time socializing on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook to build an audience, but Google remains king when it comes to getting you warmer leads and better quality clients.

Camille Fontz Destination Wedding Photographer

Destination Wedding Photographer

Camille Fontz

"There’s literally people out there right now googling services and products, money in their hands, ready to purchase. There are also numerous businesses that offer what they are looking for. However, they will only reach out to a select few: the ones to show up first. SEO does that for you. If you have an online presence, it needs to be optimized so you are found every time.

After I started working with SEO for my website, it doubled my leads, doubled my bookings, tripled my income, and dropped my online ads investment to $0.00. Everyone who runs a business but doesn’t have an optimized website is losing money."

Camille Fontz Destination Wedding Photographer

Destination Wedding Photographer

Camille Fontz

"There’s literally people out there right now googling services and products, money on their hands, ready to purchase. There are also numerous businesses that offer what they are looking for. However, they will only reach out to a select few: the ones to show up first. SEO does that for you. If you have an online presence, it needs to be optimized so you are found out every time.

After starting working with SEO for my website, it doubled my leads, doubled my bookings, tripled my income, and dropped my online ads investment to $0.00. Everyone who runs a business but doesn’t have an optimized website, is losing money."

Mastering SEO For Wedding Photographers

Understanding SEO can be challenging for any business. So when you start thinking of SEO for Wedding Photographers and optimizing your wedding website portfolio and blog, you might not even know where to start. SEO has become a delicate art to master; search engines like Google continuously change the rules of the game, and it can become a part-time job trying to keep up with the latest changes.

The days of buying multiple domains and adding the keywords you wanted to rank for were left behind in the late '90s when the internet did not have so many websites and so much content.

If you want more and better clients, you've got to conquer the internet by creating high-quality content and optimizing that content to make a more significant dent.

Best Photography Website Design for a Top Wedding Photographer

THE SEO BASICS

When it comes to getting the best possible Bing or Google search results, the first important aspect is creating content and then creating some more content.

Not everyone understands what creating good quality content looks like. Make sure your content is readable, that it appeals to the audience you are trying to reach and that it tells a story that will resonate with the interest or pain point that a particular website visitor and the potential client might have. In summation, the content has to be unique and appealing to search engines and people.

The Very Commonly Forgotten Part of SEO

The second most crucial aspect and the most forgotten aspect is the technical part of your website.

I get contacted by people who have created excellent quality content, but the website is of poor quality. Improving the website is where I can help them improve their SEO Ranking. To go into more detail of what these aspects of SEO are like, let’s break it down into parts.

Photo by Destination Wedding Photographer - Camille Fontz
Photo by Destination Wedding Photographer - Camille Fontz

Create Discoverable Written Content

Make the time to Create Content For Wedding Photo Galleries

Most photographers make the mistake of wanting to rank for just a few specific terms. For example, they decide they want to rank for the term "Wedding Photographer." So they go ahead and name every page of their website with the words, "Wedding Photographer." They sometimes even optimize for one term only.

Search Engines Continue to Get Smarter

They probably don't know that Search Engines like Google have gotten smarter; in the case of Google, the LIS (Latent Semantic Indexing) is part of the algorithm, which identifies semantically related terms. In layman's terms, it makes a connection with the terms related to your industry and business to your content.

For our clients, we give them the goal of creating content with 300 words, that depict a captivating story where the photographer shares their experience at the wedding. One of our most talented written-word clients is Camille Fontz. Camille will take you on a quick journey in her blog posts, where she provides details of her clients' weddings. She explains how she met the couple, the decor, ambiance, and venue.

The overall content helps you understand the benefits of hiring her for your big day. Camille is capturing a life-changing moment, and yes we also add the wedding photographer keyword in the content for strategic reasons, but it's not the highlight or the focus keyword in all her galleries and blog posts.

What Camille does best is write up her experience as if she was talking in an intimate setting in front of friends of this great experience she had while taking care of her wedding clients. She is creative and sophisticated, and every piece of content is unique.

Photo by Destination Wedding Photographer - Camille Fontz
Photo by Destination Wedding Photographer - Camille Fontz

Use your Blog to Share Wedding Photography Business Stories and Resources

Most of the content created by busy Wedding Photographers are in short-form format. Content is around 300 words or less and just highlighting the experience they had at a wedding, elopement, or engagement proposal.

In between sharing your work and the awesome couples you get to work with, make sure you write articles and include resources that make it easier for the type of client you are trying to reach. Take time to write a guide on the best places to propose or the latest trend on engagement rings; this can get the attention of a prospect way before the person is ready to purchase your wedding photography services.

Photo by Destination Wedding Photographer - Camille Fontz
Photo by Destination Wedding Photographer - Camille Fontz

Technical SEO FOR WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHERS

One of the biggest challenges we have when launching a wedding photography website is making sure it has the right amount of content, and that the material is optimized.

But the first aspect is more crucial; without content, you will never rank for any term much less the important ones.

The SEO for Wedding Photographer has to be optimized and continuously tweaked. If not, then it loses the real value and opportunities that a good piece of SEO Content can bring you. It's like driving your car without power steering, no air in your tires, old brakes,  and without making the oil changes on time. Over time your car would stop working or even worse cause you to crash.

The content is the complete car while the technical part is how we keep all the moving pieces in order so that steering wheel is easy to maneuver and on occasions might even take your website into autopilot.

Photos by Camille Fontz - Destination Wedding Photographer
Photos by Camille Fontz - Destination Wedding Photographer

Finding the Right opportunities with Keyword Research

Keyword Research for SEO has evolved from when I started focusing my efforts on SEO in 2011. For us, what has changed is how we know to write content based on the needs of our clients, and we prioritize based on the search volume of that keyword and the difficulty to rank on it.

At one point in time I only used Google Ads tools, but unless you are spending a big chunk of money, we feel that using KwFinder is a more reliable and useful tool. With KW Finder and Google Search Console, I can see what I am ranking for and the opportunities that the specific domain holds.

As a photographer working alongside many wedding photographers over the years has helped me identify opportunities that are related to how my client's customer purchase their services. For example, moving my focus on a keyword such as Elopements and away from a word like Hitched because there is a high search volume for Elopement and not enough content. If you take the time to write a piece on ideas on how someone can propose to their significant other opens up an opportunity to sell them not only the wedding, but all the events leading to the wedding (like the actual proposal, an Engagement Session, and Love Stories.)

Once we identify what content we are going to write on, we make sure we include the focus keyword in the paragraphs and h tags.

If your website runs on WordPress, you can use a tool like Seo Press, which will help you to tighten up the content around the focus keyword you are trying to target. It will also give you guidelines on optimizing your content.

Immaculate Permalink Structure

This is one of the easiest things to fix as you continue to create content moving forward. Your links should match the high-quality work you are trying present. Make sure they are short and to the point - yourweb.com/immaculate-keyword

Keep your Permalinks Clean. Camille Fontz

Remove the Duplicate Content

A lot of people have the option of tags on a website and photographers tend to use the tags more than my other clients. Unless the website has hundreds of blog posts and you are using it for navigation I recommend you stay away from tags. Some tags and categories end up appearing as duplicate content for the search engine.

If you want to use Tag because you have hundreds of unique posts and pages then you might want to have an SEO professional take a look at how to make sure the tag does not reflect in the search engine results as a duplicate.

Make sure you Nurture and Prioritize your Internal Linking

As you continue to create content it's important that you link the content to other pieces of a relevant content on your site.  This will not only help with ranking your site by telling the search engine what content relates to what you wrote but it also helps your reader navigate and learn more about your body of work. The easier to find a page the more traffic it will have and better it will rank.

Don't Forget LOCAL SEO

Local SEO For Wedding Photographers is a critical aspect because you as a wedding photographer have to be physically present to deliver your services. For that reason, you need to make sure you take advantage of the tools and free features Google My Business provides.

It will improve organic search results and on occasions, the positioning of Google My Business is over the top search results of content that is not local. Fill out the empty spaces and validate your account you will thank yourself later.

SEO Google My Business

The multiple aspects of Image Optimization

Most photographers are against compressing their JPEG files. It's understandable you want to show off your work. What they miscalculate is that most people are going to be searching your site on a small device like their cellphone and not on a billboard sign. For that reason, there are many tools that compress files without having it lose its quality. The tool that is validated by the photographers we work and respect is Shortpixel. We've used many and this tool gets the job done and saves a lot of time over time.

Another important part is making sure each image has a title, description, and ALT tag which explains to google and the visitor what the image is about.

ESTABLISHING DOMAIN AUTHORITY / TRUST

The Importance of Domain Authority is something we have to take into consideration. It's pretty much how much the Search Engine trusts your website when compared to others.

There are many ways to establish trust and gain authority but you have to make sure you do it a steady pace and this is not something you can completely control or create overnight. Domain Authority takes time and effort. The topic on how to Build Backlinks to help with the SEO For Wedding Photographers is one I will cover in another post.

In Summary, when working on the SEO For Wedding Photographers you have to make sure you apply the right tactics to get some initial growth; aligning those tactics to the long term strategy with SEO for your website is to produce valuable qualified leads. 

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