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SEO for Photographers: How to Optimize your Photography Website

a guide to SEO for photographers

For professional photographers, expanding a customer base and earning more bookings requires far more than just word-of-mouth referrals from previous clients and customers. SEO for photographers is so important because the first place people go to discover new services is search engines like Google. If your professional or wedding photography website isn’t showing up on the first page, there’s a good chance that potential customers will choose a different photographer for their next big event or family portrait session.

As a small business owner in our growing digital world, gone are the days where word of mouth and print advertisements lead to the majority of your business. Instead, digital marketing and search engine optimization (SEO) reign supreme for earning new customers. With 66% of all businesses utilizing some sort of online advertising, it only makes sense to amp up your photography business’s online presence to be more competitive and gain exposure.

But how do you do it? Here’s a beginner’s guide on SEO for photographers so you can improve your photography website to start earning more keyword rankings, website traffic, and photography bookings.

Why Professional Photographers Need SEO

Any business, big or small, needs to invest in their online presence to be competitive in today’s marketplace. Search engine optimization is one of the most cost-effective ways to improve your overall online visibility. At its core, the goal of SEO is to boost the visibility of your webpages by getting them ranking in Google’s Search Engine Result Pages, also known as the SERPs.

Search engine behemoths like Google and Bing keep the details of their ever-changing search algorithms close to their chest and don’t always release the specifics of what businesses should do to land those coveted SERP rankings. But there are some SEO best practices that any small business can implement to up their chances of ranking in the search results. SEO takes time and hard work, but your efforts can quickly result in more site traffic and revenue.

seo for photographers gif

Some of those optimizations are more simple. With the right tools and software, professional and wedding photographers can make changes to their websites in a CMS like WordPress or Squarespace. Other digital marketing concepts can be a bit tricky to implement for the average business owner, so for more advanced SEO strategies, it’s an important thing to work with a digital marketing professional or agency well-versed in the search engine result pages for your photography niche.

Considering that photography is, by nature, a visual business, it makes sense that many small business photographers create websites that are stock full of images. But in the world of SEO, a website has to be more than just a place where potential clients can see the work you have done before. It also has to communicate to search engine crawlers (who can’t see images) the relevance of your content, the quality and expertise of your services in comparison to your competitors, as well as your location and the markets you serve.

Designing and structuring your website content to meet the needs of both your potential customers and search engines is key to ranking in organic search results and earning new client bookings. Here are the primary ways you can implement an effective SEO strategy for your own website.

SEO for Photographers: The Basics

family portrait photographer

Whether you’re an established photographer or just starting out, there is a need to complete a few different SEO basics to ensure your website is optimized properly. If you make it a priority to improve upon the most important ranking factors, you will most likely start to see your SEO rankings improve in as little as 1-3 months.

Photography Keywords

Keywords are the search words or phrases people use when they search in any search engine. With the sheer amount of different keywords people might use to search for photography services like yours, it’s important to do thorough vetting to ensure the keywords you target bring a lot of traffic that is likely to convert on your site.

There are plenty of online tools available to help you determine which relevant keywords to use, but since you are the closest one to your business, take some time brainstorming. Do you specialize in wedding photography, family portraits, or corporate photography? Do you only serve specific local markets? These key factors of your business will help you identify the related keywords that will bring the right kind of traffic to your photography website.

Keywords for SEO for photographers

Here are some things to think about when doing keyword selection.

  1. What is the focus of your business? Are you trying to optimize for SEO for wedding photographers only, or do you do family shoots, portraiture, or newborn baby photography? You can have multiple answers to this question.
  2. What locations do you serve? Are you based in one area, or will you travel to different towns and cities?
  3. Who are your competitors? Are you competing with well established wedding photographers in local search that have already established their site authority in the eyes of Google? If so, targeting long-tail keywords that are less competitive is a great way to get some initial search engine rankings for your photography site until you have built up your domain authority through off-site SEO efforts.

Once you have the answers to the three questions above, you’ll be more focused and in a better position to dive into more in-depth keyword research. Online content tools, such as our Keyword Search Volume Tool, provide important keyword data like search volume and cost-per-click that shows how many people are searching for specific keywords or what they are paying to target them in PPC campaigns.

Taking the time to conduct thorough research will help you find the right keywords that bring converting traffic to your website.

HTML Optimizations

Once you have the proper keywords picked out, you’ll need to use them in both the frontend and backend of your web pages. Search engines use web crawlers in order to read what is on your site, and when you properly optimize your HTML tags, it makes it easier for Google to see what exactly your website is about.

At the bare minimum, the HTML tags you should optimize on your photography website pages include:

  • <title></title>. Defines the title of the page or the title tag.
  • <h1></h1>. Header 1, which is the largest font on the page, after the title. Should include your focus keyword.
  • <h2></h2>, <h3></h3>,<h4></h4>, <h5></h5>. All subsequent sub-titles or subheadings that decrease in SEO impact as you increase in number. 
  • Meta description. The code of this tag varies per website platform and server you are using, but the meta description is a short sentence telling Google exactly what each page of your website is about.
  • Alt tags. Search engine crawlers cannot see your images, so an alt tag provides an HTML text alternative so they can understand the content of the many images you’ll likely include on your photography website.

Once you have these HTML basics incorporated on each page of your website, it will be easier for Google to read and categorize your information.

Developing a Sitemap

It doesn’t matter if you have the best-optimized landing pages and blog posts on the entire Internet, if a search engine cannot find your web pages, then they cannot rank them within the SERPs. This is called indexing, which is the crawling and subsequent categorizing of any webpage into Google’s vast website database. And once the website and its pages are indexed, Google can use what information it has to populate its search results.

The easiest way to ensure Google can find your landing pages is to develop a simple sitemap that tells Google exactly what is on your website. A sitemap is exactly what it sounds like– a map of every page. They don’t have to be complex, just a structure of your pages and their URLs. Working with a member of our digital marketing team can help you create a basic, yet functional sitemap to ensure your website is being crawled and indexed properly.

5 Photography SEO Essentials

phtography optimization and SEO

For the most part, the fundamentals of SEO will not change from website to website, but there are specific things professional photographers should focus on because their websites are more visual in nature and feature more images than the average website.

Having lots of images on your website can impact website speed, page load times, and other important performance metrics that are a part of Google’s ranking algorithm. Here are 5 important SEO tactics for photography websites to focus on to make sure their image-heavy website performs well in search.

#1: Optimize Images

You run a photography business, so optimizing images for search engines should be a a no-brainer. Since your website will likely include a gallery that is populated with high-resolution photos, it is crucial that you optimize them to be the right image size.

If your page load speed is poor, you’ll likely experience high bounce rates and lose that website traffic you just worked so hard to earn. Not only will optimized images make it easier for clients to scroll or click through your portfolio faster, smaller pictures improve site speed and load times and result in a website that is more responsive and performs better on mobile devices.

#2: Use Alt Tags

Simply put, an alt tag is a description of your photograph that Google can read. Google web crawlers cannot see image files, so a small snippet of alt text makes all the difference in helping them understand the content of your photos — like whether they are primarily wedding photos, landscape photography, or senior portraits.

Consider your photos as just other pieces of real estate on your website that should be optimized with SEO best practices. Adding keywords into an alt tag is yet another way Google can gain information and in return, rank your site.

#3: Create Blog Content

Creating a blog that allows you to target new keywords and while also showing off your photos and past work is great for SEO. Maybe your primary keyword is “wedding photographers near me,” but a long-tail keyword like “engagement photography” can help open up your services to a new market of potential customers.

Example of photography blog with good SEO for photographers

If your photography website is targeting “wedding photography” keywords, try targeting engagement photography in a blog post. It’s a great way to add new content to your site while also earning new keyword rankings that expand your customer base. Here’s a few reasons why consistently publishing blog posts is a great On-Page SEO tactic for photography websites in particular.

  • You can use content and blogs to target new keywords with the goal of helping to boost your search engine rankings.
  • You can show off more images in your portfolio work while also providing captions and more detailed context that will help engage your target audience and their unique needs
  • You can utilize the blogs as an extra place for images, which includes alt text, making your page more keyword rich.
  • You can connect with your clients! Online shoppers want to know that there is an actual person behind the screen (and camera!) Writing great content that showcases testimonials or events makes you more personable.

#4: Make Your Homepage SEO Friendly

Your website’s homepage is most likely the most popular page on your site, making it that much more important for it to be SEO friendly. The information you post on the homepage should be quick to find and easy to read. Make sure to include the following:

example of homepage with good SEO for photographers
  • A call to action with relevant keywords,
  • Your contact information both on the top of the page (header), and the bottom(footer),
  • Links to your social media profiles,
  • Photos of your best work
  • Headlines, with the proper HTML formatting.

#5: Stay Away From Duplicate Content and Keyword Stuffing

There are several SEO no-nos that websites should stay away from, but some key cautions in particular for photography sites are duplicate webpages and keyword stuffing.

Each page on your website should serve a specific purpose and there should be no duplicate content. Not only do duplicate pages slow down the website’s speed and negatively impact user experience, but Google also penalizes websites with multiple duplicate pages. Just make sure the content you write and the pictures you share on each page are different.

Keyword stuffing in content and alt tags can be tempting if you really want to get ranking for your main keyword, but Google will recognize these black hat SEO tactics immediately and likely penalize your site. Instead, include phrases and synonyms into your page titles and headings that have topical relevance to your target keyword.

You can use a tool like our landing page optimizer to create in-depth, quality content, that displays authority to Google, thus improving overall search engine results for your domain name.

Off-Site SEO for Photographers

Anything to do with off-site SEO for photographers is what happens “off” of your website. Off-site SEO should be a fundamental detail in every photographer’s SEO strategy, as it is a high ranking factor in Google’s eyes. Off-site signals like backlinks and brand mentions show Google that your photography site is trusted by other webmasters and users on the internet.

The easiest way to invest in off-site SEO is to develop a strong backlink profile. A backlink is a link from another website that leads to your website and is used as a signal of authority by Google when ranking your website against your competitors. It tells Google that other businesses trust your website, which is a huge factor in ranking high in the SERPs.

To start earning links, connect with other vendors you’ve worked with in the past and see if they’ll participate in a link exchange. Make sure the anchor text is relevant to your site’s content and is natural in appearance.

For new sites in particular, earning backlinks will have the most impact on improving your SEO rankings right away. The more quality backlinks you have from relevant websites in your photography niche, the higher authority your website will have in Google’s eyes, and the better chance you’ll outrank your competition.

Local SEO for Photographers Tips

Local SEO is how Google classifies and promotes businesses per their location. When a user enters a geographic or location-based keyword phrase, Google understands that the most relevant results will be those that come from the same geographic area.

Think of when you do a Google search for a pizza place, the results at the top will likely include Google maps with those businesses closest to you in your town, city, or suburb. However, photography businesses are not as cut and dry.  Portrait photographers may have a studio that they work in, while wedding photographers may not have a brick-and-mortar location, but still be confined to working events in limited areas.

Making sure your location information is clearly communicated in your meta data and off-site signals is an important thing for driving qualified traffic to your site — or only those users who are also in the same area where your business operates.  Having a clear contact page with your phone number or a submission form will help turn those local searchers into more bookings and business.

Also, getting your photography business listed in popular online directories like theknot.com is a great way to start building your off-site signals and earn links back to your site. Make sure your business is listed in the most popular photographer directories so more customers can find you and search engines can trust that your business is reputable.

example of online wedding photographer directory

Here are some easy local SEO tips to follow to improve your search engine results appearances for geographic search phrases.

  • Fill out your Google My Business profile. This is where you’ll put your studio location (if you have one), your hours, your website URL, and your contact information.
  • Update your Yelp directory listing. Feel free to fill your yelp photo gallery with recent pictures of your work but at the very least your Yelp profile should include the same information as above.
  • Comb through your customer testimonials on Google, Yelp, and social media. Make sure that you reply to every single one with a solution or words of thanks, even if it is negative. Doing so will allow potential clients to see your customer service at work.
  • Get your photography website listed across online directories. Monthly local citation services can ensure your site information is listed with accuracy across hundreds to thousands of NAP listings, a cost-effective, easy way to get a nice boost in domain authority

Creating a Great Photography Website: How to Improve Core Web Vitals and Page Experience

Consumers have very limited attention spans when it comes to finding information on the Internet. Because there are so many photography businesses out there, if your website gallery doesn’t load, they can easily hop to another new page on another domain.

Poor user experience and page speed is the number one factor in why a user would leave your website, and because Google is advanced enough to understand whether your website is operating at peak performance, it is less likely to rank web pages that have high bounce rates or don’t perform well.

Luckily, Google provides a free tool known as PageSpeed Insights that allows anyone to see how their website is performing. They also provide Core Web Vitals metrics in their Google Search Console. Core Web Vitals are best described as three metrics created by Google that measure unified the essentials in delivering a great experience on the web.

The three metrics are:

  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): measures loading performance of the website as a whole. For a good user experience, your LCP should occur within 2.5 seconds.
  • First Input Delay (FID): measures interactivity; how long it takes for a user to be able to interact with the page. Every page should have an FID of less than 100 milliseconds.
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): measures visual stability; or how often the website’s layout shifts when a user is scrolling through. Every page should have a CLS of less than 0.1.

The best part about PageSpeed Insights is that you don’t have to be incredibly savvy with web-dev in order to make changes. When you add your URL into the PageSpeed Insights tool, it will give you very detailed information on how to increase both your Core Web Vitals metrics and your PageSpeed. Google provides step-by-step instructions, but if you have any questions, a member of our digital marketing team is happy to help you.

Last Thoughts on Photographer SEO

When it comes to SEO for photographers, it is important to remember that search engine optimization is like the stock market: you get out of it what you put into it. It is very important to be patient when it comes to SEO simply because of the nature of what it is – not only does Google change its algorithms periodically, it can take a couple of weeks to a couple of months for Google bots to actually crawl your website.

Just like it took you awhile to build up your photography skills, you can’t improve your Google rankings overnight. By taking the first step to connect with an SEO professional, it is not only an investment in your business, but in you as a photographer! The more people who can find you website in Google Search results the more individuals who will see your photography and consider purchases services from you.

After you have implemented your SEO for photographers strategy, make sure you track your progress in Google Search Console and Google Analytics. Take snapshots every 3 months of your improvements, and continue to optimize accordingly. As your metrics improve, your appointment book will likely start filling up.

New Website SEO: How to Start Earning Organic Traffic

There is so much that goes into launching a new website. Purchasing a domain name, finding a great web designer, and writing website copy are all essential steps in a successful website launch. Most site owners invest a lot of money and time into the design and readability of their websites. But without any website traffic, no one will even see the high-quality website they have worked so hard to build. 

That’s why SEO is so important for new websites. Executing a careful SEO process with your new url can help you earn keyword rankings, protect from Google penalties, and save you time in the long-run. Starting with a good SEO plan can prevent site owners from having to make changes to foundational elements of their website down the road like the url structure, pillar pages, or overall site architecture.

Those new site owners who implement the best practices of search engine optimization are better situated to quickly show up in search results and start earning new site visitors and customers. For new site owners who want their hard work to be rewarded with organic traffic, these 10 SEO practices are the best approach for building your new website on a solid foundation.

If you don’t have the resources in-house, connect with SEO professionals to ensure your new website has what it takes to launch straight into the search results.

New Website SEO Checklists:

Keyword Research | Site Architecture | On-Page SEO | SEO Tracking | Page Experience | XML Sitemap | Local SEO | Link Building | PPC | Content Strategy

#1: Do your Keyword Homework for your New Website

Any new business or website entering a niche market needs to have a concrete understanding of their target audience. In the world of SEO, businesses connect with their target audiences through keywords and search terms. Keyword Research is the process of identifying and selecting the search terms that your target audience is already using to search for products, services, and content like yours. 

Although getting traffic from search is the ultimate goal, increased traffic is not helpful if the visitors who arrive to your new site aren’t actually in the market for the products or services your brand offers. If you select keywords that are irrelevant to your industry niche, organic traffic is unlikely to translate into increased conversions. If you select keywords with low search volume, it is unlikely you will drive many clicks simply from a lack of impressions. 

The best keywords, then, will be those that your website stands a strong chance of ranking for and converting from. Keywords with higher CPCs are more likely to drive qualified traffic and leads to your website. Why? Because if there are companies out there willing to pay top-dollar to rank in a PPC campaign for specific keywords, it’s likely the individuals using those search terms are converting.

It’s also important to consider the keyword difficulty of your target keywords. One of the most common mistakes that new site owners make is targeting keywords that are far too competitive. Like any new business or product, your website has to prove its value and usefulness to internet users over time. Choosing keywords with SERPs that are dominated by well-established websites with huge backlink profiles is not a smart strategy for new websites. Instead, identify longer-tail keyword phrases that are less competitive and provide opportunities for your new website to start ranking right now.

In this example, “business intelligence services,” is a great keyword target because it has lower organic difficulty, reasonable search volume, and higher cost-per-click

As you grow your backlink profile and domain authority over time, you can reoptimize your landing pages and web content for those more competitive search terms. The majority of searchers never make it past the first page of the search results, so if your website is unlikely to get to page 1 for your main keyword target, it’s best to go back to the drawing board and find a more realistic keyword.  

Keyword Research Checklist for New website SEO:

  • Use a keyword tool to identify the high-value keywords in your industry that will bring qualified traffic to your new website
  • Choose keywords that have a strong search volume, a lower keyword difficulty, and higher cost-per-click
  • Optimize your pillar pages — home page, services pages, or category pages — for those primary keywords
  • Develop a content strategy so you can continue to target other relevant search terms or long-tail keywords to earn more search engine rankings and more traffic in the long-term

#2: Build an SEO-Friendly Site Architecture

Site architecture makes a difference in new website SEO

Site architecture refers to the way your new website is structured. Not only is site architecture essential for users to navigate your website with ease, it’s also important for the search engine bots that crawl and index your landing pages. Because your site’s architecture is an essential part of whether or not your landings pages show up in Google search results, it’s important to identify the primary keywords you want to rank for and structure your website accordingly. 

The homepage is the natural starting point of your new website, but it’s not necessarily the first page users will come across in search results. A strategic site architecture will give new site visitors strong footing regardless of which page they land on first. Users should always know where they are in your website and where they need to click for the content they seek next. 

A common metaphor for site architecture is the pyramid. Your homepage will form the top of the pyramid, and beneath it, you will have the primary category pages of your site. These category pages should be able to encompass all of the content on your website. Beneath those category pages you will have the specific pages that naturally fit within that category (e.g. For ecommerce sites, these likely include product pages). Your url paths should not only reflect your site architecture, but be short and keyword rich to be as SEO-friendly as possible.

The header and footer of your new site should include links to key pages so users can quickly navigate to important, valuable content. Your internal linking structure will provide the pathways for Google’s crawlers as well, and it will also distribute PageRank across your website, an important Google Ranking factor. Having breadcrumbs on your site will also help users and Google bots understand your website’s architecture. 

All of these SEO site structure tips can be completed by your web developer on the backend of your website. Popular CMS platforms like WordPress make it simple to add breadcrumbs. If you don’t think about these structural elements early on, you could be forced to make changes down the road that require an extensive site migration with redirects, url changes, or even website redesign. This can cause money, time, and even a loss of organic search rankings.

Site Architecture Checklist for New Websites:

  • Structure your website with your homepage at the top, category pages beneath the homepage, and then individuals pages or product pages within those categories 
  • Keep your urls short and keyword rich
  • Link the most important pages of your website in your header and footer
  • Find CMS plugins to set up breadcrumbs so users and search engine robots can easily understand how your website is structured

#3: Cover your On-Page SEO Basics

Once you have identified the keywords your ideal audience is using, you need to optimize your content for those keywords. On-Page content includes all of the visible and invisible content of your website. Google crawls all of it to understand the quality, relevance, and authority of your content in relationship to your competitors.

Optimizing your landing page copy is easy with a tool like the LinkGraph Landing Page Optimizer. Enter your target keyword into the tool, and our software will scan the top ranking SERP results to identify key terms and phrases that Google associates with the search term. Add the suggested Focus Terms into your content to improve the topical depth, overall content score, and elevate your chances of ranking.

If you’re using a popular CMS like WordPress, Magneto, or Shopify, optimizing the backend of your website is fairly simple. Still, make sure that the web developer you are working with has SEO knowledge and can make sure the HTML elements of your website like your page titles, meta descriptions, and heading tags are optimized for your target keywords. Even better, have them use schema.org markup on the backend of your new website so Google crawlers can more easily crawl and index your web pages and improve the quality of your search appearances. 

As you add new landing pages to your website, optimize those pages for other relevant keywords or long-tail phrases that will expand your market and increase your overall keyword rankings. Also, make sure that each piece of content you create has good information architecture that includes internal links back to your primary category pages. By doing so, you will help Google better understand how all of your web pages relate. 

On-Page SEO Checklist for New Websites:

  • Use LinkGraph’s Landing Page Optimizer SEO tool and include the suggested Focus Terms into your website copy. Get your content score over 80 if you want to rank
  • Demonstrate topical-depth and authority with long-form, original content 
  • Optimize title tags, meta descriptions, heading tags, and alt text for your target keywords
  • Use schema.org to improve your overall search results

Learn more about the best practices of on-page content optimization with our comprehensive ebook

#4: Start Tracking the Performance of your New Website SEO

Track your new website SEO performance from the start to see your improvement.

There are many different tools and softwares that you can use to track the performance of your website, but Google Analytics and Google Search Console are the primary tools every site owner should set up to track how their website is performing. With the key data and metrics these free tools provide, you can start understanding how users are interacting with your new site and how Google crawlers are ranking your web pages.

Google Analytics allows you to understand where your website traffic comes from, how long users stay on your website, how many pages they view, and other key metrics. With Google Search Console, you can measure your keyword rankings and search engine performance. Metrics like impressions, clicks, and click-through-rates can help you understand which content on your website is performing best in search engines and which pages are driving the most traffic to your website.

There are other tools and software that can help you monitor your overall SEO strategy. Once you begin to acquire backlinks for your new website, a tool like the LinkGraph backlink analyzer can help you identify spammy or toxic backlinks, perform competitor benchmarking, or identify new link building opportunities. Create an account to access our full suite of SEO tools

New Websites SEO Tracking Checklist :

  • The first step is to set up Google Analytics and Google Search Console Accounts for your domain name
  • For B2Bs, link your Google Analytics account to your CRM platform to track your leads coming from organic search
  • Set up your LinkGraph account to access the SEO dashboard and start tracking your SEO performance

#5: Make sure your New Website is High-Performing

An optimized website with high-quality content and high-performing UI/UX is key to driving organic traffic to your site. Users are going to press the back button on their browsers if your web pages take too long to load, don’t perform well on mobile devices, or don’t provide a high-quality user experience as they click from landing page to landing page. 

In 2021, the page experience of a website will be considered in Google’s ranking algorithms. Google’s crawlers will evaluate the page experience and usability of your new website primarily through their Core Web Vitals metrics, which measure speed, load times, interactivity, and visual stability. 

You can monitor your new website’s Core Web Vitals in your Google Search Console Account. GSC will provide you a score of “Good”, “Needs Improvement”, or “Poor” for every page of your website. If you see multiple pages with a “Poor,” rating, you may need to make some upgrades to your web hosting, web design, or other technical aspects of your website. 

Page Experience Checklist for New Websites: 

  • Make sure your website performs well across all devices — mobile, tablets, and desktop — and that all webpages, visuals, graphics, and animations load promptly
  • Use Google’s Free PageSpeed Insights Tool to check your page speed
  • Monitor your Core Web Vitals in Google Search Console and make any necessary improvements
  • Invest in a quality UI/UX designer to improve the overall page experience of your site 
  • Read this blog post for some tips on how to make your website faster

#6: Submit an XML Sitemap so Google Understands your New Website

The more new pages you add to your website, the more important an XML sitemap will be. Sitemaps communicate to Google crawlers which web pages of your website are the most important, make it easier for Google to find and crawl all of your pages, and help Google better understand the hierarchy of your website. 

There are tools that can help you make your own sitemap, but consulting with an SEO expert is a good idea to make sure you accurately identify the highest-performing, most important pages of your website.

For larger and enterprise-level websites with hundreds to thousands of landing pages, there may be multiple pages of your website that don’t generate conversions that don’t need to show up in search results. An SEO expert can implement noindex tags to ensure Google doesn’t rank those in their search engine results pages.

Once you have your sitemap complete, upload it in Google Search Console. GSC will notify you of crawl errors so you can make adjustments accordingly.

XML Sitemap Checklist for New Websites:

  • Identify the most important pages on your website that you want Google to crawl, index, and prioritize in keyword rankings
  • Create your XML sitemap with the help of a sitemap generation tool or SEO professional
  • Upload your sitemap into Google Search Console

#7: Create Profiles on Third-Party Review Sites and Get Local Citations

After your on-page optimization is complete, the next step is to work on implementing an off-site SEO strategy for your new website. Off-site SEO is all about creating signals on other websites that show search engines like Google and Bing that your new website is trusted by lots of people on the internet. These off-site signals play a big part in Google’s ranking algorithm. 

An easy way for your website to start building these signals is to get listed across business directories in your industry. For local businesses, local citations with up-to-date, accurate information about your business are particularly important for appearing in location-based searches. A local citation service can get your new website and business information listed across hundreds of business and online directories really quickly.

And for websites of all sizes, not just local businesses, creating profiles on the most important Third-Party review sites in your industry is essential for building your off-site signals. Google crawls and aggregates data from these sites and considers the quality of your reviews in its ranking algorithms. Make sure you are monitoring them regularly for any negative content.

It’s also a good idea to incentivize customers you’re confident had a positive experience to leave reviews. Point them toward the review sites that will have the most impact and are likely to show up in the top-ranking spots for searches with your brand name.

Local SEO Checklist for New Websites:

  • Create business profiles on the important review sites in your industry
  • Sign up for a local citation service to get your site listed across thousands of business directories
  • Incentivize customers to leave positive reviews to build offsite signals on the most important review sites

#8: Launch a Link Building Campaign

One of the most important search engine ranking factors is your overall site authority. When your new website launches, your Domain Authority score will be zero, because you have not yet earned a reputation among internet users, search engines, and other webmasters. 

Google measures site authority primarily through backlinks, or links to your website from other web pages. The logic goes that if another website links to yours, they must find your content trustworthy and valuable. Earning links on other websites is one of the most important parts of any off-site SEO strategy, and it’s commonly known as link building. 

Creating original content that includes links to your website, and pitching that content to other websites, is one of the best ways to earn backlinks in a way that is Google compliant. Webmasters are always on the hunt for good content, and links that come from reputable websites in your industry will be more valuable and move the needle on your site authority even faster.

There are many link building strategies out there. From guest blog posts to broken link building, getting creative is key in earning new links that are outside of your existing network. Enterprise SEO agencies like LinkGraph that create content at scale can help you earn many links quickly. Building up your backlink profile is one of the most essential steps in improving your keyword rankings and driving organic traffic to your new site.

Learn more about Site Authority with our Free Link Building Ebook

  • Make sure you have high-quality content on your website that is worthy of links!
  • Start getting traction with off-site SEO by asking site owners in your own personal network to build links to your new site
  • Outreach to other reputable site owners in your industry to identify link building opportunities or guest blogger partnerships
  • Launch a link building campaign with LinkGraph to earn high-quality links that have contextual anchor text and are earned through original content

#9: Launch a PPC Campaign to Get Traffic Right Away and Improve your SEO

The reality is, search engine optimization takes time. Getting your webpages ranking organically for competitive keywords does not happen overnight. It will likely take months for your new site to establish its reputation with search engines. So in the meantime, a carefully executed PPC campaign can help you start generating clicks, traffic, leads, and revenue while you continue to do the work of link building and content creation.

A good way to think about PPC campaigns is like “renting,” traffic. Once your budget runs out, those clicks will no longer come. Overall, SEO is still a better strategy than Google Ads campaigns because owning those top spots means more traffic in the long-term. For this reason, you can use your PPC campaigns to prospect traffic quality for SEO. If those keywords you pay to rank for result in conversions, it will be worth your efforts to try to rank organically for those same terms.

PPC can get very expensive though, so before you devote the majority of your new website’s marketing budget to PPC, make sure you are working with a reputable digital marketing agency that has a proven track of creating optimized PPC campaigns

PPC Checklist for New Website SEO:

  • Identify the keyword terms that will drive qualified traffic and leads to your new site
  • Optimize your ads for relevance and conversion so you can improve your Quality Score and pay lower CPCs in the ad auction
  • Use your PPC campaigns to prospect traffic quality, and then redeploy those keywords in your SEO campaigns

#10: Develop an SEO Content Strategy for your New Website

Most site owners launch their new website with a homepage, their primary category pages, and other key product pages. However, if you never add new pages to your website, you will struggle to drive traffic for the long-term. Internet users are always looking for new content, and if your website doesn’t offer anything new, users will quickly grow uninterested and will probably not return to your site.

Not only do new landing pages mean additional keyword rankings, multiple studies have shown that websites with over 40 landing pages have higher conversion rates. Having many long-form, high-quality landing pages that are valuable and useful to your site visitors gives those visitors more reasons to navigate your site without having to bounce back to the SERPs or search for content somewhere else. 

Blog posts are an ideal way to constantly create new content that targets long-tail keywords, creates content marketing opportunities, and builds authority, expertise, and trustworthiness. A strong content strategy also benefits your off-site SEO, because great content assets that live permanently on your website gives more reasons for others to link to your new site. Overall, a strong content development strategy is essential to moving your website from launch to long-term traffic. 

Content Strategy Checklist for New Websites:

  • Create an editorial calendar and start publishing more content on your website on a consistent basis
  • Use new web content and landing pages to optimize for other related keywords you hope to rank for
  • Promote your content through other channels like email marketing, social media campaigns on LinkedIn and Facebook, or by pitching through PR and link building campaigns

A Brief Guide to Mobile Ad Types

Smartphones are everywhere, and they are the primary way many people access the internet. As a society, we can now do nearly anything on our phones, from watching videos and talking to friends to ordering groceries and online shopping. With 40% of all online transactions being completed using a smartphone, mobile devices are becoming an ever-more important part of the digital marketing landscape.

Mobile phones are changing the way consumers view brands and make purchasing decisions. Businesses are spending more money than ever before creating mobile-responsive websites and advertisements, with the goal of reaching their customers first before their competitors. In fact, within the past year, mobile search ad spending was estimated at 28.12 billion, which represents a 24% increase from 2018. Businesses are getting more mobile-savvy, meaning more reasons to understand the nuances of mobile advertising so your advertisements can perform better and drive more clicks and revenue for your brand.

Due to the overwhelming popularity of mobile ads, it is important that any business owner stays ahead of the game when it comes to different mobile ad types and their best practices. Here’s a brief guide on everything you need to know about the best mobile ad types and how to utilize them properly for your business needs.

What is Mobile Advertising?

Simply put, mobile advertising is the practice of creating an advertisement that consumers see only on their smartphones. This is not to be confused with mobile marketing, which is an umbrella term for any digital marketing that targets mobile users and can include SMS marketing. Mobile advertising, on the other hand, utilizes various data points to specifically target people who use their phones to access the internet, search engines, or social media platforms.

Top Mobile Ad Types

Not all mobile ad types are created equally. Here’s a quick list of the top mobile ad types you can use in your ad campaign.

Banner Ads

By far the most common form of mobile advertising, banner ads use a non-obtrusive banner at the top of the page to promote their brand and products. These ads are embedded in the web ad server or the mobile app. Banner ads are designed to quickly grab the attention of consumers with high-quality images, bright colors, and/or quick blurbs of text with a call to action.

Since there is limited space for content, mobile banner ads tend to rely on brand awareness and recognition for the most value considering that the small ad format doesn’t allow for detailed information. The end goal is to pique the customer’s interest and cause them to click over to the brand’s webpage and convert.

Native Advertising

Native ads are quite unique in that they don’t look like your typical mobile ad in an ad network. These ads look  “native” to the content on the page, meaning they look like organic pieces of content written for that specific page. To do this, the ad format is the same as the content around it; so if that page is a quiz, a blog, or an infographic, the native ad content is virtually indistinguishable. Plus, since they are embedded in the mobile web environment, they cannot be blocked and taken out of the content.

Major players in the ad community choose native display ads as they fit seamlessly into the customer’s user experience without any forced interruptions.

Interstitial Ads

Interstitial ads are interactive ad types that display across the entire page while the page is loading. They catch the user’s eye, and often give no other choice to the user than to interact with the mobile ad format. Users have to close out of the mobile ad before they can proceed with their content.

For example, say you are playing a game on your mobile phone. When you are in between levels, a short video ad pops up advertising another product, game, or service. These are interstitials, and since they take up the entire mobile and desktop screen, they offer unique advertising options that result in increased engagement, clicks, and conversion.

Mobile Video Ads

Video ads are exactly what they sound like but they can be exceptionally complex in their execution. They simply show videos about the brand in question when a consumer clicks or interacts with the page. A good example of this is on social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook or in between video views with Youtube ads.

While video ads are one of the most expensive digital advertising options, it is a great way to gain a high conversion rate and impressions. Many businesses choose this form of ad placement as most consumers are visual learners; if they post a video explaining the uses of their product, then there’s a higher chance their conversion rate will increase.

Rich Media Ads

Rich media ads are interactive, highly dynamic ads that are most often limited by a brand’s advertising budget. A brand would choose a rich media ad because they want to engage with their target audience in a more creative way while benefiting from a high CTR. These ad types grab the consumer’s attention simply because the ad targets them in a convenient and more captivating way.

The Benefits of Mobile Advertising

With the sheer versatility of mobile ad types, there are plenty of benefits that come with investing in mobile advertising. But in order to benefit, you need to understand how your target audience is using their mobile devices. Do they use their phones to browse the internet, engage with their friends on Facebook, or to access certain apps or games? Having a solid understanding of where your target audience is will help you understand what platforms to advertise on and which ad types to use. Once you are actively running mobile ads, there are so many benefits in comparison to traditional digital ad types.

Mobile Ads Reach a Broader Audience Network

At the end of 2019, mobile advertising accounted for 72% of the entire digital ad spending in the United States. This means that mobile audiences are larger than desktop and tablet audiences, resulting in opportunities for more impressions and a wider group of people to reach. If you have the ability to target these consumers with different forms of mobile interactive ads, why wouldn’t you?

Geotargeting is a Big Plus

If you really want to hone in on a potential client via geotargeting, the mobile ad network is the way to do it. Any business can easily geotarget a consumer by using the location data that comes from having a smartphone. If you’re a local business, geotargeting can make it so your mobile ad impressions only go to those people who are in a certain radius of your brick-and-mortar store. This is an advantage that can lead to more foot traffic and a higher ROI on your digital marketing spend.

Versatility is a Big Incentive

As mentioned before, each mobile ad type can be customized depending on your target audience and your specific business goals and needs.  Since mobile ads integrate seamlessly with multiple different ad platforms like social media channels, web platforms, and mobile apps, the creativity it brings you is endless. Knowing where your audience is and using hyper-targeted creative and copy can help improve conversions and lower your overall customer acquisition costs.

Accessibility is the Name of the Game

Nearly half of the world’s population now has a smartphone. Social media and mobile phones have become the communication norm, and not only are consumers tied to their mobile phones, but they also spend quite some time investing in the latest technology and updating their apps. The accessibility of mobile ads is that you can instantly deliver targeted ad campaigns right to your consumers, without hassle.

Better Understand User Experience and Customer Habits

Mobile phones offer advertisers a plethora of data and customer information, which in turn gives them insight into user experience and customer habits that they wouldn’t be privy to with traditional forms of advertising. And who doesn’t like a ton of information? With all these insights, you’ll be able to translate your data into a beneficial marketing campaign that results in higher clicks and a faster monetization of your ad campaign.

Cost-efficiency Leads to a Better ROI

While yes, certain ad types are more expensive than others, as a whole, mobile advertising costs just a fraction of other traditional media options such as TV or radio ads. So with all these cost-savings, businesses are able to double-down on their mobile ad campaigns and target consumers more efficiently.

The Top Mobile Advertising Platforms

Now that you know about the benefits and different types of mobile ads, what platforms do you use? Here are some of the most common mobile advertising platforms available.

Google Display Network

Google is the powerhouse of digital marketing, and that dominance also extends over mobile ad types. Many smartphones offer Google as the default search engine, and almost 60% of all searches come from mobile devices. Utilizing Google Display Ads is a great way to publish banner ads on publishers across the internet and within specific smartphone apps.

Facebook

Facebook and Instagram have launched one of the most popular forms of mobile advertising, the Audience Network. This ad platform makes it easy for marketers to choose from a variety of different ad types all in one place. Additionally, Instagram offers an incredible benefit – as it is the first mobile platform that was built just for the smartphone audience.

AdMob

AdMob is a platform, owned by Google, that focuses specifically on mobile app advertising. It is an all-in-one place where businesses can monetize their mobile apps by using one of the largest global advertiser demand networks. For those companies that have a mobile app, this platform can help you find those target users who are already using apps that are similar to yours.

AdColony

Where AdMob was meant specifically for stagnant ads on mobile apps, AdColony is a mobile video ad network where advertisers can put up short videos about their brand. What’s cool about AdColony is that you are able to micro-target users based on the specific mobile device they are using, their operating system, the connection type, and the customer’s demographics and geography. So for example, AdColony gives a company the ability to target female iPhone 12 users with an iOS operating system, using 5G data in Boston, Massachusetts.

TubeMogul

TubeMogul is a mobile ad platform that helps to differentiate between fraudulent traffic from bots and traffic from real people. Founded by Adobe back in 2016, this platform created the non-human traffic credit program back in 2016 to help weed out “fake” traffic so your ad campaigns can perform to the best of their ability. They use a sensor to detect fake traffics from bots and web crawlers – so you can be confident that the money you are spending on mobile ads is being seen by actual consumers looking to convert.

It is important to know that just because there are plenty of mobile ad platforms available out there, doesn’t mean you have to use them. Choosing which platform works best for your business goals is what is most important.

Optimizing Your Mobile Ads for Conversion

Now that you have the right mobile ad type and the right advertising platform chosen, there are a few things you can do to ensure your ads convert to the best of their ability. Here are some optimizing mobile advertising tips and tricks that will help to convert your target audience.

Write Device-Specific Ad Copy

Consumers see tons of advertisements all day, and so they want to read something that is personalized to them. Simply writing “contact us on your iPhone today,” or click to learn more on your tablet” can result in a higher CTR than if you were to simply write “call us today to learn more.”

Optimize for Local

Use geo-targeting to your advantage! Local and small businesses should use geographic data as much as possible. Targeting a potential consumer based on their location can seem more personal while piquing the user’s interest and connection to the brand.

Get as Granular as Possible

Do not be afraid to get as specific in your targeting. While generic targeting such as “all users in New York City on iPhones” surely isn’t a bad thing, it may not provide you as many customers in the bottom level of the funnel, ready to convert. So use modern options like micro-targeting due to demographic, device type, and time to grab those customers right when they are ready and waiting.

Don’t Forget About Social Media

Most companies are advertising on Google and Facebook at the bare minimum. It can be overwhelming to figure out exactly what mobile ad platform to use for your ad campaign, so you can get the biggest bang for your buck by targeting both the largest social media platform and the largest search engine out there. Once you start with these two options, you’ll be able to get some data on your customers’ habits. The more you know about your target audience, the easier you can double-down on targeting them properly on other platforms. 

Mobile advertising is one of the best ways to target consumers at all levels of the marketing funnel. With our digital world growing every single day, it is becoming more and more clear how business owners need to adapt to the digital landscape to focus on mobile customer experience.

Content Development: Improve your Content Strategy for SEO

What are internet users looking for when they use a search engine? Whether they want expert information, an in-depth analysis, a detailed product review, or a quick answer, they are ultimately on the hunt for good content. When they come across a piece of web content that they find valuable, they usually browse, scroll, click, share, and sometimes even link to it. If your company wants to grow it’s online presence, there’s no better way to do so then through content development — or simply providing great content to the millions of internet users who are constantly searching for it.

Lots of content gif

With 40,000 searches happening on Google every second, the search for content is not going away anytime soon. There is so much information and content available on the internet, but most of it is low-quality and doesn’t even get organic traffic from Google. The primary reason why is because Google’s algorithms prioritize content that is high-quality and will only show users the best of the best on the internet.

So if you’re a site owner that creates high-quality conte