10 Suggestions for Better Keywording

Having the correct and most relevant keywords associated with your files will not only get them in front of the most interested visitors but will improve your ranking in our new search engine. Here are 10 suggestions you can think about when keywording your images.

1. You only need between ten to fifteen (5-15) keywords. Twenty-five (25) is the most. More descriptive keywords means better search results, bringing in more users, which means more sales for your images at higher prices then other sites. We would rather have fewer files that have better keywords than more files with plenty of irrelevant keywords.

2. Keywords need to be separated by a comma or semi colon when you submit them with your images. Compound phrases need to be separated by a space and then surround by commas. You can remove any quotation marks.

3. You can add ONE SET of location tags. Avoid using locations as tags unless there is something in the photo that makes its location recognizable. Don’t use Kennebunkport, Maine for an image of a seagull in the blue sky.

4. Remove all the keywords that are obviously not in the images. Make them as specific as possible to what is in the image. Remove keywords that could be tangentially related, but aren’t really illustrated well by the photo. i.e. picture of an airport runway and using the keyword “pilot.”

5. Take a few of the choice words and make them far better by turning them into a phrase. If it is a popular saying use the whole phrase.

6. Don’t “stretch” your tags into irrelevancy, in order to generate more hits for an image. This can be very frustrating for our users, who tend to search literally.

7. Figures of speech, nicknames, slang and metaphors can create a ton of problems in a search engine. Please don’t use them. The reviewers will add them in if necessary.

8. Catch Phrases and Proper Names — Don’t Break Them Up with a comma. If you have a keyword that is either a very common set of two words, or is a proper name, enter it without a comma. The search engine has the ability to recognize many phrases that operate as a common term but contain more than one word, such as “hard drive,” “hot dog,” or “White House.” Just enter the compound phrase like you see in the previous sentence and don’t use a comma to separate those two words. It also recognizes the names of many public and historical figures.

9. You do not need to type in ‘car, cars’ to cover the singular and plural versions of a noun. Type in only the one that is more accurate for your photo. If there is only one car, type in “car.” Your image will come up in a search for both car and cars, but it will be ranked higher if the plurality matches what the buyer searched for. If there are multiple cars in your image you can write car and cars.

10. Be as literal as possible. Describe just what is in the images.

Other decision factors:

* Does your image have people in it? If yes, then describe the people specifically. Use keywords to explain gender and age.

* Is there a color that is predominant? Only use colors if this is important to the image. An image of a red hat on top of a woman should not have the keyword “red” but could have “red hat”. If the image is a “pink flower” use the compound phrase “pink flower” with a space and no comma and NOT “pink, flower”.

* What objects are prominently included in the picture – ONLY use key subjects of the picture, not items in the background. Don’t list insignificant details. Think about if you did a keyword search for a keyword you have included in your keyword set, would you want to get that specific image in your results. If it is maybe then think real hard about adding it because it may turn off buyers who don’t want or weren’t expecting that results.

* Are you using a special angle or other technical points worth mentioning? Panoramic, low angle etc.

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