Why People Aren’t Linking To Your Photo Website

Why People Aren’t Linking To Your Photo Website

Ten SEO Tips To Get Websites To Link To You

by Grover Sanschagrin



If you’re one of those photographers who wonders why more people aren’t linking to your website, then you’re probably making it too difficult for them to do so.

The single most important factor in search engine optimization (SEO) is the number of backlinks to your website. Links are like money, you can’t ever have too much. I’m talking about real links, not ones you pay for, or that you create yourself.

Getting people to link to your website isn’t easy, and getting important sites to link to you can be quite difficult, but well worth the effort. Remember the more important the site the more valuable the link.

I’ve assembled a list of guidelines to follow if you’re looking to encourage sites to direct more web traffic your way.

1) Create great content.
Great Content is anything someone wants to share with someone else. Anything controversial, anything new, something unique, something clever or funny, etc.  Avoid average, non-special topics — nobody wants to look at pictures of your dog, or hear about that cute thing your kid just said. OK, that’s not true. Your mom would love those things – so send her an email and keep it off your website.

2) Make it easy to link to you.
You would be surprised how many people screw this up. Bloggers generally avoid linking to Flash websites, sites that require a plugin of some sort, sites that don’t have “permalink” URLs that will change later, and sites that have too many stories on a single page. Make things easy for THEIR readers and more bloggers will send more web traffic your way.

3) Use embedded galleries, and encourage specialty blogs to use your images in their posts.
If you have a collection of images on, lets say classic cars, create an embedded gallery of images and let a blogger use the gallery on their site – for free. By doing so, you will be creating a link back to the images on your site, and the blogger gets some amazing images for their story. It’s a win-win. Just make sure you have a way to turn that traffic into sales. Make your images available for sale as prints, or as a download.

4) Find specialty blogs and websites on topics you have pictures for, and write something they’ll want to share with their readers.
If you happen to have great images of guitars in your archive, write a blog post all about guitar photography and notify a few well-known guitar bloggers about your story. Do this for all of the photography you can think of, over and over.

5) Create a resource or guide on a specialty.
Write a post that contains links to other posts. For example, “The Top 20 Best Guitar Blogs on the Web” according to you. Explain what you like about each of the sites listed. Use your own images in the post – and then let all those bloggers know about your post. Many will link to it.

6) Write about, quote, interview and link to other bloggers.
Writing about other bloggers, or influential or inspirational people, is very link-worthy. Often, if you write about a blogger, they’ll end up linking to that post.

7) Invite guest bloggers to post on your site.
Let others write on your blog, and they’ll likely mention you, and link to their story on your site.

8) Comment on other blogs.
Participating in the dialog on other sites can put you on a blogger’s radar, and could result in a link if your content is good enough.

9) Ask questions in your blog posts. Encourage debate.
If you ask people to respond to your posts, many will. Create a dialog and if the dialog gets informative, or heated, or controversial, you may benefit from links from other bloggers. Comments and healthy debate should be considered another form of really great content.

10) Answer all the questions in your blog comments.
Don’t just post something and vanish. Answering questions will add to the active debate on your site, and improve your original post – making it more link-worthy.


Want more strategies and insights to improve your website’s search engine rankings? Sign up and get the free 39-page SEO for Photographers Workbook, plus more tips sent right to your inbox with our 4-week Bootcamp.

SEO for Photographers - PhotoShelter

Grover Sanschagrin is co-founder and Vice President of PhotoShelter. Follow him on Twitter at @heygrover.

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There are 14 comments for this article
  1. Hector Perez-Nieto at 8:55 am

    Writing tips is also a good way to increase traffic. My last blog post was a photo “how-to” (strobist-style) and received good click-through from my Facebook fans. I have links to my Photoshelter gallery from there. In general I alternate some posts are showcases (embedding Photoshelter Flash slideshows) but will increasingly write more tutorials, even Photoshop stuff. http://blog.tremblestudio.com/how-to

  2. Orcatek Photography at 1:24 pm

    Getting links like this are as good as gold. Key I find is being active on areas that cross over to you. I photograph cars, so I spend a lot of time on automotive websites to stay active and get some good links.

  3. Tang's photo Memories at 12:36 pm

    I have links from a few of these sites, I have an 83 SEO Grade (everything except the two custom pages). I have thousands of photos, all with meaningful titles and complete metadata. Google spiders all my images regularly and often, and if Google posts images at the top of the search results more often than not my images are included there. However, I get very poor, sporadic results for the normal search results for my PhotoShelter website. I have Google Analytics on the site and it looks to me like the traffic I am getting mostly comes from people clicking the images that appear in Google searches. I have been trying to determine why this is. My personal website http://www.tangsphoto.com with just a few sample images but with a lot of text usually appears in the normal results. I have used Majestic SEO for my PhotoShelter website and it shows few links, even some that I know exist. My personal website shows many links. I ran my PhotoShelter website through ScrubTheWeb Meta Tag analyzer. The analysis tells me my PhotoShelter website has a Google Page Rank of 0. The analysis includes the following comments about Robots. I wonder if this is a problem affecting my PhotoShelter search results. Warning! The robots.txt file located at Open Window to Visithttp://tangsphoto.photoshelter.com/robots.txt blocks the submitted URL from being indexed by the robot(s) with the name of: * ia_archiver If this is your Web page and you do not wish to restrict the above robot(s) from visiting this page, it is recommended you make the necessary changes before submitting. The following unexpected content was also found in the robots.txt file which does not comply with the current “Robots Exclusion Standard”. Please verify the robots.txt file before submitting to search engines: 1. Disallow: /c/*/login <- wildcards are not a Robots Exclusion Standard for User-Agent: * 2. Disallow: /c/*/signup* <- wildcards are not a Robots Exclusion Standard for User-Agent: * Any help would be appreciated. Jerry Tang

  4. Thomas Mikkelsen at 1:21 pm

    Hello. You got some good points in this artical. I am a photographer and trying to increse the traffic on my site, by optimicing my seo and building good quality backlinks. But i really find it hard, and the traffic isent really incresing. I am not sure what i am doing wrong?? Maby some of you can help a lost man out?? My website is: http://www.56-nord.dk

    Best regards
    Thomas Mikkelsen

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