Want to learn a little more about On-Page SEO for Wedding Photographers?
First things first! What is on-page SEO?! On-page SEO is the process of optimizing the content on your site. With the goal, of course, to gain a ranking in search and be found by those dreamy ideal clients of yours!
With a website launched and ready to draw in clients, the majority of on-page SEO work for wedding photographers will happen through blog content.
The 9 major components of on-page SEO for wedding photographers to focus on are:
- The quality of your content
- Your page titles
- Meta descriptions
- Schema markup
- Your URLs
- Internal linking on your site
- Your site’s ability to be responsive when viewed on mobile
- The speed of your site
As you can see, these actions vary greatly from off-page SEO, which usually includes going after backlinks. Aka all those submissions on highly popular wedding blogs that you’ve been chasing after! Let’s break down each of these 9 components a bit more!
What’s contained in your blogging content matters oh so much! Most of my wedding photographer clients outsource their blogs to me because they are highly visual creative professionals. That usually translates to “can’t stand writing”. Or conversely, they don’t mind writing or learning SEO, but they prefer to keep the focus of their business on their clients. Which makes total sense right?
Whether it’s a lack of time or a disdain for writing, it’s important to note that just dropping your gorgeous photos in your blog posts and hitting publish is doing more harm than good. Google wants to see that your blog contains answers to frequently asked queries. In addition to that, Google wants to see that your content falls in line with “like content”. If you’re scratching your head on that last one, I’ll break it down for you. Yes, you want your content to rank in line with your competitor’s content!
Aside from containing your keyword, your blog post titles should be short, sweet, and to the point. If your blog post titles currently look like “Fabulous Venue Wedding Person and Person | Atlanta Wedding Photographer”, knock it right off! The recommended amount of characters for a blog post title should be no more than 50-60. The above example has 71. Blog post titles don’t always have to be “sexy” and that can be a hard concept to grasp when putting it side by side with your highly visual, no doubt gorgeous work. But it does get the job done. Keep in mind that as much as you are writing your blog post titles for SEO, you are writing them for humans as well. The ones who are searching for your work. Those blog post titles will be spit back out on search. So what will make a potential client click the title of your blog post over a competitor’s? A clear and concise title that delivers what they’re looking for!
The headers you use throughout your blog post will become an HTML element that provides structure to your page. So popping in random headers to satisfy a “go-green” on Yoast (if you’re blogging on WordPress) is kind of like a false positive. Well-written headers within your blog content that guide the reader from paragraph to paragraph work to create a better user experience! Overall, giving a huge helping hand to on-page SEO for wedding photographers.
The title of your blog post will appear in an H1 header. Anything after that should be thought of as subsequent headers. These headers should have tags like H2, H3, and so on! If you purchased a boxed template for your website, you *might* need to have a developer go into your CSS and tweak the appearance of your headers. All too often template headers can be illegible, or absolutely humongous in size. Avoid these at all costs!
Your meta description is the brief summary or snippet of information about your blog post that will appear on search to users. Your meta description should be anywhere from 156-160 characters, the copy of which should strive to describe what users can expect to find on your webpage. Keyword included of course!
Your meta description should be unique to the content you are publishing. SEO plugins like Yoast often allow their users to pre-fill meta descriptions. If you opt to do this, each and every one of your blog posts will have the same meta description and it will hurt your ability to rank. It can be tempting to fill this in and think of it as being “done”, but this is another step I would recommend avoiding at all costs! Meta descriptions should be unique to the content they describe.
PS: If your site is built on Squarespace, you’ll be able to fill out the meta description for your blog content under the SEO tab.
Sounds super tech-y right? I thought so the first time I heard this term and immediately thought to myself “I don’t have time to learn that”! Turns out, I don’t have time to NOT learn it because it’s an essential part of on-page SEO. Schema markup is essentially a language used to speak to search engines, which helps search engines understand your website. Pretty important right? Schema markup is responsible for your SERPs (search engine result pages) and rich snippets. If you’re not sure whether your site is optimized for Schema markup, you can test it at this link!
Remember how we talked about those short n’ sweet & straight-to-the-point blog post titles? Same goes for your links! Short links are great for social shares. But, even more so, they won’t get cut off from being indexed on search! Those big long links are being produced from your those big long titles, they kind of go hand in hand. You know what else is great about short links, aside from being properly indexed? They are more memorable to the user experience! Do you have to log in to your site and start feverishly working to shorten each & every blog post link? No. But you do need to avoid unnecessary words and keyword stuffing when creating the URLs for your blog content.
Think of linking back to yourself within your own content as more than just a call to action! Linking back to other pieces of content on your blog, or even linking back to your investment or contact page is a way of creating internal pathways on your own website. It guides your user to take the next step with your business. Even if that next step is keeping them on your site to read another one of your blog articles or to gain a deeper understanding of your work. This is fabulous for improving your site’s bounce rate and guiding potential clients into taking a step forward with your business!
This one seems kind of like a “no-brainer”, but you would be surprised how many websites do not translate from a desktop experience to a mobile-friendly experience. If you land on a website that takes forever to load on mobile, or worse yet, only loads in bits and pieces, how likely are you to stay on that site? Or, are you more likely to click away out of frustration? Yeah… Same goes for your potential clients. whether it’s a phone or a tablet, something like 65% of users are searching via mobile. That is a huge chunk of traffic! If you plan on purchasing or have purchased a boxed template for your website, make sure that it’s mobile-friendly and responsive. Otherwise, find an amazing developer who can easily make your website experience transition from desktop to mobile.
Ok, wedding photographer friends! This is the part where I sing the praises of compressing your images before handing them off to be blogged. Those gorgeous unforgettable images of yours won’t boost your on-page SEO if they are larger than life and make it impossible to load your latest blog post! Looking for another super easy way to improve the speed of your site outside of compressing images? Delete any unnecessary plugins if you’re using WordPress as your blogging platform!