The Name Game
A large number of my views on the blog here every week come from Google Image search. This would not be possible if I were not naming my pictures correctly. For anyone looking to increase views of their images online there are a couple of things you want to do to make your photos easier to find and most attractive to the viewer. First thing is to name your pictures. I have a habit of coming up with catchy little double entendre names for things and that is not at all useful here. Make the name of your image descriptive, that way when Google or other search engines encounter it they will know how to categorize it. We have all looked in Google images for something, they did not get there because they were named “DSC223454”. What they all have in common is that somewhere along the line a name and description was embedded in the metadata. Imagine if one of your images was one of the first five or so pictures you see in a typical Google search page. That picture will get a lot of views guaranteed.
In WordPress it is really easy to name and describe your photos. When you upload an image you get the text, alternate text, description, and caption fields to fill out in the dialog box. I am sure many just leave them blank but it is important to fill them all out. One thing I do often is copy and paste the name and description on all the lines. It is fast, easy and covers all the search criteria. The actual metadata of the photo is useful too so be sure that you are naming images upon input to your image software and if needed rename more descriptive on output. Typically I will name my import images with “Location, Month, Year, Image#” so it would look something like this “LaJollaCove2-12-154”. Then I make sure it has the keywords I want (often I will add and delete keywords as I sort through the images).
Also, remember to be truthful. Don’t name something you know is wrong or even are not sure of. It may seem like a cool gag at the time but misnaming/categorizing photos can last a long time and is super annoying to someone who is serious about their search. One other thing, slightly off topic, is to start increasing output resolution. With hi-res tablets, phone, and laptops becoming more common display quality is rapidly approaching print quality and 72 ppi just does not cut it anymore. Be part of the hi-res revolution and be sure you are doing justice for your work. If you are worried about some one “stealing” your picture and doing financial harm to you, congratulations, you are one of the elite few who really needs to worry about such things! Hire a lawyer. For the rest of us just be pleased that we can now show the world our photos in the best light possible.