How to Drive Traffic to Your Photography Website
This post was last updated on March 24, 2020.
The time has finally come. After countless hours dedicated to improving your skills and images, you have finally created a photography website to share them with the world. Congratulations! Now there is only one thing left to do: getting people to visit your site.
But how do you drive traffic to your photography website? There isn't a straight-forward answer to this question. However, the 15 actionable tips you’ll find in this article have proven to be highly effective in boosting the performance of online portfolios.
How to drive traffic to your photography website
Do your SEO
Appear on Google Images
Mind your site’s UX
Start writing a blog
Be someone’s guest
Partner up with brands
Create a newsletter
Strengthen your social presence
Give PPC a try
Update your content
Optimize for mobile
Pay attention to analytics
Offer an incentive
Look your best
Enter photo contests
01. Do your SEO
SEO, which stands for search engine optimization, is an extremely powerful strategy to boost your photography website’s traffic. But what is it, exactly? SEO is the process of optimizing your content and pages in order for your website to appear in a better position in search engine results.
This includes several steps you should apply to your site, from finding the right keywords for your business and using them in the right place, to choosing the right URL and creating relevant content. But don’t worry, we have put together everything you need to know about SEO for photographers to guide you through the whole process.
On top of bringing new visitors, taking care of your SEO can also have a direct impact on the success of your business. Let’s say someone is looking for a photographer in your area. They will probably start by asking friends for suggestions, but more often than not, they’ll end up doing some online research to find the studio or photographer whose work they like the most.
Local SEO is key to ensure your name is among the top results in search engines, multiplying your chances to get new clients. You can even offer them the option to book an appointment with you on the spot with Wix Bookings, making sure you make the most out of every link click.
Essentially, this step will determine whether your website appears among the results when people are browsing Google, Bing, or any other search engine. Considering that nowadays these platforms are the go-to for any kind of search we want to perform, you can understand why taking care of your SEO is such a crucial step.
02. Appear on Google Images
Now that you know how important search engine optimization is, you’ll be happy to hear that you can use images to improve your website’s SEO. As a photographer, this side of SEO will probably feel much easier and more natural. Images can boost your photography website’s traffic in two main ways: having a positive impact on your overall SEO, and making your pictures appear on Google Images. Both of them can help you increase your organic performance and drive visitors to your photography website.
In order to take advantage of the SEO opportunity your outstanding photos offer, there are two things you’ll need to take care of, both of which are equally important. The first one is to optimize images for your website, ensuring that they load fast without experiencing any quality loss. The second one is to write SEO friendly alt text for your images, increasing their chances of showing up on search engine results.
03. Mind your site’s UX
You only get one chance to make a first impression, so you better get it right. The way in which you present your work will have a major impact on how people perceive you as a professional photographer. And, most importantly, it will determine how happy visitors are with your site.
You might be wondering how visitors’ happiness relates to driving traffic to your photography website, as they obviously would need to have already arrived at your site before they can have an opinion about it. Seems counterintuitive right?
Yet search engines have evolved to the point where they care about user behaviour just as much as they do about keywords and page optimization. Therefore, you should take the time to improve your portfolio’s UX to make sure visitors spend a significant amount of time browsing your site and keep coming back to see your work. Plus, the happier they are with your portfolio, the more likely they are to share it with others, which will directly result in more traffic.
The best way to make sure your site has a solid user experience is to build it from a photography website template. These ready-made templates have been created by professional designers, and thus include all the elements your portfolio needs. They are also fully customizable, meaning you can adapt every detail to your style and needs. And since they are completely free, you have literally nothing to lose.
04. Start writing a blog
Writing a blog for your photography website has endless benefits. One of the most important ones is that it can help boost the traffic of your photography website. Writing content for your blog will allow you to target a long list of relevant keywords, which will increase your exposure on search engines and expand your reach.
Sharing your knowledge and experiences will also help you position yourself as an expert in the field. This knowledge will add to the value of your work, as people will see just how much effort and thought goes behind every image. You can also write more general blog articles, such as the latest technology releases and current photography trends, in order to expand your audience reach beyond potential clients.
05. Be someone’s guest
Put your knowledge to the test by writing a guest article on someone else’s blog. Guest writing is actually one of the most powerful free tools to promote your photo business online, yet it is also one of the most undervalued. This practice offers all the benefits of writing your own blog, only with a broader audience.
On top of being able to reach more people, you’ll also get backlinks to your photography website. These are one of the most significant ingredients for increasing your chances of appearing on page one of the results, meaning you’ll not only get traffic from the guest article itself but also from your improved organic reach.
06. Partner up with brands
Regardless of which genre you specialize in, getting to work with large brands is probably somewhere on your list of business goals. In recent years, social media has opened the doors to photographers of all levels. This trend has been primarily driven by outdoor photographers, who focus on creating beautiful narratives around just about any product.
Contrary to popular belief, good things don't come to those who wait, but rather to those who make the effort to chase them. To grow the exposure of your work, you should actively reach out to brands. Needless to say, having your images promoted by brands with large audiences will most likely drive a lot of traffic to your photography website.
07. Create a newsletter
When you first sit down to think about photography marketing ideas that can help you boost the traffic of your website, a newsletter probably won’t even cross your mind. We tend to think of marketing like a series of efforts you put together to reach people who don’t know you yet. But what about the ones who already know and like your work?
When it comes to converting your existing audience into constant traffic, email marketing simply has no rival. Putting together a strong email marketing plan will help you strengthen the community around your work, as well as keeping them updated about your newest projects and whereabouts. With Wix’s very own email marketing solution you’ll be able to build, share, and track these campaigns from within your website.
08. Strengthen your social presence
At this point, there is no doubt that having a solid social media presence is an absolute must for photographers of all styles and levels. Not only do these platforms allow you to share your work with hundreds of millions of people, but they also promote engagement and allow you to create a sense of community around your photos.
Ideally, every person who reaches your profile on a social media platform should immediately visit your site to see your best work. The most straightforward way to achieve this conversion is by linking to your photography website in your bio. There are, of course, many additional ways in which you can drive traffic to your website, such as including your URL on captions or using the swipe-up option on Instagram Stories.
09. Give PPC a try
Something that you might have not considered up until this point is spending some money on online promotion. Pay-per-click (PPC) advertisement might be the best way to start, as you most likely already have a solid social presence you can use to launch campaigns. Unlike “feed” promotions, where you pay to push an existing post or image, PPC takes place outside of your profile and allows you to select the specific audience traits you’re aiming for.
To start your PPC adventure, simply select your most outstanding photo and use it to promote your website across the social media channels where your photos are getting the most attention. The type of audience you target will be determined by your goals. For example, if you want to reach out to potential clients for your next photoshoot, you should focus on a small, locally based group than if you simply want to drive traffic to your photography website.
If you don’t quite know where to start, take a look at this beginner’s guide about how to advertise on Instagram.
10. Update your content
Search engine bots not only read your keywords and understand your visitors’ feelings, but they also keep track of just how often you update your portfolio. Keeping your photography website fresh will make you look good in the eyes (algorithm?) of these bots, who will consider your site a reliable and authoritative source. As a result, your SEO effort will get a significant boost and you might see yourself climbing a couple ranking spots on search results.
These updates can include anything from adding new images or blog articles to implementing a new app or layout redesign. In any case, the most time-saving option is to create a photography website that is easy to update right from the start. If you already have created your online portfolio, try to include features that will help you simplify this task.
11. Optimize for mobile
One of the most significant photography website design trends is the global mentality shift from “mobile friendly” to “mobile first.” The large majority of online browsing is done on mobile devices, meaning that statistically speaking, most of your visitors will only see the mobile version of your site. Therefore, having a mobile friendly photography website is no longer a choice but an absolute must.
But the need for mobile optimization goes far beyond making sure your website looks good, as important as that is. In recent years, Google algorithm updates have started to use the mobile version of the content for indexing and ranking sites. Essentially, this means that no matter how much work you’re putting on the rest of your site’s SEO efforts, it can all be for nothing if you skip mobile optimization.
12. Pay attention to analytics
In order to make the most of your professional photographer website, you need to keep track of its performance and constantly look for ways to improve it. Your site’s built-in analytics tools will allow you to see how many people are viewing your website, but in the long run this data will simply not cover it. Among other things, you should know how these visitors are reaching your website, how much time they spend on it, where they are from, and how many of them return.
You can access all this information by connecting your website to Google Analytics. By knowing as much as you can about your visitors, you’ll be able to identify the areas you need to improve to boost your website’s traffic and continuously grow your online presence.
13. Offer an incentive
One of the most effective ways to drive traffic to your photography website is to simply give users a clear reason to visit. And what better incentive than being able to see and share the photos they hired you to take? You can use Wix Photo Albums to create stand-alone mini-sites within your website to share the results of your photoshoots with clients.
Another great strategy for encouraging people to come to your website is to open your own digital store and sell photos online. All you need to do is add Wix Art Store to your site, and share the good news with followers, clients, and loved ones.
14. Look your best
At the end of the day, the one thing that will bring people to your website is your outstanding images. After all, your work is the true star of your photography website. Your main priority is to select the very best examples of your media creations and use the highest quality tools to showcase them.
For photo displays, your best choice is the Wix Pro Gallery. It’s a fully customizable app that will give you full control over the way your images are shown, as well as full mobile optimization. If you want to create a video gallery, check out Wix Video, which is a powerful tool to showcase, share, and sell your videos online.
15. Enter photo contests
Last, but not least, enter photography contests to give your work more exposure. Most contests display all participants’ entries in a gallery with links to their online portfolios. This provides an excellent opportunity to drive new visitors to your website and significantly grow your audience. Plus, you might even win some amazing prices in the process.
Take for example Wix’s two biggest photo contests: Your Dream Shot and The Ultimate Photography Adventure. The participants’ websites were shared with hundreds of thousands of visitors, regardless of their final position in the contest. Subscribe to this blog to make sure you don’t miss a chance to win the opportunity of a lifetime, all while getting a nice traffic boost for your website
By Judit Ruiz Ricart
Editor of the Wix Photography Blog