Simple Ways to Improve Your Search Engine Ranking | Part 1

The Prague Photographer – The SEO Diaries

The idea behind this series of posts is to help you improve your search engine ranking, while avoiding all the usually tech-speak. As those of you who have spoken to me know, I am not a programmer, a design, or an SEO expert, so I tend not to use all the technical terms that make SEO sound completely unreachable to the average person. So I figure if I can do this, anyone can.

Back in April 2011 I was helping a client decide upon what domain name to purchase for her new site and I stumbled upon a domain name that I myself ended up getting. www.thepraguephotographer.com. I had recently taken up photography as a hobby myself and decided that for $10 per year it would make for a really cool vanity email address. So I set up the email account and installed a blog. At the time I added  a 33 word post to the blog, which is still there now, and left it at that. Until now that is. I decided I would put some of these SEO tips and suggestions that I had been freely handing out as fact into practice. I decided I would dedicate just one hour per week to this and see where I could get. Here is what I did in the first four weeks and the real life results that I managed to achieve.

Week 1: 8th October 2012

I decided I would simply use our most popular design from the previous month (ETHAN)and create a simple site with just 3 pages, ABOUT, EXAMPLES and CONTACT. The next step was to decide upon my key words. My advice here is less is more. Bearing in mind that your key phrases need to appear in the page title, page description and most importantly in the text on your site and list of 100 keywords would be difficult to sculpt into usable text for the site. Given the domain name I decided to pick 2 key phrases “Portrait Photographer Prague” and “Wedding Photographer Prague”. I then went in and added the same page titles, descriptions and key words to each page through the website admin SEO section. I only had one page of text to worry about and two key phrases, so repeating those key phrases a couple of times throughout the text was not that difficult.

      1. Page Titles: The Prague Photographer – Wedding and Portrait Photographer Prague
    1. Page descriptions: Being a Wedding Photographer in Prague can take you to some amazing places, there are so many great locations for weddings in and around Prague that you are spoilt for choice. Being a Portrait Photographer in Prague is even easier, Prague is famous for it fantastic beer and infamous for it’s beautiful women, beautiful women make for beautiful Children, so no matter if it’s a family portrait, “memory shots” of your beloved little ones, or a Saucy-Snap-shot for that special man in your life, there is no better place to capture it.
    2. Meta tags: Wedding Photographer Prague, Portrait Photographer Prague,

The next day I did a search for those 2 term in Google and the results were as follows:

  • Portrait Photographer Prague: page 16
  • Wedding Photographer Prague: page 35

Week 2: 15th October 2012

The first thing I did was re-do my google searches and I also added a third search:

  • Portrait Photographer Prague: page 10
  • Wedding Photographer Prague: page 34
  • Photographer Prague: page 25

Not a bad start I thought, so how to spend my hour this week? More text, I decided to add a new page to the site about wedding traditions in Prague (figured easy way to add some key words) and I also added a similar blog post (changed the text so it was not exactly the same). I also added “Photographer Prague” as a key word to meta tags for every page)

Week 3: 22nd Oct 2012

The first thing I did was re-do my google searches:

  • Portrait Photographer Prague: page 8
  • Wedding Photographer Prague: page 30
  • Photographer Prague: page 24

Great, still moving in the right direction. This week I added another page, this time on Portrait Photography Tips, of course containing lots of lovely keywords. I also added a similar blog post, but as before changing the content so it was not exactly the same. I also made sure that I had keywords in the post title for this and last weeks post, changed the permalinks of the posts to also contain my keywords and made sure that the posts were at least 200 words long.

Week 4: 29th Oct 2012

As always the first task was to redo my searches:

  • Portrait Photographer Prague: page 5
  • Wedding Photographer Prague: page 25
  • Photographer Prague: page 15

Already running short of blog post ideas I wasn’t sure what I was going to write about this week and then it hit me “Wedding Venues”, that could be an almost never ending series of keyword rich posts, but where to start. The answer was simple, my own Wedding, so I put together a little post about Zlata Koruna. This left me some time to spare so I submitted myself to google places, it does not take long to do, but I will have to wait for my verification postcard to arrive before I will actually appear. I also went back into my SEO settings for the site and changed the page titles so they were slightly different for each page, but of course still including my keywords.

Week 5: 5th November 2012

Once again I performed my google searches, which this time took much less time to find!!

  • Portrait Photographer Prague: page 2
  • Wedding Photographer Prague: page 21
  • Photographer Prague: page 4

As you can see, I have moved up nicely for 2 of my key phrases, but it looks like “wedding photography prague” will take a little more work than the other. I put this down to one or both of the following 2 factors. More competition for those keywords and/or those competitors have done more SEO on that key phrase than the others. So I guess I will have to do more work on “wedding photographer prague” from now on. Instead of alternating blog posts, one week, portrait photographer prague”and the next “wedding photographer page”, so I will do a “wedding photographer prague” blog post 2 out of every 3 weeks.

After doing this weeks blog post I turned to this weeks main project “creating inbound links”. These are simply links on other websites directing people to your website. So I added myself to a couple of free local business directories. I then decided I had a few minutes left so I would check out where I was sitting on yahoo and bing searches and I am very glad I did. I was page 1 across the board! This little project started as me seeing if the advice I had been giving people actually worked, but I decided right then that this was journey worth sharing, so here we are. 5 hours work so far, spread over 5 weeks, not too much to ask of anybody I would think.

Stay tuned for more SEO updates from The Prague Photographer SEO Diaries.

CLICK HERE to read part 2 of the SEO diaries by the Prague Photographer.

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Peter Knight | CMD Sales Manager, photography enthusiast and full time dad.
Peter@creativemotiondesign.com
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Creativemotiondesign Websites for Photographers

November 7, 2012