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FORUMS Post Processing, Marketing & Presenting Photos The Business of Photography 
Thread started 02 Apr 2017 (Sunday) 10:43
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How long does it take to get your site on the first page of Google?

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Joined Apr 2017
Location: Chicago
Apr 02, 2017 10:43 |  #1

My husband and I started​m (external link) and have grown to be full-time for both of us in just over a year. However, all of our people come from word of mouth, and we are working towards better SEO and getting to the first page of Google. We blog 2-3 times a week with no real change. Do you have any advice?

Rachel​m (external link)

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Joined Aug 2005
Location: Belmont, CA
Apr 02, 2017 11:00 |  #2

PAY FOR an ad, which moves up your site on the web search engine's order of presentation

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Location: Florida
Apr 02, 2017 11:38 |  #3


There's a reason these search engines are wealthy. Ads. People pay to advertise.

If you want to expedite your name, you need to push advertising. But, you don't need google searching so much, right? It doesn't help if someone in California finds you and you're in Chicago, right? Let alone Maine! You need to advertise locally, social media locally, and have a presence. Everyone and their uncle with a camera has a "photography" business waiting to be labeled that never goes anywhere. You're competing with people knowing you're for real and not just another would-be-start-up-parent-with-a-dSLR, right?

The successful professionals that I am around have to periodically do things to stir interest, such as mini-sessions advertisements to get things going, get stuff shot, get it on social media, sharing it around, and push sales and put out local ads, go to events and set up a booth and do mini-sessions, etc. The more you are shared around by all the local girls on their social media, the more likely you'll get some interest. Obviously depends on what services you offer and what you shoot (weddings vs e-sessions, etc).

I'm sure Chicago has a few thousand "photographers" and you're competing with all that to even get seen by a potential customer. Google search won't fix that. You need to be on their social media, shared by real people, and you need to be present at places where people see you and get to know you. Word of mouth is virtually every portrait and event photographer's #1 income, 2nd to a cooperation (rare) position. They don't sit at home and watch google to see if people are looking for them. They work every day, if they're not shooting images for a client, they're advertising and getting out there to get another client.

Very best,

My Flickr (external link) :: My Astrobin (external link)

Junior Member
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Likes: 11
Joined Jul 2010
Apr 03, 2017 10:46 |  #4

I went from unlisted to page 2 over a few months without advertising in a city of a million. How long has your page been as you currently have it? I looked for Chicago maternity photographer and stopped searching by page 15. It can take a few weeks to move up.

I can advise on a few issues. First, your photos are embedded in a slideshow, and unsearchable for Google. It means your photos will not help you in any way in your ranking, and you are left with a few text all reading similar "Chicago Maternity Photographer" as the sole SEO generator for your page. Think to use a more SEO friendly format for your gallery. Also while putting Chicago Maternity Photographer may seem like a SEO friendly name, having it 3-4 times on the same page will start to be treated as spam by google.

Also silly question, but one that people sometimes miss. Did you sign up your site to Google Webmaster tools?

in a big city like Chicago, you need to do tons of work and social networking just to get on an even playing field like 1000 photographers have already done. Meaning even if you do everything right, you may still be on page 10+. You need to up the game, which includes advertising.

Hikin ­ Mike
Walkin' Like a Penguin Now!
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Location: Atwater, CA
Apr 05, 2017 00:43 |  #5

Like 'Firebot' mentioned, you may do everything correct, but never see page one. I might try advertising (PPC) like most here mentioned.

You home page says spam to me. Write for people and not Google. This may not put you on page one, but speed is an issue: …​m/EkVyZRW0 (external link)

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Steve ­ Ruddy
Senior Member
542 posts
Likes: 18
Joined Mar 2008
May 01, 2017 11:17 |  #6

Congratulations on your success. I took a look at your site and it seems like your content is pretty good. YHowver you don't appear to be listed with google business. If you were you would be on googles first page doing a search for Maternity Photography in Chicago. …m1!1e3!3sEAE,lf​:1,lf_ui:2 (external link) I have been re doing my site and have pretty much zero content but I show up on first page for my area and am included in google businesses. Some one can even see me if they search for a business in a nearby city and expand the google map. Also investigate Google's Webmaster Tools and make sure you have a lot of link backs to your site. I wouldn't sweat it too much though if your fully booked!!!

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1,204 posts
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Joined Apr 2005
Location: Chicago, Illinois
May 03, 2017 12:55 |  #7

Did you put the index code in your site?

1,399 posts
Likes: 30
Joined Oct 2006
May 03, 2017 13:12 |  #8

The more people want to find your site, the higher it'll rank. There's really no one solution or one concrete method to get you there other than being "talked about" frequently by other sites and become a good source of information and content. For example, while I recommend blogging for photographers, blogging itself doesn't do much to help you get ranked up; it helps when other people link to your blog posts on other sites so my recommendation is to always make blog posts personal so that when your client sees/reads it, they post it everywhere they can.

At the end of the day all of this may still not get you on the first page due to competition in the area. But I also always tell people not to worry about google rankings especially when starting out; while there are some simple things you can do to try to optimize your site for SEO, it won't be the thing that gets you clients in the beginning. If you provide good service, your clients will advertise for you for free. :)

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How long does it take to get your site on the first page of Google?
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