Visitors and search engines love websites with lots of content. If a visitor is comparing two different companies’ product/service, as a general rule, the company with more info available about the product/service is more likely to obtain sales. Similarly, if one website has more pages about a product/service, then Google will rank that website higher in the search engines than a website with less content. Unfortunately, generating content can be a bit of a monotonous chore and even a challenge, especially for small businesses. Thankfully, there are many techniques available for generating content for your website.
Adding a gallery or portfolio to a website is something that most websites can benefit from, particularly small businesses. It shows prospective customers tangible evidence of the quality of work that your company provides, and gives you an opportunity to quickly and easily create plenty of pages with relevant content for Google to index. Add a photo and write a few sentences about the photo, pretty easy!
However, there are many styles of online galleries out there, and not all of them are as beneficial to your site’s search engine optimization as others. Galleries that provide the most SEO juice generate pages for each photo and/or collection of photos, with some additional text about each photo or collection of photos. This creates an ever growing archive of content. Then take it a step further with categories and/or tags for the gallery and now there’s a bunch more keywords on these gallery pages. All of this creates lots of valuable information and when used in conjunction with filtering methods it makes it easy for visitors to learn more. What’s more, this content creates many indexable pages filled to the brim of keyword dense content to boost your search engine rankings. Talk about two birds with one stone.
Creating a SEO Optimized Gallery with WordPress
There are many ways to create a gallery along these lines. Obviously, the ideal way to create the most effective gallery possible, is to hire someone. This means the gallery is custom tailored to fit within your website and to showcase your content in the most effective way possible. While this would be the best route, it certainly isn’t the cheapest. But then again, the most effective option is never the cheapest option.
If budgets are tight, here’s a few alternatives.
If you know a bit of coding, and are familiar with WordPress development and/or PHP, then this tutorial from Jason Skinner is a great place to get started. If you’re familiar with WordPress’ custom post type functionality, you could create a new post type and add a “lightbox” style gallery on individual posts in that custom post type.
If you aren’t familiar with WordPress development, then there are WordPress plugins to get you started. Unfortunately, the vast majority of WordPress gallery plugins out there simply embed a grid of images with a “lightbox” style popup when clicking on the images. As has been mentioned, that is not the most effective way to have a search engine optimized gallery.
Nextgen Gallery’s “compact gallery” gets the job done, as does Help For WP’s Custom Post WP Gallery. Nimble Portfolio also supports individual pages per entry. If you’re not set on your site’s current design, many WordPress themes often include a portfolio/gallery section of the website that allows site owners to create galleries with dedicated pages per post.
The great thing about having a gallery like this, is that it’s easy to add an image and then write a few sentences about the image. That quick and easy bit of writing will do wonders for converting visitors into paying customers as well as ranking higher on the search engines.