Search engine optimization (SEO services)
Artists have websites and concern themselves with the need to promote their websites. This often leads them towards SEO services providers. The first objective of any website is of course to be seen on Google and other search engines and to generate traffic.
80% true! Firstly one has to ask, be seen by whom? Artists naturally need to be seen by people who would either buy their work or by the people who would promote them, ie, agents or galleries.
The problem arises because there are hundreds of thousands of artist websites, each competing for the same generic terms. Where does that leave any possibilities of actually ranking in any meaningful way. Pretty small I think, near on zero! Then one factors in all the large selling art websites with hundreds of thousands of pages, art galleries and even museums. Impossible!
So where does that leave SEO services when specifically related to the small art website. One could argue that it is a complete waste of time.
That does not mean that there is no value at all in doing some SEO services for very specific ends. For example, you may produce artworks in Plastic and searching for this in google find that there are very few pages with this content. You may then target those words until you find that very few if any are actually searching for those terms. So even that might be a waste of time.
Using Google Adwords tools to find niche markets, if you are actually in one, can often be misleading. A proportion of the search numbers results are actually the counts of your competitors looking for niche markets themselves. They do not represent accurately the actual number of organic searches made.
Google does not return very long tailed search term numbers in its results. Its actually very difficult to know the numbers of searches for long tailed terms.
I once added to my website, Abstract artist in Cambridge. Yes I found that I came quite high, as there were few people targeting those terms but sadly actually few people looking for them so it did not generate any real interest in my work.
Taking a small tangent, there are also many misrepresentations spread around. Talk, such as, you must not over optimize your website as you can be penalized by Google.
Of course if you try to trick Google you will get no-where. But by optimize I mean, to make it beyond doubt to the Google spiders eye what your website pages are about! Google wants us all to optimize our website as it helps them to actually know what they are about. It’s a bit like saying, you must come to the party well dressed, but if you over dress we will kick you out!
The only penalization might come in the form of not actually getting the surge in traffic that you anticipated, but that’s the nature of a highly competitive environment. Less to do with, if Google is penalizing you or not.
Of course SEO services can be of great benefit to larger websites. Sites with many pages can create good internal linking structures and generate interest and links from elsewhere. They need to do it right! but the small artists site needs only to be optimized for the artists name.
In conclusion, the artist website is a modern day calling card. An essential place to direct people. Don’t waste your time with SEO and instead go and paint a picture.
What you should do is to create portfolios of your work, on art for sale sites. They have the resources to promote themselves on google. It is almost ironic that very large art selling sites, like Saatchi spend a lot of money on advertising. This does suggest that, alone SEO services will not deliver results.