Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Lord Ganesha And The Long Tail

Ganesha is the elephant-headed Hindu god of prosperity, the remover of all obstacles, who also goes by the name lord Ganapati.
Having extensive captioning and text along with my Ganesha imagery allows for greater web traffic via long-tailed key words (yeah, I know, I've used this picture on my blog before).

Ganesha’s Birthday
By 9:00 this evening over 2,000 Internet searches had ended at my site.  The top searched for word was “Ganesha” with 63 searches, followed by “Ganesh symbol” with 17, “wrecking ball” with 14 and “ganesha symbolism” with 10.  Ganesha is often the key word that brings most people to my site, but to have 63 was unusual, and to have the second and fourth most searched for terms to be also “Ganesha” related was quite unusual. I did a quick search on Google for “Ganesha” and quickly learned that today was considered Ganesha’s birthday!

Long Tailed Key Words
I then went back and started checking to see what other Ganesh-related key words were bringing in traffic. Below is the list of Ganesha related key words that I found in the first 500 search terms.   I didn’t bother going through all 2,000+ key words, but it appears that about ten percent of my day’s traffic was due to the key word Ganesha and it’s long-tailed variations (long tail key words being key word phrases containing two or more words)!

Long Tailed Key Words And Web Site Traffic
What we see from this list is a classic example of long-tailed key words and how they can build traffic. If I had a photo of Ganesha on my site with the minimal caption typical of what most photographers have I would only have had a fraction of today’s “Ganesha” traffic.  If you want more traffic to your site, include more caption material that the search engines can use to guide those looking for such images in your direction.

The Difficulty of Long Tailed Key Words
Another interesting aspect for long tailed key words is how hard it is, at least for me, to figure out what those key words will be. I find it a lot simpler to just try and write something interesting about the image. That isn’t all that easy either. To write coherent, interesting and relevant text takes time and effort…and a lot of it!

Long Tail Key Words, Targeted Traffic And The Long Term
Long tail keywords not only help bring in more traffic, but more targeted traffic as well, and if your selling something, whether it is prints, stock photo licenses, or imprinted coffee cups, targeted traffic can mean increased revenue. The conundrum, at least for me, is that the time and effort required to bring in that traffic, to write the captions, upload the images, work for the links is time that I can’t put into making images.  I am sacrificing making images in the belief that the long-term reward will make it all worthwhile. I’ll probably know in about five years…geez, I sure hope I’ll know!

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