The interior design world moves on and so does the way your clients use the internet to find you. Sometimes for the better and sometimes not.
Just after we have spent ages (days! weeks! months!…years?!) trying to figure out what search terms our clients might type into Mr Google, and then incorporate that into our online presences(s), we find they are morphing how they search into something new and far more sinister.
Would you believe it? In the design world, a place based on aesthetics, those darned potential customers are using images to find us. How annoying is that? It seems like only yesterday when we ignored images because we knew that google can’t really ‘see’ them and we balanced that by putting all the right words everywhere. We even got the odd first page google listing for some odd convoluted phrase that one client a year might potentially type!!
So now it seems that we have to go back to what we naively thought was right all along. All we have to do is just put lots of pretty pictures onto our site and the whole world will come flocking to our door.
Well, maybe! I’ll backtrack a little and explain where I’m coming from before everyone gets a little too excited!
I’ll come from one simple factoid. One of my interior design industry based web sites has about 500 hits a day. Not bad, I suppose. I looked into some of the stats a bit more last week and found that by far the most number of hits came from google. Fine. About 85% of the hits in fact. Nothing new there then? No.
But; there’s always a “but”.
When I delved deeper I found that 19% of the google hits were coming from the GOOGLE IMAGES part of the google search site. IE the bit where you type in ‘mohair velvet fabric’ (or whatever) and then find you have loads of pages returned to you, so you click on the images bit on the left hand side and it only shows you (in theory) lots of pretty pictures of mohair velvet fabrics. (As well as lots of other junk of course, but on the whole it’s not too bad).
19%. that’s quite a lot.
So I looked at different time frames and, yes, that 19% was pretty consistent over at least the last 6 months. Maybe 17%, maybe 23%, it varied. That’s still enough of a trend for me to believe it and I’m sure it would hold true if I had bothered to look further back in time.
So what’s going on here then?
Well firstly it showed that I am doing some things right. I am putting images alongside my musings. It makes it easier to read, pretty pictures – some perhaps even relevant – just like a magazine. Also for the images to have been recognised by google then I must also have tagged them (the ALT tag if you want to be more precise in HTML terms). So yes I had images in my musing and they were correctly tagged images. That is, the images had a bit of text manually put on them by me. To make matters better I had also called the images the same thing (broadly) as the tags I intended to use.
Google looks at:
1. The name of your JPEG;
2. The image size;
3. The alt tags you give to the image; and peripherally at
4. The physical colour scale of the image (it can recognise it is mostly green, for example).
The first three of these are very important the 3rd much less so.
So you’ve just done a great design job for one of your better clients. You upload some pics of the rooms to your online portfolio and voila! 100s of people will beat their way to your internet door!…er no.
Let’s say you had this great picture of the main room. So you upload img_1325.jpg to your site and you cleverly ALT-TAG it as “main-room-31-randomstreet-localtown”.
Not good. Assuming it was not a tiny thumbnail image here is something along the lines of what you should have done:
1. Called it “contemporary-modern-home-belgravia.jpg” – or something similarly appropriate; and
2. Tagged it as “contemporary, modern, home, Belgravia” – or something similarly appropriate.
You get the idea? The keywords you have already discovered that work in the text of your writings now also need to be judiciously applied to your images. Get cracking!
Here are some of the posts I previously wrote or you can find them all in one go by <clicking here>
- The Four Layers of Building Design, Part 4: Interior Design (kothea.com)
- An Interior Designer Gets Lots of Web Visitors But Few Leads / Enquiries (kothea.com)
- Interior Designers – An Update On using Facebook, LinkedIn WordPress blogs and Twitter (kothea.com)
- Are You Thinking of a Career As an Interior Designer? (yepthatsme.com)
- Can I post to Twitter and Facebook at the same time? (marketing.yell.com)
- Interior Designers: Why does no-one visit your web site? (kothea.com)
- Superior Interiors with Kelly Hoppen | Channel 5 (kothea.com)
- The Business Bible For Interior Designers (kothea.com)
- How do you explain INTERIOR DESIGN to a 6 year old boy? (kothea.com)
- Interior Designers – Where are my customers? (kothea.com)
- Interior Designers – What Should I write About On My Blog (kothea.com)
- Who is the best interior designer in the world? in Europe? (kothea.com)
- Interior Designers and their financially lucrative ‘bit on the side’ (kothea.com)
- Pinterest and Customer Interest : Interior Designers Pin their Boards to the Wall (kothea.com)