3 Keywording Strategies to Increase Your Stock Photo and Video Sales

Shakir Thowseen
Published December 01, 2018

Why are the right keywords so important?

You've taken some amazing photos, captured in the perfect light and edited to perfection. You upload the photos to some stock agencies and sit back, waiting for the buyers to flock to your content. A few days go by. Then a week. A month.

And nothing.

You start second-guessing the quality of your photos and suddenly you're spiraling down a destructive path, questioning whether you should just stick to your day job.

We've all been there.

The truth is that most of the time your stock sales have little to do with your actual photos and videos. No matter how incredible your content is, if you don't have the right and the most thorough keywords, your content simply won't be surfacing on potential buyers searches. Like the content you create, keywording is an art that can make or break your sales.

Keywords are a major component that a search engine has to match your images to what your buyer is putting into the search tab. So how to make sure you're choosing the right ones?

Strategy 1: Think like a buyer

To make sure your content reaches your ideal buyer, you need to find out who they are and what they might be putting into the search engine.

Let's take a look at this example:

Salad Bowl

The primary subject in this image is a bowl of salad. In addition to adding words that describe the salad like 'spinach', think about who your buyers might be. Keywords like 'superfood' or 'diet' will help reach writers of weight loss articles whilst words like 'recipe' and 'cooking' could help reach food bloggers.

Of course, it definetly helps if you can see what images like this are already being used for so you can target buyers more effectively. If you're an Upload My Stock member, we provide this information to you through our Similar Images feature that shows you how images like yours are being used around the web to help you capture your audience.

Strategy 2: Find alternate keywords and trigger words

Now that you understand your potential buyers, the next step is to try and include all the words your buyer might be putting into the search engine.

Let's say you have an image of a breakfast that includes some eggs, bacon and toast.

One of the first keywords that will come to mind will probably be 'breakfast', though words like 'continental' and 'meal' might follow close behind as words people are searching for. Having a good keyword helper can be very handy here in letting you make the most thorough list of keywords. As tempting as it might be to add every synonym there is, make sure not to go overboard!

Not all the words from a keyword helper will be related to your post but it definitely helps to have the option to pick the ones that may add value.

Here is a list of words that Upload My Stock provides to help you expand the audience you reach:

  • Synonyms BREAKFAST → MEAL
  • Trigger words: BREAKFAST → TOAST
  • Hypernyms: BREAKFAST → FOOD
  • Direct Hyponyms: BREAKFAST → CEREAL
  • Popular nouns: BREAKFAST → BRUNCH
  • Popular adjectives: BREAKFAST → HEALTHY

Strategy 3: Focus on the subject

No matter how many awesome things may be in the background of your image, make sure you stick to the subject. Having irrelevant keywords can decrease the chances of your content surfacing so make sure to zoom in to what's in the forefront.

Remember to also forego numbers and camera details like '4k' or 'Sony' as they won't help reach buyers and waste space for better potential keywords.

It's time to boost the visibility of your content and make more sales! Upload My Stock is here to help you get there, streamlining the process so you can spend less time tagging and more time capturing the world. Get started Upload My Stock Home page.

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