Keywording can be a tedious and time consuming process and a lot of people might ask ‘why do we have to do it?’.

Well it all depends on how many people you want to have view your photo.  If you don’t add keywords (also known as Tags) the search engines won’t know what your image is about and will just skip right over the top of it and carry on.

Keywords are an important part of the process when you are trying to sell your images, or even if you just want to share them on Flickr.  The right keywords can get you a front page listing on a micro stock website such as shutterstock or istockphoto when people use one of the search terms you have entered as a keyword.

So keywords are really just a way of telling the search engines what your image is about.  It’s easy really, you just describe the elements and feeling of the photo, take the first image below for example.  Keywords might include describing words like:  boats, yachts, water, rocks, stones, landscape, overcast.  You might also describe the feeling of the photo with words such as: calm, tranquil, quiet.

See, easy!  There are many more words I could use to describe this photo they were just some off the top of my head.  Give yourself a challenge and see if you can come up with 10 keywords for the other two photos here.  Can you think of 20?

Keywording can definitely be a boring and tedious part of the process but once you’ve done it a few times words just start rolling out and before you know it you’ve reached 50 or more keywords for a single photo.

The right keywords are very important if you are looking to sell your photos.  Throwing in words that have nothing to do with your photo just so you show up in more searches won’t help at all.  You might get a high rate of views but if it’s not what someone was looking for then it’s not really worth it.  It’s better to get 1 view and 1 sale than 1000 views and no sales.

Happy Shooting!

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