I found some very interesting web analytics data, something I never saw before: One of our web properties - WhatOneMillionBuys.com , a niche, luxury blog for the curious - had a jump in search engine referral traffic recently. Surprisingly enough, the referral search engine is not the regular Google Search (or Yahoo/Microsoft etc.), but the Google Image Search engine. Never before did I see such a high percentage of traffic coming from an Image Search engine compared to traffic from other referral sources.
Visit WhatOneMillionBuys.com to see the content.
What's different between people using image search engines vs. regular search engines?
The intent: Image search engine users seek visual clues and visual answers to their questions as opposed to regular search engine users who are looking for mostly textual answers. This fact implies that image search works better for some sort of content, as users on these engines are usually more random browsers, and their intent is to find something interesting, rather than exact answers to their question. Interesting, colorful images which jump-out in the result list are more likely to be clicked on.
The behavior: In sync with the intent described above, image search engine users are more likely to view additional SERPs (search engine result pages) and browser to secondary result lists until they receive the visual impulse they are looking for. Many click-thrus to our site comes from SERPs way deep into the result list.
The Clicky widget below shows the latest search engine referral traffic's distribution
Below are a few common-sense techniques to maximize the organic image search traffic to your blogs and website:
- Take and use good quality, colorful, interesting images
- Upload images with meaningful filenames. Add keywords to the filenames and separate words with dash or underscore
- The post title, content and image filename should have some strong semantic relationship
- Add alt and title HTML tags
If you have a web site or blog, which has a surprisingly good quantity of image search engine referral traffic, share it with us. We may be able to find some common characteristics among these sites and blogs.
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