Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The Challenge of the Artist Website & Search Engine Spiders

The words on your website are used to feed “search engine spiders.” These spiders spend their days (and nights) crawling into websites and looking for words to bring back to the search engines. The search engines then store these words and wait for people to type these words in places like Google or Ask.com. When the search engine gets a word, it gives the person who asked a list of sites that utilize these words.

Artist’s websites, which tend to be heavy on visuals and lite on words often struggle to feed the spiders a sufficient amount. How you meet this challenge will dictate how visible your site becomes.  If you use your site strictly to refer venues to, this won’t matter.  Otherwise, it’s good to visit sites that are not related to art, to see how they meet this challenge. The official term is web site optimization.

For instance, on my own website I was challenged to create searchable words for my Storyprints which is my line of whimsical art prints that portray an image and a story. Take for example my art print, Holy Cow!

(You can actually check out the page at my website too http://www.slashcoleman.com/whimsical-art-print-three-cows.html)

I use the following tricks to help make the image "read” more like a word and less like a photo:
1) I give the image itself an appropriate title. In this case, whimsical-art-print-three-cows
2) I use the word “cow” in the title itself.Ie. "Holy Cow"
3) Beside the image I use the following description: “Whimsical three cows take over Hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil.”
4) I also use a generic description such as “Each beautiful limited edition art print is attached to a 11"x 14" mat, wrapped in a poly sleeve, signed and dated by artist Slash Coleman.”

It’s worth it to go back through your site and think about how you can make some of your photo’s more search- engine friendly.


  1. you know, I adore real spiders v much :p

    I was always wondering how do these search engines work?? thanx alot and ...

    good job!!

  2. Spiders are a metaphorical sign for creativity too especially if you dream about them!