The Importance of Keywording Properly, Part 2

In Part 1 of Good Keywords Sell, we addressed keyword spamming, accuracy, and the buyer’s perspective. For Part 2, we’ll examine:

• How to create keyword phrases using quotation marks

• A few pointers on how to keyword concepts

• Visualizing your keywords

Keywording phrases

Use quotation marks when keywording a phrase. Referring back to an example from Part 1 of this article, we examined keywords for a German Shepherd photo, and included dog, canine, Alsatian, and German Shepherd. However, during your keywording process, you should consider placing quotation marks around “German Shepherd” in addition to German Shepherd separately. Your intention should be to have your dog image appear in the right subscriber search results.

There’s a pretty big difference between Mexico the nation and New Mexico the state. A subscriber who needs an image representing one but not the other can quickly grow frustrated. This is why we stress using quotation marks as appropriate.

Keywording concepts

Think concrete first, abstract second. A brick wall may be analogous to strength, or an obstacle, but first and foremost? It’s a brick wall. Often, this entails thinking of nouns and verbs first, followed by adjectives.

Keywording concepts can be a frustrating experience because of the subjectivity involved. A popular conceptual image is the fork with a tape measure wrapped around the prongs, like spaghetti, to suggest dieting.

Fork and “tape measure” (note the quotation marks!) are the obvious. Diet, obesity, and health would be the abstract keyword choices that would best work with the image(s). Make sense?


Keywords are extremely important. When you submit, before you make that final click of the mouse to upload, take a moment and think about your keyword choices. Visualize the keywords you’ve chosen. Do your visualizations match, or relate to, the images you’re uploading? Do they really make sense? If yes, proceed. If no, revise your keywords. This will increase your overall earning potential and spare you frustration when an image in your portfolio is not doing as well as you think it should.

If an image is not doing as well as you feel it should, please revisit your original keyword choices and make some changes. The new keyword(s) may be all that is necessary to have the image become your next heavily downloaded image.

Other keyword-related articles:

Good Keywords Sell

Why Was My Image Rejected for Keywords?

Improve Your Sales with Keywording

Improve Your Sales with Keywording, Part 2

Improve Your Sales with Keywording, Part 3