How to Build Links with Flickr – SEO Tip Week 33

Written on August 19, 2007 – 9:45 pm | by Shell Harris |

SEO TipsIf you read my post about Squidoo last week you know I got addicted to it just a little bit. Our SEO company has started using Squidoo as a tool and sometimes one tool can lead you to another. This discovery was totally serendipitous. As I was trying to market my own Squidoo pages (lenses as Squidoo calls them) I had a thought on how to use Flickr to build links. (Flickr is an online photo management, photo sharing web 2.0 site.) I had been placing some images on Flickr so I could then link to them from my Squidoo page. Once all the images were in place I went back to Flickr to start naming them and adding descriptions. Then I thought, “Can I place text links in the descriptions?” And you what, I could and you can too. Flickr allows you to place links in the photo descriptions and they are real HTML links that are followed by the search engines.

FlickrI’m sure you can see the uses for this. Does you site sell products? Can you place the photos on Flickr? If so, you should add your product photos and each photo should have a title, description and link to that product. These links meet many of my perfect link criteria especially since you control the anchor text of this one-way link. Of course you should always make sure the link makes since. If you are selling a bike, take a picture of the bike put it on your Flickr account and then link to that bike on your site.

Flickr images are returned in search results and Google currently has 26 million pages cached so Flickr has good search engine visibility.

To further prove this works, do a search in Google for ‘dark phoenix costumes‘. I’m a bit of an X-men fan and so I posted some artwork of the Phoenix character which is the subject of my Squidoo page. As of August 19, 2007 you should notice that the #9 search result is my Flickr page I created and the #6 result is for my Phoenix Squidoo page. The Flickr Dark Phoenix Costume page only took one week to be cached by Google and now a one-way link has been cached with keyword rich anchor text.

Please don’t abuse or spam this technique but instead try to provide information for your customers with the photo. I’m sure Flickr would have no problem turning all the links to redirects or nofollow links such as Wikipedia. Don’t abuse, just use.

Let me know if you have tried this already or what success you have had with this strategy.

Shell Harris co-founded Big Oak on January 1, 2004. In a previous career he was a print & web designer and often developed the sites he designed before focusing on his current passion for search engine optimization and Internet marketing. He is an avid researcher, SEO specialist, company mouthpiece and is always looking for the next big thing in Internet Marketing.

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  1. 15 Responses to “How to Build Links with Flickr – SEO Tip Week 33”

  2. By Kimberly Dawn Wells on Aug 21, 2007 | Reply

    Great tips for using Squidoo and Flickr! Did you know about our Photo Phights on Squidoo?

  3. By WordPress Guru Advice on Aug 22, 2007 | Reply

    This has been a great revelation. Thanks . The only practical problem seems to be that you have to have great photos for Flickr to work for you.

    Lately I released a plugin on my site for Flickr that is really worth looking. It allows searching for images right from your admin area .. and does more.

  4. By Mr Handy on Aug 29, 2007 | Reply

    You can do this at other photo-communities like, too :)
    I agree that you shouldn’t abuse this though

  5. By Prepaid Tarif on Dec 10, 2007 | Reply

    Great advise! Never thought about it until I read your article, I’m impressed.

  6. By Jo on Apr 1, 2008 | Reply

    Wow.. thanks for this one! Haven´t thought about building links with photo communities yet. Cool!

  7. By Shell Harris on Apr 1, 2008 | Reply

    This post is dated now and some of the things mentioned here aren’t passing link juice any longer. Check for no follow when you look for link building opportunities on Flickr. Zoomr may get you more link juice but it isn’t as nice as Flickr in my opinion.

  8. By Krumpet on May 1, 2008 | Reply

    Links placed in Flickr descriptions are nofollowed. The current school of thought on nofollows is that SEs actually do follow them, but no link juice is passed. As such, leveraging Flickr to build PageRank is a waste of time.

    Leveraging Flickr to get pages indexed, on the other hand, may be valuable. Also, the jury is still out on the value of using Flickr to provide SEs with targeted anchor text.

    All that being said, Flickr wasn’t meant to be a PageRank passing machine. Use it to build a strong portfolio of your company’s products / services and leverage it to help build your brand. A strong brand will result in more inbound links and, as a result, higher PageRank.

  9. By Jochen Schweiz on May 5, 2008 | Reply

    How about Youtube, is it nofollowed as well?

  10. By Auf Raten on Aug 30, 2008 | Reply

    Yeah, Youtube is nofollowed, no chance.

  11. By Suchmaschinenoptimierung on Oct 16, 2008 | Reply

    I never knew, that you can set links in Flickr descriptions… It’s time now to learn, how we can use Flickr for Link Building…

  12. By Yellow SEO on Dec 4, 2008 | Reply

    Thanks Shell, Great link building tips for Squidoo and Flickr! Marvel cool, a blast from the past for me before becoming a SEO I worked as toy designer for Marvel / Toybiz.

  13. By Vic on May 23, 2009 | Reply

    Thanks for the nice tip and info Harris.
    I thought about it but never tried about it.
    Your article not only teaches me how to the flickr link building ways, but also make me feel excited about it.

  14. By Fonic on Jun 13, 2009 | Reply

    Realy nice trick. Gota try it for my own strategey. Thx a lot man. Does it still work?

  15. By Tiendas on Aug 21, 2009 | Reply

    And i always thought flickr was pretty much useless.

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