We've been talking about leading photos in the forums and while it's not just about having a leading photo, it's about having a really great leading photo. We recommend this because we see these photos get shared a disproportionately number of times higher.
The quote of the day "People eat with their eyes first!"
Here is an example of a Hub that is crushing it. http://vespawoolf.hubpages.com/hub/The- … lsa-Recipe
Why is it crushing it?
- The leading photo has been repinned over a 175 times. We see Hubs that get repinned without other backlinks do very well for more competitive search results if they have other content assets within the Hub
- Good content that supports a specific title
- Good use of the recipe capsules
- Good organization of capsules with sub headings
This Hub gets well over 1,000 views a day!
How about some stats from HP rather than just one example.
Take 5 topics (one for recipes) get a sample of 1000 hubs that get over 1000 views a day and present data on those with and without a large photo at the top. Add some info on article length, hub age, number of interlinks, etc. This would help us better understand what works.
There are good reasons why this tactic may not be a good idea in G's eyes - it excludes text content above the fold.
Well, I guess this is about trust and common sense to some extent. We should trust that HP applies common sense when giving their pointers. What's good for Hubbers is good for HP.
Paul has been blabbing about leading images for a while. I think he had enough time to double-check his findings. I realize that some people require the presentation of a full study before they move, so that might come in time. Till then, they're kind of welcome to miss out.
What about the earnings implications. My gut feeling is that the first ad after the ads above the title, is the one that generates the most income. The author of the article can affect where this ad appears on the page. If you have a text capsule at the top with a minimum of about 100 words this ad will appear above the fold to the right of the text. If you have a summary text capsule at the top less than 100 words the ad will be pushed down and attached to the next text capsule. If you have a full size image at the top the ad gets pushed down. Does HP have any data on the optimum position of the ad for earnings, and whether having a full size image at the top may affect earnings through click through rates. Of course, getting more traffic will increase earnings, but everything is a compromise, and as you have said there are other ways to get traffic.
Does having a full-size image at the top increase general Google search related traffic as well as via the Pinterest links? I guess that should show in the Traffic Source stats.
Quick query: how does position of the Lead Photo effect the Meta Description/First Paragraph 140 char? Do you recommend increasing use of the summary section, just in case?
Lead in photos are something I'm beginning to try out - I've never used them to give that first adsense a place to go.
You've pretty much convinced me that it is a good way to go - to the point that I just added a couple to hubs that didn't have any.
I did notice, on the hub used for example, that no photo attribution was given, though....
'The leading photo has been repinned over a 175 times.'
not a high rate for a hub published 5 months ago!
I don't know - if flat beats the tar out of anything I've got and it gets more views than my entire subdomain!
We believe that photos are content. So a photo above the fold is content above the fold.
The key is getting a really good leading photo. The recipe microformat takes the first photo in the hub and will often include that in the search results - so it's best to lead with a finished product.
When creating a leading photo, ask yourself is this the type of photo that will get pinned. If so, that's probably worth it.
When we look at Hubs that get numerous pins, they do much better in the search results than average. It appears to be a pretty good leading indicator to search traffic if a new hub is pinned several times.
This isn't the only way to get traffic, but looking at ultra successful hubs, it's becoming much more prevalent.
If you are concerned about text above the fold, try a text capsule with a leading paragraph, then a full width picture.
What about the page loading time a lot of people have dial-up? Just because someone Re-Pinned your article doesn't mean the hub was visited. I am guilty of repinning pics. and not ever visiting the article.
A lot of times I just like the pics. and I leave a comment and share to facebook ect... then repinit.
I'm afraid I'm with you tamron - I love the pretty pictures but don't bother to see where they come from! Still blithely pinning my own and other hubbers' work though in the hope that other people take more of an interest
This is why I prefer to use BO.LT instead of Pinterest. You click on the photo and it leads the reader straight to the site. easy peasey, and increases your traffic....
I've never heard of that. Is that the full name so I can search it?
I've never heard of BO.LT. I'm going to look into it right now! Thanks for the tip, jenubouka.
Type BO.LT just like that into Google, and it will pop up. If you want an invite let me know I can send one via FB.
I love vespawolfe's hubs. She has a sub-domain worth following if you like great recipes. Plus she's a delightful hubber.
I have some leading photos, but I'm going to take a look at number of pins and see if most of them are my first photo in the hub. If so, I may extend a few capsules to see what happens.
I've got loads of pins....but they are for sewing that I am no good at....Pinterest can have em!
So, we find that the click through rate on ads increases with lower quality content and decreases on higher quality content in general on a pure pageview basis. However, that doesn't tell the entire earning story.
The ads get optimized based on the various positions of the capsules, so when the right 250X250 is pushed down, a below title ad appears. The addition of the below title ad generally more than offsets the loss of the 250 by pushing it down.
However, hubs with photos are generally rated higher in quality. They get more traffic and earn much better over time.
My bolding. You have just said what all the 'experts' on this site said for eons. To attain a higher click-through rate, keep back information from the searcher, in the hope that the adverts took up the slack.
I'm afraid I never followed this mantra. If I am writing on a topic, I gave as much information as I had/could get, or even get away with.
I have never set out knowingly to cheat the searchers out of what they searched.
I have known writers on here who got a much higher click through rate than me, whose hubs were crap.
Full of spelling and grammatical errors, and very little in the way of information.
I have read really successful hubs, and not seen what information was kept back to improve the click-through rate. Obviously I have a lot to learn. Some people know how to write hubs that garner traffic, are interesting and well-written, and yet somehow they have kept some vital piece of information back that encourages the searcher to click an ad.
Now that is clever. I'm still pondering over this issue.
I used to know how to position ads for optimum performance, but I no longer have any clue, after joining the HPads program.
I still write hubs to get the all-important top right ad, but my earnings are low enough for me to reconsider ad placement.
Oh and I always put photos in.
I get all turned around and confused by advice like this. I don't know much about pinning, but when I search for something on the internet and the results I find have all kinds of pictures or other distractions when what I really want is information, I get really, really annoyed. For that reason, I try to think of what my reader would want to see when he/she visits my Hub. If they've come to my Hub to learn about something or read a story, throwing some huge picture at them as soon as the page loads will only tick them off. I assume, anyway. I know it would me. I try to give them words to read, and little picture representative of the subject matter, and a few ads that maybe they'll click on if they're nice. Anything else just seems like fluff.
I guess if I wrote about making the worlds greatest bundt cake or how to sew your own drapes maybe I'd think differently, but I don't. I'm not totally convinced that what works well for one Hubber would work for all.
Why do I use leading photos in my hubs? The truth is that I’m new to internet writing. I don’t know a lot about search engines, SEO’s, keywords, tags or attribution. But I do know something about human nature. A picture is worth a thousand words, as they say, and food is all about the senses. First smell then sight, touch and finally taste. If a potential reader can almost “taste” the food through the photo, maybe they’ll read on and try the recipe. It’s a good goal, right? Freelance writing is about the creative process, but it’s also about sales.
This technique may not work for everyone, but it seems to be a good idea for my niche. After all, the internet is all about instant gratification and that’s what a photo provides. If you’ve ever seen a food blog, they’re photo-driven. Pinterest is photo-driven as well. But the internet is also about opinion. Skilled writing is invaluable. Hub Pages is chock full of great writers and if you draw in readers through poignant writing embellished with photos, all the power to you. That’s what I aspire to as well. I wish us all the very best!
175 pins? If you create a "Made for Pinterest" image you can get thousands. My top two hubs have 13k and 14k pins respectively with several others in the mid hundreds. Simply create an appealing title tagged image and you'll have hundreds of pins in no time.
That photo personally does not do it for me at all. I think Wrylilt is on the money with her made for pinterest image hub. Not that you can predict however the number of pins you will have. Some images get pinned when they are not appealing (well to me anyway) and others go viral faster than you can blink an eye. Way to go Wrylilt!!! 13K and 14K each? WOW.
I don't want to be too materialistic, but do visitors from Pinterest have enough money to buy anything?
I don't understand how the particular image you posted would receive thousands of pins. I don't get it. You must be doing something other than just posting a graphic pic about 32 ways to use cherries. Or is that just an example of what to do? Is it that big on a hub?
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