Home NewsAnnouncements Introducing semantic image names on Folksy
Pom Pom Dahlia Print by Dee Beale

We recently made a change to the way images are named on Folksy. In this blog post we’re going to explain the reasons behind making the change, how it affects you and your shop and how you can make the most of the new system to get your products seen.

What’s changed?

When you upload an image to Folksy as part of your product listing, that image is stored in the Cloud. Until recently, the images were given a string of numbers and letters as their unique ID, called a hash, during the uploading process. Now what happens is that we take the title of your product listing and use that to generate a file name for the image.

Pom Pom Dahlia Print by Dee Beale
Pom Pom Dahlia Print by Dea Beale – available on Folksy here

For example, this file name for this image is ‘7271108-A4-Pom-Pom-Dahlias-Signed-Open-Edition-Giclee-Print-0‘ because it’s taken the title of Dee Beale‘s listing which is ‘A4 Pom Pom Dahlias – Signed Open Edition Giclee Print’ and appended it to the automatically generated string of numbers.

This is what we mean by semantic file names: that the name given to the file is related to its meaning in words.

Why image titles have changed

As this article explains, images are becoming increasingly important as a way for customers to find and buy products. It’s difficult to put numbers on how many people use Google Images to find products as those figures aren’t readily available, but we do know that images are returned for around 20% of search queries on Google and they are often shown above organic text-based results. If you look at the image below, you’ll see that searching Google for “pom pom dahlia print” on a mobile returns a row of paid-for results first and then a row of images, drawn from organic results.

Google search result showing image results for Pom Pom Dahlia Print

By using a semantic file name for all images on Folksy, we hope to get more Folksy products included in Google search results pages, as well as in the Google Image search pages (which users access via a tab on Google).

How you can make the most of the changes

Product titles are already the biggest determining factor for internal search results on Folksy (read more about that here – https://blog.folksy.com/2017/02/23/how-search-works), but this change to image names means that how you title your products is now more important than ever. So do your research and make sure that your titles are as descriptive as possible and include the words people are actually using to find those products.

Consider searcher intent (ie what are people looking for when they type something into a search engine) and use free tools like Ubersuggest, Keywords Everywhere and Google Trends to find the best words and phrases to explain what your product is or does or what it’s for – remember you’re looking for the ones with the most searches but the least competition. A simple way to start is to imagine trying to describe the product to someone who can’t see it, and once you have a list of words and phrases, see which of those are the most popular and relevant using the tools listed above, and which you are most likely to rank for.

If you’re unsure how to do this for your products, watch our first two Product Listing Reviews here:



Product titles affect Pinterest too

Visual searches don’t just take place on Google. Millions of people use Pinterest every day to find products and to shop, and product titles are really important here too. That’s because whenever someone pins something directly from Folksy (find out how to do that here – https://blog.folksy.com/2019/04/09/pinterest-and-instagram-tips) Pinterest uses the product title on Folksy to generate the title of the pin. So Dee Beale’s Pom Pom Dahlia becomes…

Pinterest product title example using Pom Pom Dahlia Print by Dee Beale

Pinterest is a huge visual search engine, so it’s another great opportunity to get your products seen and sold – and another reason to get your product titles right!

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Elizabeth June 5, 2019 - 4:09 pm

Great news! How often are the image names updated?

Camilla June 11, 2019 - 4:35 pm

Hi Elizabeth. I’ve checked with Doug, and if you change or edit the title of a listing, then the image name changes to match it immediately.

Tracey christie June 13, 2019 - 8:54 am

Hi, Camilla, I understand the link with picture ID, what I am not sure about is do you need to amend the name of the image file on the computer before uploading to folksy. I have heard that this is an important thing to do, however I am not sure if it applies to Folksy. Say I have an image taken on my camera, image has a generic number p122345.jpg does this file name need to be changed for every photo before its uploaded or does Folksy change the file name to the title description of the listing.
Thanks for your help

Camilla June 13, 2019 - 2:27 pm

Hi Tracey. You don’t need to change the name of the image file before uploading it to your Folksy shop because our system automatically changes it anyway. However, you’re right that image file names are important, so if you have a blog for your creative business, it’s a good idea to edit the file names of the image before uploading them there. I hope that helps. If you have any other questions, please do ask!

liame4947 June 19, 2019 - 1:05 pm


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