Does a website help?

Joined
Feb 6, 2006
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TX originally from Louisiana
I'm curious about how many have websites, who with, and does it help your business in any way? Then how about how long do you leave photos on it - do you archive, use as portfolio, etc?
 
Joined
Oct 17, 2007
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25,501
Location
Orland Park, Illinois
I'm curious about how many have websites, who with, and does it help your business in any way? Then how about how long do you leave photos on it - do you archive, use as portfolio, etc?

I have a website through Zenfolio.
http://www.nagelphotography.com/

This isn't a full-time business for me, but I wouldn't have any business without a website.

I use the website mostly to share my work. Images are available for sale. I leave images out on the site indefinitely.

Glenn
 
Joined
Jan 2, 2009
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6,991
Location
Alaska
Real Name
Dan
Like Glenn, I use Zenfolio. Extremely easy to get up and running. If you pay for the pro account you can use your own domain name and hide all evidence of the zenfolio site.

Even if you are doing business in person, it is a huge benefit to put proofs up on a site and have it set up so a client can look at them and then order what they want right on the site. Also then you can let people purchase with their credit cards through the site without having to get yourself set up to handle them.

I recently did a show in a coffee shop who allows you to hang work but won't deal with the sales (nor charges a commission). I simply put the web address on the description of each piece and buyers went on the site and ordered them. That way I was also able to offer various additional formats that weren't displayed in the show. It worked well.
 
Joined
Sep 18, 2007
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2,873
Location
London
I have a website but primarily it is used to store images off-site as it were. All the images are there indefinitely.

I don't want to be able to sell direct from the website (Smugmug) and it's not a business for me at all but when I do sell to magazines having the website is extremely useful. I have sold quite a bit over the five years I've had it from magazine researchers and picture editors finding me by searching for specific items through Google etc. I'm in national magazines several times a year as a result.
 
Joined
Jun 15, 2008
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4,069
Location
Bellingham, WA
+1 for Zenfolio. I tried others, but Zenfolio is so easy to set up and if you need help, you can ask one of us or customer service is excellent. You can also take all the Zenfolio branding off your site and use your own domain name with a pro account.

Mine is here Carole May IMAGES

I leave all the photos up all the time as you never know what people are looking for, and I often find that people buy photos that I took 2-3 years ago. With the pro account, you have unlimited space.

Once you sign up with Zenfolio, your yearly fee remains the same. If they raise their price, your price stays the same. I've been with them now for 4 years.

I wouldn't have a business without a website as that is the first question people ask.

Carole
 
Joined
Feb 6, 2006
Messages
20,044
Location
TX originally from Louisiana
Thanks y'all! Guess I better get busy. I've had a website for 1 1/2 yrs but didn't do much with it - that's my fault. I'm getting photo ops I never dreamed I'd ever get and working hard to make sure my photos for those people are the best I can do. I'm learning to develop my own style, my own "feeling" about the way I want something to look. Thanks again for giving the "push" I needed.
 
Joined
Jun 15, 2008
Messages
4,069
Location
Bellingham, WA
The nice thing about Zenfolio is that you can customize it to your feel. I recently re-did mine in earthy colors as my photography is landscapes, boats, orcas, etc.

Carole
 
Joined
Mar 17, 2010
Messages
3,541
Location
Portage, IN
I had smugmug, but do to the massive increase in price I left for zenfolio. I am very very very happy with them, it was so much easier to get things set up. Mine is in my sig if you want to see it.
 
Joined
Feb 6, 2006
Messages
20,044
Location
TX originally from Louisiana
well, I'm trying to get things going but having issues. Can't figure out if it's an apple thing, photo shop thing, or stupid me thing. For whatever reason, I can't move files from elements to my external hard drive - it's empty - not used yet.

AND wish I had asked this before I renewed smugmug - got it for another year now. I'm definitely keeping zenfolio for next year!
 
Joined
Jun 5, 2009
Messages
4,866
Location
USA-Today
for photos that you take, I would tell folks they are up there until (DATE) that way it promps folks to purchase.. I find that does better for teams I shoot, Sports, etc.
for poster size, I let them know to contact me
 
Joined
Sep 27, 2008
Messages
2,078
Location
SE Wisconsin
I have started my zenfolio account in the past few weeks to simply use it as a place to share my photos with family and friends. I went with the pro account for the use of my own domain name at some point but to also sell some photos hopefully.

Zenfolio is very easy to use and configure. I really started working with it last week. I am finding that having the game plan makes the difference when setting it up. I have flow charted a number of items for how I want it to work and the reasons I'm using it.
 
Joined
Feb 6, 2006
Messages
20,044
Location
TX originally from Louisiana
I had bought the smugmug pro account. I liked it okay - just wish I had the sense to get the photos on it instead of burning CD's and not always getting paid for them - got burned by a MX customer. Now, everything is watermarked .
 
Joined
Jun 15, 2008
Messages
4,069
Location
Bellingham, WA
I had bought the smugmug pro account. I liked it okay - just wish I had the sense to get the photos on it instead of burning CD's and not always getting paid for them - got burned by a MX customer. Now, everything is watermarked .

Two rules in life:

Never do anything in the morning before coffee.

Never give a CD until payment is received, no matter who it is.

Carole
 

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