Find Web Hosting and Build a Professional Photographer Website
In our days modern internet text content plays a very important role that attracts readers to a website. Videos are also very important because compared to plain text it can carry more information and it is more faster way to communicate the topic. Pictures are also a very important element of every website, so we can’t avoid embedding them into the content.
Most websites use stock photos, others hire photographers to take the pictures for them. The demand for professional images is increasing, but there are also lots of professional photographers with high quality equipment who can produce professional photos. If you are a photographer yourself, probably you already know how hard is to build a good reputation and get a long term contract. Maybe you have already started building your portfolio using social networking sites such as Flickr, Pinterest, Instagram Tumblr or Facebook. These website provide a good platform to upload, store and share your work and get some jobs. All this can work to a certain point, but if you really want to stand out from the crowd, you should build your own photographer website, create a portfolio that will represent you and your work, while have full control over your photos, unlike on social networking sites.
In the following I will teach you how to find a good hosting provider and how to build a professional photographer website.
Build your photography website
The first step is to choose a platform that will allow you to easily manage, upload and update content on your website. It can be a photo gallery or a cms that allows you to build a portfolio or a custom built software that is specially developed for your needs. Whatever you choose, make sure you understand how your website works, because the goal is to be self-sufficient and add new content yourself. If you are not familiar with website building you should look for a web designer/developer who can help you out at the beginning.
If you don’t have the budget to hire a designer or you like to build your website yourself, consider choosing a platform that has a great support and an active community who can help you out on different public forums. For instance a very good option for building your photography website would be WordPress. This is very popular, open source software, which is available for free, and has been created mostly for blogs, but it has extensions and themes that will transform the core blogging interface into a professional photographer portfolio website.
Purchase a good photographer hosting plan
I can’t stress enough that hosting is one of the key factors to a successful website. So choosing a good hosting for your website is important. But what are the features you will need while building your photography portfolio? Obviously you will be uploading images and probably lots of them. You want that your website to load fast and display images quickly. For the start it is enough to get a shared hosting plan. If you decide to build your portfolio using WordPress, I highly recommend using BlueHost or InMotion hosting. These two companies offer great support for Wrodpress and their shared servers are fast enough to provide a good performance for your photography website.
Organize your photography portfolio
Participating on a few photography sessions, you can end up having thousands of images. Most likely you will not want to upload all these images to your website, not only because it is too much content, but you will want to show your best shots to your potential customers. Pick your best 15-20 photos, rework them using a photo editing software such as Photoshop or Gimp, and highlight them. Keep the “less is more” factor and do not overwhelm your website visitors. If you can’t convince your visitors with 20 photos, probably few hundreds would not help in getting a job, so upload only high quality material to your website.
As a recommendation, do not upload your pictures in a raw format, resize them for web and reduce the file size of the images but keep the good quality, this way your potential customers will be able navigate through your photos quickly.
If you have the time for blogging, do not hesitate to create a section on your site where you share you experience, thoughts and write about yourself. This will create a communication bridge between you and your customers and will also help to gain more traffic from search engines.
Convert visitors into customers
Your website is properly structured and your images are in place, obviously you want to get some new clients. Probably you don’t want to receive an email or a phone call from all your visitors, but only from those who will likely sign the contract. To avoid wasting your precious time by dealing with clients that does not have the proper budget or a clear understanding on what you do, make your website efficient: make it clear what services you offer, what are your fees and what is the process of your work. By presenting all these information on your website, most likely the next phone call will end up in closing a deal.
Conclusion and recommendation
Building a photography website or portfolio is not hard; certainly it requires some time and a certain level of technical knowledge if you decide to build it yourself. Using WordPress for your website can significantly reduce the time and the difficulty level of the development. On top of that, WordPress is extremely flexible allowing you to install a theme, customize it for your needs and personalize your website without the need of writing a single line of code. At the end of the day, you are a photographer and not a developer, and WordPress was built for persons like you. Now that you found a good and simple way to build your website, go and sign up with Bluehost, purchase their Starter plan, register your domain name for free and start your WordPress photography portfolio right away.