PhotoChat; Making/Managing A Website

PhotoChat is a weekly conversation between Photography Pro’s and Amateurs that takes place on Thursdays at 1PM EST hosted by Prime Social Marketing. To follow the conversation or take to part simply follow #Photochat on Twitter.

This blog post covers my longer answers to the questions that are condensed then put into tweets for the Photochat.

Due to my current teaching schedule I have been unable to take part fully in these photochats on twitter, as I finish my lessons 15 minutes to the end of the chat. Luckily this week I am able to take part due to the winter break.

Q1: As a photographer, how important is it to make a website, and what are the biggest advantages of having one?

Having a website for any sort of business is one of the corner stones of marketing. This is a place where you will make first contact with your customers and therefore leave your first impression on them.
For photographers one of the biggest advantages is that you can showcase your work, style and look of your images. People can sit and browse who you are as a photographer. This is better than a phone number in a book or sporadically meeting people at a gallery show or trade fair.
A website can also be a place where you can communicate directly with your work laid out and presented how you want. As well as being a space where you can notify people about what you’re doing, showing work in progress and build a following.

Q2: What do you use your website for, and how much work or profit do you generate from your site?

I use my blog as a place to share images, discuss and showcase photography as well as new ideas. My Blog is for non-profit as I would not class myself as a professional.

Q3: How did you create your website? Did you use a builder, hire a professional or code it yourself?

I have built now three websites. The first two I actually coded myself (one in HTML and the second in flash) although I think they were good, it took a long time to set up. Whereas when getting someone to do it or using a template, you can save time and go out and shoot. Also in hiring someone you can get a more professional look than by doing it yourself, which when you are selling yourself it is important to look professional.

Q4: What are the biggest issues, difficulties or frustrations you’ve run into when creating and managing a website?

My biggest problems were updating and keeping it fresh as the amount of work made it really off putting. It wasn’t just dragging and dropping content but took time coding, and organizing the site and then bug checking before uploading the content. With a template or predesigned build you can more easily update a site without having the dread that you have to do it.

Q5: What’s the best advice you could give to a photographer building a new website for themselves?

Plan the site. What pages you will have and which pages will link to which pages. Also create a simple interface for people to use. I generally get annoyed if I need to click more than 3 times to get somewhere. Lastly bug test and then get others to test out the site before you make it live.

If you wish to get notifications when I post on my blog, you can follow me on Twitter@aperture64, on Facebook.com/aperturesixtyfour or alternatively be emailed by subscribing below.
All images are the Copyright of Benjamin Rowe , ALL RIGHTS Reserved unless credited to another photographer.
For more information please read my Copyright Statement

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