How to build a wedding photography website
A photographers website is the number two way to build your photography business.
Did he just say number two?
Yep number two, because referrals and current customers is always going to be number one.
So you need a photography website what to do?
So I do have a couple unique perspectives on this. I am a commercial and wedding photographer, but I also own a website company. So while my goal is not to tell you what the design should be, I want to guide you through the process.
What is your niche?
- Wedding Photography
- all the above?
While I do not want to jump to SEO this kind of goes hand in hand. Your niche will tell you what your website needs to sell but also where google will place you in the search rankings. The more competitive the more niche your site and pages need to be. For instance I have 2 separate websites. One for weddings and one for commercial photography. This structure may not be needed in your area.
Your niche will dictate your page structure. If you do weddings, animals and senior photography then these will be your main navigation pages.
What website platform is best for photography?
The question is what works best for you?
I use wordpress but I host on my own server. Why wordpress? It’s flexible and I know what I can do with it. There are a ton of plugins I can get to work. There are plenty of others out there. I hear a bunch about Squarespace lately.
Here is some things you should think about when choosing a platform.
- Works on a mobile device
- Is updated regularly
- Do you have access to a person who can help you
- Lots of design templates to choose from
- Can be hosted on my service or do I pay a monthly fee
- Backend editor
- SEO friendly
What is a design template
The template is the look of your site. Generally there are places to buy a template that you like. Look for one that gets updated by the author regularly. Or choose one that is provided by the service. For WordPress you can get themes everywhere. Where places like squarespace have many ones they pre built.
Build yourself of hire a pro.
Depends where you are in your business. If you are just starting you may not have the funds so build yourself is the only option. There is a point you might need to hire help. Even I did to dig into the look and usability of the site. I hired a consultant to help with what brides are looking for. Designers can also just notice things that you may not look at but your customer might be that picky.
I love websites that have a portfolio section built in. Now that’s different than a blog. The blog is what you are reading now. I can blog about a latest wedding. Where the portfolio features photography. It also lays out the images big and separate pages.
Why is separate pages better?
SEO – more pages helps your photography website rank better.
You will also need the ability to have large photos.
What is a ALT TAG? Why is it important for a photographer
It is important because we use a ton of photos.
What is it?
It is the code that the browser is reading that we only see if the photo is broken. The tag also tells google what the image is of. So I might use a “wedding photographer” in the ALT TAG on my home page logo. The on my album page the TAG would read “wedding albums”
If you do not have this ability you loose a lot of areas to help your site rank better.
Forms for photographers
Your website should act like a secretary and business brochure for your wedding business.
A form is the areas you fill out your personal information to contact someone.
I love forms. I use a service call jotform. I have the app on my phone so all the forms I have offline access to. I then email a copy to myself.
So where do I use forms?
- Contact us (keep it short)
- I created a pre wedding checklist using a form
- Contract information, A form can collect advance information
I have these forms that when someone calls I can point them to my site to fill out what I need. Its mobile friendly and my clients love it. I also have my contact forms go to a customer service person to help email back faster.
I know there is so much more that goes into a website. These just cover the basic of what to keep in mind. SEO is a huge area for me so look for posts later about this.