How To Start A Photography Website (Today)
Start a photography website and show some of your photographs.
Professional photographers need to showcase their work, and amateurs usually like to.
For the professionals, their own website is an absolute must have.
For amateurs it’s not essential, but for many it is desirable.
There are options for the amateur to have an online presence on image sharing sites. Some professionals might like an added presence on these also.
Regardless of the options and choices available, a website of your own is always desirable.
I’ve written about some very good photography website options previously.
However a self hosted WordPress.org website is a step above anything else.
There are so many ways to customise one, and to add the functionality you want.
I can build a website completely from scratch but it doesn’t have the sophistication this one has.
The plugins available to WordPress sites, mostly at the touch of a button add so much more to it.
I use affiliate links on this website, and there are some on this page.
If you click on one and buy something from the website it refers you to, I will get a payment.
You will not pay any extra for your purchase.
WordPress recommended hosting provider
One thing that’s different with a WordPress site and all these, is you have to provide hosting.
This means buying a hosting package from a hosting provider.
As with most things on the Internet there is an astonishing choice available.
There is one provider which specialises in WordPress sites, and is one of their top recommended hosting providers.
With a WordPress site you will be using a theme, and some plugins and add-ons.
These as well as WordPress itself are constantly being developed.
Most, if not all, of these improvements are free, and SiteGround keeps them updated for you.
If you need it SiteGround can provide help in building your site. They have some of the easiest and best site builders available.
SiteGround hosting is reasonably priced and one of the best hosting providers anywhere.
A SiteGround hosted WordPress site, is as good and as affordable as having your own website, or blog gets.
Picking a theme for your site
When starting your WordPress site the first thing is to choose a theme.
A theme gives it’s look to a photography website, and is an important part of the process.
There are both free themes and paid for themes available.
This is an exciting and slightly frustrating part of building your site.
It’s exciting because there are so many fantastic themes to choose from.
The frustration is for the same reason, it takes some time to choose, the choice is so vast and brilliant.
If you can’t find a free theme that you really want, check out the paid for ones.
It’s not that you won’t find themes you like, it’s choosing the one you like and want most.
You will decide on a theme eventually, and then it’s time to move on.
Learn about and use Plugins
Plugins add functionality to your website, and some are necessary.
As with themes the choice is huge and there are free ones, and ones you pay for.
Some of the absolutely essential ones come pre-installed, enough to get you started.
You can probably build and run your site with just these plugins, but you’ll likely add more.
Sometimes you might want to add something else to your site.
You check it out and find it can be add in the form of a plugin.
There’ll usually be a choice of a few, (not too many), and you choose the one you want.
This will be done through the WordPress dashboard, with a click or two of a mouse.
If you decide to code a site completely yourself, you can add functionality with html and css.
It will take longer, taking time to figure out, and probably won’t be as good or secure as a plugin.
Now there’s a temptation to keep adding plugins that do all sorts of weird and wonderful things.
Try to stick to as few as you can, they can slow down a site, and consequently drive people away.
Stick to the essential ones, and another one or two that really add something very useful.
Adding content and publishing your website
Once you’ve got your hosting, theme and some plugins sorted, it’s time for content.
You should include a few static pages like an About Us page and a Contact page.
It’s vital that you also include a Private Policy page, and no harm to implement some GDPR elements. Even if you’re not in the EU, some GDPR compliance makes sense.
Blogs and websites are basically about content relating to the subject of the site.
In your case it will be about photography. You will need some articles and photographs.
All websites will be well served with some photos, but their central to a photography website.
Once you’ve got that part sorted, it’s time to publish your blog.
Up to this point there’s a lot of work. It’s straight forward though, and very much the easy part.
If you open a physical shop in a city, you’re going to get some passing trade.
A website is an online shop. You have a potentially much greater customer base, but no passing trade.
No one is going to walk past your door, stop, and walk in.
You have to find a way of getting you’re website noticed by people, and then to click your link.
Of all the things you’ll ever do online, this is probably the hardest.
You have to find what gets you traffic and make sure it does just that.
Search Engines are the obvious tool, and if they work well for you, the best.
You have to write your articles on topics that people are searching for. That’s not too hard.
When someone does search for a keyword you’ve written an article one, they’ve got to find your article.
The search engine will serve up all the articles it finds related to the particular keyword.
There will be about ten on the first page it displays. If your article is one of the first three or four listed you might get some traffic.
There’s liable to be dozens, if not hundreds of pages though.
It’s possible there could be over a million websites listed. Yours could be on page 20, or 94.
The work it takes to get into those first few spots on page one is enormous.
If you do manage it, someone else could outdo you in two days, and knock you back down the listing.
Even if that doesn’t happen, you have to put in the same work for all your articles.
That could be working brilliantly for you, and the search engine implements a new algorithm.
This might only knock you down to page 2 or 3, but that’s not much better than page 20.
Search Engines are great when they work, but they’re not dependable.
Social Media is also hard work, but find a strategy that works, and it can be a little easier.
The Social Media platforms change the way do things also, but not with the same devastating results.
You’ll finding your own way to get your message in front of some people.
If your message grabs attention, it will get shares and will get in front of others.
You pick up followers or friends, and you can get your message to them.
It will be gradual, and slow at first, but you should get an audience through Social Media.
There are many different operator’s in the sector, who all work differently.
It’s best to try to build an audience on more than one of those.
Some people regard Pinterest as social media, other as a search engine.
It’s definitely a search engine, but you can make it work for you like social media.
Perhaps it’s this bit-of-both make up that makes it so good at generating traffic.
It’s the easiest way to drive traffic to a new website.
You do have to know what to do, and do it, but it will work, and probably fast.
Unlike other search engines, with Pinterest you can follow people and others can follow you.
You can also message people, this is what makes a slightly social media platform.
It works by the creation and publication of pins. They are initially saved to a board.
Followers can access the boards of those they follow and save pins to their own boards.
Pinterest also show pins to other people who can also save them to their boards.
Members can search like with any other Search Engine. They are shown relevant pins which the can also save.
Pins are linked to a web page, any one you like, and this is where the traffic comes form.
When someone clicks one of your pins, they land on the web page you have it linked to.
Where Pinterest beats regular Search Engines is that you gain more traffic with more effort.
Pins can stay live for months.
The only drawback is that it can take up most of your time.
This is where tailwind comes in. You can automate your Pinterest engagement with tailwind.
You can set up your pins to be published any time you want.
Now you get advice all over the Internet telling you that such a time is best for pinning.
However you’re pins are published to the whole world, and only 1/24th of it will be at that time.
I think people who give this advice are only aware of their own time zone.
You will have followers from all over the world. The people you follow will probably be scattered all over the globe also.
With tailwind you can set pins to publish right throughout the entire 24 hour span of a day.
That can make your pins relevant everywhere not just in a few neighbouring time zones.
You can set your tailwind schedule for a day, a week or longer.
It will take a little time to master it but it should start to work immediately.
There are three different ways to use tailwind and they all work together.
This is very straight forward. You set the pins to publish to a particular board or boards at given times.
Pinterest work out the best times for you to pin. You pick a pin and set it to one of these times.
You do the same until all the slots are full. If you want to publish more pins, you can add more slots, and choose the times.
With this you can set pins to publish right through the day, and night.
All Pinterest members has a feed of pins that are being published right then, by those they follow.
This is basically how all Social Media works.
Your followers can have instant access to your new pins through this.
If you’re pinning yourself, then there will be times of the day when you will not be active.
This means that followers of yours in a large part of the world will be offline when your online. They will not have instant access to your new pins.
With tailwind you can have a steady 24 hour publishing regime, and cater to a global audience.
This increases your possible traffic, and keep it coming constantly.
The second method for using tailwind is called Smart Loops.
With the regular pinning method, you have to schedule pins one at a time.
You can do this in big batches, and can be done well in advance. It still takes time though.
With Smart Loops you can set some pins to publish regularly to one or more boards.
tailwind spreads them out so that there’s a good gap between the times they publish. Once you set a loop, those pins will automagically keep being published as long as you like.
Smart Loops will serve you best if you use them with your best pins. Both Pinterest and tailwind will have statistics to show you what those are.
You can set up several Smart Loops to keep your best performing pins on autopilot.
Tailwind Tribes is many people’s favourite part of tailwind.
Tribes are groups of people who are active in the same niche, and pin each others pins.
When you pin to one of your boards you can potentially have your pin seen by all your followers.
If another person pins one of your pins to a board of theirs, all their followers can see your pin.
Say some of those followers click your pin, that’s traffic to your site.
Members of a Tailwind Tribe submit some of their pins to the tribe.
Other members of the tribe pin those pins to their boards, exposing them to more potential traffic.
In return you pin other members pins.
The more you pin the more your pins are likely to be pinned.
When you join a tribe, dive right in and pin 3 or 4 pins, and submit 1 or 2 of your pins.
Your pins can get pinned many times, possibly by every tribe member. That means you don’t have to have many pins to get a lot of re-pins.
Every member of tailwind can join 5 Tribes for free, and buy extra ones.
Stick with the 5 until you really master them so that when you buy more, you can get full value.
Join tailwind for free
You can join tailwind on a free trial, like many other programmes.
Unlike most free trials, tailwind’s is not time restricted. It’s restricted by use instead.
What this means is that you can get to know it really well before you start to pay for it.
You can submit 100 pins. It doesn’t seem a lot but if you only submit a few each day, you can really see how they work.
The free trial allows you to join all 5 tribes that you get with a paid plan.
This means that if you use your 100 pins sparingly, you can go all out in Tailwind Tribes.
In that way you can get a long period and a lot of value in you free trial.
Try tailwind for free now.