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Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?
  
 
bnoeggs
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?


I'm planning on going p/t for profit shooting weddings, portraits, kids sports and other projects as well in 2014. I'm at the point where I have the quality gear needed to shoot with, a good knowledge of what I'm doing with the camera as well as competent post processing skills. Currently, I'm "shopping" the competition in the area so I can set pricing that is fairly competitive for the level of services I will be offering.

My goal in 2014 is to shoot roughly 6-9 weddings (at a profit of course) as well as shooting local youth sports events in some of the more affluent areas around town. This being a turn-key operation, I won't have a storefront and will work out of the house this year. Initially, I'll want to build exposure locally, getting my name known around town,earn $$$ to pay off the gear I now own and if year one goes well, strongly consider going f/t in 2014. I know cash management can make or break the business and I'm level headed enough to choose to grow slow and steady.

I am searching for a decent hosting website where I can upload images, set pricing, allow clients to view as well as order from the site. I'll be local to my area mostly (Oklahoma City area) and as a part timer, will do my shooting on weekends and processing on weeknights.

I know almost nothing of the websites that host and am hoping you will help me cut thru the hundreds of sites that offer the service and share with me your opinion on who you use and why you like them. My immediate goal is to get started with a site that doesn't overcharge but provides a fair service for the costs involved. Of course, I'd like to hear what some of the pro photographers here utilize and gain some wisdom from your experiences.

Thanks for your help!

Bill.



Dec 16, 2013 at 06:15 AM
onesickpuppy
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?


There are many to choose from...and it will depend on what you find in the ways of...

support
cost
options
how easy to setup

I've been with Smugmug for multiple years, and yes while they raised the price for a "pro" class (allows for selling)...I still feel that their support and community support is one of the best.
But remember..that is my feelings

I currently have over 16000 images hosted and growing...and find that I get top class support when I need it, and virtually no down time.

You can check out my site at

www.rb-images.net




Dec 16, 2013 at 06:31 AM
bnoeggs
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?


Thanks Puppy...I'll check it out. :-)


Dec 16, 2013 at 04:31 PM
Meatpacker
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?


Probably the easiest is Tumbler. (for photogs) Plus there is a bunch of SEO stuff built in, ensuring greater web visibility. Here's a good article for you on Tumbler;
http://blog.hhcolorlab.com/wordpress-for-photographers/why-you-shuold-build-your-photography-website-in-tumblr
Here's my friend, Amyn, on Tumbler;
http://amynnasser.tumblr.com/
You can see how he has hs own website, and other sites, all linked.

This is Wordpress with a free theme used;
http://www.digitalcamnetwork.com/

This is my site, which is just plain, old time, HTML, (this is NOT work friendly, and this site has not changed in years)
http://www.federicomastrianni.com/index.html

I use Bluehost, which I find very reliable...and cheap...

Hope this helps.

Federico




Dec 20, 2013 at 04:14 PM
DougDolde
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?


I'm loving Photodeck.com. They let you upload full resolution images and you're able to sell the files online without your intervention in various resolutions/prices. You get paid via Paypal.

You can get half off your first month with coupon code YG@ULYCTN



Dec 20, 2013 at 06:48 PM
a123
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?


I've been with smugmug for several years and they have been great. However...I just switched to Shootproof because they have a few better features that I use. Easier pricing, easier albums, ability to create mobile apps, easier tracking of sales and easier integration into my website....and many other little features that work better for me.


Dec 21, 2013 at 12:28 AM
bnoeggs
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?


Fine information everyone. Thanks for your guidance. I can look at some of these with confidence knowing that they are "peer" approved.

Thanks again and Happy Holidays!

Bill



Dec 26, 2013 at 04:44 AM
jmitch19711
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?


I've been using bludomain.com for years and love them. Simple, cheap and reliable.


Mar 01, 2014 at 01:26 AM
pmiller228
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?


Give zenfolio a look. For $250/yr(I think) you get unlimited storage and bandwidth, decent site builder (though more complicated than some others), tons of selling options- with options for self fullfillment or full service, and just recently a very affordable per/gb RAW upload option if you want offsite backups.


Mar 03, 2014 at 04:33 PM
 

Search in Used Dept. 



mdude85
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?


I don't think expecting profitability in the first year is exactly "slow and steady" but that aside, smugmug and zenfolio would be my first recommendations. It's really up to you whether a service is considered to "overcharge". You can also take a look at Photocrati but it is a Wordpress theme and will require some basic knowledge of that blog engine.

I would not go with a Tumblr blog -- it will not really give you the e-commerce ability you are looking for.



Mar 04, 2014 at 10:54 PM
Sharona
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?


I'm going to tag on here: Mdude - Would you say that Zenfolio and SmugMug are similar products? In other words, they do the same things? Is the hosting as well as web site building all inclusive?

I am trying to figure out the simplest way to show my photos, do some blogging, and when I get there, allow clients to order directly from a printer without my having to deal with it. They could just go to their own gallery and choose what they want, and order them. I am not there yet with my work - I am still building a portfolio. But I'd like to have that option when I'm ready and not reinvent the wheel, so to speak. I'd prefer that it "look like" a web site, and not a flickr gallery, if that makes sense....

Thank you!
Sharon



Mar 05, 2014 at 03:25 PM
mdude85
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?


They are similar, even competing, products. Both products offer inclusive web hosting by default, but usually you must upgrade to a more expensive package if you wish to use your own domain. Both sites offer a basic plan for around $30-40 per year. That's a very good deal considering the cost of traditional web hosting.


Mar 05, 2014 at 06:51 PM
Sharona
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?


Thanks! More research, then I need to make a decision and get it going.


Mar 05, 2014 at 08:05 PM
pmiller228
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?


Things may be different now since I last shopped, but I tried both smugmug and zenfolio and ended up with zenfolio due to it being easier to make a decent design. I've now moved on to squarespace which is even easier, but still use zenfolio for galleries and orders.


Mar 05, 2014 at 08:09 PM
Sharona
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?


Thanks pmiller - I just took a look at your web site. So the landing page and all of those galleries and contact info - that's squarespace or zenfolio?


Mar 06, 2014 at 02:57 PM
pmiller228
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?




Sharona wrote:
Thanks pmiller - I just took a look at your web site. So the landing page and all of those galleries and contact info - that's squarespace or zenfolio?


My main site is all squarespace. You also get the option of password protected pages/galleries but no easy way to sell photos like with smugmug or zenfolio.

Here's a small example of a zenfolio gallery:

http://gallery.228studio.com/children



Mar 06, 2014 at 03:16 PM
bnoeggs
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Needing a hosting website- Any ideas?


mdude85 wrote:
I don't think expecting profitability in the first year is exactly "slow and steady" but that aside, smugmug and zenfolio would be my first recommendations. It's really up to you whether a service is considered to "overcharge". You can also take a look at Photocrati but it is a Wordpress theme and will require some basic knowledge of that blog engine.

I would not go with a Tumblr blog -- it will not really give you the e-commerce ability you are looking for.


In regards to slow and steady...I work full time...Wanting to display my works (naturally) and draw some business in and grow slowly, at a pace I like..I'm not going to kill myself so to speak. As far as profitability, well, I want more glass...good glass hahaha

Thanks again everyone for the input!



Mar 09, 2014 at 05:16 AM





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