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How to Create a Photography Website for Free

So, you boast amazing camera skills and the ability to focus on details. Unfortunately, there is no use of them if you are unable to showcase your talents on the Internet. For this reason, the only way to get recognition is to create a photography website for free in case of tight finances. Getting your work on social media is good but not enough.

A strong web representation is necessary not just to highlight your best works but also to grab the attention of potential customers or colleagues to team up with. The good news here is that building a new site from scratch may take you several hours considering that you already have prepared relevant content and photos to showcase.

Wix – The Best Photography Website Builder

Product Name:Wix
Official Website:https://wix.com
Photography Templates:45
Founded:2006
Complexity:Very easy
Free plan:Yes
Paid plan:From $13/mo

Wix – is the best photography website builder, which delivers a broad spectrum of niche-specific tools and features. The system targets photographers, creatives, models, artists and other users, who have an intention to start and manage professional portfolio projects. Due to the integrated WYSIWYG editor, the platform allows tracking all the steps of the web design process. It is a nice solution for beginners and web design experts.

Wix Features

Wix website builder offers multiple and diverse photography website design options. It has over 40 gallery types available in various design formats. Users may choose from different design editing options, add/modify web pages, upload and edit photos, create portfolio galleries, add sections/categories etc.

Wix Photography Website Templates

There are multiple photography-focused widgets available in the App Market that can enhance your portfolio design and performance. These include Wix Photo Albums, Portfolio, Before and After Slider, Portfolio etc. Due to the Pro Gallery widget, for example, it is possible to create amazing lists of photos and images. You are free to pick the needed format whether it is going to be an Instagram grid or full-width slider. Moreover, the feature comes with extra protection to prevent your works from downloads by third parties. Moreover, the feature comes with extra protection to prevent your works from being downloaded by third parties.

Apart from photography widgets, there is also access to other add-ons that can help you manage your project. Thus, you may integrate analytics, set event calendars, integrate booking services, integrate Live Chat and contact forms, and more. The system delivers total freedom in terms of third-party service integration.

The website builder offers 3D parallax scrolling feature to pick and set any image/video file as a website background, HD video hosting option to create and integrate presentations from Vimeo and YouTube, multiple client integration opportunities that let you drive user attention. Among the widgets you can use for this purpose, it makes sense to enlist the following: Scheduling Pro, Live Chat, Events Calendar, Contact Management +CRM, 123 Form Builder, Wix Forms, Google Event Calendar, Latest News, Wix Chat, Book Appointments Online, Callback etc. Finally, Wix has an integrated eCommerce engine, which lets you connect a small web store to your website to start selling works online.

Wix makes it possible to integrate a user testimonials widget to let clients share their experience and impressions in a separate website section. This is a helpful feature that allows potential customers interested in cooperating with you, to find out more about the quality of your products/services. Some of the most useful widgets suitable for this purpose include Comments, Social Testimonials, Voice Comments+, Customer Reviews, Testimonial Builder, MyReviews, Yelp, Comments+, Inffuse Testimonials and more. They are also available in the App Market.

Presenting your photography works/services to the target audience is only half of the business. To start generating profit, you need to connect a web store to start selling online. Wix lets you do that by means of eCommerce widget (Wix Stores) integration and its further customization.

Wix Designs

With Wix, you do not need to create a new website from scratch. Simply pick any of the available responsive layouts from the list and proceed to its customization. Choose a category you need (Wix has a separate category of photography themes), add texts, contact info, photo samples, testimonials, and go live in minutes. You will get a mobile-friendly and stylish website for free (see Wix portfolio examples).

The website builder offers two design editing options to come up to the needs and skills of diverse user categories. Standard Wix Editor is a better pick for proficient users as it allows for deep design customization. Wix ADI, in its turn, makes it possible to create websites in the automated mode even without mouse clicking – just sit and watch how the service is building your entire photography website.

Wix Cost

Wix lets you build an endless free website, but this plan still comes with certain restrictions. This eventually prevents you from starting a full-featured project. To get access to the advanced features and tools, it makes sense to upgrade to one of the premium plans:

Website Wix Plans

  • Combo ($13/mo) – absence of system ad banners, free domain name connection for 1 year, custom domain, 2GB bandwidth, 3GB storage space, 30 minutes of videos, free SSL Certificate, 24/7 customer care;
  • Unlimited ($17/mo) – Site Booster App (free for 1 year), Visitor Analytics App (free for 1 year), 2GB bandwidth, 10GB storage space, 1 hour of videos, $300 ad vouchers;
  • Pro ($22/mo) – Events Calendar App (free for 1 year), unlimited bandwidth, 20GB storage space, 2 hours of videos, professional logo, social media logo files etc.;
  • VIP ($39/mo) – 5 video hours, first priority support, 35GB storage space etc.

Business/eCommerce Plans

  • Business Basic ($23/mo) – customer accounts, no Wix ads, unlimited bandwidth, 20GB storage space, 5 video hours, $300 ad voucher, secure online payments, custom domain name, free domain for 1 year, plans and recurring payments, 24/7 customer support;
  • Business Unlimited ($29/mo) – business development tools, 10 video hours, 35GB storage space etc.;
  • Business VIP ($49/mo) – unlimited video hours, unlimited bandwidth, availability of the complete Wix Suite, 50GB storage space, customized reports, priority support.
  • Enterprise ($500/mo) – advanced business solution that ensures the highest functionality and maximum amount of tools.

Wix has a 14-day money-back guarantee for users, who are not satisfied with the selected plans. What’s more, newbies have a nice opportunity to save their budget due to the special offers and 50% discounts the system introduces every week from Tuesday to Thursday.

Summary

Wix lets you handle every task when bonding a photographer site from scratch. The web building process takes a couple of hours and only and it does not require any preliminary programming awareness. The website builder abounds in photography-related features and tools, thus letting everyone start and manage quality projects.

uKit – Cheap Photo Studio Website Builder

Product Name:uKit
Official Website:https://ukit.com
Photography Templates:8
Founded:2015
Complexity:Very easy
Free plan:Free 14-day trial
Paid plan:From $6.30/mo

uKit – is a cheap photo studio website builder, which stands out from the crowd due to its ease of use, intuitive nature and convenience. There is no need to master intricate coding nuances to work with the system – so understandable and simple for everyone it is. The software comes with a user-friendly interface and multiple tips that help everyone get started with ease. uKit is a great solution for photographers, artists and just for creatives, who wish to showcase their talent and professionalism by means of quality project presentation.

uKit Features

To start a full-featured project, the website builder lets you browse and choose multiple widgets from its extensive collection of add-ons. You can pick and integrate Social Networking Buttons, Timeline, User Comments, Timer, Service Calculator and other widgets depending upon your portfolio requirements.

ukit photography templates

uKit also allows for effective user interaction. It grants access to tools and features that ensure effective communication with potential clients and partners. These include callback and live chat widgets, integration of which takes a few minutes only. Likewise, the system lets you integrate social network accounts into your project to share business news, events and updates with the target audience in Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and other resources.

The system comes with integrated blogging and eCommerce engines. They make it possible to connect a blog to your portfolio website to interact with users and to start a web store to sell your products/services without the need to leave your photography website. As a website owner, you can grant temporary project access/management rights to other users you cooperate with.

uKit Designs

uKit boasts an extensive collection of templates with a separate category of photography websites. There are only several of them there, but each design is professional, responsive, free and completely customizable. If you don’t like the selected theme for some reason, you can always switch to another template without losing the submitted content. There is also an opportunity to choose and customize a blank theme to create a truly unique and personalized photography website design.

uKit Cost

uKit pricing policy is one of the most affordable in the contemporary web design market. In fact, this is one of the cheapest platforms you can find out there. The system doesn’t have a free plan yet there is an opportunity to test its features at no cost during the 14-day trial. Ready to go live with your project? The go ahead to explore the following subscriptions:

  • Minimal ($6.30/mo billed annually) – 24/7 support, SMS notifications, backup, custom domain name connection, unlimited page number and disk storage space, over 200 professional templates;
  • Basic ($7.70/mo billed annually) – powerful statistics tracking tools, Google Analytics, no copyright sign, live chat support, premium designs;
  • eCommerce ($9.10/mo billed annually) – shopping cart settings, currency choice, payment/shipping options, integrated eCommerce tools, acceptance of online payments;
  • Pro ($10.50/mo billed annually) – custom code integration, eCommerce functionality, custom color scheme application etc.

You can save big, when working with uKit, if you pay for a longer period of time. Thus, if you make a one-time payment for 3, 6, 12 or 24 months, you can save up to 30% of the initial cost.

Summary

uKit is a feature-rich DIY website builder that lets you start, manage and publish quality photography projects. The system grants access to responsive photography themes, integrable widgets, customer interaction tools and affordable subscriptions. Its use does not imply coding proficiency, making the photography design process simple and intuitive for everyone.

WordPress – #1 Free CMS for Photographer Website

Product Name:WordPress
Official Website:https://wordpress.org
Photography Templates:Dozens of themes
Founded:2003
Complexity:Complex
Free plan:Completely free
Paid plan:Paid themes and hosting

WordPress – is the #1 free CMS for photographer website development, which lets you launch large-scale projects, irrespective of their complexity, size and integrated functionality. The platform is quite complicated, especially for first-time users with little or no coding background at all. It takes some time to master it, but you will eventually get quality result, if you decide to give it a try and invest some effort into the system exploration.

WordPress Features

WordPress prevails over its multiple competitors in terms of integrations and functionality. There are dozens of free and paid photography/portfolio plugins, application of which will make your project professional and appealing for everyone. The most popular and feature-rich integrations you can pick for your project include Storyform, WP-Media Tagger, Wordfence, Easy Watermark, Imsanity, Envira Gallery, Soliloquy etc. You can also choose from versatile event scheduling invoice and proofreading plugins, such as BirchPress Scheduler, Picu, WP Invoice and many more. Special attention should also be given to customer interaction plugins, namely Client Portal Plugin, WP Notification Bar Pro, Easy Social Share Buttons, WP Customer Area, Request Callback Plugin etc.

wordpress photography templates

The CMS unveils an opportunity to sell your works/services online. This becomes possible via eCommerce plugin integration. There are lots of them out there, but the most popular and trusted one is WooCommerce and it allows connecting a web store to your photography project.

WordPress Designs

Along with plugin integration, the software makes it possible to browse dozens of photography templates on the web. They are specially designed for WordPress by third-party developers, being available in free and paid variants. Mind, however, that free designs are more subjected to malware threats, which triggers the need to deal with trusted web experts only.

When it comes to template customization, WordPress users have two options. It is either possible to edit the selected theme in the Gutenberg Editor that is quite intuitive and simple or switch to the standard editor, which requires more thorough exploration. What’s more, WordPress unveils an opportunity to integrate WYSIWYG visual editing plugins (Elementor, Divi Builder, Thrive Architect, Lead Pages etc.) for simpler and more convenient template editing. These extensions can be free and paid.

WordPress Cost

WordPres is a free Content Management System, which means that you can download, install and use it at no cost. To get access to more advanced features and tools, however, you won’t go without paid plugin integration. Some of the ebay examples are listed above. Likewise, you will need to invest into quality templates and hosting/domain name. This is where Bluehost proves to be the best solution. Being officially recommended by WordPress, it delivers a rich spectrum of tools and features to match your project hosting requirements. The cheapest Bluehost subscription costs $2.95/mo only.

Summary

WordPress is a renowned free CMS, which works great for photography website development. The system grants access to multiple photography and customer interaction plugins/ templates that eventually let you start/manage professional portfolio projects. The system is not quite easy to master, but it is definitely worth user attention.

SmugMug – Platform to Protect, Share, Store, and Sell Your Photo

Product Name:SmugMug
Official Website:https://smugmug.com
Photography Templates:20+
Founded:2002
Complexity:Average
Free plan:Free 14-day trial
Paid plan:From $7/mo

SmugMug – is a quality platform to protect, share, store and sell your photos. This is the place, where you can create and tell all kinds of photo stories as well as keep them safe and share with users you need. The platform also lets you sell prints and downloads to make profit. SmugMug somewhat differs from its competitors. Apart from creating photo collections, the service also allows other users to select and use the uploaded images from corresponding collections.

SmugMug Features

The platform unveils multiple opportunities to users, who have an intention to compile appealing photo galleries and to present them to the target audience in the most favorable light. You can upload images separately or use the bulk upload feature, if you intend to add many photos. Having uploaded your photos, you can organize them into collections, sorting them out based on multiple parameters. Right after that, you’ll have an opportunity to personalize the images and photo galleries, adding titles, keywords, descriptions and captions.

SmugMug Design

As soon as you are done with your photo gallery creation, you can set up safety parameters. The system allows adjusting accessibility settings as well as safety characteristics. It’s up to you to specify users to grant access rights and to enable photo sharing options. SmugMug allows creating shareable links and making posts in social networks to evoke user interest.

The software is also known for Lightroom integration, which lets you upload, sort out, organize and manage images with a few clicks only. Availability of the integrated eCommerce engine allows for web store creation to sell your photo collections there. As a web store owner, you can set up image display parameters, set and customize price lists for different categories of users, design and sell gift certificates, create and upload logos/ watermarks for your collections etc.

SmugMug Designs

SmugMug lets you create stunning photography projects, which feature responsive design and easy customization. The system offers over 20 pre-made templates to match any specialization, topic and preferences. It comes with a handy drag-and-drop functionality and lets you conveniently modify and manage photo collections with maximum simplicity. The software allows uploading images, creating new collections, sorting out the elements, customizing gallery content and completing other actions to reach the desired result. It supports HTML and CSS design customization to let you create one-of-a-kind project.

SmugMug Cost

The system doesn’t have a completely free plan, but the available 14-day trial lets you test all the available features at no cost at all. If you are satisfied with the options/services offered, you will have an opportunity to upgrade to one of four premium subscriptions with regard to your special requirements:

  • Basic ($11/mo) – unlimited full-resolution storage, personalized photo website, detailed security and privacy settings, free desktop and mobile apps, 24/7 support;
  • Power ($16/mo) – full control of gallery design and security, drag-and-drop design tools and templates, complete website customization, advanced security/privacy settings, personalized domain name;
  • Portfolio ($34/mo) – integrated sales tools, watermark protection;
  • Pro ($52/mo) – custom photo and gallery pricing, client management tools, marketing promo campaigns, packages and coupons.

The system lets you save up to 40% of the initial cost by making annual payments. This is convenient, fast and beneficial for regular platform subscribers.

Summary

SmugMug differs from lots of other website builders and web design resources. The systeem lets you create photo galleries, save them and even offer your works for sale. It unveils multiple photo management and sharing options, letting users pick the preferred subscriptions based on their objectives and intentions.

Carbonmade – Free Website Builder for Photographer’s Portfolio

Product Name:Carbonmade
Official Website:https:/carbonmade.com/
Photography Templates:45+
Founded:2005
Complexity:Average
Free plan:Free trial
Paid plan:From $8/mo

Carbonmade – is a free website builder for photographer’s portfolio, which allows creating and customizing visually-appealing and full-featured online photography projects. The system is not the easiest one you can find out there, but you will quickly master in a few hours. Mind that baseline coding skills may come in handy to you to simplify the web design process and maximize its efficacy.

Carbonmade Features

When it comes to portfolio creation, the website builder allows for unlimited video and image uploads. It does not impose any restrictions as to the number of photos/videos you would like to add to the project. HD video support is also available here, letting you upload your video files directly to the system by using the custom video player. This eliminates the need to waste your effort and time, while embedding videos or uploading them from other platforms.

carbonmade templates

Carbonmade does not only let you create and manage photo/video collections. It also allows sharing the portfolios with other users, who are interested in them. This is done by granting access codes to certain users, while other people won’t be able to access them without your permission.

The website builder also lets you see and control your portfolio statistics to find out how much users are interested in your work. By using integrated analytics tools, you can see the number of people, who have visited your project and to define the most successful/popular portfolio (if you have several of them). Other Carbonmade features that contribute to your portfolio performance include password protection, fullscreen covers, gallery sliders, Lightbox integration, photo captions, custom logos and favicons, video loops, thumbnails and backgrounds, audio/PDF/SVG/Vector/GIF support, social buttons, video and photo cropping, image optimization and many more.

Carbonmade Designs

The website builder doesn’t have many templates. When signing up for the account, the system will ask you to specify your profession to come up with suitable designs and layouts. All in all, there are 9 categories of professions to choose from here. These include Photographer, Motion Designer, Illustrator, Concept Artist, Industrial Designer, Graphic Designer, 3D Designer, Architect, UX Designer. For each category, Carbonmade offers 4-5 layouts. Pick the one that appeals to you most and go ahead to create outstanding photo gallery presentation.

Carbonmade Cost

Carbonmade doesn’t have a free plan, but you can test the system and the features it offers using a free trial. As soon as it comes to an end, you will have to upgrade to one of premium subscriptions. The system currently offers three of them:

  • Beginner Plan (about $8/mo billed annually) – limited customer support, custom default Carbonmade subdomain, unlimited photos and images to upload.
  • Pro Plan (about $10/mo billed annually) – up to 50 projects, domain connection, ad removal, private portfolio creation, integrated analytics etc.
  • Unlimited Plan (about $17/mo billed annually) – unlimited features, Talent Pool listing etc.

Thus, Carbonmade pricing policy is somewhat above the average. However, if you need a professional portfolio, then it makes sense to invest into it or keep looking for a more cost-effective alternative.

Summary

Carbonmade is created with the needs of photography website owners in mind. As a specialized website builder, it grants access to multiple industry-specific features, responsive designs and tools needed to launch and manage a professional portfolio project. The thing is that the system is not quite intuitive and it also may seem a bit expensive for beginners.

SITE123 – The Easiest Photography Website Builder

Product Name:SITE123
Official Website:site123.com
Photography Templates:13
Founded:2015
Complexity:Easty
Free plan:Unlimited
Paid plan:From $12.80/mo

SITE123 – is the easiest photography website builder, which stands out from the crowd due to its intuitive WYSIWYG visual editor, abundance of customizable responsive templates, simple design customization options and special features that contribute to your photography project functionality. The platform does not imply coding skills, being a great pick for beginners and web design pros.

SITE123 Features

SITE123 comes with blogging and eCommerce engines. As a result, its subscribers have an opportunity to connect blogs and web stores to their photography projects. A blog can become a one-stop destination, where users can find handy info about your industry news, updates and other interesting facts. This is also the place, where clients can communicate with each other, sharing their comments and ideas whenever required. As to web store integration, the feature will be of great help to photography business owners, who have an intention to sell their works/services online.

The website builder offers multilingual support, making it possible to create photography websites in several languages with regard to your requirements and expectations. This simplifies the process of interaction with clients and partners from abroad.

SITE123 is also known for its built-in Logo Maker, which can be used to design your own photography project logo, if you don’t have it yet. This is quite a nice way to enhance your business reputation and popularity with the target audience. Additionally, the software grants access to multiple widgets and integrations that are handy when it comes to photography website creation. These include Galleries, Social, Forms, Live Chat Support and many more. By the way, there is also a built-in Form Builder here, which allows creating and integrating all types of online forms to reach the goals you have set.

SITE123-LogoMaker

SITE123 Designs

SITE123 has quite an extensive and versatile template gallery. The designs are all free, customizable and responsive by default. They also belong to different niches with regard to their specifications and topics. A separate category of photography/portfolio templates is available here as well. You can browse the collection to pick and preview the designs you are interested in before making the final choice. In case you are not satisfied with the selected design, you are welcome to switch to any other template any time. Finally, there is an opportunity to pick and customize a blank template from scratch, if you are not satisfied with designs available by default.

SITE123-Design

SITE123 Cost

SITE123 is one of the cheapest DIY website builders out there. The system offers a free plan, which is never-expiring and allows you to create as many websites as you need at no cost. Using a free plan is a nice opportunity to practice your skills and to explore the toolset the system offers by default. To go live with your photography project, however, and to get access to advanced tools/features, you won’t go without upgrading to one of the premium plans. Here they go:

  • Basic ($12.80/mo) – 10 GB of storage space, 5 GB of bandwidth, free domain name connection;
  • Advanced ($19.80/mo) – 30 GB of storage space, 15 GB of bandwidth, up to 50 products per month;
  • Professional ($28.80/mo) – 90 GB of storage space, 45 GB of bandwidth, 500 products per month;
  • Gold ($34.80/mo) – 270 GB of storage space, 135 GB of bandwidth, unlimited products per month.

SITE123 subscriptions are more than affordable for everyone. They include a broad range of tools and features to come up to versatile needs of users.

Summary

SITE123 is a user-friendly, simple, convenient and cost-effective DIY website builder, which is a perfect solution for users, willing to run quality photography projects for personal and commercial use. The system grants access to integrated extensions, Logo Maker, multiple portfolio designs, multilingual support and other features that can bring your photography project performance to the brand new level.

IM Creator – Free Drag & Drop Photography Software

Product Name:IM Creator
Official Website:imcreator.com
Photography Templates:16
Founded:2011
Complexity:Average
Free plan:Yes
Paid plan:From $8/mo

IM Creator – is a free drag & drop photography software, which provides an easy, hassle-free and convenient website creation process. The system has quite an extensive selection of niche-specific templates, powerful integrations and special tools needed to set up full-featured portfolios for artists, photographers, creatives and business owners.

IM Creator Features

With IM Creator, you don’t have to be a coding pro to set up, customize and manage your own project. The entire website development process is intuitive and understandable here. The system offers an opportunity to connect a blog and a digital store to your website to get the most out of your business presentation. You can set up a small/mid-size eCommerce project here to sell your photography works/ services on the web.

The website builder is also known for its powerful integrations. There are multiple widgets (free and paid) to pick and use here. They refer to various categories to cover various needs of users. Some of the most popular add-ons include SoundCloud audio player, Facebook comments, Google event schedule list, PDF viewer and many more. If you need to present your business news, updates and events in social networks, IM Creator allows connecting social media profiles to your website to provide direct access to the feeds whenever required.

With IM Creator, you can set up photography projects in various languages of your choice due to the integrated multilingual support feature. Just pick the languages from the suggested list and go ahead to customize your project.

IMCreator-Features

IM Creator Designs

The software offers quite an extensive template gallery with dozens of free, responsive and customizable themes. They refer to various niches. Photography designs are available here as well. Currently, there are 16 of them here, all featuring high quality and advanced customizability. If you don’t manage to find a suitable theme here, you can pick a blank design and edit it from scratch. By the way, the website boulder offers quite an unusual approach to the project customization process. It has the “Stripes and Polydoms’ system, which allows selecting and arranging content stripes on a page to form its layout. If you expect to avail deeper website flexibility and performance, code embedding feature is at your service here as well.

IMCreator-template

IM Creator Cost

One of the major highlights of the website builder is its free nature. IM Creator can be used at no cost for non-commercial project development. If you need a photography website just to present your creative talent to the target audience, you can start the one for free, using the entire set of built-in tools. However, if you plan to sell your photography works/services online, you may need to upgrade to one of the premium plans, namely:

  • Premium Account ($8/mo) – unlimited hosting, domain name connection, absence of ads, premium support, access to all templates, eCommerce engine;
  • Unlimited Licenses & White Label ($350 annually) – unlimited licenses for clients, White Label feature, reseller control panel etc.

The website builder also has three types of White Label subscriptions for users, who plan to use the system for personal brand promotion. These include Standard, Host It Yourself and Servers Control plans. Their cost constitutes $350, $2500 and $25000 per year correspondingly.

Summary

IM Creator is a contemporary website builder, which can be a great solution for portfolio/photography website development. The system features an extraordinary “strips and polydoms” web design approach, multilingual support, versatility of integrations and niche photography themes to comply with the most popular user requirements.

Web.com – Simple Website Builder for Photography Projects

Product Name:Web.com
Official Website:https://www.web.com/
Photography Templates:9
Founded:1999
Complexity:Average
Free plan:No
Paid plan:From $4.95/mo

Web.com – is a simple website builder for photography projects, which is one of the oldest web design systems out there. Created in 1999, the system has evolved into a worthy representative of the web design niche applicable for personal/commercial project development. The software comes with integrated hosting and marketing solutions that let users promote and represent their businesses on the web.

Web.com Features

The website builder offers an intuitive and hassle-free process of website creation. With a handy DIY editor, it lets everyone set up and customize a website from scratch. Photography projects are not an exception. Formatting your portfolio should not be a challenge due to the availability of dozens of pre-designed content blocks the system offers by default.

Webcom-Features

You can highlight your project performance due to the opportunity of photo/video gallery creation. The platform has over 2 millions of stock images, which are completely free for everyone. If needed, you can resize/crop the selected images to fit your website layout parameters. There is also a tool that lets you embed videos from Vimeo and YouTube to create impressive presentations for customer attraction.

Web.com makes it possible to set up and run online stores due to its built-in eCommerce platform. There is a separate section of web store features/tools you can choose to create and enhance your digital shop design/performance.

Opportunity of social media integration is available here as well. The system allows building an online community with embedded social feeds, customizable social buttons, social sharing features and other advantages. As to customer interaction options, they are also quite extensive here. The platform provides an opportunity to create contact forms, add sections and fields, embed/customize Google Maps to specify your physical business location, if needed.

Web.com Designs

Web.com template collection currently includes over 100 themes for personal/business use. Photography/portfolio sections are available here as well, which makes the software applicable for the development of these projects. All designs are free, customizable, professional and responsive by default. You can preview each template before picking the most suitable sample for further editing.

Webcom-Designs

Design customization process is easy and straightforward. The editor is intuitive and simple even for a non-techie. Each theme comprises pre-designed content blocks, proper arrangement of which allows creating website layout. It’s up to you to add, reorder, delete and configure the blocks to create a unique brand presentation. Finally, there is an Advanced section here, where you can embed your own code to make your photography project one-of-a-kind.

Web.com Cost

Web.com does not have a free plan or trial. Instead, it has quite a flexible pricing policy and several types of packages for different projects – WordPress websites, online stores and standard sites. When it comes to starting a photography website, you will be able to choose from the following subscriptions:

  • Website Essentials ($4.95/mo billed annually) – DIY website builder with a built-in blog, 150+ mobile-ready templates, free domain, free private domain registration, free SSL, secure hosting, free web design experts support, easy Google Site verification, social media tools, basic website analytics, easy Google Analytics and Tag Manager set up, professional email (5 boxes), email, phone and 24/7 live chat support;
  • Business Essentials ($7.95/mo billie annually) – Logo Builder, business profile in local directories, SEO website submission, monthly SEO health checks, customized SEO To-Do lists, SEO ranking report;
  • eCommerce Essentials ($13.95/mo billed annually) – powerful eCommerce reports, unlimited appointments, appointment reminders, web store connection, unlimited products and categories, secure online payments, 24/7 automated sync technology, advanced shipping, custom discount codes, QuickBook Online and Xero connection, abandoned cart saver, unlimited inventory locations, opportunity to sell on Instagram and Facebook;
  • eCommerce Premium ($19.95/mo billed annually) – marketplace selling, automated sales tax calculations, bulk editing tools, fulfillment automation, Amazon multi-channel fulfillment, restock management, quick fill listing templates, barcode creation.

The website builder additionally has a discounted rate for the first billing cycle. Beginners get an opportunity to upgrade to the plans listed above at special prices. These constitute $1.95, $3.95, $9.95 and $24.95 per month correspondingly. The prices will become standard after the first month of the system use.

Summary

Web.com is a quality DIY website builder used to start and customize personal and business projects, including photography websites. The system has a nice selection of free niche-specific templates, design customization tools, eCommerce and blogging features, stock collections of images/videos, affordable and flexible pricing policy. This is enough to run a simple photography project.

Zenfolio – Modern Portfolio Website Builder

Product Name:Zenfolio
Official Website:https://zenfolio.com
Photography Templates:20+
Founded:2005
Complexity:Average
Free plan:Free trial
Paid plan:From $6/mo

Zenfolio – is a modern portfolio website builder, which was founded with the only purpose in mind – to create, customize and promote projects for photographers, creatives, artists and other users, who intend to present their works/services to the target audience. The software comes with eCommerce/blogging support, photo/video uploading feature, abundance of portfolio templates and other elements needed for quality website creation.

Zenfolio Features

The website builder comes with built-in blogging and eCommerce engines, thus, letting its subscribers connect blogs and online stores into their photography projects. As a result, it becomes possible to stay connected with the target audience, initiate discussions and sell products/services online, if required. Zenfolio allows creating and selling separate images and photo collections.

The software delivers advanced content management options to effectively organize images into galleries, create photo categories, arrange the uploaded files, import/export metadata etc. Users, who own photo collections hosted on external resources (like Adobe Lightroom, Photo Mechanic, Command Line, Microsoft Live Photo Gallery etc.), can import them to Zenfolio any time. Zenfolio also offers free and simple video/photo hosting and it also supports multiple file formats. Social media options are available here as well. The service allows sharing photo collections in social networks like Google+, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest etc.

Zenfolio-Features

Finally, Zenfolio stands out from the crowd due to its powerful integrations. Users may choose from multiple add-ons and widgets to add to their projects. There are standard extensions and specialized photography widgets here. The latter include Photographer’s Edit RAW File Processing, Triple Scoop Music and many more.

Zenfolio Designs

Zenfolio cannot offer a standard template collection yet it has around 12 website presets for various types of projects. Each of them comes with a separate gallery composition, presentation structure, image display settings, menu parameters, homepages and other photography-specific elements. Everyone can create personalized website design, when working with color settings, typography types, background parameters. You can enable/disable certain web page elements, if they don’t match your website design.

In case none of the available presets appeals to you for some reason, the software allows selecting a blank template to customize it from scratch and to create your own unique project design. Get ready, however, to spend some time exploring and mastering the system. A nice feature is that all Zenfolio themes are professional and stylish, which eventually ensures appealing photography website presentation.

Zenfolio Cost

As a commercial website builder, Zenfolio doesn’t offer a free plan yet there is an opportunity to test the platform for free during 14 days. As soon as you are ready to pick a premium plan and to start working on your photography website, you will be able to choose one of the following subscriptions:

  • Portfolio ($6/mo) – 15 GB photo storage space, 25 hosted videos, shareable client galleries, 1 custom watermark, photo sharing and client proofing, advanced search, Adobe Lightroom plugin, people filter, custom logo and domain, SEO optimization, Instagram feed, Zenfolio uploader, uploading from browser;
  • PortfolioPlus ($15/mo) – 100 GB photo storage space, 75 hosted videos, opportunity to sell directly from the website, eCommerce features, video credits;
  • ProSuite ($30/mo) – 1TB photo storage space, 250 hosted videos, 3 custom watermarks, Book Me add-on etc.

Mind that Portfolio, PortfolioPlus and ProSuite plans are currently available to users from the US, UK and Australia. Additionally, the website builder has an advanced solution for studios and professionals. It includes video/HD streaming, multi-user account access and privileges, post-shoot green screen, event features, high volume photography, online pre-order for clients and other advantages. You can apply for a demo version to test these and other features of the advanced program.

Summary

Zenfolio is a specialized photography/portfolio website builder, which explains the narrow specialization and niche toolset/features the system includes. There is everything you need to set up and effectively promote your photography project here – niche website layouts, extensive photo/video gallery creation options, video/HD streaming, bogging/eCommerce solutions.

Portfoliobox – Specialized Photography Site Builder

Product Name:Portfoliobox
Official Website:portfoliobox.net
Photography Templates:Dozens of themes
Founded:2012
Complexity:Medium
Free plan:Yes
Paid plan:From $0.9/mo

Portfoliobox – is a specialized photography site builder, which provides an opportunity to set up, customize, manage and promote professional portfolio/photography projects. The system will be of great help to artists, photographers, models, designers, musicians and other creatives. It does not imply deep coding proficiency yet some time is required to master the service and learn its features.

Portfoliobox Features

The website builder comes with a unique set of niche-specific tools and special parameters required to launch and run full-featured portfolios. There is an opportunity to compile and customize individual portfolios and image galleries for different clients. Likewise, you can create and update various types of website pages, such as Videos, Instagram Pages, Galleries, Blogs, Multipages, Parallax Pages etc.

Portfoliobox has built-in blogging and eCommerce engines. This means that you can connect a blog and/or a web store to your project to give it the desired focus. A blog will let you stay connected with the target audience, while a digital store will enable you to offer your products/services for sale on the web.

The software additionally encompasses versatile social media integration and stats collection tools as well as SEO features and marketing elements that contribute to the effective promotion of your photography website online. If you intend to target users from abroad, the platform allows connecting with the “Find Creatives” platform. This is the place to market your works, dealing with clients worldwide.

Portfoliobox Designs

The system doesn’t have separate templates to fit various creative niches. Instead, there is an opportunity to select and combine several themes to create a unique, professional and one-of-a-kind portfolio design. Just pick a template category (the list is quite long here) and start working on your project.

Portfoliobox-Features

All Portfoliobox designs are dynamic and 100% responsive. The website builder comes with an intuitive visual editor that simplifies the process of project customization for everyone. Users may add and manage image galleries, change colors, fonts and text size, upload products and their descriptions, integrate media files, visual effects and animations etc. Likewise, it is possible to adjust website SEO settings, enable marketing and analytic tools here.

Portfoliobox Cost

Portfoliobox has a free plan but its functionality is quite limited. The system allows testing its toolset and features, but you won’t be able to publish a ready-made project until you upgrade to one of the premium subscriptions. To do this, you will be able to pick one of the available plans:

  • Light ($3.5/mo) – 10 pages, 50 images, 10 products, 10 client gallery images, custom CSS editing, image protection, SSL security, unlimited bandwidth, powerful SEO tools,mobile optimization;
  • Pro ($9.5/mo) – 50 pages, 500 images, 10 products, free custom domain, advanced styling options, 24/7 support;
  • Pro Plus ($12.5/mo) – 1000 images, 1000 pages, 1000 products, 5000 client gallery images, Adobe Lightroom integration, no system ad banner.

The website builder offers an opportunity to get a money refund, if you are not satisfied with a selected subscription. In this case, you can get your money back within 14 days from the moment of plan purchase.

Summary

Portfoliobox is a specialized DIY website builder, which serves the only purpose – portfolio/photography website creation. Thus, its toolset and feature list completely comply with this task and user requirements. The system unveils the opportunity of running unique projects, letting you pick and combine several layouts, compile and manage photo/video collections, integrate media files, animations, blogs and even digital stores.

Major Steps to Create a Photography Website

Most photo studios follow the same scheme – they need platforms to effectively showcase their work results to finally convince clients that their skills comply with their expectations.

Niche platforms (Flickr, Pinterest, Behance etc.) as well as social networks (Instagram, Facebook etc.) and message boards should also be considered for publication. Free or paid photo stocks may also be quite effective sometimes. However, you need to understand that these are extra/related resources to attract clients. The most reliable and well-controlled tool is a website.

Here are several ways to launch a website:

  • CMS (Content Management System). Websites created with CMS are easy to expand and supplement with the required functionality. It is convenient to publish any type of content here – from text to video files. It is you, who completely controls the entire content. The main problem is initial set up. What you certainly need is hosting and domain. The software can be paid or free.

    When it comes to portfolio creation, it makes sense to give preference to free open source CMS. There are lots of manuals and an extensive user community on the web, where you can find a specialist to complete the required functionality tasks. We just recommend not to reinvent the wheel and to pick the most popular CMS – WordPress.
  • Cloud Platform (Website Builders). This is the most convenient format to create any websites for representatives of small and micro businesses. Photographers and photo studios are ot an exception. Why? Just because you won’t have to deal with multiple web technologies, when working with cloud website builders.

    A platform handles many technical issues, including domain setup, website uptime and hosting connection, load balancing etc. To create a unique design, you do not need to hire third-party experts. Instead, you can complete the task independently by simply dragging and dropping the required elements in the graphic editor. The connection of analytics and other external services is often automated here. Marketing solutions are sometimes available as well. In other words, SaaS platforms provide everything on a turnkey basis for a moderate fee (by subscription, without large one-time investments).
  • Static HTML. Any website is a collection of pages. Nobody forbids you to use static HTML files in your project. You can write a code for them even in a text editor. Hosting for “static” projects is several times cheaper than that for dynamic CMS-based websites. Sometimes it is even provided for free like that in GitHub Pages.

    The only problem is that you have to be a professional layout designer to launch an impressive website. It won’t be functional by default as you will have to edit the code to make any changes. What’s more, you won’t be able to edit separate blocks directly in the admin panel (like in CMS or website builders). You will have to work with each page. Such tools as Mobirise can partially simplify the task of website and layout management. Anyway, you will face the need to plunge into the tech aspects deeper than this may be required from a photographer.

Thus, it becomes clear that website builders are the most reasonable and functional tools for photographers, who don’t possess deep experience and specialized knowledge in the website development niche. If you expect to avail full control over the project, you can consider an opportunity of using a popular CMS. Get ready to handle technical aspects in this case.

Aspects to Consider When Starting a Photography Website

Your name is your brand. Thus, it is not recommended to conceal your full name and to get off with standard phrases like a “professional photographer …”.

You should initially be ready that clients will start looking for reviews about you and your services right after they receive recommendations (from their acquaintances, via mailouts, ads etc.). Therefore, you should at least create a separate section with customer reviews and testimonials. The title (which is one of the most important meta tags on a page) should include the following: “Photographer reviews”.

At most, you should make it a rule to periodically monitor the following request: “YOUR NAME reviews” and to correct the potential mistakes based on this info. Indeed, your business will not thrive in case of negative reviews of your work. Mind that competitors may sometimes be responsible for negative reviews, so, it is crucial to quickly respond to such “stuff”.

Must-Have Elements of a Photography Website

It’s up to you to publish any info you consider important about your business, creative approach, works, plans and achievements. However, there are a few elements that are a must-have for any photography website:

  • Contacts. Apart from your phone and email, you should provide more communication solutions that are currently in demand: messengers, social network accounts etc. It is great, if you have them and control their regular updates. The links should refer both from a website to social media and backward. Don’t be lazy to create a separate About Me page or homepage section.

    Photography website homapage

  • Portfolio. Potential clients should be able to see the samples of your work to understand what exactly you are ready to offer. This can even be a separate website section: each work should have a separate page with a description of the initial tasks and a result display. It is allowed to publish all work samples on the same page, but it will be oversaturated with graphic elements in this case. This is bad in terms of SEO and for clients with slow Internet connection.

    The best works must be presented on the main page. Sliders and/or photo walls with thumbnails should be used for compact publication. All photos with work samples must have an “alt” tag. The text description of images contributes to more effective search engine optimization and helps drive niche traffic.

    Wix Photogallery

  • Services. Description of services matters a lot as well. If the list of services is long, it makes sense to post them on separate pages and to unite them with links from a common (summary/overview) page. Take your time to write the Title for each service page, which should include niche keywords (queries). The more detailed the services are, the higher are the chances that visitors will find you from the organic search, but not from ads (don’t forget about paid contextual advertising anyway).

    Services

    If you designate a separate service, you must also indicate its cost (at least “from…”) . If possible, more detailed pricing of your services should be provided as well. It is reasonable to provide the final price list on a separate page and to give it a corresponding name.

  • Blog. Adding a blog may be redundant, but it can work well for your website sometimes, attracting more clients. It’s up to you to decide whether you are ready to spend time and effort here. Actually, you can go with a one-page website only like a landing page, for example.

    Blog

    It is more difficult to promote landing pages in organic search as compared to websites with a limited number of pages with separate sections for certain services and work samples. This means that you can get customers by launching advertising campaigns only. It is normal for this very niche, but you should correctly calculate the budget, accurately determine the target audience and select keywords before launching an ad. Otherwise, the money will be wasted.

  • Niche Specialization. A photographer can rarely work well with different topics. Someone specializes in portrait photography, someone prefers to work at events (weddings, birthdays, anniversaries etc.), while someone generally shoots food or architecture.

It doesn’t make any sense to be overambitious. It initially makes sense to highlight your topic and to supplement or expand it afterwards, if required. Niche-specific websites are better indexed and ranked in the search engines. It will be easier for the target audience to find you.

Have a look at the simple example: if you specialize in weddings, it’s better to write that in the Titles and web page texts: “Wedding photographer…”. You will cut off all the unnecessary traffic and minimize the number of requests from non-target customers.

Bottom Line

Still wondering how to create a photography website? The answer to the question looks quite simple: you need a quality feature-rich web design platform that will comply with your major project requirements. You should also consider the steps of the website creation process and the must-have aspects a professional photography project should have.

When picking a suitable web design software to get started with your photography project, you should initially consider your special needs, industry specialization, budget, web design skills, available time, requirements and business objectives. If you have time, you can test each system to decide on the best one. If not, browse the reviews listed above to find out which service has more to offer based on your individual situation.

Howard

About the Author

I'm Howard Steele, the founder and editor-in-chief of this website. With over 10 years of web building I know how complicated and tiresome this task can be for a non-IT person. Can’t decide which service to choose? Feel free to ask me for advice. Just describe your website needs, and I’ll gladly help you.

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