Portfolio Website Advice | The Photographer’s Guide To Effective Web Design
Portfolio Website Advice | First impressions matter! Think about it – the way you dress, the shoes you wear, even the way you act when you’re meeting a potential client are vital factors that can affect their decision whether to hire you or not. However, what if we told you that they’ve already gotten their first impression of you long before they actually met you?
A recent study found that majority of customers will research a product they’re considering purchasing, or a company before they decide whether to hire them or not. You can already see where we’re going with this – the first place they’ll turn to when doing their research is the Internet. When was the last time you updated your website? Is it up to date and up to par with portfolio websites of other photographers in your niche? Here’s how you can take it a step further and stand out for all the right reasons.
Two Elements That Affect Website’s Effectiveness | Portfolio Website Advice
If you want to get the most out of your photography website, there are two seemingly simple things you need to keep in mind: visual appeal and functionality. You can set up the most appealing portfolio website to showcase your creativity, but if your visitors can’t find the information that they came searching for, it won’t do you or your photography business any favors. To help you understand some of the best practices of web design and avoid most common pitfalls, we gathered a list of 6 crucial design tips that will turn your portfolio website into a powerful business tool!
Simplify Navigation | Portfolio Website Advice
One of the most important elements you need to take care of when it comes to functionalities is the navigation. You will want to make it as easy as possible for your visitors to effortlessly go from the point A to the point B and ultimately convert into paying client. In addition to setting up a simple and concise navigation bar at the top of each page, consider including a secondary navigation below it or on the side to help you visitors navigate around.
To take navigability a step further, consider enabling keyboard navigation: in addition to placing virtual arrows next to the images in your portfolio, let your visitors flip between images with the arrows on their keyboards as well. This way they’ll be able to focus on what truly counts – your work, instead of trying to figure out how to navigate your website. At the end of the day, this is a photography portfolio, which means your works need to be the center of attention. Which leads us to our next point: the design.
Less Is More | Portfolio Website Advice
Considering your pictures should pop and grab the attention of your potential clients the moment they land on your website, you’ll want to make sure your website doesn’t overwhelm your visitors with unnecessary design elements. You are a part of a creative industry, we get it, and you want your website to show that, but if your visitors are constantly raving about the design and not your images, you have a serious problem on your hands. Keep the design elements to a bare minimum and remember, your website isn’t perfect when there’s nothing left to add – it’s perfect when there’s nothing else to remove.
Keep The Contrast High Throughout Your Website | Portfolio Website Advice
You’re a photographer, so who are we to tell you anything about contrast? While it may sound obvious, you’d be surprised how many photographers actually overlook this simple fact: photography typically looks much better when viewed on black or at least dark backgrounds, because it helps bring out the contrast in your images. However, if you’re running a blog on your website (as you should, but more about that later on!), keep in mind that text is best viewed in black against white or bright background. This is because the eye finds it more difficult to scan white text on black background.
A Blog Isn’t Just For Search Engines | Portfolio Website Advice
Photography websites are notorious for lack of text, and text is be-all and end-all of search engine optimization. So how can you compensate for the lack of keywords on your website you want to rank high for? Easy: be blogging on a regular basis. But it’s not just the search engines that will be interested in your blog – think about it, if you update your portfolio every 3-6 months, why would your potential clients keep coming back? By blogging about your area of expertise and sharing the behind-the-camera tips and tricks that will help your clients have a better shoot, not only will you rank higher on search engines, but will have visitors coming to your website and sharing your posts on social media.
Cover Your Bases | Portfolio Website Advice
Even though it’s not technically a design tip, contact details are one of the most important elements of your portfolio website. Yet, you’d be amazed how many photographers leave out this crucial piece of information. If you’re hoping to have your visitors converted into paying clients, how are they supposed to contact you if you don’t list your contact information on your website, or bury it several clicks away. Your visitors won’t try too hard to find your email address or your phone number, so make it easy for them and feature them in the footer of every page, and consider setting up a separate contact page with a complete listing of your social media contacts as well as your email and physical address.