Portfolio Website Essentials | The Photographer’s Quickstart Guide To The Perfect Portfolio Website
Portfolio Website Essentials | Back before the internet became a thing, photographers had to put together physical, printed portfolios and hope to get a meeting with a potential client so they could show their work. Nowadays, however, EVERYONE with a device connected to the internet can view your work. To a potential client, you as a professional photographer are often only as good as your portfolio website. They’re checking you out for the first time, and if you don’t impress them, you won’t get their work.
A photography portfolio website is all about promoting you and your services. You are a brand, and your name is a brand name, which makes your portfolio a reflection of your business. It’s a reflection of who you are as a photographer. Assuming you do have some work, it’s vitally important to organize it all in one place. Here are our top tips that can help you create that perfect portfolio website that gets you hired.
Showcase Your Logo | Portfolio Website Essentials
By placing your logo and tagline throughout your website, a potential client will quickly see who you are (your name is in the logo, and the style of the logo will give a sense of the style of your photography) and what you do (the short description of the services you offer in your tagline). In the Western world, we read from left to right, top to bottom, so it’s only natural to put your logo in the top left of your website so that visitors can instantly identify who owns the website.
Curate Your Best Work | Portfolio Website Essentials
This is a photography portfolio website we’re talking about, after all, so it will affect whether you get a new gig or not. Potential clients will want to see your previous work to decide whether you’re good or not and for general interest, to see what you’ve been up to in the past. Choose at least five projects so you can showcase the breadth of your work and your unique style, but be selective. Remember, it’s always better to have a portfolio of a few projects that are stunning than dozens of projects where some of them are just OK.
Organize Strategically | Portfolio Website Essentials
Depending on what niche you’re serving, your portfolio should contain big high-quality images, clearly accessible to the potential client. You also need to make sure you strategically order the pictures to leave the best impression possible. If you place your best images at either the beginning or end of the portfolio, you will hit the visitor the hardest. We recommend using both ends of the spectrum to grab their attention right from the beginning and leave them something to remember at the end of the portfolio.
Flash Is For Portraits, Not For Websites | Portfolio Website Essentials
Adobe Flash is a tool that some website developers use to set up websites. Unfortunately, Flash takes a long time to load, it is not search engine friendly, some devices can’t even display it, and they often look overdone. Keep it clean, simple and non-distracting. Let the potential client click through at their pace. Using parallax or other scrolling features are acceptable and are very popular today.
Keep It Fresh | Portfolio Website Essentials
Keep in mind that your work doesn’t end with just setting up a killer portfolio. You’ll also want to regularly update it. The best portfolios are never static, after all. Building a great portfolio is a lot like gardening. Every so often you need to prune and selectively remove pieces that are no longer representative of your best work. You also have to make sure you plant the seeds for new work and look for opportunities to expand your portfolio.
Simplify Navigation | Portfolio Website Essentials
Simplicity in the interface and visual design of your website will push your work to the surface, where it belongs. This means simple navigation and the fewest amount of website sections necessary. Complex navigation will only confuse the potential clients and even annoy them so your pictures may end up being ignored by them. That said, you should make your portfolio works like what common people expect to be intuitive and convenient.
Make It Easy For Your Visitors To Contact You | Portfolio Website Essentials
It doesn’t really matter how stunning your work is, if your potential client can’t get in touch with you, you’re not getting any work. Dedicate space on your homepage to telling people how they can reach you. Different people prefer different methods of contact, so make sure you provide a couple of ways that they can do so – make it easy for them. Use a form to make it easier for potential clients to contact you (so that they don’t have to take down your email address and then open up their email manager). A form also enables you to ask for specific information, such as name, email address, website URL, details of inquiry.