There are some categories of websites that are very difficult to design well. One very common example is the ecommerce category, where you need your website to feature hundreds of separate pages and still offer simple, easy navigation around the site for the visitor. Another very tricky category for Charleston web design companies is professional photography. A website can be a fantastic way to give prospective clients a look at the best of your past projects, but if it’s designed poorly, that website can actually discourage people from wanting to contact you directly to photograph their next big event. Here are some critical photography website design tips to keep in mind if you want your site to accurately reflect the spectacular quality of your work.
Obviously, the photos that appear on your professional photography website are all-important. But getting to that point takes more than just uploading high-resolution versions of hundreds of beautiful photos to your website. That approach will likely result in web pages that take a long time to load and may simply crash repeatedly in some browsers. Some strategy is required to get the website versions of your photos to look as great as they do in real life.
First, be sure that your website can provide small thumbnail versions of photos, rather than the high-resolution versions themselves, on main pages. If the visitor wants a closer look, they can click on that thumbnail and see the real thing. Depending on your website design software, you may need to take some extra steps to get those thumbnails right. Some programs, for instance, will simply shrink a high-definition image down to a smaller size for a thumbnail, which won’t save you any page load time. Instead, you’ll want to upload a version of your image that is already simplified and saved in the appropriate format.
Including a gallery containing many photos is a great idea, but don’t set it up so that all the photos in the gallery have to load at the same time. The best option is usually to have the first few photos load, then wait to load the rest until the visitor scrolls farther on in the gallery. There are other tricks that a professional in web design in Charleston, SC can use to make the photos on your website look fantastic without sacrificing page load time.
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Aside from the actual photos on your site, there are two other critical things that you need: ease of navigation and comprehension. Your photography website isn’t just a portfolio of your work; it’s also a tool that should be regularly putting new clients in touch with you directly. That depends on your visitors easily seeing how to move around your site and how they can contact you, whether that’s through an email form, a live chat window, or a prominently displayed phone number. These features are important on any type of website, but on a photography site, the beautiful images can distract from these contact options, so it’s all the more important to make them obvious and inviting.
When a visitor encounters your website for the first time, what do they need to know about you, other than that you know how to take gorgeous photographs? One of the most important facts for you to convey to your audience is what kinds of events, subjects, and service areas you specialize in. If you primarily shoot weddings, make that crystal-clear. If you specialize in working with children, that’s a great thing to put on your home page. Just implying that you photograph anything and everything won’t inspire confidence in a potential customer that you can handle their event well.
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At PalmettoSoft, we are proud to have helped professional photographers create websites that not only showcase their work in a beautiful way, but that also invite the potential customer to get in touch with the photographer and book their next event. Call or email us today for expert help and many more photography website design tips.
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