wedding photography website home page
Photographers -- you all know this already, but our websites are SOOOO key to our success! Can I get an amen??

They are often our first impression. And in today's fast-paced world, we get a split second to make a first impression. If someone were to stumble upon your home page, would they be intrigued enough to click and go deeper?

I've always counseled new photographers that the top two things they should spend money on are lenses and their website. Your website has the power to make your work look better than it is or WORSE than it is. And that impacts your bottom line. Packaging is everything.

Today I'm going to share what I believe are 5 must-haves for a killer wedding photography website. I would encourage you to look at your current site with a critical eye and use this as a check-list to grade yourself and make some goals for improvement. What I've realized after being in this industry for over a decade is that my website is never truly DONE. There are always tweaks and improvements that can be made, and because of the power my website holds in impacting first impressions, it's well-worth the effort to make those tweaks.

1 -- Personal Introduction
Wedding photography is a very personal thing. So even though our sites are business-based, as photographers we are wise to introduce ourselves and try to connect with potential clients on a personal level. This typically happens on an "About page". Whenever I first visit a photographer's site, the first thing I click on is the About page. I want to see the face and look into the eyes of the person who is speaking to me through the rest of the site. So an approachable professional head shot is KEY. Find a photographer friend in the industry, and trade for head shot sessions once a year to keep your About page fresh and updated. These head shots can also be great content for social media! The other obvious component to include on an About page is your bio. Writing your website bio is likely one of the most difficult tasks you will undertake as a business owner. But it's well-worth your time. Make sure your bio reads more like a narrative than a resume. Strive to connect rather than impress.
wedding photography website about page
2 -- Sampling of your work
This is the most obvious component of a photographer's website, but more often than not, photographers allow their "Gallery" or "Portfolio page" to become out-of-date. This one factor could make the difference between booking a client or not booking them; being able to raise your prices, or remaining in the sea of photographers who are priced down the middle of the road. This is especially true if you are in the first few years of your business journey. When you are starting out, your work gets exponentially better with each and every shoot. Is your website selling the photographer you are today, or the photographer you were 2 years ago? Make sure your Portfolio page includes only the best of the best images and is up-to-date. Click here to read more about the process I use to update my Gallery page regularly.
wedding photography website portfolio page
3 -- Basic pricing info
When it comes to sharing your pricing info on the web, there is a fine line you will want to walk. On one hand, there's no need to share all the details of your pricing. If you do, your Info page will likely become too text-heavy and confusing. But if you opt not to share any pricing, you risk a potential client moving on to inquire with another photographer who does. Brides who are surfing the web for photographers are looking for information. They want to make sure you are within the range of their budget before they take the time and effort to inquire. So a good rule of thumb is to share your starting price point with some detail as to what is included within the core of your services. That way you are able to pre-qualify potential inquiries and it saves both parties valuable time. When a potential client inquires with me, I know they are likely able to afford me, and I am happy to send them a more detailed .pdf of my complete package information.
wedding photography website pricing page
4 -- Multiple points of contact
A "Contact page" is a must for every business. But so many photographers miss the boat when they only share one way for potential clients to contact them -- the proverbial contact form. I have a few pet peeves when it comes to photographers' contact forms, so forgive the soap-box rant. First -- make sure to include your home-base location. If you're willing to travel, great, communicate that, but make sure you list your home city on your contact form so that clients are given a context for where you are located. Next, a contact form does not take the place of a stand-alone email address and phone number. As businesses, we should allow people to email us directly without having to fill out a contact form, and a phone number increases our professionalism. It's just good business practice to allow people to contact us through any one of these formats. The Contact page is also a good place to link to all of your social media profiles so that visitors can get to know you further through their favorite channel.
wedding photography website contact page
5 -- Cohesive, visually pleasing brand
The above 4 items are the must-have content components of a killer photography website, but they are made powerful and compelling only when they are wrapped up in a cohesive, visually pleasing brand. Remember that everyone has a very short attention span on the web these days, so it behooves us to make our websites image-heavy and text-light. If you're just starting out, or you're looking to over-haul your site, choosing a customizable website designed by a professional graphic designer is something I would HIGHLY recommend. Two amazing companies who provide stunning customizable sites for photographers are GoLive and Foil & Ink. Definitely check them out! And if you'd like to learn more about who designed my current website and the rebranding process I went through a few years ago, click here!

What do you think about my must-have check-list? I'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

There are definitely additional items that you could consider adding to your site to enhance your user-experience. Some of these include a publication section, testimonials from past clients, a blog, or client resources. But make sure you master the 5 must-haves before you consider branching out and including any of these. Blogging has been HUGE for my business, and I talk more about the role of a blog in a photographer's brand in this post if you'd like to check it out!

----------> Just starting your photography business? Click here to download a FREE list of 50 Goals for Your First Year in Business that is sure to give you some ideas to get you started on the right foot!
50 goals for your first year in business as a photographer
The 5 must-have components that will set your website apart from other photographers and win you the client!
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