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Photo Hosting/Website Experience

iiiNelson

Active member
So I've been looking more into getting a photography based website to host and maybe sell some of my images online. Does anyone have any experience with Zenfolio, PhotoShelter, Squarespace, SmugMug, or Format? How has the experience been? My other requirement would be something that requires little web maintenance and quick site building time. I don't want to jack around in HTML or CSS extensively (if at all.)
 

routlaw

New member
Doug thats one I've never heard of. I am also in the process of rebuilding my website, long over due and long the brunt of my attention. Had used iWeb for years but suffice it to say its a bit long in the tooth these days and does not accommodate other attributes such as the OP's desire to sell online. Rapid Weaver 7 is also a consideration.

Thanks
 

routlaw

New member
Doug, looked at your website and also spent quite a bit of time reviewing the Photodeck website. Seems like they do a nice job and perhaps the tip of the hat would go to Photodeck vs Photoshelter. However when perusing your website it was not clear to me how one would purchase prints from a particular image. Your menu does have Print link but there seems to be no link on a particular image where one could choose print or digital download. May I ask how you're managing this? Or did I miss something?

Thanks

Rob
 

MrSmith

Member
i am with live books but need to move to a non-flash platform so have been looking at options. the free adobe website creator you get with the creative cloud plan looks great but it’s an exercise in frustration. so confusing with galleries, projects, project galleries and no easy to follow way of creating just 2 simple galleries of still life and location images.
hours of playing with it have created absolutely nothing of value even after looking at the help centre.
has anyone managed to use this effectively? i’m no web editor/wordpress guru but i’m not stupid either!

the old live books site was easy to use so i’m going to have a play with the html based site editor and see how that goes, its more money but i cant sit there for days trying to understand a poor user interface. these sites are supposed to be easy to use.:banghead::banghead:
 

iiiNelson

Active member
i am with live books but need to move to a non-flash platform so have been looking at options. the free adobe website creator you get with the creative cloud plan looks great but it’s an exercise in frustration. so confusing with galleries, projects, project galleries and no easy to follow way of creating just 2 simple galleries of still life and location images.
hours of playing with it have created absolutely nothing of value even after looking at the help centre.
has anyone managed to use this effectively? i’m no web editor/wordpress guru but i’m not stupid either!

the old live books site was easy to use so i’m going to have a play with the html based site editor and see how that goes, its more money but i cant sit there for days trying to understand a poor user interface. these sites are supposed to be easy to use.:banghead::banghead:
I actually went with Format. It lacks the eCommerce options for now but it's simple to use and update. I have a Behance site but it was a bit much to fall in love with from a usability standpoint.
 

Abstraction

Active member
So I've been looking more into getting a photography based website to host and maybe sell some of my images online. Does anyone have any experience with Zenfolio, PhotoShelter, Squarespace, SmugMug, or Format? How has the experience been? My other requirement would be something that requires little web maintenance and quick site building time. I don't want to jack around in HTML or CSS extensively (if at all.)
I use Zenfolio. I like it quite a bit. It was very easy to build, no scripting or programming knowledge required. Most of my time was taken with polishing the site. They have the sales/e-commerce option, but I don't use that. I just built a very simple site to host my photos. You can see it here: http://alexanderolshansky.com
 

DougDolde

Active member
Doug, looked at your website and also spent quite a bit of time reviewing the Photodeck website. Seems like they do a nice job and perhaps the tip of the hat would go to Photodeck vs Photoshelter. However when perusing your website it was not clear to me how one would purchase prints from a particular image. Your menu does have Print link but there seems to be no link on a particular image where one could choose print or digital download. May I ask how you're managing this? Or did I miss something?

Thanks

Rob
That is true you can't select the print option from an individual image. I just ask buyers to put the image number and title in the "note to seller" box upon PayPal checkout.
 

Jan

Member
Doug thats one I've never heard of. I am also in the process of rebuilding my website, long over due and long the brunt of my attention. Had used iWeb for years but suffice it to say its a bit long in the tooth these days and does not accommodate other attributes such as the OP's desire to sell online. Rapid Weaver 7 is also a consideration.

Thanks
Since awhile now, EverWeb is 'the new' iWeb. I bought it last year and rebuilding an existing website made with iWeb is pretty straight forward although I decided to re-built from scratch (my site is not rocket-science anyway). The good thing is that if you are experienced with iWeb you continue with EverWeb right away since it is continuing where iWeb stopped development. Same interface, functions etc. I don't regret the purchase.

Oh, it has the shopping cart function and a few more advanced functionalities compared to iWeb ;-)
 
I just had to build a new site to replace the aging one that I cobbled together before the phone and tablet era. I was tempted by Squarespace, based on how good many of their sites look, but didn't want to be completely beholden to my host for everything. I also didn't like the added expense, since I'd need to keep my regular hosting account for other purposes.

After looking at a few other options, including Koken, I bit the bullet and went with Wordpress. There are many downsides to this platform—lots of complexity, and the grueling and uncertain process of choosing a theme. But after a couple of weeks of miring myself in it I picked a theme (a quite nice, fairly expensive one) and got to work. My girlfriend is a web developer, so I was able to run crying to her when things got bad. And my theme company offered excellent support (often answering emails in the middle of the night).

I absolutely love the result. If you have experience (or patience) for something like wordpress, and especially if you live with a developer, this is a great option. Otherwise the proprietary hosted platforms are probably the way to go.

If you do consider wordpress, you should do your homework first and make sure your web host has all the latest and best back-end resources, and that they have good tech support. I found it was helpful to go with a host that isn't competing solely on price. Mine markets itself to small businesses. I find it more reliable and easier to deal with than my old budget host.
 

csspest

New member
If you can afford (the relatively small cost) for some linux hosting then WordPress is a very good option. You don't need any development skills to install and configure plugins
 
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