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Thread: smugmug vs zenfolio vs own custom website

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    smugmug vs zenfolio vs own custom website

    is creating your own custom website with a web programmer the way to go or is it better to go with a smugmug or zenfolio account?

    what's are the pro's and cons?

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    Subscriber Member Jorgen Udvang's Avatar
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    Re: smugmug vs zenfolio vs own custom website

    I've decided to go for something in between. My current website hasn't been changed or updated in years, simply because, even though I am capable of doing the work myself, it tends to end up at the bottom of the priority list.

    I will use a combination of blog and gallery with Wordpress and Photocrati for my best images. It's relatively inexpensive and ensures easy updates and compatibility with search engines, social media etc. I'll probably also have an online gallery at Zenfolio, but that will be larger galleries mostly directed towards existing projects and clients.

    What I like about the Wordpress/Photocrati combination, is that I can integrate blog and galleries and at the same time sell images. That will enable people who are interested in a new or ongoing project to order images directly from the blog.

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    Contributing Editor ustein's Avatar
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    Re: smugmug vs zenfolio vs own custom website

    I like SmugMug a lot but did not try Zenfolio.



    I find custom to much of a hassle.
    Uwe Steinmueller
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    Editor&Owner of Digital Outback Photo
    http://www.outbackphoto.com

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    Re: smugmug vs zenfolio vs own custom website

    leaning towards smugmug.

    any cons on smugmug?
    seems easy, nice looking, and can sell prints and they print and send for you.

    seems if one were to sell prints from own custom site much more of a hassle in a way but not sure how many people actually find/look to buy prints of photos they find on smugmug.

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    Contributing Editor ustein's Avatar
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    Re: smugmug vs zenfolio vs own custom website

    >people actually find/look to buy prints of photos they find on smugmug.

    Don't think of SmugMug doing your marketing. That is your task. Not sure what other sites do.
    Uwe Steinmueller
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    Editor&Owner of Digital Outback Photo
    http://www.outbackphoto.com

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    Senior Member mathomas's Avatar
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    Re: smugmug vs zenfolio vs own custom website

    As a professional web/enterprise software developer, I'm quite capable of building my own website, and thus chose to use zenfolio .

    I found zenfolio's design tools to be very good (and they've apparently improved them since I did my layout). I didn't try smugmug, but links that I had followed to smugmug before going with zenfolio didn't lead to great-looking content there (other than the photos, of course), IMO. All of this is a matter of taste, and is not to say that my zenfolio site (or the photography therein) is a thing of beauty, either.

    Zenfolio has some pretty good pricing controls, in my very humble and inexperienced opinion. I've ordered test prints that look pretty good but not fantastic. I haven't done a whit of marketing and haven't made a bit of money.

    http://mathomas.zenfolio.com

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    Re: smugmug vs zenfolio vs own custom website

    if i go with smugmug do i still need flickr?

    is flickr really best for social and to get the most eyeballs on your work?

    ideally, i would like to have only one either smugmug or flickr just to keep things simple.

    thanks for the help

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    Subscriber Member Jorgen Udvang's Avatar
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    Re: smugmug vs zenfolio vs own custom website

    You don't "need" anything. You can shoot film, have it developed and show the photos to anyone who visits. I use Zenfolio for "real" work. My flickr account hasn't been used in ages. I never saw the point with flickr. To make my photos available for free to as many people as possible? If I want to show photos to friends in an informal way or for critizism, I display them in my gallery here at getdpi. Then there's fb.

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    Re: smugmug vs zenfolio vs own custom website

    I did a one month trial of both zenfolio and smugmug. Here's the short version of my opinion... ZENFOLIO!

    I've been using zenfolio now for exactly 1 year and it's been brilliant every step of the way! The things I can do through zenfolio have opened all kinds of doors for me. Here are some examples:

    Templates: Seriously, it so easy to get a look you like just by clicking a button!

    Banding: Forget about it. Unlike smugmug who slap their unattractive brand on all your pages, zenfolio leaves you alone to create the look and feel you prefer.

    Facebook on a custom page: Here's what I mean: (www.photopoa.com/about). I know, I only have about 60 likes, nothing massive, but I can watch my stats in google analytics (very easy to hook up in zenfolio) and I know this facebook link is getting me lots of return visits and it's really growing the hits on my site. No long is my site just a one off portfolio.

    PDF download: I just gave a photography talk (6 tips for beginners, followed by a friend who is a photojournalist speaking about their experiences). I converted the keynote into a very simplified pdf and put it up on my site for easy downloading. (www.photopoa.com/phototalk.pdf). One way to offer something back. win win. You could also offer this as a personal flyer, pricelist, etc.

    Zen adapts to our needs! I love the new drop down menus. I used most of my 'votes' for this feature and they responded beautifully. I'm now only waiting for that blog feature they are working on and I trust they will get it out in due time and it will be excellent.

    I hear smugmug is great if you know anything about code writing. I don't, I prefer to take pictures and share them in a clean and quick format and ultimately, that's why I chose zenfolio.

    Peter

    www.photopoa.com
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    Zenfolio 10% off code: HQ4-WJD-WHY

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