opening a website

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by Pure, May 20, 2009.

  1. Pure

    Pure TPF Noob!

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    Hey guys, I've got a few questions regarding opening/running a website.

    First of all, naming the site. Do most people have an actual "company" name for their website, or would it be appropriate to just use my name as the "business?" My name is Colin Bassett, so I was thinking something around the lines of:

    "www.colincbassett.com"
    "www.cbassettphotography.com"

    Or something of that nature. I've been shooting a lot of theater productions lately, and I've experienced a flood of interest in prints, but I've had to turn them down because I don't have anything except a flickr.


    The display/business aspect:

    Instead of custom building a website which would take too much time, I was thinking about using Sumgmug or Zenfolio. One of the advantages I've seen with Zenfolio is that they use Mpix as their print service. Is that alone worth it to use ZF, or are the Smugmug labs just as good? Anyother good sites?

    If you have anything else to say, go ahead.

    Prices? I'm only 17, so I'm far from a pro, but I don't want to give my prints away for free. What would you guys say is a fair price for prints?
     
  2. midget patrol

    midget patrol TPF Noob!

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    um, good set of questions. you're asking the right ones. I put my website up about two years ago when i was 17 and it's gone through a few serious overhauls since.

    i tried building my site from scratch. it's really not worth your time, unless you're already really good at web development. I use Mpix exclusively for my prints and they've never let me down. As far as pricing, i charge a little more than it costs me to get them.

    Good luck
     
  3. manaheim

    manaheim Jedi Bunnywabbit Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I think most photographers tend to stick with their names as their site names and their "company" names. I think this is a good idea. I ground my teeth over this one for quite some time before I chose to NOT do this. I still wonder about my decision, but at this point people know my through my business name and I'm sticking with it.

    My advice to you would be unless you have a particular reason to NOT use your name, to go with that. My photography business has a certain angle to it where it made sense to me to not go the usual route... that is likely not the case where you're just starting out and may not have a particularly narrow focus like I did.

    From what I've seen smugmug and zenfolio and the like seem like a great way to do business. I personally balk when I see smugmug because I think the name is fairly ridiculous and I wouldn't want to be associated with it, but that's me. I have my odd hangups. :) I wouldn't necessarily listen to me in this respect because selling prints also doesn't happen to be a big part of what I do.

    Good luck with it.
     
  4. Pure

    Pure TPF Noob!

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    I could build my website myself, but my friend, who would design and build the website is already busy recoding some 2 million lines of code for some company, and they're paying him $120,000......he's 16. And I'm not joking, hes that good at it.

    As for the prints, I'm looking for a solution that would be most convenient for myself. I'll be at college in September, and having prints coming in and then having to ship them out would be a huge pain. I'd be a easier to have them go from ordering to printing straight to their doorstep.
     
  5. Pure

    Pure TPF Noob!

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    Being 17, and this not really being a true "business" I agree that using my name would be best. I really don't specialize in anything, but I do like theater shows, event shooting.


    As for smugmug, I do agree the name is somewhat stupid, but hey, I'm not a professional, and well, I doubt the people buying my prints would notice. Not to mention I'm going to change all of the logos, etc.


    edit: whoops forgot to use the edit button. sorry.
     
  6. photogincollege

    photogincollege TPF Noob!

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    I would really Get your own website if you want to get serious into the business. It looks more professional that way, and if you start to move up the ladder in business your going to want to get one eventually anyway.
     
  7. Pure

    Pure TPF Noob!

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    Photography is more of a serious hobby for me than a business. So while a site/portfolio does look very nice, and shows professionalism, I really can't justify all of the extra hours building one.
     
  8. JodieO

    JodieO TPF Noob!

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    Why build a website? You can get templates anywhere that are customizeable and so simple to use - that's how I did mine. Mine happens to be through Bludomain, but there are many other options.

    The second you take money for your work, you would be considered a business, IMO whether you are 17 or 70. I started my first business at 16 (painting portraits) but it was so little work, but started a new business at 19 "for real".
     
  9. Pure

    Pure TPF Noob!

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    The thing is that I won't be able to process any orders myself. I'll be in college, and unable to spend time shipping orders, etc. That's one of the reasons a site like Smugmug or Zenfolio would help me becuase they would process and ship the orders for me.
     
  10. bdavis

    bdavis TPF Noob!

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    why colincbassett.com? That c in there is confusing and gets lost a bit. I would just stick with colinbassett.com
     
  11. photogincollege

    photogincollege TPF Noob!

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    wow that bluedomain has some nice templates. I might have to use them now lol. And when I said get your own website, I didn't necessarily mean from scratch, just your own domain and be able to edit it however you want.
     
  12. Pure

    Pure TPF Noob!

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    I wish colinbassett.com was open, but unfortunately the owner is not looking to sell it. cbassett.com is going to be open in June. I really can't decide what would be best, other than colinbassett.com

    Of course. I'll check out the temps.
     

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