General Question

funnynerd's avatar

How do I make money on the photography (fine art) website I'm starting soon?

Asked by funnynerd (160points) February 28th, 2010

I love photography, and I’m finally starting to build up a portfolio.

I also want to make money as a photographer to supplement my paltry work-study income, and have found someone to build a website for me.

I obviously have to pay my web designer and for the space- but how do I make that investment worthwhile? Or, how do I make money off of it?

How do I market my website? How do I decide what my work is worth? How do I protect my photos from being stolen?

Thank you to anyone who can offer ideas and wisdom.

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10 Answers

DarkScribe's avatar

You don’t. Make money, stop people stealing images – all of the above. There are quite literally tens of millions of “photographers” since the advent of cheap digital cameras. Even stock specialists like Getty have dropped their prices and commissions dramatically. A couple of years ago you could make a reasonable income from stock – not any more.

If you set up a studio, get a name, use a website to sell your services – possibly, but it won’t be easy. Even well established wedding photographers are in price wars with each other.

joeysefika's avatar

Your best bet would be to make some prints and sell them face to face at local markets. I know a few photographers who sell A2 prints, framed for around AU$400. This helps get your name out and make some money. The internet is not a good place to start, sure it’s easy to make a page but remember it’s easy for the thousands of other semi-pro photographers too

CMaz's avatar

You don’t and get in line.

Love your craft. Find another way to profit from it.
The web is so polluted with “want to be’s” you will just get lost in the cavernous cracks.

Find success doing it locally. Use a web site so your clients can find you easier and to best display your work.

funnynerd's avatar

I think I haven’t made myself very clear.

I don’t have unrealistic expectations set. I’m not expecting to make $40k a year right out of the gate or anything. I just want to sell a few $45—$100 prints a month, and use the website as a way to get my name out in the world beyond my friends and acquaintances who don’t have the income to buy my stuff.

You know, use it as a starting point.

Should the fact that there are a ton of other people who are photographers stop me from pursuing my interest for photography? What if that was the opinion all artists had? We wouldn’t have any culture.

@RealEyesRealizeRealLies thank you. :)

PacificToast's avatar

Sell prints.

CMaz's avatar

“What if that was the opinion all artists had? We wouldn’t have any culture.”

Good and positive attitude. :-) Before the internet went mainstream.
But by all means you have to go for it. Just don’t expect more then a pretty web site.
Then again you never know.

The internet is more ego then entrepreneurial. The problem is sifting through the ego.

Marmeduke's avatar

One comforting thought is that 98% of personal e-commerce sites crash and burn. I’m not being sarcastic, because if you actually put together a website properly, that is well optimised and marketed, it is far from rocket science achieve success with it. There’s lots of competion from fantastic photographers who are rubbish internet marketers, very little from web savy good photographers.

So you can be profitable. I would recommend doing offline locally based marketing – as already sugested – to bring in a little bit of immediate income. But slowly and surely work on building traffic to your online portfolio. Do thorough keyword research – 5 good low demand kw’s per page, optimise the pages effectively, build lots of strong back links etc.

Generating sales directly through online marketing will take time, but is so worth it. There’s no need to sweat blood over it, just build the reputation of your site online slowly. I’ve done it and am reaping the rewards! [link removed by Fluther]

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