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online galleries
Old 09-27-2006, 09:04 PM   #1 (permalink)
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I notice some photographers, mostly wedding photographers, offer online galleries where clients can log on and actually view their photographs and pick the ones they like. These galleries are password protected so only the client can view his/her own photos. On some I have seen whera clients actually has the option to purchase prints in various sizes directly from you or your lab of choice. This seems like it could save alot of time ,as you know meeting with clients is often very time consuming. Does anyone know of a program that does this?
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Re: online galleries
Old 09-27-2006, 09:12 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lavatown
I notice some photographers, mostly wedding photographers, offer online galleries where clients can log on and actually view their photographs and pick the ones they like. These galleries are password protected so only the client can view his/her own photos. On some I have seen whera clients actually has the option to purchase prints in various sizes directly from you or your lab of choice. This seems like it could save alot of time ,as you know meeting with clients is often very time consuming. Does anyone know of a program that does this?
There are a number of such systems on the web. There are also free scripts that allow you to build your own. One of these is available for BreezeBrowser Pro and integrates with Paypal. You do have to fulfill the print orders yourself.

Other services like Shutterfly have complete turnkey systems:

http://www.shutterfly.com/profession...lery/index.jsp

However, keep in mind, that much of the profit in wedding photography can come from good salesmanship when presenting the proofs to the customer and that usually requires face to face contact. So there may be trade offs.

Cheers,
rfs
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Re: online galleries
Old 09-28-2006, 09:58 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R_Fredrick_Smith
However, keep in mind, that much of the profit in wedding photography can come from good salesmanship when presenting the proofs to the customer and that usually requires face to face contact. So there may be trade offs.

Cheers,
rfs
That is very true... At our studio all prints and albums for the bride and groom are sold in the studio. However, using the online proofing and ordering through our lab has added an average of $500 in print sales to people other then the bride and groom, that may not have bought in the past. That is $500 average per wedding in additional sales. That speaks for its self.
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Re: online galleries
Old 09-28-2006, 10:32 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Pictage is supposed to be a good provider of the services you are looking for. They carge a fee, but provide many of the services you are looking for.

I use photoreflect for online sales. It has the ability to show photos and to have password protected catalogs. You can print yourself or have one of their affiliate labs do the priniting for you. They don't charge an intial fee, but they do charge a percentage on orders.

You can find more information at
www.photoreflect.com
and at
www.pictage.com
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Re: online galleries
Old 09-28-2006, 11:12 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Pictage is excellent. In order to get the big orders though, you have to be pro-active with your clients. Put them on the web and give them 10 days to pick out what they like. If they like it, they mark it. If they aren't sure, they mark it. If they think they like it, but something bugs them, they mark it. Then take them down and bring them into the studio and show them the 800 they picked out of the 1500 you shot.

Once in the studio, after them a soft drink and sit down and go over their likes with them. Proshots is excellent for this. You can even show them what various size images will look like framed. It keeps track of what family member ordered what as well.

Pro-actively meeting with the client will get you the big orders. Putting them on the web and forgetting about them will get you minimal sales. Use DVD's as closure tools. They put in a big order, off them DVD's for 100-150 bucks each. Then offer them an extra for their safe deposit box for 75 bucks, so they'll always have the images available. You figure maybe 300 images in the album, so the rest can go on DVD.

Remember, you need to be different! To offer services and a style of shooting that others in your area don't.

R
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Re: online galleries
Old 09-28-2006, 01:28 PM   #6 (permalink)
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How do these online proofing sites manage image copyrights? I've heard about people capturing the images electronically and printing them themselves. Do they reduce resolution or watermark them in someway that's simple and protects the photographer?

JK
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Re: online galleries
Old 09-28-2006, 01:57 PM   #7 (permalink)
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The resolution is low enough that they won't get good prints out of it.

Rget
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Re: online galleries
Old 09-29-2006, 08:57 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Some of the sites automatically put a watermark on the larger photo. The customer clicks on the thumbnail and the larger photo comes up with the watermark on the photo. You can design your own watermark, or they use one of their own. Photoreflect does this. Go to their site and check out some of the online stores.
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Re: online galleries
Old 09-29-2006, 09:29 AM   #9 (permalink)
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RVMD hit it on the head. I am thinking of opting for Pictage myself, as they offer a great service and as well can allow the happy couple to pay for the photos with installments on their credit cards. Pictage does take 10% commission and I am actually going to sit down here today and watch the DVD and package they sent to me.

RVMD is right though--if you are there in person, being pro-active and showing your enthusiasm for the images in person--you will do better than the online services. I have found that a DVD playing as a slide show on my plasma tv while going through proof books with them is a strong way to sell the images.

RVMD also hit it on the head with being unique--that is key and parmount. Being an individual in a saturated market is more important than what online finishing/printing tools you have.
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