WordPress is an easy to use and very flexible website builder. We call it a CMS (content management system), because it not only helps to create amazing website but one of its main features is to manage website content. Via its admin panel, the user is able to create new pages, add text, upload images, embed videos and have full control over the incoming comments.
With WordPress is simple and easy to build any type of website. In this article I will show you how to create a photography portfolio website without the necessity of knowing computer programming.
Choose a good WordPress host for your photography website
Choosing a good web hosting plan is not easy. If you don’t have any experience with hosting and websites, probably you don’t know how important is to get a reliable hosting provider. If you choose the wrong hosting company, you can end up losing your website, and while your site is your main source of clients, you want to keep your site online at all costs. Please avoid even thinking to try out free hosting service. It is just waste of time; if you are not a hoppy, but a full-time photographer, I suggest getting a professional hosting plan.
For WordPress hosting, I highly recommend BlueHost. The company, has a very good reputation among webmasters, and has been the official hosting partner of WordPress.org since 2005. With the one-click installation tool, offered by BlueHost, you can install WordPress to your domain in just couple of minutes.
The installation process is very easy, here is a quick video for you to watch and learn how to install WordPress to your BlueHost web hosting account.
Get a lightweight photographer WordPress theme
Once you have finished installing WordPress to your website and accessed the admin panel, it is time to change the default theme. To do this, you will have to access the Appearance > Themes menu and search for themes. There are lots of free and premium themes you can choose from. Here is a list of the best premium photography wordpress themes:
Tripod is a premium responsive WordPress theme that was created for professional photography websites. It has a nice and simple minimalist design and the integrated drag-and-drop page builder allows you to create the layout that fits best your design needs.
Hiker was designed for photographers. It is agrid based theme, focusing on displaying photos at its best. This theme also comes with drag and drop builder which allows you to customize the homepage, create your portfolio and arrange your blog posts in the way you want it. It is fully responsive, so mobile users will also enjoy browsing your photography portfolio.
Moda focuses on showcasing your photos in a very elegant way. Thein-built heroic gallery allows you to create and arrange your photos into galleries. It has 5 different amazing gallery layouts: slideshow, carousel, landscape grid, square grid and portrait grid. Moda is mobile friendly, delivering optimized images forsmart phone users, making your website load faster on smaller screen devices.
Setup your photography portfolio
The above mentioned themes include page builder and galleries which makes your job much easier. But if you choose a theme that does not has these features included, you will need to search for a photography portfolio builder plugin. In the WordPress.org plugin showcase you can find lots of free plugins that will enable you to build your photography portfolio. Beside this you will need other plugins that will help your website load faster and have higher rankings in search engines. Here is a list of the plugins you will need for your photography website:
- Yoast SEO plugin – helps you optimize your pages
- W3Cache – speeds up your website by caching pages and images
- Contact Form 7 – to create custom contact form on your site
- Really Simple Captcha – to include a spam detection filter in the contact form
- Google Analytics Plugin – to include your Google tracking code to monitor website traffic
These are the most needed plugins; certainly you can add more if you wish to integrate other functionalities to your site, however do not over commit, because having lots of plugins activated on your site can slow it down.
You will also need to set up pages, menus and widget to your website. It is important to have an “about us” where you showcase your equipment, the people you have worked for, your motivation, etc. The “contact us” page is also very important, here you should put a contact form and also list your email address and phone number, allowing your potential customers get in touch with you quickly. It is good to also list your prices, because this way you can avoid dealing with customers who does not have the budget to hire you. Finally, you should create the menus and setup the widgets to the sidebar (if necessary).
Check your website frequently and update plugins and WordPress core when there is a new version available. Outdated plugins are easy target for hackers, which is not something you want to deal with.
Finalizing your photography website
After you finished adding content you should spend a good amount of time testing the website. More eyes can see more, so send your website’s address to your friends, and ask them to take a look to your site and search for eventually errors and report those to you. Be open to suggestions and do not hesitate to make modifications to your site. Once finished, the website does not require much attention; however it is beneficial for your business and also for search engines to add new content once in a while.
Are you ready to get started building your photography website?
Sing up with Bluehost, register your free domain, install WordPress, get the theme you like, upload your photos and content and start getting clients. Good luck!