by Tom Lee Published
A Website (Part 2) - First Steps
Where To Start
I am a frugal photographer, I like most of you am not a millionaire and don't like giving money away. I went into business to take it off other people! So lets assume you own a small computer, and I can convince you it won't cost anything except a little bit of your time, we'll examine the cheapest way of getting a website up and running.
What Do I Need
You don't need sophisticated equipment to create web pages (but it does help). Most photographers have some form of computer, perhaps for doing digital manipulation, or just for typing letters. There are many software packages available for making what is commonly called WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) pages. Claris Homepage, Dreamweaver, Frontpage Express, to name a few. Microsoft Word and Lotus Smartsuite will also allow you to make and publish web pages easily and quickly, the list is almost endless. I chose Claris Homepage because it came free on the front of a computer magazine, so I didn't pay for it. How cheap is that! It also works much the same as an ordinary word processor. So if you can type a letter and put pictures next to the words, you've done it.
The rest is down to your imagination. Think of how you sell yourself when talking to prospective clients, its not all that different. Tell them how good you are, what you can provide for them, and shown them some samples.
A basic site will consist of four pages:
· The 'Homepage' sometimes referred to as a 'Splash Page' - This introduces the viewer to your studio. The aim is to give it impact so people will want to look at your other pages and stop people from going to someone else's site.· The 'Information Page' - There is no point of having a website unless you can give them a good reason why they should choose you, and let them know what services you can provide.
· The 'Samples Page' - Show them what you can do! If this is your first site, don't go overboard. It doesn't have to be big to catch the eye.
· The 'Contact Page' - Give them a telephone number, address and of course e-mail so they can get in touch.
We now have a simple four-page website, which we can build on and expand into a real attention grabber!
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