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Best Photography Portfolio Websites

Okay, you need an online photography portfolio but where do you start? Here is a guide to help you create a beautiful photography portfolio website.

A photography portfolio website lets you showcase your work for sale in a straightforward way. You put your images onto the site in a layout that reflects your personal style and taste, then invite people to come look at your offerings and buy the images of their choice. This is a way for you to build your business, your brand, and demonstrate your photography skills in a certain area of the visual arts, such as product photography.

It's a fact that there are untold numbers of photographer portfolio sites on the internet, which means you've got a lot of competition for views. Another fact is that just about every type of product and service has a lot of competition for views. It's how you build your photo portfolio website and what you put into it is what makes you stand out from the rest.

The first step to building a photography portfolio website is to find a website builder that offers the features you want and need. It's much easier to build your portfolio website when you have the right tools to get you started. After you've settled on your website appearance, it's time to build out your site and put your best effort into its creation. Once you're finished, you'll have a fully-functioning photography portfolio website that delivers your product to your clientele and helps you build your photography business into something bigger.

Why should you have a photography portfolio?

A photography portfolio lets you show your work to a potential client, but it's more than simply showing off your skills as a visual artist. Your portfolio demonstrates your ability to self-curate your work, your ability and skill at improving images and bringing out their best qualities, and demonstrates your ability to lay out a shot before you click the shutter.

A potential client gets the opportunity to assess all of these and other aspects that go into the type of photography you specialize in. The portfolio helps them judge your skills as a whole and use what they see as a reason to hire you or buy your images.

How do you create an online photography portfolio?

The first step to creating a photo portfolio website is to find a site that offers domain name sales, hosting for your site, and templates that guide you through the website building process. Essentially, you want a website creator that makes it easy for you to master the content management and placement of your photos.

Once you're satisfied with the choice of host and their offerings, you create an account and get started building your site. Alternatively, you can build your portfolio website through WordPress, but using WordPress can be more complex than a site with pre-made templates.

Now that you've started your website and picked a template, it's time to start uploading your images for sale. However, before you start uploading, make sure to use lower resolution images as people can easily get around anti-download measures. You can supply the buyer with a high-resolution image file when they make a purchase. The website host may offer anti-download and theft measures through the template, but you'll still want to protect your work with low-resolution photos and watermarking.

During your site construction work, you'll be prompted to pick colors for the site, decide on a font and size, and upload a logo. All of this goes toward creating a visual identity for your site and makes it easier for customers to identify and associate the designs with you as a photographer.

Make sure to set up an e-commerce portal that enables you to accept credit cards and other forms of payment for each sale. You can use an e-commerce website for photography that sends a link to a download or automatically sends the picture to the buyer after the purchase has been completed.

After you've completed the structuring of your website, including landing pages and categories for your pictures, it's time to engage in self-curation and put your best images onto your website.

What should you include in your photography portfolio?

Figuring out which photos to include on your photography website requires self-discipline and a willingness to edit yourself in order to curate your choices. You should include photos that represent the best of your work and editing skills, regardless of the area of photography you focus on.

Look through your existing photographs and pick the ones that you feel represent your work the best. Chances are good that you have photos that you feel don't quite represent your skills and abilities, but make an effort to include some on your photo portfolio website. This serves to show a viewer that you don't restrict yourself to creating the same type of photo repeatedly, and that you have a range.

After you've made your selections, you need to put them online and make sure to create categories for your work, even if you're only working in one area of photography. For example, you take pictures of wide-open vistas in the American west. This gives you a theme for your work, but it's not a stopping place for your website. Sort your pictures into categories below your main category to help a customer narrow in on a style or type of photograph that they're seeking.

Include a biography or about me section that talks about your interest in a specific area of photography. This serves to explain your photography processes to a potential customer. Discuss topics that include your methods for achieving results when behind the camera and how you use editing software to bring out the best in the image. This helps you present yourself as someone who can capture excellent images and make them better through post-processing techniques.

What are the best photography portfolio websites?

The best photography portfolio websites are ones that anticipate your needs as a photographer, are easy to use, and don't have a steep learning curve. After all, you're a photographer, not a coder, and you need a website builder that's easy to comprehend and intuitive to use. The best photographer portfolio sites include:


Pixpa is a portfolio website maker that's designed with the creative in mind. It features portfolio templates for photographers, requires no coding ability, and enables you to build a professional website. You can change the template details to have it reflect your brand with little effort needed. It also has a feature-rich eCommerce platform that enables you to easily make sales. The only drawback to using Pixpa is limited availability of certain design elements.


Pixieset was created to make it easier for photographers to design and manage their photography website and business. The site provides tools for building a photo portfolio website, but also handles bookings, billing, and contracts. One very convenient feature offered by Pixieset is the ability to take a gallery into a mobile app that you can send directly to your customer.

One of the disadvantages to Pixieset is the fact the website templates don't have a lot in the way of editing options. As a result, it's difficult to make your template reflect your brand.


SmugMug offers strong anti-theft measures and unlimited image bandwidth and storage to help photographers maximize their portfolio and prevent losses. It also has SEO optimization for websites and at-a-glance statistics. The site has over 20 templates to select from, giving you flexibility in the creation of your portfolio. However, if you want to enable eCommerce on your site, you have to pay for the most expensive hosting package to gain access to payment processing. SmugMug also takes a 15% fee for all sales made on the platform.


Zenfolio is another website that provides powerful tools for photographers who are looking to build a photographer portfolio site. The site helps you with your marketing efforts, has an integrated storefront for one-click sales, and has customizable web forms for sales and shipping preferences. Video tutorials are offered to help you understand what goes into building your portfolio and free live webinars covering various topics related to online photography sales. You also get nearly unlimited access to cloud storage.

A basic account on Zenfolio provides you with everything you need to get your website started. However, if you opt for a lower tier account, you'll have to deal with the Zenfolio logo on your account, which can confuse a customer as to who they're buying from. Another con of Zenfolio is the fact it's difficult to get in touch with customer service.

How do you choose the right website for you?

You need to identify what you want from the portfolio website before you make your decision to open an account. Do you need unlimited bandwidth for the images you plan to sell? Or do you want a variety of customizable templates that you can tailor to your needs? Photography portfolio websites all have the core feature of displaying your photos in a format that's easy for your customers to view and buy, but you want a site that meets more needs than simply displaying your images for sale.

Check out Mailchimp's comprehensive website hosting and building services before you commit to a photography portfolio site. Mailchimp offers inexpensive hosting options that offer the bandwidth you need for image storage and display, a website builder that's flexible and responsive to your design needs, support for SEO, and email marketing options to help you keep in touch with your customers. You'll find the tools offered by Mailchimp easily meet your needs and are easy to use. Get started today with the hosting package of your choice and get your photography portfolio site up and running tonight.

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