I know I might sound like your mother, but . . . "First impressions are important."
It's true, and in today's world of social media and mobile devices, it's especially important to make a good first impression - especially with your web site. If you don't make a good first impression, folks may click off your site in a matter of seconds, or less.
Your web is your home on the web, and in effect, when you set up a web site, you are inviting people into your virtual home - your galleries, your blog, and your store. You are also inviting people, from around the world, to read about you . . what you like and don't like, what gear you use, and where you have been and where you are going. You are also telling friends, followers – and total strangers – about your accomplishments and goals.
So indeed, your web site says a lot about you.
Above left: I used to have a cluttered web site, plastered, like many web sites, with ads on the right. It worked well, but it was just too busy and did not showcase the most important aspect of my work: my photography. I looked more like a photo store than a photographer.
Above right: Back in November, I switched to Squarespace because I wanted a clean web site on which I could showcase my photography. I chose Squarespace for several reasons: cool, totally customizable templates; all-in-one source for my blog, galleries, store, classes and more; ease of use; and 24/7 customer support. In addition, a Squarespace site looks great on desktops, laptops, iPhones and iPad - which is not the case with all web sites.
I still have ads, but they are placed at the bottoms of several posts a months, as well as on my sponsors page. I have found this placement to be much more effective than putting bright banner ads on the right. Studies have shown that regular readers become numb to these ads.
You can read more about Squarespace, and the awesome new Squarespace iPad and iPhone app, in this blog post.
Today, I think my site says: Rick Sammon loves photography - all aspects of it.
What does your site say about you? Leave a comment in the Comments here - along with a link to your site. Don't be shy. Show others your work. You may get some constructive criticism . . . and/or some great ideas. I'll take a look at each web site. Who knows? I might find some undiscovered talent, as I have done on my Tough Love portfolio reviews.
If you don't know what your web site says about you and your work, maybe it's time for a web site makeover.
If you are in the NYC area, I am giving a talk on social media and building a web site at Adorama on February 19th. Info here.
If you like stuff like this, you can subscribe to my blog here.
Explore the light,
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