A few years ago when we were looking for a home for our images and website, we stumbled across Photoshelter, we were one of the first studios to try out their new Beam product line and at the time we thought it was a cool product. That love affair lasted about a month.
As your business grows, your web presence will too. You will need your website to do more and being able to manage SEO to a granular level becomes, even more important.
For our studio application, we needed custom pages and with every custom page we needed different Meta Descriptions. Unfortunately, we couldn’t have that with PhotoShelter.
Second, we needed a company that could offer support to our team seven days a week; Photoshelter has telephone support, but from 9-5 EST Monday through Friday. Most of our development occurs on the weekends, so often when we needed support, it just wasn’t happening until Monday, and even then it was slow going getting in touch with someone.
The user community isn’t pretty large either so when we posted to the community group; we usually didn’t get a response.
I always felt bad about leaving Photoshelter because their product was spiffy and focused on your images, which was nice. Most commercial products out there provide you all the bells and whistles, but that can detract from your photography.
I always missed how Photoshelter took care of my images and decided to revisit them when I saw that the legendary Joe McNally uses them. I thought things might have improved, so we signed up a for another trial, but alas, the same issues.
So I thought to myself if Joe is using them what gives? He certainly must have high demands of his web presence? Well if you look closely at Joe’s website, it is a blend, he uses Photoshelter for his portfolio and then WordPress for all the other stuff. Okay, I could live with that too, but I want something of a seamless integration. What you see here today is that vision!
I haven’t found a tool yet, and there are numerous ones out there that provide the level of image management and security that Photoshelter provides and by using WordPress for everything else, I can have my custom pages, the granular control over my SEO and one of the best online image management portals out there.
The only way you could get something like this today would be to spend the money and design it yourself, so this is the next best thing. Sure it means that I have to use two different tools for my website presence, but it is a small price to pay.
Sometimes you just need to take a second look at things to see the potential, had it not been for the closer scrutiny that we conducted with Joe McNally’s site we would have passed Photoshelter yet once again.
If you are a photographer that cares for his or her images, take a look at Photoshelter.
If you think Photoshelter might be right for your photography business, use this link to sign up. You will get a $15.00 credit once you sign up and I will get a credit too!