Starting a Photography Business: Part 26 – Cut the Ribbon!

I’ve just cut the red ribbon, popped the champagne corks and flung open the doors for the first time, to welcome you to, Ruth Bayley Photography. If you’d like to come in and have a look, please mind you don’t trip on the ribbon at your feet.

If you’d like to open a separate browser with the link and gather round, I will proudly give you the guided tour. http://www.ruthbayleyphotography.co.uk/

Well here we are then! Welcome to the much changed and right up until a few hours ago, still fiddled with homepage! I just couldn’t resist tweaking the text. If you refresh the homepage, the large photo on the right of the page will randomly change to keep the site looking fresh. It also helps to promote different styles of photos, and clicking on them will take you straight through to the photo and the collection it resides in.

This page is laid out as clearly as possible, and here, I have to confess, I break the quota of words that Google likes a site to have per page. It’s really not practical or at all pretty, to squash in 250 words. I can confidently tell you this as during my meltdown stage a few weeks ago, the page did contain that many words and it looked pretty messy.

My beloved, and much wanted sign up box, is to your lower left, clicking here will take you through to sign up for regular email updates and also give you a free gift of photography tips. My original design for this box was well, I have to say, a little boring, so the designer at SmartDeCat did a little bit of magic and came up with this lovely image, which by coincidence, virtually replicates a photo I have in the ‘Waterscapes collection’ of birds flying in a diagonal line over mountains.

In the second paragraph, I’ve been as clear as possible with the product description, so people know instantly the products that are available; the paper a print is produced on and the type of frame that they can choose if they wish to. There are links on the words too, to take you straight through to the ‘Frames and Prints’ page which shows you pictures of the materials used.

And just in case people don’t see that, or the page in the navigation; in the product selection area, under each individual image, this fantastic cms software allows me to add a ‘learn more section.’ Clicking on this gives you the same print and frame product description along with the dimensions, so people can be in no doubt about what they receive when they purchase an item.

So if you’ve not yet left the homepage, you’ll see as you scroll down the page that there are group of photographs, these promote most of the collections, and again by clicking on them you can go through to the photo itself and then to the individual collections.

There is a download collection which, between us, hadn’t even crossed my mind until my web designer suggested that people might want photos for their homework or to use on their own sites and just be charged a little amount of money. I’m seriously considering building a photo library to sell work to agencies or to companies direct and so I wasn’t initially sold on this, however with a little bit of thought, I saw the benefits for both customers and myself. Oh, I do sometimes wish that I’d had a computer to do my homework on when I was at school, though I doubt I’d have actually got any work done!

To the navigation; on your left you see I have a my blog, I know there’s not much in there yet; however it will be filled with lots of useful articles. One thing it isn’t going to include is links that lead visitors away from my site. I’ve just got them to my site, probably by promoting my blog post via social media, the last thing I’m going to do is send them away again.

And finally there is a page promoting my upcoming photography tours, so I can start whetting people’s appetites. The contact page is clear and straight forward and is deliberately designed by the software not to include an email address to cut down on spamming,

Well, if you aren’t too tipsy from the free champagne, please feel welcome to have a browse around. Remember to sign up for email updates if you’d like to be kept up to date with news of new images and photography tours.

Living in the beautiful rural county of Yorkshire it was perhaps natural for Ruth to have an affinity with the countryside and its wildlife. Creativity is Ruth’s driving force finding an outlet in television & radio she worked for many years as producer for BBC & ITV.

However a love of photography and for being surrounded by nature called her to go back to her photography training and bring pleasure and joy to people through her connection with our planet.

Staying in the moment when taking her images allows her to experience the natural magnificence unfolding before her eyes. It is this moment of mediation, of gratitude, that she evocatively conveys through her images.

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