DPChallenge: A Digital Photography Contest You are not logged in. (log in or register
 

DPChallenge Forums >> Business of Photography >> DPC ZenFolio User's Group
Pages:  
Showing posts 1 - 25 of 110, (reverse)
AuthorThread
04/10/2011 11:12:28 AM · #1
I thought it might be good to have a thread to discuss all things ZenFolio. In other words, how about we set up a ZenFolio user's group here (thread) where DPC users of Zenfolio can help each other and show each other our sites (in one place).

So if you're a Zenfolio customer and DPCer, chime in here, even if just to let us know you're here!

As for my self, I am about to make the move from Smugmug to Zenfolio (the 15th is my deadline to switch).

I've got my website "mostly" set up. Right now, my URL http://nrshapiro.com still points to Smugmug Pro, but you can see my ZenFolio account here: http://nrshapiro.zenfolio.com

Happy to hear any comments and suggestions.

And of course Zenfolio tips. I'll be posting some here too.

Message edited by author 2011-04-10 11:17:28.
04/10/2011 11:21:48 AM · #2
I have been using Zenfolio for a few years now, I just recently upgraded my account so I could build a webpage. So far so good! It is a good site and makes sense if you are photographing for customers and to advertise yourself. My page is
http://www.onepurplerose.zenfolio.com.

My page is still evolving and I plan on spending the summer making some new and better work. Also, I'm in the process of designing a new logo. An ever changing process....

04/10/2011 11:29:32 AM · #3
Originally posted by Neil:

I thought it might be good to have a thread to discuss all things ZenFolio. In other words, how about we set up a ZenFolio user's group here (thread) where DPC users of Zenfolio can help each other and show each other our sites (in one place).

So if you're a Zenfolio customer and DPCer, chime in here, even if just to let us know you're here!

As for my self, I am about to make the move from Smugmug to Zenfolio (the 15th is my deadline to switch).

I've got my website "mostly" set up. Right now, my URL http://nrshapiro.com still points to Smugmug Pro, but you can see my ZenFolio account here: http://nrshapiro.zenfolio.com

Happy to hear any comments and suggestions.

And of course Zenfolio tips. I'll be posting some here too.


Some thoughts...While building my page I was critiqued by several professionals. One thing that was said to me was a portfolio should not have no more than 10-12 images. Some people like less. You should put the best that you have on your site. Most folks don't want to scroll through tons of images. Keep the number of tabs minimal, I reduced mine to four. I guess that is personal taste though.

Your About page is good, both image and statement reflect your work.

Nice work on your page!
04/10/2011 12:31:52 PM · #4
I have been on Zen for a little over a year now - http://www.chronostasis.com/

It will be good to see who else is about :- )

Some nice shots in the two sites already posted though

Message edited by author 2011-04-10 12:33:31.
04/10/2011 12:36:37 PM · #5
For those of us on SmugMug, can you explain the differences/advantages/etc. of Zen over SM?
04/10/2011 12:44:59 PM · #6
Originally posted by tanguera:

For those of us on SmugMug, can you explain the differences/advantages/etc. of Zen over SM?


What convinced me:

- I like the price sheet management better. I can save price lists by name, and then apply them to a gallery. But you can kind of do that in Smugmug I guess if you create a dummy gallery, and then set the prices for that.

- Most of all, I like the ease at which I can restrict the products that the user sees (this is actually related to the above though). There's an option to show as featured products only matching aspect ratios, and to make it so photos CANNOT BE CROPPED by users. That's better for fine art photography (as apposed to event photography).

- I like the way there's an emphasis on the products being for sale...see this sample page:
http://nrshapiro.zenfolio.com/favorites/h3a15cb30#h3a15cb30
I'm talking about the featured product list (price list) on the right.

- I like the more explorer-like hiearchical tree for my folders that lets me browse and edit my portfolio almost like a local folder tree. (I say almost because there's still no drag and drop, which would be really great.)

- As part of the tree structure, settings are inherited making it easy to setup access lists (though this is not completely "consistent"...there are a lot of things that are not inherited from the parent folder. I hope they get better in this regard.

- Because of the tree structure, you can build a more logical portfolio structure, including three or more levels where it makes sense. Whereas you can only go two levels with smugmug.

- Menus and screens are very easy to customize. My smugmug account was set up a while ago though, and I think there may be a more interactive way now.

- I compared prices of prints, some were higher than smugmug, some lower, overall a wash I figured. Prints are fulfilled by MPix, but you can also set prices and self fulfill.

- looks like they give you more tools for SEO optimization too.

- All that, and it's $50 cheaper a year (pro account for $99 per year)

That's not to say there are not some smugmug things I'll miss...I think the sharpening on the reduced images is better on smugmug, making the smaller views of print files a little better looking on smugmug. Smugmug has video...ZF does not, but while I have some video on smugmug, it's not important to me.

I still have a lot more to play with and learn on Zen though.

ETA: I just compared the "profit" overheads...ZF wins...12% for full service versus 15% (and only 4% for self fulfillment, whereas Smugmug doesn't really support that as far as I know.)

Message edited by author 2011-04-11 15:36:42.
04/11/2011 02:47:34 AM · #7
So just the three of us then . . well I guess it doesn't take so long to get to know each others names.

:- )
04/11/2011 03:55:20 AM · #8
Originally posted by Jedusi:

So just the three of us then . . well I guess it doesn't take so long to get to know each others names.

:- )

Nah, there are others, too.

I've had a Zenfolio account for years. We lived in the USA for 8 years and I needed somewhere to put my travel and family pics for all our family far away so they wouldn't feel so left out.

I've never used Zenfolio to try and sell images, but it is very much on my "one of these days" list.
For now, I don't make proper use of the site at all, but I still like it.
It has been incredibly reliable and stable, and the few times I've had a question/issue, the communication has been prompt and helpful.

Every few months they add one or more new features, so I don't even mind when I get the email that gives me advance notice of a maintenance outage, because it usually includes a "goodie" of sorts.
04/11/2011 07:27:28 AM · #9
I'm a zenfolio user as well but haven't had much time to explore all there is to offer or different ways of setting up the website. Am interested in learning, playing and sharing here, if there's interest.
04/11/2011 08:34:55 AM · #10
I recently decided to just use zen to host my primary site and consolidate my efforts and resources there, rather than relaunch my current site.

I like the customization that I am beginning to see on some zen sites. I would like to shed the traditional zen look (which anyone remotely associated with the photographic community could spot in a second), while keeping all the behind the scenes functionality and features that zen offers.

I wonder if any of you can share some tips on how you went about the customization. Is it a project a relative web novice can do, or does it require an outside consultant?
04/11/2011 09:00:08 AM · #11
Set up an account a little over a year ago to enable people to view and purchase photos from a local dog event I shoot each year. Love the way it works and setting up price lists and selling is a breeze. http://bobcrossphotos.zenfolio.com/
04/11/2011 11:01:04 AM · #12
Yeah, customizing in SM is rather daunting. But I'm immensely pleased with their tech support, and I've seen the quality of the prints they send out. Quite impressive. I already have a domain name, but have it pointed to SM. Eventually - meaning when I have the money - I may have my site redone and just have it point to SM/Zen for payment/fulfill.
04/11/2011 02:08:54 PM · #13
That's where my site is...
Matt MacLean Photography
04/11/2011 02:26:48 PM · #14
Originally posted by photodude:



I wonder if any of you can share some tips on how you went about the customization. Is it a project a relative web novice can do, or does it require an outside consultant?


It obviously depends on what you want your site to end up looking like - to be honest I started by unticking virtually all the boxes I could find then started putting stuff back in to keep it as minimal as possible. I have to be honest it had its funny (and frustrating ) moments but I got to the sort of place I wanted.

04/11/2011 02:35:07 PM · #15
Originally posted by mattmac:

That's where my site is...
Matt MacLean Photography

Very nice indeed Matt
04/11/2011 03:40:20 PM · #16
Originally posted by Jedusi:

Originally posted by photodude:



I wonder if any of you can share some tips on how you went about the customization. Is it a project a relative web novice can do, or does it require an outside consultant?


It obviously depends on what you want your site to end up looking like - to be honest I started by unticking virtually all the boxes I could find then started putting stuff back in to keep it as minimal as possible. I have to be honest it had its funny (and frustrating ) moments but I got to the sort of place I wanted.


On my site I had to trick Zenfolio to do multiple "banners" for different sections of the website (e.g., landscapes versus theatre versus my personal site. I did this on smugmug with little effort once you know how to do it (and that's the hard part). But once I figured out how to do it (I couldn't find a documented way), it was pretty easy on ZF too.
04/11/2011 05:44:32 PM · #17
If anyone out there wants to start a zenfolio account make sure to have one of the members listed here send an invite, you save 10 bucks and there is also a kick back to person making the invite, and of course I would be happy to invite you!!!
04/11/2011 06:12:18 PM · #18
Originally posted by Neil:

On my site I had to trick Zenfolio to do multiple "banners" for different sections of the website (e.g., landscapes versus theatre versus my personal site. I did this on smugmug with little effort once you know how to do it (and that's the hard part). But once I figured out how to do it (I couldn't find a documented way), it was pretty easy on ZF too.


Did this involve writing code?
04/11/2011 10:33:05 PM · #19
Originally posted by photodude:

Originally posted by Neil:

On my site I had to trick Zenfolio to do multiple "banners" for different sections of the website (e.g., landscapes versus theatre versus my personal site. I did this on smugmug with little effort once you know how to do it (and that's the hard part). But once I figured out how to do it (I couldn't find a documented way), it was pretty easy on ZF too.


Did this involve writing code?


No...I just had to figure out how to add a third choice to the website global banner setting. As it stands, you can have text or an image, and that appears on every page. Te only way to get rid of it is to use a small transparent graphic instead. Once you do that, you can include your own banner in your custom template, and use multiple templates based on where you are on the website. However, I couldn't quite get the transparency to work, so right now, you'll see a white line to the left of my banner.

After I get everything else set up, I'll go back and try to get that to work again and/or refine it.

04/12/2011 02:16:31 AM · #20
Well for anyone joining or switching, here are a couple of tips.

1) I used upload junction to copy my stuff from Smugmug to Zen. It worked very well, and save me a load of time. However, it took a long time--two to three days in my case for 17GB, so plan for it. http://www.uploadjunction.com

2) Their instructions are pretty clear for setting up your domain records. However, when I did it, it didn't quite work. After the domain started correctly showing up at ZF, it didn't go to my page, instead giving me a page not found (from ZF). I went into my account settings, and I noticed that it wasn't showing my domain in the settings field--even though I had done it 15 minutes before. So I did it again. And this time it worked instantly.

And so I have now paid, and I am a ZF member for the next year!

I had pretty good Google rankings before, we'll see if the site change affects that. Certainly they have some good SEO tools for me to use to make sure my stuff can be easily found.

A bit more disconcerting...I wanted to close my Smugmug account to make sure it didn't renew (on the 15th)...I don't like their "immediate" method. It should give you a way just to schedule not to renew. Instead, you have to "close" your account, which according to the form, results in the immediate deletion of all your galleries, etc. :( Nothing like all that power in a single press. And technically, my subscription had 3 more days.


Message edited by author 2011-04-12 02:27:59.
04/13/2011 02:27:32 PM · #21
Anyone have organizational tips...

I originally created:

Featured Photos (with my main prints for sale)
Locations - grouped by where they were shot
Events
Theatre
Clients

But then I decided maybe Featured Photos would be better as a collection that I would vary (its also my main slideshow). Started putting them back in Locations, and got stuck, because it could be a pain to maintain prints spread out all over (even if gathered in the collection). But maybe the collection takes care of that. Then I decided to do a "featured prints" and pull the featured photos from there.

But I'm not even close to decided...I'd love to hear your own organizational thoughts and tips on using galleries versus collections.

I love the file manager in general, but I sure wish it had drag and drop between folders.
04/13/2011 03:52:48 PM · #22
Originally posted by Neil:

Anyone have organizational tips...


I'm sorry I missed this thread earlier Neil. I'm a Zenfolio user as well (www.davidnusbaum.com).

I don't know if I would call these tips, but I'll toss out a few approaches that have evolved for me.

I created my portfolio as a group one layer above "All Photographs" and the links from my home page land at or above this group. This makes it easier to avoid having users encountered groups or galleries they cannot access.

I created a "Clients" group below "All Photographs" and made it private. Client galleries or groups are placed in the Clients group and then made public. This makes it easy for clients to see their galleries, but they cannot browse to the galleries of other clients.

At the moment my portfolio images are all in one gallery called Photostream (obvious flickr influence) and then I add these images to different collections to form my portfolio. I like give viewers the ability to drill down and see a bit more even if they start out with a specific portfolio collection. I used the RSS feed from the Photostream gallery as a sitemap with google and that has helped a lot with getting images indexed. This may also help with viewer bad links when changing my portfolio structure, but I need to test and see if that really holds water or not.

I had started off creating galleries in a group for each photo session so I could create a bit of a blog with the newest work on top, but I found that galleries in groups to not paginate so it the page grew too long.
04/13/2011 05:12:42 PM · #23
I am on Zenfolio as well. (www.ryalsphotography.com) I really like it. I think I've been there for almost 3 years now. I am a huge fan of Mpix, so when it came time to build a site, it seemed like a pretty obvious choice.
04/13/2011 08:15:01 PM · #24
Well you guys probably already knew to do this, but I am finally bit the bullet and putting keywords, titles, and descriptions into my JPEG print files. Pain to do it, but I'm tired of editing them on specific sites, over and over again.

And Zenfolio picks them all up nicely when you upload.
04/13/2011 09:04:21 PM · #25
Thanks for sharing the links...great work!
Pages:  
Current Server Time: 11/21/2017 11:46:46 AM

Please log in or register to post to the forums.


Home - Challenges - Community - League - Photos - Cameras - Lenses - Learn - Prints! - Help - Terms of Use - Privacy - Top ^
DPChallenge, and website content and design, Copyright © 2001-2017 Challenging Technologies, LLC.
All digital photo copyrights belong to the photographers and may not be used without permission.
Proudly hosted by Sargasso Networks. Current Server Time: 11/21/2017 11:46:46 AM EST.