Building a website is a great way for photographers to showcase their work, so picking the right web builder is critical.
As photography is such a visual medium, it’s important to choose a web builder that comes with a range of stunning templates. It’s also a good idea to go for one with unlimited uploads, as well as the ability to create galleries and slideshows. E-commerce features and SEO tools are also important if you look to monetize your business.
But which web builder ticks all the boxes? We have taken a look at some of the best website builders for photographers to help you choose the best solution for you.
Top 6 website builders for photographers in 2021
- Wix – Best for selling photography products
- Zenfolio – Best for photography features
- Zyro – Best for small photography businesses
- Squarespace – Best for design
- Weebly – Best for ease of use
- WordPress.com – Best for plugins
|Upload Limit||From 3GB|
|Number of Templates||800+|
Wix is not specifically targeted at photographers, but it is one of the most popular web builders around. And it does come with lots of really handy features for photographers. Let’s take a closer look at what they are.
Wix has plenty of templates, features and apps available in a dedicated photography section. It comes with over 550 templates, including ones designed specifically for different types of photographers. You will find ones for photojournalists, wedding photographers, landscape photographers, portfolios, and many more.
The Wix App Market also offers an add-on called Right Click Protect, which is designed to protect your work from being copied. You can also use it to add watermarks to your images. You can include over thirty media galleries to showcase your photos and videos.
Wix has a free-for-life version, but it does come with Wix advertising. So, it’s not ideal for professional photographers, but it is still a viable option.
The cheapest plan costs $4.15 per month and comes with a custom domain and free SSL certificate. The Combo plan costs $18 a month and offers double the bandwidth of the cheaper plan. And the Unlimited plan costs $22.16 a month and gives you unlimited bandwidth, 35 GB of storage, visitor analytics, a professional logo, and priority care.
- 550+ templates including 40+ specifically for photographers
- Easy drag-and-drop
- Competitive pricing
- Strong e-commerce
- Free for life plan
- You have to pay for a Premium plan to get rid of ads
- Combo plan only has 30 minutes of video
|Number of Templates||13|
Zenfolio is a web builder that is specifically aimed at photographers. Therefore, all the features and templates are with photographers in mind. It has an elegant, easy to use interface, which uses the drag-and-drop format.
Let’s take a look at Zenfolio’s bespoke features for photographers.
Zenfolio’s features, plugins and e-commerce options have all been created for photographers. So, every account comes equipped with a customizable portfolio website, unlimited galleries and photo uploads, SEO tools, and Google Analytics (read our Zenfolio review for more details).
While Zenfolio only has 13 templates on offer, they are all perfectly tailored to the photography industry. And the web builder comes equipped with plugins that connect your Zenfolio account to Windows Live Photos and Adobe Photoshop Lightroom.
It also offers strong e-commerce options, including Self Fulfillment products for those items that aren’t available through Zenfolio’s integrated labs. As you would expect, it comes with features to protect your images from being copied. And it offers mobile-friendly sites, as well as a mobile app for both you and your customers.
While Zenfolio doesn’t offer a free version, it does offer a two-week free trial to help you decide if it’s the right web builder for you.
If you want to upgrade after the free trial, Zenfolio has three paid plans. The Starter package costs $7 a month and comes with unlimited storage. The Professional plan costs $10 per month and comes with unlimited photo and video uploads, a full suite of marketing tools, a built-in shopping cart and custom watermarks. The Advanced plan costs $30 a month and gives you additional features for School, Sports, Dance and Event Photographers.
- Targeted specifically at photographers
- Reasonably priced
- Drag-and-drop web building format
- Free trial
- Limited templates and fonts
- No free version
|Price||From $14.99 per month|
|Number of Templates||55+|
|Upload Limit||From 1GB|
Zyro is a web builder with simple site construction and strong e-commerce features, making it a great choice for small photography businesses. It has a grid system, along with a drag-and-drop format, making it ideal for beginners.
Better still, it uses artificial intelligence, or AI, to help you build your brand and get to grips with SEO. Let’s take a closer look.
Zyro has a range of attractive templates that are ideal for a photography website, store or online portfolio. It even has photography templates to help you display your work with large image galleries. And if you need more bespoke features, Zyro gives you access to plugins and add-ons to help you market your work.
Zyro is a great choice for photographers who want to build a website in a hurry. It has lots of AI features that can do a lot of the heavy lifting, including a blog title generator, business name generator and slogan generator.
It even has an AI Writer that analyzes copy from across the internet and generates text for your site. In our testing, we found the quality of the content was a bit patchy, but it certainly gives you a good starting point, particularly if you don’t have the time or skills to write lots of copy yourself.
The AI Heatmap tool is more useful to budding photographers, as it will show you which parts of your web pages are grabbing the attention of your visitors.
It also has excellent e-commerce features for small businesses. You can use it to create a store, generate automatic shipping estimates based on the IP Address of the customer, and offer discounts. It also offers different payment options, such as PayPal and 2Checkout.
Unlike Wix and Weebly, Zyro doesn’t offer a free version. And, although it doesn’t come with a free trial, it does come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Zyro’s Basic plan costs $14.99 per month, and comes with an SSL certificate, blogging tools, 1GB of storage and 3GB of bandwidth. The Unleashed plan is priced at $15.99 per month, and gives you unlimited bandwidth, unlimited storage, a free domain for a year, and Google Analytics.
Priced at $24.99 a month, the E-commerce plan lets you sell 100 products, make commission-free sales, and accept online payments. The E-commerce Plus is priced at $14.99 a month and lets you sell unlimited products, add product filters, and sell your products on Amazon.
SEO and AI are included in each of the four pricing categories.
- Artificial Intelligence tools
- Commission-free sales
- Easy to build
- Strong e-commerce features
- Can’t switch templates
- No free version
|Number of Templates||100+|
Squarespace is another excellent web builder for photographers. And although it doesn’t have a specific section dedicated to photographers, it does have a range of excellent templates and features that are ideal for a photography website. Let’s find out what they are.
Squarespace’s main selling point for photographers is its beautiful templates. They are stylish and intuitive, and you can add in elements, like galleries and videos to really show off your work. Squarespace offers over 60 templates, which is fewer than Wix. But the ones on Squarespace look nicer.
Squarespace is mobile responsive, and you can switch between templates without losing any of your work. It also uses a drag-and-drop format, which makes it very easy to build a new website.
Squarespace doesn’t have any photography apps or extensions aimed directly at the photography industry. But it still has plenty of features you will find useful, like a decent image editor and the ability to grow client lists. However, it falls slightly behind Wix and Zenfolio, both of which offer extensions built specifically for photographers.
Squarespace doesn’t offer a free version, but it does have a 14-day free trial. The Personal plan costs $17.99 a month and comes with a custom domain, SSL certificate and SEO tools. The Business plan costs $29.07 a month and comes with a limited range of e-commerce tools, as well as detailed website analytics. The Basic Commerce plan costs $33.22 a month, and delivers powerful e-commerce analytics. The Advanced Commerce plan costs $51.21 a month and comes with e-commerce APIs, discount codes and advanced shipping tools.
- Stunning templates
- Logo maker
- Mobile responsive
- Drag-and-drop format
- Switch between templates with ease
- No right click disabler to aid image security
- Not targeted enough at photographers
|Number of templates||55+|
Weebly is incredibly easy to use, making it a great choice for photographers who don’t have a lot of web building experience. With its intuitive editor, you can add galleries in just two clicks.
You don’t need any coding skills. You just need to select a theme and start adding features, like galleries, videos and images. However, it’s worth noting that, when you upload your photos, there can be a slight loss in image quality, thanks to Weebly’s auto-optimize function.
Weebly has plenty of features that would appeal to photographers. It has the ImageLock app that prevents visitors from copying and downloading your images. There is also a flexible gallery builder with advanced image editing features.
Photographers can upload images in bulk and enhance them by adding filters or changing the brightness. There is also a mobile app that allows photographers to edit their website and upload photos from a mobile device.
Weebly does offer a free plan. This comes with a limited selection of themes and a domain hosted by Weebly.
There are also three paid versions. The Personal plan costs $8.24 per month, or $65.94 per year, which gives you a free domain name. A Professional plan costs $19.23 per month or $148.35 annually, and gives the user access to an ad-free version with password protection. The most expensive option is a Performance plan, which will set you back $43.96 per month or a yearly sum of $461.55. This plan gives you e-commerce tools and full access to all the membership features.
- Easy to use
- Unlimited storage
- Variety of apps and plugins
- Good image security
- Steep pricing scale
- Reduced image quality
|Upload Limit||From 3GB|
|Number of Templates||31,010+|
WordPress.com is more complex than other web builders, but it’s still fairly simple. You can still use a plugin to replicate a drag-and-drop style of web building, but it does have a coding option, so you can customize the look and feel of your site.
It is very straightforward, and it does offer hosting and live chat support in case you run into difficulties. WordPress.com offers a lot of flexibility for photographers, with loads of plugins and themes to choose from. It doesn’t give you as much freedom as WordPress.org, but it is simpler and easier to use, and offers a lot more support. You can find out more about both in our ultimate WordPress review.
WordPress.com has thousands of free and premium templates and themes. You can filter by categories and it has nearly 100 photography templates. There are even specific categories within the photography section, including portfolios and photo blogs.
WordPress also has over 50,000 plugins, including StoryForm, which lets you display your photos in a story format, Picu, which is a photo proofing plugin, and Easy Watermark, which lets you protect your images with a watermark.
WordPress.com has four paid plans, as well as a free plan. The free plan comes with WordPress hosting and a pre-installed SSL certificate. The Personal plan costs $4.12 a month, and comes with a free domain for a year. The Premium plan costs $9.62 a month and gives you access to premium themes and Google Analytics. The Business plan costs $27.47 a month, and gives you access to more than 50,000 plugins and advanced SEO tools. The most expensive is the E-commerce plan at $49.45 a month. It has lots of tools to help monetize your business, including integrations with top shipping carriers and the ability to accept payments in 60+ countries.
- Many templates
- Lots of plugins
- Strong e-commerce
- Coding gives you complete control
- More complex
- Limited customer service
Why do you need a website for photography?
Despite the growth of popular photography social media apps, such as Instagram, it’s still incredibly important for a photographer to have their own website.
For starters, you are the only photographer on your website, so you don’t have to compete for likes and follows among thousands of professional and amateur photographers.
It also gives you much more credibility. Clients almost always prefer a photographer with an official website over someone with only an Instagram page. You can also target online searches through the use of SEO tools.
How to choose the best web builder for photography
When it comes to building a photography website, you will need tools to help you build a professional and attractive online space to showcase and sell your work. So, it’s important to choose one that has photography features, such as galleries and the ability to upload hi-res images. And be sure to choose one with good marketing features, such as SEO tool and social media integrations.
It’s also vital to choose a web builder that comes with a generous upload limit, so you can add all your work. Depending on which plan you go for, most builders have sizable upload limits, but we would recommend choosing one that comes with unlimited uploads just to be safe. And if you’re planning on selling your work, you will also need a web builder with e-commerce features, such as payment options and a shopping cart.
Some web builders even offer bespoke features that could really help you build your photography business. It’s really important to choose one that offers protection for your images, such as a Right Click ban or Watermarked images. Some builders will give you the chance to have an app for clients to view and buy your photos.
How to create a photography website
Here is a step-by-step guide on how to set up your website.
- Decide on what type of website you want and what you want from it.
- Choose the website builder that is right for your needs.
- Pick a payment plan.
- Select a template.
- Add your photos and content.
- Add and install apps, plugins and add-ons.
- Utilize SEO tools to gain maximum exposure.
- Review and publish your website.
What is important when building an online photography portfolio website?
The most important thing is to make a professional site that will help you showcase your photos. So, choose an attractive template that compliments your work, and helps you organize your photos.
Make sure you have your marketing set up before you go live. This can include linking your site up with all your social media accounts and making sure you’ve got your e-commerce set up. And, of course, it’s very important to have SEO friendly URLs and meta tags to help clients find your website.
Should you consider a free photography website builder?
Some of the best website builders offer free plans, including Wix, WordPress and Weebly.
However, although a free plan might be tempting, you will be very limited in what you can do with your site. You won’t have access to many tools or templates, and you will have to put up with a branded domain name, and possibly site ads. This will make your website look unprofessional and less trustworthy.
Luckily, lots of web builders offer free trials of their premium versions, so you can try them out before committing.
Best website builder for photographers: Summary
Zenfolio was voted #1 by professional photographers and is definitely the most targeted web builder for this type of site. So it is definitely a great choice if you want to showcase your photos online. It comes with loads of tools to help customers view and buy your work, and it has handy security features to prevent anyone downloading your work without paying for it.
Squarespace has some excellent templates, but they are pretty limited and are not targeted at photographers.
Wix and WordPress both give you access to apps, extensions and plugins that can help with e-commerce and SEO, and you will find lots of tools to help you build a photography website.
Weebly and Zyro are incredibly easy to use, but don’t come with quite as much functionality.
Our advice would be to use the two-week trial of Zenfolio to see if you like it. And, if it doesn’t suit your needs, we recommend choosing Wix.
What is the best free website builder for an online portfolio?
Wix’s free plan is the best for photographers because it comes with a choice of over 500 professional-looking templates and built-in features that will allow new clients to get in touch.
Can I use Instagram instead of creating a photography website?
Yes you can, but it does come with limitations. If you use Instagram, you will have to compete with thousands of other photographers so it is tough to stand out from the crowd. A website will give you much more individual exposure.
What website builder for photographers can I use to sell products?
Wix has the most features to help you sell products, thanks to its vast and expansive app store. However, if you are looking to sell self-fulfilled products, Zenfolio is the best option.
What website builder is the best for professional photographers?
Zenfolio was voted #1 among professional photographers. It is a web builder directly targeted at photographers, so it has loads of great features to showcase and sell your work. It comes with unlimited storage and fantastic e-commerce options.