Opening your own photo video website

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Picking and setting up a website can be a big decision to make as a lot of time can go into getting all setup. I have about 5,000 images at mine so moving would be a big job.

You have basically 4 choices.

1. Free sites that usually have limited control over your photos and bandwidth  limits. is the biggest of them all. There is a pro account which is $25 yr.

2. Paid custom site with yearly maintenance fees and limits to alterations unless you pay for the web masters time. Initial cost plus yearly fees which vary from site to site. Plus you need you own domain name.

3. All in one sites like SmugMug, Zenfolio, PhotoShelter, Photobucket etc. From $30 to $200 yr. You have full control over these sites and can customize them yourself for free or pay someone else to do it for you. You don’t need a domain name but have the option.

3. Blog sites can be free or paid. The one your reading now is free for me. These are fine for posting a few photos at a time and commenting on them.  You can also set it up so others can comment too. Domain or not its up to you.

With Zenfolio It’s very easy to do (some features will require a bit of study) and can cost as little as $30 a year.  Zenfolio  is the company I have been using. I find it to be the easiest to use of the bigger full feature sites. your site can be for any product not just photos and video. Don’t like the name Zenfolio just add you own domain name and no body will see anything except you domain name.

As some of you know, I have been using the Zenfolio hosting service for organizing and presenting my photos and videos  for about 5 yrs. It works great as a way to deliver images to clients as you can have a password for downloading or for the accessing the gallery itself. Prints or digital files can be ordered with your set prices. Each gallery can be customized including free music for slideshows (50 songs for choose from).

I think Zenfolio is a really good website service,  I recommend  it. The controls and features are logically setup so it’s not too hard to figure out the more advanced features. I had a hard time with SmugMug.

Some of the features Zenfolio offers.

• Unlimited storage for your photos and videos.    (36-64 mb per image uploaded. Tiffs as well. The free version is 4g + 2 gig for each new year.)

• Elegant pages with a variety of layouts and designs including creating your own completely custom designs that you can edit without any knowledge of coding (upload you own 1080 x 1920 custom backgrounds like I did).

• Beautiful presentation of your photos and videos

• A very easy to use and intuitive interface

• Full screen Slideshows with music (50 free songs are included)

• Ability to link to many image sizes and share your photos and videos on Facebook and Twitter directly from your account. This way, you can upload files only once and share them any way you like.

Please  use my referral code K1E-JAU-MEZ during sign up to save 10% off your own subscription if you decide to go with Zen. it’s better than nothing and it helps me out a little.

Zenfolio offers a free Trial account for two weeks so you can see if you like it or compare to the other sites both paid and free. Check out all the features at this link.

Home page here:

Want your own domain name? I use Go-Daddy. About $10 yr to have your own name with a .com. Setting up is not the easiest to configure but its doable for most people. Zenfolio tries to make it as easy as possible with tutorials.