How to get started with online photo proofing with Zenfolio.

March 14th, 2023
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Photographers need the most efficient ways to deliver images to clients for their review, commenting, sharing and, ultimately, ordering downloads and prints. One of the best ways to achieve this is through online client proofing, enabling you to streamline your workflow and provide an easy experience clients will love.

In this article, let’s dive into how and why photographers should use online photo proofing with Zenfolio client galleries.

What is online client proofing?

It’s a process that allows photographers to share your digital images with clients in an online format that gives clients access to view the images, select their favorites, and provide feedback in one convenient and easy to navigate spot. Online photo proofing saves both the photographer and client time and expense by eliminating the need for physical proof sheets or meetings in person. Zenfolio photographers benefit from a streamlined and automated online proofing workflow that was designed from the ground up with advanced technology to expedite the process and eliminate many time-consuming manual tasks.

How does online client proofing work?

Start by uploading the images to an online platform with resources that enables the photographer to control the presentation, access and security or privacy settings. The photographer creates a gallery by client, event or project and either automatically or manually uploads photos or videos to the gallery. Share the link with the client granting access to view, select favorites, and provide feedback. The photographer can also enable clients to share images and order downloads, prints or photo products directly from the gallery.

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Why should photographers use online client proofing?

1. Saves time and money.

Online client proofing, especially on platforms with automated uploading and application of presets, can help photographers skip several time-consuming manual steps. Photos and videos can be uploaded to an online platform and shared with clients in a matter of minutes, eliminating the need for physical proof sheets or meetings, which can be time-consuming and expensive.

2. Enhances the client experience.

Photography clients will enjoy the convenience of viewing, selecting, and even ordering photos directly from a client gallery that can be accessed from anywhere with an internet or mobile connection. They can take their time to review and select images.

3. Easy to use.

Online client proofing platforms are designed to be user-friendly for both photographers and their clients. The process is straightforward and easy to navigate, which reduces the risk of confusion or frustration for the client.


4. Improved sales.

Online proofing and ordering directly from a client gallery makes it easy for clients to purchase prints, digital downloads or photo products without bouncing between platforms or back-and-forth communication with the photographer. And photographers can eliminate the need to manually process orders.

5. Secure and private.

Online client proofing platforms are secure and private, which means that only the client and photographer can access the images. While this ensures that the images are not shared or accessed by unauthorized individuals, the photographer can control settings to grant their clients the ability to share images or expand access on a case-by-case basis.

How to get started with online client proofing?

Just follow these steps to start using online client proofing:

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Step 1: Choose an online client proofing platform.

Choose a platform that fits your needs and budget. For the optimum time savings and client experience, look for a platform with advanced technology and automation that expedites image uploading and encourages online ordering direct from a client gallery.

Zenfolio is a great choice for photographers to proof and deliver images to clients for many reasons:

  • Easy-to-use interface: Zenfolio is user-friendly and intuitive, making it easy for photographers to upload, organize, and share their images with clients.
  • Customizable galleries: Zenfolio allows photographers to customize their galleries with their branding, colors, fonts, layout, and more, giving them complete control over the look and feel of their galleries.
  • Mobile-friendly: Zenfolio galleries are designed so clients can easily view and proof images on any device, including smartphones and tablets.
  • Secure: Zenfolio uses industry-standard security protocols to protect photographers’ images and their clients’ data, ensuring safety and security.
  • Sales features: Zenfolio offers the ability to sell prints, digital downloads, and photo products directly through your gallery. This allows photographers to monetize their work and generate additional revenue.
  • Integrated printing services: Zenfolio offers printing services from partner labs, which enables photographers a hands-off process for printing and shipping directly to their clients without having to go through a third-party vendor.
  • Customer support: Zenfolio provides excellent customer support, including live chat, email support, and a knowledge base with helpful articles and tutorials.

Step 2: Upload your images.

The first step is uploading your images. Zenfolio offers 3 convenient ways to upload images:

Step 3: Customize your galleries.

After uploading, it’s time to customize your galleries. Zenfolio provides a variety of options to make your galleries stand out, including:

  • Customizing the layout: Choose from a variety of layouts to showcase your images in the style and presentation you prefer.
  • Selecting a theme: Zenfolio offers a variety of themes to choose from, allowing you to select colors and fonts that best represent your brand.
  • Adding a logo: Brand your galleries with your logo for a more professional presentation.
  • Customizing the navigation: Choose from several settings to customize the navigation of your galleries and make it easy for your clients to find the images they want.

Step 4: Share the gallery with your client.

Now you can share the gallery link with your client. Zenfolio gives you the option to share by sending an email or with a direct link. You can also edit the link with a custom name. Make sure that you provide clear instructions on how to view the images and select their favorites. 


Step 5: Receive feedback and orders.

After viewing the images, your client can provide feedback and place orders directly through the online platform. You’ll receive notifications when a client selects their favorite images or places an order.

The Zenfolio Favorites feature allows visitors to pick specific photos in a gallery for future use or for reference of other photo proofing needs. Photographers can enable and set the Favorites feature for functions including:

  • Creating a list of photos that the client would like retouched.
  • Creating a list of photos that clients would like displayed to their wedding guests.
  • Create a list of photos that clients dislike and would like not to be displayed in the Gallery.
  • Create a list with just one single photo and send a message to the photographer about it.

Photographers can also enable Commenting in a client gallery and set it to be notified when a comment is entered then respond to a comment.

Once the client has selected their favorite images, some online client proofing platforms, like Zenfolio, allow you to deliver the images directly through the platform via downloads or print sales.

Step 6: Deliver the final images.

Online client proofing is an excellent tool for photographers who want to streamline their workflow, enhance the client experience, and increase sales. With the right online client proofing platform, photographers can easily and even automatically upload their images, share them with clients, and receive feedback and orders. Online client proofing is secure, private, and easy to use, which benefits both the photographer and the client. Try it and take your photography business to the next level.


  • Cheryl Dell'Osso

    Cheryl is the Director of Content Strategy at Zenfolio and the Owner/Photographer at Portraits by Cheryl and Seniors by Cheryl in Raleigh, NC. Cheryl has mentored countless new photographers looking to build successful photography businesses.

*Promotion valid until March 31, 2023 at 11:59 p.m. PST. Promotional discount off the subscription price of a new Portfolio, PortfolioPlus, ProSuite annual plan will be automatically applied at checkout with code ZENFOLIO50. Discount applies to the first year only. Cannot be combined with any other promotion.

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