4 ways for photographers to sell more prints.

December 16th, 2021
4 ways for photographers to sell more prints

If you’re a photographer, chances are good that you’ve thought about selling your prints. After all, what’s the point of taking all those beautiful photos if nobody ever gets to see them? 

Offering prints for sale as part of your photography business has many benefits. Firstly, it provides customers with a seamless and enjoyable experience from start to finish. Why end your client’s experience with you at delivering digital files? Instead, provide an end-to-end experience where you are in control of the quality of the work right until it’s hanging on your client’s wall. Secondly, it creates a new revenue stream for your business. Industries everywhere have felt the financial crunch and adding prints for sale simply creates new ways for your business to be profitable  

Finally, it pleases customers with beautiful prints and gifts they can cherish for years to come. Running a photography business can be about so much more than just the images. Your customers are buying into you, your creative vision, and most importantly, how you make them feel. And that feeling translates to the final artwork and your customers will cherish the photos as much as the experience. 

By offering prints for sale, you are sure to create a successful and long-lasting photography business, but maybe you’re not sure where to start and surely have lots of questions, like: How do you price your prints? How do you market them? Where to sell photography prints? And how do you make sure people actually buy them? 

Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. In this article, we’ll give you all the tips and tricks on selling photography prints that you need to start selling like a pro.

image preview showing the headboard and pillows of a bed with a print of two brides embracing hanging above

Show what’s possible with high-quality printed photos.

As a photographer, you know that printed photos can be absolutely stunning, but how do you convince your clients to invest in high-quality prints?

One way is to show them what’s possible with beautiful, professional-grade prints. Here are some tips:

Hang prints in your own home.

This is the best way to show off the potential of printed photos. Hang them in different rooms and styles to show how versatile they can be. 

Another great option is to show clients mock-ups on a website. These allow clients to see what a framed print or canvas wrap will look like in a room or variety of different spaces all from the comfort of their home. This helps the customer really envision how their own images will look on various products once they’re printed. And with the Zenfolio preview feature in your customized online shop, clients can view different print sizes, frame types, and other options, further helping your customer with their choice.

If you’re hanging your photos in your home, studio, or office, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, make sure that the photos are hung at eye level. People will be much more likely to notice and appreciate your photos if they’re hung at a comfortable viewing height. 

Second, try to hang them in an area with good lighting. Photos that are too dark or too bright can be difficult to appreciate, so hanging them in a well-lit area will help potential buyers get a better sense of your work. 

Finally, don’t be afraid to experiment with different arrangements of your photos. Try hanging them in groups or in different patterns to see what looks best.

Use high-quality materials.

Make sure you’re using high-quality paper and inks for your prints. This will make a big difference in the final product. 

There are a few different materials you can use for your prints, but one of the best things to consider is using archival materials. Archival paper, inks, and backings are designed to resist fading and other damage, are acid-free and, as the name suggests, will last for a long time, which makes them an excellent choice for selling prints.

Another option is canvas. Canvas prints have a more traditional look and feel and are also quite durable. If you’re worried about shipping damage, you can always opt for a print mounted on foam core or another sturdy backing.

Whatever material you choose, make sure it’s of high quality so that your prints look their best. Your customers can tell the difference, which will help you sell more prints in the long run!

Highlight the benefits of printed photos.

When you’re showing off your prints, be sure to highlight the benefits of investing in high-quality prints. Explain how they’re more durable than drugstore prints and how they can be passed down for generations to come.

By following these tips, you can show your clients the true potential of printed photos. And when they see how amazing they can look, they’ll be more likely to invest in high-quality prints.

black and white framed print of two brides hanging on the wall above a computer desk

Make buying prints easy and seamless for your clients.

As a photographer, the most important thing you can do for your business is to create a photography portfolio website. Once you have that all of the other tactics can start to work together, and offering prints to your clients is a great tactic to increase your sales and provide them with beautiful products they can treasure for years. However, buying prints can sometimes be confusing and overwhelming for customers. 

You need to make buying prints effortless for your clients, so they are more motivated to make the purchase. 

Sell photography prints directly from your website.

If you’re a photographer, chances are good that you’ve considered selling photos online. After all, what could be easier than setting up a website and letting people browse and purchase your work from the comfort of their homes?

But if you haven’t been able to get started because you don’t know how to sell photos online in the first place, it’s time to dive in. First things first, set up a shop as part of your online portfolio website and client galleries where you can list your print options. Once you have this in place customers can easily choose the photographs to add to their cart and purchase. Some websites will allow you to review and approve client orders before they are sent to labs for printing – a perfect way to ensure the prints will have quality cropping selections, without the hassle of putting the whole order together yourself.

As a photographer, one of the most important things you can do is present your client galleries in an appealing way. After all, this is where potential customers will go to view and purchase your work.

There are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind when creating your client gallery to sell pictures online. First, ensure the images are high quality and accurately represent your style. Your galleries should look clean and professional and help to communicate the narrative of the images. 

Second, provide detailed descriptions of each image, including information about the location, subject matter, and interesting stories or details. This information might not be as crucial if you’re delivering engagement, wedding, or family photos since the client’s were present at the shoot, but if you’re selling landscape or wildlife images, street photography, or other subject matter that will appeal to a larger audience, this information will be key to tell more about the images. 

Finally, organize the gallery in a way that makes sense and is easy to navigate. With a bit of thought and effort, you can create an attractive and effective client gallery. Your hard work will pay off when you see those sales rolling in.

image preview showing an 8x12 inch framed print of two brides hanging above a beige couch
image preview showing a 20x30 inch framed print of two brides hanging above a beige couch

Create a print selling strategy.

As a photographer, prints are one of the best ways to make money from your work. Not only can you sell them outright, but you can also offer them as part of a package deal or even as part of a subscription service.

However, simply offering prints for sale might not be enough. You need to have a strategy in place for how you will sell them. Otherwise, you’ll likely find that your prints are not selling as well as they could be.

One of the most important things to consider when creating your selling strategy, either in person or online, is to start planning the sale long before the sales session. One way to do this is to share product information and examples of prints on display on your portfolio website, blog, and social media posts. Another is to mention the end result (ie. a photo album, gallery wall, or large print) consistently as part of every communication, from your email newsletters to your gallery delivery. Whether you offer in person sales or sell exclusively online, set yourself up for success by preparing before going into every sales conversation so you’re not leaving money on the table.

Create automated reminder emails.

You know how important it is to get your clients to print their photos. There’s nothing quite like seeing a stunning image printed and hanging on a wall. But sometimes, life gets in the way, and your clients forget, or might not even know that this is the best way to display their photos.

That’s why setting up automated reminder emails can be a lifesaver. Not only will it help you sell more prints, but it will also keep your clients happy.

Here’s how to create automated reminder emails that will help you sell more photography prints:

  • Use a tool like MailChimp, Constant Contact, or Flodesk to set up your email list. Zenfolio also has the option to create custom email journeys for your customers so that you can keep all of your gallery management and communications on the same platform. Seamless!
  • Create a sign-up form on your website or blog so people can subscribe to your list.
  • Write your email content, including a call-to-action for ordering prints.
  • Set up your automated emails to go out on a schedule that works for you.
  • Sit back and relax while your reminder emails do the work for you!

Photography prints and gifts for every occasion.

As the holidays approach, many people begin to think about giving gifts to loved ones. Photography prints make an excellent gift for any occasion so it’s the perfect time for you to encourage people to buy your prints to give to their family and friends. 

Make sure you have marketing strategies that foster print sales during the holidays, mother’s day, father’s day, birthdays, anniversaries, and other special events.

If you’re a photographer who sells prints, you know that getting sales early is crucial. Unfortunately, many people are hesitant to buy prints because they’re unsure if they want to make the investment or to hold off and make sure they still like them later. This is where gallery expiration comes in.

By setting an expiration date for your galleries, you can create a sense of urgency that will encourage people to buy prints sooner rather than later. Plus, you can offer discounts for early purchases, which will further increase your sales.

Offer promotions to encourage more print sales.

If you’re looking to boost your photography print sales, consider offering promotions and discounts. This can be a great way to encourage customers to buy more prints and help you attract new customers.

There are a few different ways you can go about offering promotions. One method is to offer a discount on products when clients spend a certain amount; for example, 20% off $20 or more. Another popular promotion is to offer a discount on shipping when clients spend a certain amount.  

You can also create promotions for “early bird” print purchases to encourage clients to buy prints as soon as the gallery has been delivered (and it’s fresh in their minds), or a “last minute” promotion to try and squeeze a few extra orders in before the gallery expires.

Whatever promotion you decide to offer, make sure it’s something that will appeal to your target audience. For the most successful coupon campaign, promote your offer in a way that will reach your target audience. Some online portfolio websites already have integrated options you can use to email information about your promotions directly to clients and display them as banners in your galleries. 

All of these promotional methods can be set up within a few minutes using the Zenfolio selling dashboard. There are also alternatives within some email list providers, or you can opt to outsource that work to a marketing consultant or advertising agency.

photo prints, framed print, and canvas print on marble counter

Create an exclusive experience with high-quality prints.

When displaying your photography, nothing is more important than offering a high-quality product, and when you sell photos online, you have the opportunity to create a truly unique and exclusive experience for your clients. Remember that your product is more than just a photo or a print, but the entire experience you provide for your clients.

With Quick Shop, you can offer your clients the ability to purchase the most popular products with just one click. This makes it easy for them to get the prints they want without having to search through your entire store.

And when you sell your work as part of a high-end experience, you can be sure that your clients will get the best possible product. By offering a unique and exclusive experience, you’ll be able to stand out from the competition and attract the best clients.

Contributor

  • 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 January 31, 2023 at 11:59 p.m. PST. Promotional discount off the subscription price of a new Portfolio, PortfolioPlus or 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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