- 4 Ways to Make It Easier for Your Clients to Pay You
- How to Get More Reviews for Your Photography Business
photo by oatawa via iStock
Building out your photography website is incredibly important. Not only do I get a ton of leads from my photography website, but it helps me to stay connected with clients I’ve worked with in the past, which means that I may be more likely to work with them again in the future.
Of course, not every photography website is built the same. If you’ve ever done a quick Yelp search of local photographers in your area in order to scope out the competition, then you’ve likely realized this quite quickly. Some photographers clearly don’t rely on their website as much as others.
I personally think this is an outdated way to view your photography website. Yes, I believe this because my photography website has helped me anecdotally, but also because the statistics back me up. Around 5% of everyone who visits your website is likely to work with you, which means that if you can get 100 people to visit your website in a week, you’ll earn 5 new clients.
One thing that has helped me to improve my conversion rate is having a live chat on my photography website. I personally think that there are too many benefits of live chat to name, but I’m going to try.
Your Clients Like It
photo by fizkes via iStock
One study done in the United Kingdom found that 41% of clients prefer to use web chat over any other form of communication when working with a new business.
A similar study done in Canada found that 73% of people who use web chat services rated their satisfaction with live chat as high and 67% of them thought it was easy to use. In comparison with other digital touch points, like a phone call or social media, only around half of people said they were satisfied or thought it was easy to use.
Nobody loves doing all of their communication digitally, but of the current options photographers have available to them, a web chat for photography websites is the most convenient, hands down.
If the ultimate goal of your photography website is to convert people who are browsing to actual buyers, then it makes the most sense to build your website for your clients.
photo by PeopleImages via iStock
My photography website is hosted on an incredibly cheap server. I basically ran the website myself for years and only recently hired help. I know the importance of having a photography website, but as a struggling photographer, I also know the importance of saving a few dollars.
It’s why I now have a live chat on my photography website. Not all live chats are built the same, but the live chat that I use through Podium allows me to collect a person’s information, like their name and cell phone number off of the chat window. It then sends this information to me so I can continue the live chat through text with potential clients.
This is the cheapest way to convert a browser into a client. It takes less of my time, since I’m not answering my phone all day, and it also saves me money by preventing me from needing to hire someone to answer those calls or emails. The Podium live chat feature is so nice because it sends me any questions from clients so that I can reach out to them at my leisure.
It’s also one of the cheapest ways to convert a browser into a client because you aren’t forced to hire someone to answer live chat questions all day. Traditional web chats can be frustrating for this reason because so many people will just exit the window without saying anything or will get dropped due to a bad connection.
Podium prevents all these problems.
It’s Safer Than In-Person Meetings Right Now
photo by stevecoleimages via iStock
If you read a lot of customer service tips for photographers, then you know that most of them have to do with in-person meetings. A lot of photographers are really outgoing and it’s nice to put a face on a name.
The problem right now is that there’s a pandemic and it’s actually unsafe to meet with every potential client in-person. I get a lot of photography leads and if I had to meet with everyone in-person, I likely would have caught covid by now from the exposure.
In order to protect yourself and your clients, you can use a web chat.
If you opt to use Podium’s web chat, then you’re also going to be saving yourself a lot of health scares by communicating with your clients over text more often. Podium’s one-charge service allows you to send your invoices via text message to your clients. It also lets you respond to every client’s needs from the Podium platform. There’s never been a way to more easily communicate digitally.
photo by Thomas_EyeDesign via iStock
While a lot of photography website tips focus on creating a flexible experience for your clients, web chats also provide a lot of flexibility to you as a business owner.
You can respond to client questions when you have the time to, especially if you use Podium’s web chat which is really just a way to start a text message thread with potential clients.
Using a web chat also allows you to expand your business hours. Before I had a web chat, I refused to answer my phone after 5pm because I was trying to maintain some semblance of work-life balance. But, now that I use Podium’s web chat service, I can respond to people much later at night because it isn’t as much of a disruption as answering a phone call.
Having more expansive business hours will also make your business look more appealing than other photography businesses in your area.
If one photographer only works until 5pm, but another will take your question when you’re panicking about your last minute elopement at 11pm, you can guess which photographer will get your business.
I do truly believe that a Podium web chat will help you to get and retain more clients, but I’m also hyping them up because Podium is currently doing a free trial of its software. So, unlike other web chat services, you can use it first before you decide whether or not it will work for your photography business in the long term.