I've looked at 8-10 builders, signed up for all the free accounts. I like Squarespace the best. It's cheaper than WIX for the same (some better) features.
Problem is... the first time my husband tried to access Squarespace he got an error message saying the site was down. He tried a couple of more times and could never get in.... I never had that problem.
Is anyone using Squarespace and what are your thoughts?
I also found the link to IndieMade on this forum. It looks really nice and seems to be comparable to Squaresqace. The price is between Squarespace and Wix.
Thoughts on Indiemade?
I'm not looking at the top packages, 1 step down.
update 4/24/18 We chose Wix and set up a site last year. Our shopping cart is through Square. They provide a free cart and processing is inexpensive. We couldn't rationalize the additional shopping/cart expense until we have enough web orders to make it worth while. We've had 1 online order.... which I'm ok with. I hate fulfilling web orders...
You might wanna check out the hPage Website Builder. They are fairly new I think, and I just created my website with them. They're pretty affordable and sites are SEO optimized which is more important for me. There's also a free package and their paid package is 4.99 euros a month.
Never had trouble with them and I like that they're quite easy to use.
This is really great information. I appreciate you all sharing your ideas on this topic. I was surprised to not see anyone list Smug Mug as a web site source. I have had my site hosted there for some time and have always found that the commerce part was very simple. I don't have to ship anything. I do however have to pay for that convenience. My wonderful lady and I have talked about doing something else to lower those costs while still having the simple commerce functionality. Perhaps utilizing the pay pal and having the ability to still use cards could be the best option in that respect. While I have not updated this years shows yet because that can be a pain as Smug Mug does not have blogging capability, I would like to have a hosted site that has all the features of my current site & blogging abilities. Any additional thoughts on that would be helpful.
Chuck, I looked at your web site, and with all the inventory on display, migrating could be a long process. Weebly is a hosting firm with good visually oriented templates and e-commerce and it includes a blogging option. It also lets you upload as many as 50 images at a time into a gallery.
I would recommend you get a web site professional to help you with the migration. Having someone with prior experience with the platform as a guide could save you a lot of work and aggravation.
I would not use smug mug. every time I go to a photographer website and it is smug mug, my corporate work computer blocks it. For some reason, many corporate filters will not allow SmugMug. So, you are limiting your audience.
Sorry David! I missed that you had mentioned Smug Mug.
:-) They had some beautiful layouts, but I couldn't handle the CSS and such to get what I wanted.
I was with Smugmug years back. I moved to Zenfolio for several years because it was easier to use. I no longer do fairs and am using my web presence more as a portfolio. I put together a Wix site that was cheaper and very easy to lay out. Went with the template you'll see on the link because it showed full images on mobile, as opposed to a cropped version, which was important to me. Some may like the open space on desktops and others may not. I find most traffic coming from mobile, so that's where I put my focus. I'm sure other hosts have the same options for mobile display. All thoughts on my approach are appreciated.
Thanks David. We decided on Wix. It seem to have the display for art. And, I like that it can be optimized for mobile viewing like you said.
Back in Oct 2017, I tried Squarespace, Zenfolio, WIX, and Photoshelter. I used all of them for the time of their respective trial periods (usually 2to4 weeks) I built my site on all of them. I found WIX to have the best value for the money and the most flexible in achieving a look I was happy with. I intended to do e-commerce and also found WIX to have the lowest commision rate for sales. In the end, WIX was the cheapest and the best for my needs, great combination.
I am currently working on my site again to focus it's attention more on just my fine art photography. It will be done in a couple of weeks. But for now here is what it looks like: