Photography Website Music and Why it Hurts Your Business

Are you on the search for music for your photography website? If you are, then read this article first as you may be shooting yourself in the foot. As you are probably aware, many photography website templates, especially the flash ones, will let you upload music files that will play automatically when a visitor opens the page. While this may seem like a good idea to you, it is best to consider the effect that this may have as it is probably not what you intended.

Granted you probably will upload your favorite tunes that coincide with the type of photography that you produce. Your hope is that it will set the mood for the viewing pleasure of the audience and help them feel more connected to you.

In actuality, photography website music will probably just annoy, irritate and frustrate your visitors more than anything. Don’t believe me? Here is why…

Differing Musical Tastes

Music taste is as varied as snowflakes. So what may seem wonderful to you may seem awful to your visitor. (Do you like what your kids listen to?) Consider all the different types of music out there from Rock and Roll, Pop, Jazz, Hip Hop, to Country. Which of these genres is your favorite? Now what are the chances that your visitors will like the same music? Well the chances are pretty low. Don’t turn them off to your photography just because of differing musical tastes.

Silence is Bliss

Right now if you are reading this article you are on the internet. Now what else are you doing besides reading this article? Perhaps you are in an office with other co-workers? Perhaps you are on your couch with your spouse watching TV? Perhaps you have the radio on or you are listening to your favorite CD. Chances are that there is something going on that would be interrupted or disturbed by a sudden and unwelcome intrusion of music. What if a song started playing right now? What would your initial reaction be? If you are like most people, you would immediately reach for the mute button on your speakers or computer. You might even leave this page to quell the nose. This is a natural reflex. Don’t make your website visitors do the same thing!

Play It and Pay

Another item to consider is the legality of placing music on your website. If you bought your favorite song from Itunes and are posting it on your site, then you are breaking the law. That is because you bought the right to use the music for your own use, but not to share it with other people. You would need a special license with the right to share with the general public. The way to get around this is to purchase royalty free music that does not have the same limitations. You can find this type of music online by doing a Google search, but you won’t find your latest top 40 songs.

The Upside of Music to Sell Your Photography

So is it all bad? Well to be honest, it is mostly bad. But, if your visitor does like your music and doesn’t have anything else going on, then they may enjoy listening while they browse your picture gallery. Will this make it more likely that they will book a session? I have no proof of that, but it is possible. Additionally, you may find it useful to play soothing music during a proofing session in your studio. This is a much more controlled environment and you know that you have your clients full attention.

The Bottom Line

Well in conclusion you can see that my recommendation is to not put music on your photography business website. I believe that the cons outweigh any possible upside. If you must put music on, then don’t make it play automatically. Let them choose to turn it on if they want to. There is just too much of a downside in lost or annoyed visitors to justify the few positive reactions that you may receive.

Photography Website How to For the Professional Photographer

Are you a photographer interested in obtaining new clients through the use of an effective internet marketing campaign? If so then you will need a website that produces results in your marketing efforts. This is not as hard as it seems, but is often not achieved by professional photographers. That is because they usually want a site that looks great design wise, but pay little attention to the marketing aspect.

If you are interested in a website for your business the question arises is how do you get it made? Can you do it yourself or should you hire someone to do it for you. It can be surprisingly simple these days to build your own website. Even with no experience in web design there are plenty of companies around with pre-built websites that you can use to get established online. However, they do not always have the best marketing in mind. Alternately, you could hire a web design expert to build your site. This will probably cost in the neighborhood of$1000 or more for a basic site. If you have the money this may seem like the perfect option but even though they are an expert in web design, they may not be expert marketers. It is a good idea to review some of their work to determine how effective their designs are for marketing purposes.

Some things to look for in any photography website are the following:

Is it professional in appearance? Avoid templates or sites that look like they were done by your nephew as part of his high school computer course. This screams amateur to your potential clients.
Is it low-maintenance? You should be able to add content quickly and easily without any need for special software such as FTP programs or web design software.
What is the monthly cost? Webhosting is extremely cheap these days. Good webhosts offer plans for less than $10.00 per month that should satisfy all of your needs. Don’t get suckered into paying $50.00 or more a month.
Does each page have a call to action? Each page on your site should have a specific purpose. That could be to get the visitor to call you, send you their email or order prints. Make sure the call to action is plainly visible.
Is it user friendly? Too often photographers get carried away with websites that contain fancy special effects that do more harm than good. If your visitors have to sit through endless animations or loading screens, they will likely leave. Also, a caution on adding music. What may sound good to you will likely turn your visitors off when it suddenly plays unexpectedly on their computer.
Is it search engine optimized? Ranking high in the search engines is key to bringing in new customers via the internet. Does each page have a keyword targeted that will bring in new clients to your business?

If your website follows the above guidelines, it is likely that you will be receiving new clientele on a daily basis from your website. If you believe that your website needs work, I highly encourage you to sign up for my free mini-course on the link below to receive more information on building an effective photography business website.