How I Built A Website In 3 Days
I had avoided ordering new business cards for my photography business for years! My excuse, I didn't have a website or a solid web presence. This wasn't for lack of trying. Over the last ten years, I've launched multiple versions of my wedding website and interviewed and hired numerous web developers who were at my price point to help me launch my dream site.
I shelled out thousands of dollars for a custom site, but at the end of the day, I didn't feel like the designs lived and breathed my brand. So I never went live. And I did what I sometimes do best and got stuck. Like really stuck. Crawl into a hole and bury your face in the mire kind of stuck. And so did my business. I found myself booking freelance work for other photographer's weddings instead of booking my own. When people would ask for a business card or website, I'd say "I'm rebranding" or "My website's not up cause it's getting an overhaul" and then direct them to my facebook page or Instagram handle. I felt defeated and like a total fraud. And I went through the endless struggle that maybe you find yourself in, where I started doubting my abilities and not valuing my work.
Every one was hailing WordPress, and while I consider myself pretty tenacious, I found the learning curve was so steep. I am not and have never considered myself a technical person. Everything I have learned about photography, I have taught myself. Photoshop, Lightroom, camera settings, posing-all of it. The mechanical parts of photography were tough for me to learn. Setting up off camera flash for a wedding reception was something that took me a good year to really feel comfortable with. Naturally, this made navigating through WordPress difficult for me. I knew I could teach myself, but I didn't know if I had the time or wanted to expend so much of my resourcefulness learning how to get it started.
So within the past two months, I did something crazy. I fired the website designer I was working with and opted to make the giant leap over to Squarespace. Squarespace is the platform I use for both my wedding website and my personal brand website, and I couldn't be happier with my decision! Squarespace is so easy to use, their free templates, and drop and drag features made designing new features and adding new content so incredibly easy! Within three days, I had planned, built and rebranded my entire business and before their 14 day trial period was finished I was hitting the publish button on my site. I couldn't believe how effortless the platform made translating my vision and my brand to the world wide web.
I personally purchased a Squarespace template from Golivehq, but there are tons of free templates you can use to get rocking right away! What I loved about Golivehq was how tactile they made building a website for someone who is visual and creative. Their motto "We'll help you knock out a knockout website (like, yesterday) & start killing it online" is seriously no joke! The tutorials walked me through step by step how to create the website exactly like the demo (stock photos included), and once I'd gotten the basics down I was able to customize with confidence!
Now, instead of having to call up a web designer every time I notice a typo, or want to change out an image, I'm able to have control over those edits with a few simple strokes of a mouse. Squarespace makes everything from purchasing a domain, to set up, to hosting so painless! I literally did it over a free weekend in my pajamas coffee in hand!
I have never felt more aligned with my brand or more in control of my business and less intimidated by a website as Squarespace and Golivehq have made the process.
Maybe it's been a while since you updated your web portfolio, maybe your website has broken links or designs from the dial-up days or perhaps you don't even have an online home yet for your brand to call it's own. If it's time for you to make a leap and carve out your own slice of the worldwide web, I strongly suggest you hop on over to square space and check out their amazing features and Golivehq for some awesome templates and ideas!