Expert Photography provides an opportunity for people to learn about photography. Image: Kazad 2013, Laughter in the Trash Can. Photo: Kazeem Adeleke/Artcentron
WEBSITE REVIEW: Kazad explains why Expert Photography has become one of the top photography websites in such a short time [UPDATED]
BALTIMORE, MD.,—When Michel Dunlop of Income Diary started Expert Photography with his brother Josh in 2011, he wrote a long article about the process. From when they bought the name Expert Photography to buying a template from Woo Themes, and how they modified it to suit their objective, the article was clear and precise. Additionally, Dunlop wrote about how they would develop the website, generate traffic and also make money. Dunlop’s article was very insightful and revealing, especially for those that did not have deep knowledge of how to develop a website to a point where it would compete with other great sites and also make money. Concise as the article was, however, some skeptics doubted that the idea would work and contested Dunlop’s sincerity. The fact that Dunlop was very open about the secrets of how to take a website from beginning to where it becomes profitable was too true to believe. The question was “Why will Dunlop reveal all these secrets if they really work?” Three years down the line, the success of Expert Photography has proven Dunlop right and that he knew what he was talking about.
In such a short time, Expert Photography has become one of the top photography websites on the internet to visit for tutorials on photography. It has over 15,000 daily visitors and more than 2 million loyal followers. Expert Photography is also making a great impact on social media. Expert photography has 18,518 followers on Facebook, 15,046 on Twitter and 1, 915 on Pinterest.
The idea for setting up Expert Photography was a simple one. According to Josh, the motivation behind setting up the website was the painful experience of teaching himself photography. He writes “Teaching myself was a long and arduous process, as I didn’t have anyone to help guide me along the way.” It is in the effort to prevent others from going through this unnecessary grueling undertaking that Expert Photograph was set up. The objective was to provide straightforward tutorials for professional photographers and beginner photographers. Josh puts it succinctly when he wrote that the objective of Expert Photography is to “produce easy-to-understand tutorials, with lots of images and visual aids, and help amateur photographers take better photographs.”
In addition to all the activities that go on in the background that are not visible to readers, there are several reasons Expert Photography has gained so much attention in such a short time, becoming one of the top photography websites on the internet.
When the website was launched in 2011, it looked like many other photography websites. Over time, however, Expert Photograph has changed. One of the most important features of this website is its simplicity. Strangely enough, in that simplicity lies the power of the website. Expert Photograph is so deceptively simple that it is powerful. It is easy to navigate and fast loading. Visitors looking for a topic or post can easily navigate through the website to find whatever they are looking for.
The structure of the website allows visitors to see all the important stories as soon as they arrive on the site. When visitors arrive at the site, the first thing they see is the announcement for a free photography eBook. Titled Quick Tip Photography, the position of the notice for this free eBook at the top of the website is very deliberate and strategic. It is not a secret that people love free stuff, and that giving away free things drives traffic. Josh and his team know this and have effectively used this two point approach to great effect in making Expert Photography viable. Besides serving as a reward for Expert Photography’s devoted followers, the eBook give away has also helped Expert Photography generate more traffic and acquire emails as you have to leave your email address to download the book. The increase in traffic and acquisition of emails has enabled the monetization of Expert Photography
Tutorials and Photography Tips from Expert Photography
Tutorials on photography have made Expert Photography one of the top photography websites to visit on the web. Just below “Recent Blog Post” is the “Tutorial Category”. This category has helped Expert Photography generate a lot of traffic. Many of the posts in this section include topics on how to handle a camera to taking great photographs. Some of the titles include How to Hold a Camera and Take Sharper Photos, A Beginner’s Guide To Photography , A Beginner’s Guide to Composition, How to Use Leading Lines to Improve Your Composition, Tips For Great Outdoor Photography, Top 10 ‘Rules’ For Portrait Photography, How to Create Awe-Inspiring Landscape Photos – 10 Essential Tips, Top 10 Inspirational Photography Books and many others. These tutorials are well-written and in very simple language that anyone can understand. To make the tutorials even more effective, they are supported with images that illustrates problems and solutions
The Top Lists
At the end of the site is the category known as the “Most Talked About”. Under this category are titles like 20Young Photographers 2012, Top 20 Most Influential Photographer Bloggers, and 10 Embarrassing Mistakes I Made As A Beginner Photographer. Together, these articles have been shared more than 2,581 times. That these articles are the most talked about from all the materials on the website is not surprising. For many years, Dunlop has used every opportunity to talk about the importance of “Top List” for website development and traffic generation. On Income Diary, for instance, there are many posts in which Dunlop extensively discusses how to use top list to drive traffic and also monetize website.
10 Embarrassing Mistakes I Made As A Beginner Photographer is perhaps the most popular of the “Most Talked About”. It has been shared 997 times and has 47 comments. It is not unexpected that this article has generated so much interest. It is clear, concise, and informative. Written by Josh himself, the article addresses some of the mistakes amateur and beginner photographs make as they set out on their journey to becoming professional photographers, and how to prevent such mistakes. Josh also reveals how to prevent or avoid such pitfalls that he encountered. Some of the mistakes include not using flash, constantly on the wrong focus, not backing up photographs, using the wrong camera lens, using free editing software amongst several others. This post illustrates one of the ways to have a successful photography career . In this particular post, Josh presents some problems and finished with solutions.
Effective Use of Photographs and Images
Photographs and images are used to great effect on Expert Photography. Many of the photographs and images on Expert Photography are exciting, interesting, and beautiful to look at. They were no doubt carefully selected to fascinate, attract, communicate and create a visual impact on visitors to the site. Photos of beautiful women, musicians and objects are creatively cropped and strategically positioned to excite and make visitors click on posts.
Looking through the Expert Photography website, it is clear that Josh and his team have perfected a smart way to effectively use photographs and image to achieve stunning effects. Working with the notion that visitors are likely to click on posts with eye catching images that inspire curiosity, every post is accentuated with stunning photographs. For every post, there is a striking image creatively explored to lure visitors to read or browse a post.
One of the several tactical ways Josh and his team have utilized to captivate visitors and also ensure that they explore the website is to include titles of posts on photographs. This is no doubt a creative way to get visitors to spend more time on the website. Once visitors click on a photography which has the title of a post on it, they are taken to that post, which also has links to other posts. Without even knowing it, a visitor whose only intention is to look at an image has been enticed to read a post, see more stunning images, and click on more links. It is a perfect way to make visitors spend time on the site.
From the effective use of images on this site, it is clear that having a well-written article is not enough: well-selected images are also essential to creating a stunningly beautiful website. The Expert Photography website adequately highlights this point. The use of beautiful images coupled with great articles has given Expert Photography a sort of credence and quality that most websites are lacking. In addition to increase in the number of devoted followers, Expert Photography’s posts continue to be shared on social media networks. On Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, many of the posts, grow wings, soaring to great heights because of beautiful images and titles.
Expert Photography Branding
The Expert Photography logo is one the most impressive feature of the website. This is a beautiful logo creatively designed to reflect the idea of Expert photography. Composed of squares in the manner of a color wheel, the logo effectively adds to the beauty of this site. Josh and his team know this and they proudly display the logo all over the website.
The avatar of Josh holding a camera is an integral part of the branding of the Expert Photography website. The avatar presents Josh not just as a photographer but also as someone who knows about photography. Besides giving credibility to the website, the avatar presents Josh as an authority. Additionally, it shows that Josh is part of the photography world and not an outsider trying to teach photography.
Comments and Responses
Josh is very quick to respond to some of the comments from commentators on his site. Whenever readers make comments that need responding to, Josh responds to them in a timely manner. It does not matter whether they agree with him or not, Josh is always pleasant and thoughtful. He provides very useful answers as well as make suggestions about what might help the reader. Josh’s responses sometimes take visitors out of the Expert Photography website to other sites where they can find help. Evidently, for Josh, it is more important to assist visitors to Expert Photography website the best way he can even if it takes them out of his site.
Expert Photography Store
On the right side bar is the Expert Photography Store where different books on photography are sold. Although it is not clear how many books have been sold from the store, it is safe to suggest that based on traffic, Expert Photography is selling a lot of books.
There is no doubt that Expert Photography is a great website. There are so many things to love about this site. Besides some the issues that have been addressed, the Expert Photography also has a good product review category. One of the problems noticeable on the website is a broken link in the Forum Category. Three weeks ago, the link went to a site that notified visitors that it has been hacked. Even now, the link is still not working. Overall, this is an impressive website for anyone looking for tutorials on photography and a place to share ideas with professional and amateur or beginner photographers.
Expert Photography Group on Facebook.
In its effort to continue to educate people about photography, Expert Photography recently launched a photography group on Facebook. Member of the group talk about each other’s works and also participate in photography competition.
What do you think about Expert Photography? Leave your comments below. Share.