WIX + Instaproofs = A Solution
WIX offers a marvelous platform for developing a beautiful website. Their site creation interface is the best I have encountered (and I have tested LOADS of them). The interface is clean, works well and offers a ton of options and add-ons allowing you to create the site of your dreams. I have found however, for my own particular business, that it has one fatal flaw that has caused me to investigate DOZENS of other platforms to find a solution that works for me. If you are a photographer who wants to sell image prints online, WIX completely lacks a solution for you to self-fulfill your orders. WIX stores is virtually useless for this function, and the WIX Art Store, while it offers beautiful gallery and shopping cart designs requires your orders to be printed and shipped by a second rate lab that you have no control over and that makes it's money on your hard work. BAD CHOICE! I work hard to create my images, I want to print and sell them myself, but I don't have that option with WIX.
After months of research, testing and deliberation I finally settled on a two prong solution until something better comes along -- WIX for my basic website and Instaproofs for hosting and selling my photos. Most client gallery sites like Instaproofs are geared toward wedding, portrait and event photographers. NO ONE creates a really good platform for art, travel, landscape and other non-event based photographers; but with work, planning and help from their tech support people, Instaproofs can be massaged into a functional option. The company has made tremendous strides in the past year to develop a useful gallery and eCommerce product for selling your photographs online. Like Shootproof, it lacks true website functionality beyond it's photographic gallery functions (hence, the need to combine it with WIX), but unlike Shootproof and similar products, it offers lovely gallery layouts with customization options that allow you meld it with your website. It's even reasonably priced with account options ranging from free to $50/month for a terabyte of storage (the $10 per month plan suits my needs just fine).
So if you are in the market for a photo sales and website solution, check out these two products; and if you are a photographer in the northern Arizona area and need help getting your website up and running, we can help you with that. After all, geek and artist don't often come in a single package.
P.S. In upcoming posts I will be writing reviews of the dozens of photography platforms that I tested over a six month period in the hopes of finding an all-in-one solution for an eCommerce photography website. If you have any platform suggestions of your own, I'm happy to add them to my testing and review project. Hope to hear from you ...