Friday, April 9, 2010

Creative Motion Design

It's a cold hard fact ~ If you have a business you need a professional website.

Earlier this year I spent a lot of time researching "website sites" trying to decide which one was best for my business, Inspired by christy.  There's sooooo many good ones and I was a bit overwhelmed with the amount of sites tailored just for photographers.

I had already set up a site on that was free, then upgraded to the $10 per month option to get the white branding bar off my site.  The Wix site was perfect for an inexpensive option but I just couldn't set it up like I wanted.  The interface was confusing to me but if you can figure it out I think it's an excellent option to start a website without a large financial commitment.

I ended up choosing Creative Motion Design for my new site and so far I really love it.  If you're in need of a new site I highly recommend this company.  I'll tell what I like the best about CMD...

I'm working on a budget.  And although CMD isn't the cheapest, the price was reasonable for what I get with my site.  They often have 25% off selected templates and I bought the Armande template when it was on sale.  The hosting is $100 per year so I spent $321 total for the site and one year of hosting.  I think they have several of their templates on sale now if you want to take a look~

Proofing Cart
I really wanted a professional proofing cart that was attached to my site.  This not only gets my clients on the site again but also most people will tell their friends and family to take a look at their proofs.  

You know how women are...gotta call up their girlfriends and their mommas to check out their new pics!  

I also like the proofing cart because I'm in control of the size they're viewing their images at for the first time.   You can also have clients order prints and pay thru the proofing cart but I haven't set that up yet.  For now, I'd rather speak to them personally and give my recommendations for prints rather than leave them on their own.  

The main page opens to one single photo of my choice then they click thru to their gallery.  It looks like this...

Once the client is here they click the first thumbnail to see each image at the size I've put it to.  It's pretty easy for people to understand and I hear they're updating their proofing gallery soon to include lots more perks....can't wait!

Simple Interface
Before I committed to this site I downloaded the FREE 10 day trial...this is a great feature!  I was so surprised at how simple the site is to work in.  Here's a screenshot of the main page of my interface...'s soooo simple....and all updates are immediately active just like a blog.  There's no obligation if you do the trial but if you do decide to purchase the template all your trial info is saved and you don't have to start over.  Cool~

Customer Service 
I've admitted before, I'm a stalker.  These tendencies also carry over in the customer service realms of my world ~ if I have a question I will do the live chat while dialing the 800 # and emailing tech support all at the same time!  

CMD was *fabulous* in quickly responding to my emails and were very helpful on the phone.  They even extended my trial period when I had more questions for them.  I've read several reviews on all the template sites and there was good and bad about all of them.  But my experience with CMD has been superior thru the whole process and I can't say enough good things.

There's plenty more to rave about but I'm sure you get the point by now~  A few things I don't like are the small logo placement and the black text screens.  The text screen color can be changed for a small fee but it's not a priority for me right now.

Now, as usual, I would like your help with a few finishing touches on my's my dilemmas ~

1.  Music or no music?  ...I just can't decide...I picked some pretty radical music to add but not sure it's jivin' with me...your opinion is welcome!

2.  I'm going to add a page that shows photos of a few of the specialty products I offer such as Accordion Brag Books, Albums, Metal Prints...should I add pricing info for the products or save that for interested parties only? 

Check out my site at and then share with me your opinions...good or bad...I can take it!


chantena said...

another place for good websites is 125 start up fee and 15 permonth after that with over 60+ template to choose from and change to when ever you want at no extra charge :-)........if you decide to change ever again check them out.

Astaryth said...

No Music! LOL! I don't know about other people, but I hate when I click thru and there is music. Why? because I almost always have music playing on my computer (or MP3 player) while I am surfing, or I am sitting in the living room and the TV is on. Music from a website often is jarring, not only for me, but if I am in the living room with the TV on and the hubs is watching that, all of a sudden music blaring out of my laptop is disturbing to him also.

That is only my personal opinion, and others may love music on websites *shrug*

The pricing? I would probably not list them and then give them a price if they are interested, or you could do a ballpark or 'starting at' price.

I'm going to check this site out, I'm not ready yet, but maybe in the future it sounds like what I am looking towards.

way outnumbered said...

I like the idea of "..starting at" prices...I could just give my lowest and highest...thanks for the suggestions!

Carin said...

I'll keep looking but my first suggestion... NO music Can't wait to see more though!

Patty said...

I'm actually looking for a website to host me right now, thanks for the recommendation

Peggy said...

Thanks for this post. We were all set to go with Photobiz and then started adding up all the costs - they had a set up fee and then would cost us $80+ a month for hosting and the shopping cart. We hadn't studied their pricing closely enough. We are a fairly high volume studio but still!!

Helen came across CMD and was impressed by the quality and price. We're going for the trial!

BTW - I HATE music on websites!!

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