Top 10 Photography Website Design Trends We’ll See in 2020
The requirements for a successful photography website design have never been more demanding. Your online portfolio needs to show what you can do, capture your unique style, stand out from the crowd, look good on any device, and leave a long-lasting impression. Oh, and it needs to achieve all of this within just a handful of seconds.
Easier said than done, right? Fortunately, there are several photography website design trends that can lead you in the right direction. While you don’t need to follow them all blindly, you should at least be aware of the type of content and style people are more drawn towards these days. Want to learn more? Here are the ten main photography website design trends we’ll see in 2020:
Use your best work as a homepage
Go big with media content
Keep pages to a minimum
Set up your own online store
Offer a clear mobile experience
Stick to monochrome elements
Share unique stories on a blog
Allow images to do all the talking
Treat the header as a compass
Let people choose the navigation style
01. Use your best work as a homepage
Not that long ago, it was unheard of to have a website without a “proper” homepage. This served as an introduction to your work, usually in the form of a full-screen static image paired with your name and the types of photography you specialize in. But also not that long ago, visitors were significantly more patient.
Nowadays you only have a few seconds to convince people to stay on your site. With this goal in mind, one of the main photography website design trends of 2020 reinvents the concept of the homepage, putting your best work front and center. Simply select the best examples of your work, and showcase them in a fullscreen autoplay slider or a scrolling gallery.
02. Go big with media content
While clean photography website design is still very much a thing, creators are moving away from white space in favor of larger media displays. Galleries take up most of the screen space, arranged in a masonry layout to show each image in its entirety.
You should build your online portfolio under the assumption that the vast majority of visitors will simply scroll through, without opening any images or videos. With the Wix Pro Gallery, you’ll be able to display your work in the highest quality, use autoplay videos, and ensure that people get the most out of your site regardless of how they interact with it.
03. Keep pages to a minimum
Much like the White Rabbit from Alice in Wonderland, Internet users are running from place to place, non-stop. As a result, the time spent on each website is reduced to only a few minutes, if reaching the 60 second mark at all. Within this period of time, most of them visit only the main page of your site, with the number of visitors per page decreasing as the number of pages grows.
This is why one page photography websites are on the rise. By offering all relevant content and information on a single, scrollable page, you’ll increase your chances of getting them to see all of your portfolio. On the downside, this option requires that you narrow down the amount of content displayed. If you don’t want to limit yourself to a single page, try to reduce the total amount as much as possible.
04. Set up your own online store
Like it or not, the online world currently plays a huge role in your quest to become a professional photographer. Once upon a time, you’d have had to carry a printed portfolio from studio to studio in hope of getting an internship that would help you advance in your photography career.
Nowadays, you can start a photography business by building a solid online presence and finding a way to monetize it. The most straightforward method for this is selling your photos online, both in print and digital form, as well as selling other assets such as presets.
05. Offer a clear mobile experience
It’s 2020 and we should no longer have to explain how important having a mobile-friendly photography website design is. The majority of visitors who reach your portfolio will do so from their phones, especially those who find you through social media.
In 2020, the biggest photography website design trend on mobile is to display a collapsed menu and your name at the top of the page, followed by a single-column gallery that users can easily scroll through. By adapting your portfolio’s UX in this way, you’ll ensure that mobile users get to enjoy your work as much as desktop visitors do.
06. Stick to monochrome elements
By the looks of it, choosing a color scheme for your photography website will be easier than ever in 2020. Most photographers are choosing to limit the color of their site elements to black and white, with gray tones used as accent colors. This decision goes hand-in-hand with the effort to keep visitors’ already short attention spans focused on the media content.
Those who would rather stick to color should treat this photography website design trend as a guideline, to ensure that their colors don’t clash with the images displayed. A great technique is to follow the 60-30-10 rule, which indicates that 60% of the site should be negative space, 30% your dominant color, and 10% your accent color.
07. Share unique stories on a blog
Contrary to popular belief, people are now reading more than they used to. Even if the subway is not full of people holding newspapers, the vast majority of those glued to their phones are reading something. In many cases, this reading material comes from social media, be it an interesting caption on Instagram or an article someone shared on their Twitter feed.
Writing a photography blog will help you draw the attention of this new generation of readers, hungry for easily digestible content from which they can learn new skills. Here you can share behind-the-scenes content, offer technical tips, discuss your favorite types of camera lenses, and much more. Furthermore, a blog can help you improve your website’s SEO and attract more eyes to your work.
08. Allow images to do all the talking
If an image is worth a thousand words, why not let your photography portfolio do its own talking? Photographers who choose to create a multipage website tend to do so in order to separate written text from visual content.
As a result, text is kept to a minimum on photography-focused pages, usually only including the photographer’s name, a menu, and possibly a short description of the displayed work as a whole. The bulk of the information is displayed separately, through an “About Me” section, photography services page, or dedicated blog.
09. Treat the header as a compass
The menu of your professional photographer website serves as a compass for visitors, allowing them to navigate their way through the content without missing anything. This similarity might be the main reason why photographers are choosing to set it at the top of their sites, rather than on a sidebar as we had seen in recent years.
Said compass should also let visitors quickly know where they are on the web, meaning your name should be easily distinguishable on the header. Most choose to create their own photography logos and place them in line with the menu. If you’d rather stick to a simple text element, make sure your name stands out by making it noticeably bigger and bolder than the menu items.
10. Let people choose the navigation style
By now you have probably realized that most of this year’s photography website design trends are based on the assumption that the majority of visitors will spend a short period of time browsing your portfolio. But what about those who actually decide to dedicate a significant part of their day to your work, giving it the attention it deserves?
One of the most common portfolio mistakes is to ignore the desires of part of your audience, even if they represent only a fraction of your site visitors. With this in mind, this trend aims to offer the best user experience to your most committed visitors. In addition to displaying your images in galleries, allow viewers to click on the pictures to open them in full-screen view and navigate through the content, focusing on one image at a time.
By Judit Ruiz Ricart
Editor of the Wix Photography Blog