Mobile tools for the wedding photographer
4 Getting down to business
Getting down to business
While some wedding photographers don’t want to be bothered with after sales or creating albums for their clients and simply turn over the digital files to the bride and groom, most wedding photographers deliver a full package — from pre-planning through delivering prints, albums and other products for the couple and their family.
In addition to presenting the wedding images with a portfolio app, there are other tools that help clients select prints for their home. There are a few programs that allow the photographer to virtually display different size prints so clients can visualize how a print (or prints) will look in their home.
Shoot & Sell
Shoot & Sell is designed to help sell wall art to your clients as you help them visualize your work hanging on their walls (either using an actual photo of their living room, or a stock photography example). Available for iOS and Android, Shoot & Sell, and its desktop equivalents, were developed by Ariana Falerni, a child and family portrait photographer.
Shoot & Sell comes with several stock room backgrounds to use when creating sample displays, or you can import a photo of your clients' home. You can start with the multi-image canvas templates provided, or create your own arrangements, and add frames and mats as well. Your images can be imported from your device, Dropbox and Flickr. Layout designs can be shared by email, Flickr, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Dropbox or your device. While Shoot & Sell is a solid app at $79.99, be sure to check out Preveal, too.
Also check out:
Preveal, $75 with $35 in-app Design Aglow Inspire guides, for iPad only; iOS 5.1 or later (FB sharing requires iOS 6, which doesn’t work on original iPad)
Remote Ordering and Order Tracking Apps
Once your clients have selected their images, it’s time to order prints and photo products. When you’re with a client away from your studio (and your computer), remote ordering is convenient and can fill a gap when you want to close the sale but don’t necessarily have access to your desktop ordering system.
Visit your favorite lab's site to see if they have a mobile ROES (Remote Order Entry System). If you don't have a lab, Bay Photo (U.S.) and Pikto (Canada) both offer ROES apps on iTunes: Bay ROES or Pikto. If metal prints are your thing, HD Metal Prints has its own iOS remote ordering app.
Nations Photo Lab offers web-based ordering, in addition to its desktop ROES system, so as long as you have an Internet connection, you can easily order prints and specialty products from the U.S.-based lab.
Another popular U.S.-based lab, White House Custom Color, doesn’t have an ROES app (only an ROES for your computer) but has a useful tracking app for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad that allows you to track your orders, check status and pricing and access help. You need an account to use the app, of course, but that’s easy enough to set up.
All apps are free, compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch and require iOS 5.0 or later.
Collecting payment can be a challenge when you’re on the road but there are apps that, although fee-based, allow your clients to pay for their orders on the spot.
Maybe you don’t have a credit card payment system in place or are looking for a new method to process sales — PayPal Here may provide a good option for your business. It’s a free app for iOS and Android smartphones and works on the iPad as well. Client credit card numbers can be entered manually, by “scanning” the card with your mobile device’s camera or by swiping the card through the free thumb-sized card reader.
PayPal payments are accepted as well, although your client will need the free PayPal app for iOS, Android or Windows Phone. The system is set up so you can send electronic invoices and record check and cash payments, too. It’s best to go with the swipe device or PayPal payments for the lower 2.70% fee (for the U.S.); manual entries or scans run 3.50% plus $0.15 per charge. A similar service is offered by Square, so take a look at both options and compare details, including deposit times and restrictions.