What’s the difference between a website, a blog and a portfolio site?

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By Devon Higgins

Time to discover exactly what kind of website you should be building for your photography business

Setting up an internet presence for yourself and your business can feel overwhelming. There are so many possibilities, so many directions you could go, that it’s hard to know which path is right for your needs.

In this article, we’ll define a few basic concepts and help you determine whether you need a website, a blog or a portfolio site. That big decision will clarify many of the smaller decisions you will make later on.



The Website

A website is a general term that can mean almost any kind of site on the internet, whether it’s something as complex as Pinterest or Facebook, or just an online price list of an auto parts dealer.

In the context of a photographer, your website will be the place where people find out about you, learn how to contact you, access your price list, and view samples of your work.

Once you have set up your website, you shouldn’t need to change it too often unless you are making major changes in regards to your pricing or services that you currently offer. For the most part, your website should be your online store front, allowing people to browse and peruse your products, services and prices in order to determine if they will make a final purchase. And, just like any store, you should also have a way for people to ask you questions about your business.


The Blog

A blog is a type of content-based website. A blog could be as simple as a diary of a teenager’s travels. Or it could be as sophisticated as the New York Times, which is effectively a blog built on WordPress, the content management system that carries nearly one quarter of all the world’s websites.

The key point about a blog is that it’s easy to update, so you can keep it fresh and relevant as readers keep coming back for your latest viewpoint. The lifeblood of blogs is community and interaction: people reading what you have posted, commenting on it, and sharing it with their friends.

Affiliate marketer Reed Floren explains on his site that

“The beauty of having a blog is once you’ve set it up you can easily make changes yourself and don’t have to rely on someone with more technical skills to make changes to your site.”


The Portfolio Site

A portfolio website has one job: to showcase your work and land you your next job. Format magazine writes that 63% of the decision to hire a creative for a job comes from their portfolio.

Your portfolio needs to delight, to inspire, and to prove to potential clients that you’ve got what it takes to create the shots they need. Potential clients need to fall in love with your work via your portfolio website.


In a nutshell: Your website explains who you are, where you are, and how you do your business. Your blog proves that you’re up to date with trends and the thinking in your field of expertise, and that people trust you (via their comments and feedback on your posts). Your portfolio showcases the work that will guide clients to understand what you’re capable of and get you your next job.

Devon Higgins

Devon came to FolioWebsites with a background in digital marketing and communications. With a BA in Marketing from Michigan State University and previous experience working with both big business and non-profits, Devon brings a well-rounded perspective to the team. Outside of FolioWebsites, you can find Devon coaching and playing soccer, socializing in downtown Grand Rapids, or going on adventures throughout the great state of Michigan.

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