If you have been a professional photographer for some years then the importance of creating photography packages will certainly not be lost on you. Most clients usually only have a vague idea of what they want. They are not too sure of the technicalities and what to expect. Creating organized photo packages help your clients in figuring out the specifics of deliverables.
In addition to this, having clearly defined photography packages is also beneficial to you as a photographer because it helps you be upfront and clear about the scope of your services and prices, right from the beginning. This reduces the scope for misunderstandings and ensures that the client cannot demand free extras or add-ons later which is a problem a lot of newbie photographers may have to deal with.
But creating photography packages is not always easy. Even seasoned photographers can sometimes struggle with the details of their photo packages. What do you include in a photography package? How many photo packages are ideal? How do you price photography packages? If these are some of the questions that you are struggling with then this guide is sure to help! Let us walk you through!
Understanding your clientele and their needs
The first step to creating a good photography package is understanding the needs of your clients. Different people have different needs and expectations from their photo sessions.
If you are located in a major city then you are likely to get all kinds of clients with different budgets. In this case, it can be helpful to choose a specific niche and a particular kind of clientele and cater your packages accordingly. For example, when creating wedding photography packages, you can try to cater your services either specifically for big budget weddings or for small weddings and elopements. Focusing on one kind of clientele gives you the freedom to customize your photography packages specifically for their needs and tastes. If you want to learn more than just how to create wedding photography packages here are some tips on how to grow your wedding photography business.
If you have been working as a photographer for some time then you likely have a fair idea of what your clientele is usually looking for. With experience you can slowly figure out what kind of photographs the people in your area are usually interested in, what kind of photographs look good in albums, how many images you can take and process in a reasonable amount of time and what kind of add-ons may be valuable.
However, always remember that each client is unique and different people have different needs and requirements.
Make sure that you stagger your photography packages to cater to different budgets and include options for add-ons to maintain some flexibility.
If you are relatively new to the game then researching your peers can be extremely helpful to start with. Checking out and understanding how other photographers in your area and niche set up their photography packages can give you a hint as to the industry standard for prices and other details. It can also help you identify gaps in the other available photography packages in the market where you can come in and offer something unique and innovative. This guide on how to start your photography business may also be useful for you if you are a beginner photographer.
Do check out these articles
- Photography Pricing Guide - How much do Photographers make in 2023?
- How to Become a Professional Photographer - A Complete Guide
- 25+ Photography Tips for Beginners
- How to become a successful freelance photographer
- How to Grow Your Wedding Photography Business - Best 17 Tips
- Commercial Photography - A Complete Guide
- The Ultimate Guide to Freelance Photography
Here are 6 top tips to creating the right photography packages:
- Organization is key
- Think about each photography package as an individual project
- Stagger the pricing of your photography packages
- Include add-ons for further customization of photography packages
- Maintain transparency in terms of prices and services
- Create a photography portfolio website
Organization is key
Your photography packages are meant to help your clients in understanding your services better. It is essential to make sure that your photography packages are written and displayed in an organized, legible and easily understandable manner. Cluttered or overcrowded looking photography packages will only serve to confuse your clients and may even cause misunderstandings later on which can cost you money. You want to retain your clients so that they keep coming back to you for all the major events in their life that require a photoshoot. Communication is key to building customer relationships and loyalty. This guide to customer retention is sure to be a helpful read if you want to learn more ways to ensure your clients stay loyal to you.
It is a good idea to organize your photo packages into sections, according to genre and payment scale. For example, if you offer wedding photography packages, senior portrait packages and family photo packages then you should ideally create separate packages for all three of these genres. Try and name your photography packages to properly differentiate them. Photography package names help with branding as well as organization.
In addition, you should further subdivide your photography packages by price tier. You should try to create at least one affordable photography package, one mid-tier package and one premium or luxe package. This makes sure that you can cater to a wide range of clients and also communicate your services and charges efficiently and clearly to everyone.
Think about each photography package as an individual product
As a photographer, you are selling your services to your clients. Unlike physical commodities, services can be a relatively vague sales category. Photography packages can take this otherwise vague sales category and turn it into a much more tangible product. This helps you, the photographer, clarify what it is exactly that you are selling, and helps the client know what they are specifically paying for.
Most clients don’t have an exact idea of what they want from a photo session or what to expect. This is especially true if you are working with non-professional clients like families, couples etc. Let us take a look at Stephanie Anne Rodriguez's photography portfolio website and how she sets up her photography packages for her clients.
Her photography package names are organized according to different genres and the different kinds of clients that each of these genres usually attracts. She clarifies how long the session will be, how much it normally costs, how many photos she will provide and what the clients can expect from the experience of the photoshoot in general. This not only clarifies and simplifies the whole experience of the photoshoot for both Stephanie and her clients, but it also helps her clients decide which package they want to buy more easily and quickly. The packages are not vague services but tangible products.
By providing your clients with a tangible, organized, clearly priced photography package, you can help them understand the services that you can reasonably provide, exactly how many photos they should expect and how much it will cost them. You can also offer add ons at extra cost, to make sure you can address your clients’ individual needs.
Stagger the pricing of your photography packages
Staggering the prices of your photo packages helps you appeal to a wider clientele with different budgets. Some people like to go all out and include all the bells and whistles for their photoshoots while some other clients may prefer something a little more understated. As a photographer and a business person, you need to be able to cater to the different needs of different clients.
Most photographers like to offer three different pricing tiers for each genre of photography they offer. A low priced, affordable package, a mid-tier package and a higher-priced, premium package are common. In addition to your standard packages, you can have options for add-ons and customizations at extra charge. You can also have a la carte pricing for clients who don’t need a full package.
Take a look at Pierre De Bellot’s photography portfolio website for example. Pierre staggers the prices of his newborn photography packages offering services that range from $500 to $1100. This allows his clients to pick the package that is the best value for them depending on the budget and services offered.
Depending on the genre of photography, you can also offer combo packages. For example, if you are a wedding photographer, you can offer a combo wedding photography and videography package while also offering a simple wedding photography package for more budget-conscious clients who may want only photography and no videography. If you want some more detailed guidance on wedding photography pricing and how to create wedding photography packages, then this guide to pricing in wedding photography may be helpful for you!
Include add-ons for further customization of photography packages
We have talked about all the ways in which photography packages can help you effectively market and sell your services as a photographer. However, one of the drawbacks of photography packages is that they may appear a little too restrictive to some clients. This is where add-ons can help you out.
Add-ons are basically extra services that your clients can add to the main package. Most add-ons offered by photographers are fairly simple, for example, a framed keepsake or a few extra high-quality prints. You can also offer your clients exclusive access to a personalized client gallery or personalized mobile gallery apps as bonus add-ons. If you are seasoned in the photography business, you can also offer more advanced add-ons.
For example, let us take a look at photographer Jada Carpenter’s photography portfolio website.
As a seasoned photographer with 12 years of experience, Jada is more comfortable with offering more specialized and customizable photo sessions. Since add-ons and customizations can cause the pricing of packages to vary significantly, Jada doesn’t mention an exact cost but does include a minimum price to ensure clarity. She also mentions the kind of add-ons and customizations that she commonly offers. For clients looking for something fairly specific and beyond the scope of a package, Jada offers custom speciality shoots.
It is good to have predefined add-ons because it gives you the option to expand your packages to suit your clients' needs while also ensuring you don’t end up overburdened with extra requests without proper pay.
Maintain transparency in terms of prices and services
The main purpose behind using photography packages is to ensure clarity. You want your clients to know exactly what you are offering and what they can expect to pay for it. Hidden charges and unclear pricing can hinder that. More than that, it can harm the trust between you and your client which is not good for the credibility of your photography business. A lot of photographers, especially wedding and event photographers rely on word of mouth and testimonials for marketing. Bad publicity is bad business, especially when you work in a smaller town or in a rural area where word spreads fast.
Be transparent with your prices. It may not always be possible to have exact pricing available on your website because each photoshoot is different and may require different pricing. However, once you've had a meeting or consultation with your clients and figured out what they need, try to give them a proper breakdown of costs. Let them know how many pictures they can expect at the end of their session, how long the session will last and what are the services that they will be paying for.
Christina Wilkens's photography portfolio website's photography portfolio website includes a section describing how it all works. She explains her photography packages, what they entail, the turnaround time, as well as the payment methods, accepted. Additionally, Christina also talks about her photography philosophy and the idea behind the photographs she takes. She dedicates a separate page for each of her photography packages and lists the services included with each package in an easy read and understand list form. This further helps with transparency.
It also helps to communicate with the clients about their expectations. If they want customizations that go beyond the package or the add-ons, make sure you talk about that. If you agree to such customizations, discuss the charges as well. Communicate openly with your clients about your policies for last-minute customizations and changes. This ensures both transparency and helps you protect yourself. Having a photography insurance from companies like Full Frame or PPA offers professional photographers a variety of insurance including camera equipment, professional liability insurance, omissions coverage, unlimited additional insureds, and general liability insurance.If you want to know more, do read this guide to photographer’s insurance!
Create a photography portfolio website
When you are thinking about going to a restaurant what is one of the first things you do? You probably do an internet search for some of the best restaurants in your area, check out some reviews and, most importantly, you take a look at the menus to see if the restaurant you are looking at has the kind of food that you like and if the prices are appropriate for your budget. Similarly when potential clients are looking for a photographer for their photoshoot, they are likely to do an internet search to check out the various photographers available in their area and the kind of photography packages they offer.
Creating a photography website gives you a platform to advertise yourself and your services. It also makes sure that when a potential client searches Google for “photographers in my area” or “photography packages in my area”, your website is referred to them. With this, they can take a look at your pricing plans and photography packages and contact you directly. Search engine marketing and SEO is an incredibly cost-efficient and fruitful marketing strategy for small businesses. This guide on SEO for photographers and creatives is really handy if you want to learn more about search engine optimization and how it can help your photography career.
With Pixpa, creating your photography website is easy. You can set up your photography portfolio, market and promote your work, sell prints, digital downloads and much more. Pixpa also comes with a range of fully-customizable, professional photography portfolio templates. The simple but powerful visual editor and drag and drop page builder helps you customize your chosen template easily and without touching a single line of code. Check out some of these amazing photography websites built on Pixpa for inspiration! If you are still not convinced, here are 25 top reasons why Pixpa is the perfect photography website builder!
How to set up your photography packages?
We have talked about some basic tips and tricks to keep in mind but how to create a photography package in the first place? What kind of packages should you have? What are the types of photography package names that you can use for better sales and marketing? Also, how many photo packages are ideal? We will try to simplify all of this to show you some examples of how you can set up your photography packages.
Types of photography packages
The types of photography packages you offer will most often depend on the kind of genres you specialize in, the kind of budget your clients usually have and the kind of photography that is most in-demand in your area. Some common types of photography packages include:
- Wedding photography packages for couples getting married. Sometimes photographers also offer combined wedding photography and videography packages.
- Engagement photography packages or couple photo packages for couples.
- Senior portrait photo packages for high school seniors who are getting ready to graduate.
- Family photo packages for families.
- Maternity photoshoot packages for expectant mothers.
- Newborn photography packages for new parents looking for keepsake photographs of their infant while he or she is still little.
- Portrait photography or headshot packages for individuals either for personal or professional use.
- Pet photography packages for animals and pets.
You certainly don’t need to offer every kind of photography package under the sun. However, it is a good idea to have a fairly varied selection in order to attract a wider demographic of clients.
Take a look at photographer Sydney Barkdull’s photography website for example. Sydney offers a variety of different options for her photography packages. These include wedding packages, pregnancy packages, graduation packages and more. She also offers one-day sessions for clients who may not want a full-fledged package but something more low key. This helps her cater to a wide range of clients and work in different genres.
What is the ideal number of packages you should offer?
Choose 2-3 photography genres that you want to work with and then create up to 3-4 tiered packages for each category.
For example, if you have the expertise as a portrait photographer, you may offer packages for headshots and senior portrait packages. For your headshots package, you can offer three different pricing tiers, an affordable one, a mid-tier one and a luxe one with all the bells and whistles. This makes sure that you are appealing to the widest possible demographic of clients who are looking for headshots. You should do the same for your senior portrait packages. So all in all you will end up with a total of 6 packages under two different photography categories.
Keep in mind that too many packages can get confusing really quickly. So if you work in multiple categories of photography then what you can do is list your packages separately according to a category like Organic Aperture does. They have first divided their packages into categories, including portrait packages, senior packages and lifestyle packages. Then, they have further subdivided each category into smaller packages according to the price and scope of the services offered. They offer a total of 11 packages.
Another alternative, which may work better for you if you want to keep your packages more minimalist and organized, is to offer a limited selection of packages but more options in the form of add-ons. The list of add-ons that can be tacked on to the packages to expand their scope and meet the clients’ requirements.
What should a photography package include?
A photography package should include a set amount of pictures, a specified timeframe for delivery of the edited final photos, information about the length of the photo sessions, and services included.
The number of photos you deliver for each package will depend in part on the length of the session as well as the pricing of the package itself. For example, for sessions that are less than 1 hour or priced under $100, you should limit the number of edited photos you deliver to under 10. We will talk about this in more detail in the section on how to price photography packages.
The length of the sessions can be anywhere from around 30-40 minutes for a headshots only session to full-day packages which are common for wedding photography packages.
The services that are included in your photography packages are not just limited to taking the photographs and editing them, you can also offer outfit suggestions, social media ready photographs, access to client galleries and mobile gallery apps, photograph prints and framed keepsakes, and more.
Take a look at Illinois based Cara Anne’s photography packages to see what kind of services are generally included in a standard photography package, how long the sessions are and what are the extra services that can be offered.
What are some of the best templates for a photography package?
It goes without saying that you would want to display and promote your photo packages on your site in the most attractive way possible. Since this particular page on your website is supposed to be more on the informative side, it is a good idea to choose a minimalist template that avoids clutter and helps viewers focus on what is important. Minimalist websites in general are easier to navigate and look more professional and modern. If you want to know more about how minimalism can help your website check out some of the amazing minimalist websites in this article.
Take a look at Maurice Redrick’s photography package page to see how a minimalist template can help you achieve professionalism, clarity and sophistication in how you display your services. Maurice has used the template ‘Color’ from Pixpa to create a truly gorgeous, easy to navigate and modern-looking website.
Pixpa offers a range of beautiful, professional, minimalist photography website templates that can be fully customized as per your needs. With templates like ‘Glow’, ‘Scale’, ‘Burst’ and ‘Baseline’, you can create a pixel-perfect photography website to impress your clients and showcase your portfolio and packages in the best way possible.
How to price your photography packages?
The pricing for your photography packages will depend on a few factors:
- Length of the sessions
- Number of final photographs to be delivered
- Genre of photography
- Scope of the services
- Other photographers and photography services in your area with comparable expertise and services
For a more detailed look at how to price your photography services you can take a look at this guide on photography pricing. But, the basic formula that you need to remember when pricing photography packages or pricing your services, in general, is this:
Cost of running your photography business + Cost of goods + Cost of your time and labor + Profit + Taxes = Pricing
This formula will determine your base price or the minimum price for each of your photography packages. After that, you can consider the other factors mentioned above to determine the final prices. Another thing to bear in mind is that your experience level and expertise directly correlate with your pricing. If you are a seasoned and reputed photographer, you will be able to charge a higher base price as compared to someone who is just beginning their career as a photographer.
For your photography packages, the length of your sessions should be a deciding factor both in how much you should charge and how many final photos you should deliver. Shorter sessions of under an hour will likely produce less than 10 fully edited photographs and can be priced under $100. For longer sessions, lasting 2-3 hours you should be able to provide between 15-30 photographs and can charge between $200-$300.
The genre of photography also matters. Typically commercial photography and wedding photography packages can be priced at a much higher rate than other types of photography. Wedding photography package prices typically begin from around $1000 and are often full-day sessions lasting from around 5-6 hours to multi-day shoots. Combined wedding photography and videography packages may be priced higher than that. This article on getting your wedding photography prices right is sure to be of help for you if you are looking for a more thorough understanding of how wedding photography prices and packages work.
The scope of the services and add-ons are also important when determining the prices for your photography packages. The cost of your labor and equipment should always be factored in when determining the base price of your packages. Additionally, if you are offering extra prints, keepsakes or mobile gallery apps then you should charge extra for these services. You should also charge for extra time if clients want to extend the length of their sessions, or if they want more edited photographs than what is specified in the original package.
Take a look at Australian photographer Alicia Adamopoulos photography pricing. Alicia charges a separate session fee for the consultation and photoshoot and a package fee for the photographs and prints. She describes the services provided in detail and also provides a minimum spend value so that she can always make sure that she covers the basic costs of her labor, time, equipment, and taxes.
Setting the terms and conditions for your photography packages
As we mentioned in the tips section already, being transparent is extremely important when it comes to any business, especially photography. You need to be transparent not just about pricing but also about the terms and conditions of your photography packages. This is not just to maintain trust between you and your client but also to protect yourself as a photographer. Setting clear terms and conditions prevents misunderstandings and can help you clear yourself if things don’t go right.
On your photography packages page, clearly mention the base prices of your packages, the number of final edited photos you provide, the length of the sessions, services included, add-ons and the charges for the add-ons
Apart from making your terms and conditions clear on your website and on your photography packages page, it is also important to have contracts in place to protect yourself. This complete guide to photography contracts is sure to be a helpful read in that regard. In general, when you agree to a job, you should sign a contract specifying the date of the photoshoot, the names of the photographer and clients, services being offered, the responsibilities of the photographer and the clients, payments, cancellation and rescheduling policy, whether you will retain the printing rights and copyright over the images or release them to the client fully, extra services and add ons, liability limitations and other legal limitations, releases and permissions.
Also make sure to discuss the contract with your client and encourage them to read and understand it fully before signing. You want to be clear, concise and above board with regard to all technicalities before you actually arrive for the photoshoot.
Photography packages are extremely handy in uncomplicating the process of planning and booking photoshoots. This makes it extremely important to structure them right to make things easy for both you and your client. This guide was our attempt to uncomplicate the tangle of how to create photography packages for photographers. If this guide was helpful for you then you may also be interested in our ultimate guide to freelance photography and this guide to becoming a professional photographer!
When you have the perfect photography packages, you will also need the perfect photography website to display your photography packages. Lucky for you, building a photography website is easier than a breeze. Pixpa makes it easy. Create a beautiful, professional photography website without writing a single line of code! Sign up for a full-featured, 15-day free trial right now to test drive Pixpa and its platform. No credit card required for sign up and no hidden charges. Sign up now to start building your website and grow your photography business like never before!