Set Up a Web-Based Photo Shop

LAS VEGAS -- Photographers who want to sell their work online have a new outlet. DotPhoto is launching DotPhoto Pro, an extension of its standard photo-sharing service, at the Photo Marketing Association show here this week.

DotPhoto Pro gives wedding photographers, newspapers, and other shutterbugs a simple way to display their work to their customers. Customers can search for and order prints.

DotPhoto Pro works, for the most part, just like the site's non-professional services. Signup is free, as are photo uploading, storage, and sharing. Uploaded images are organized by groups of thumbnail photos in custom albums. In fact, visually there is little to distinguish the two services. Currently, the only part of the site labeled DotPhoto Pro is a search page that lets customers search by photographer, event, or date.

Business Plan

For those who want to sell their work, DotPhoto will automatically track purchased photos, keep an account of commissions from sales, and either send the photographer a check or deposit the commission directly into a checking account. Sellers also need to provide a Tax ID or Social Security number.

Commissions are based on the price the photographer sets for their photos, less DotPhoto's standard printing fees, a 15 percent handling fee, and a 3 percent credit card fee.

Sellers can also upload simple banners for their business, and to protect their property, they can place a "proof" mark in the center of all uploaded shots. The placement and text for the watermark is fixed, but the size can be set to small, medium, or large. DotPhoto does not have the capability of adding copyright marks on ordered prints.

This service is not limited to professional or would-be professional photographers. Construction companies, sports agencies, or other businesses that accumulate large numbers of photos could find a potential after-market income from their images.

The PMA show continues through Sunday.

This story, "Set Up a Web-Based Photo Shop" was originally published by PCWorld.

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