How To Get A Professional Photography Website For $38

About 95% of the time I can guess the quality of a photographer by the design of their website before the first image even loads. If you want people to take your work seriously a Flickr page isn't going to cut it. You may think that you can't afford a professional website; think again.

For the next 18 days Creative Motion Design is giving readers 60% off their already incredibly low website prices. With this discount their websites start at just $38.00. I know there are other template websites out there that have notoriously bad customer service (I've experienced it first hand) but CMD actually posts their phone number on the front of their website. Still don't believe me? Well you can test out a website completely for free by simply clicking on "free trial" by any of their sites.

We all work so hard to produce amazing images and now there is absolutely no excuse for not having a professional way to display them. Check out the video below to see how simple it is to work with their sites.

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David Strauss's picture

I just bought a website from these guys. I haven't launched it yet, but the sites are really simple to build and have a good look. What I was most impressed with though is the customer service. I called them to get some stuff straightened out and they talked me through everything with no hassles. Since, they have sent me follow up emails with customizing tips for the specific website I got. They get full stars in my book.

Patrick Hall's picture

Nice David! You will have to post the link here once it goes live. Currently my 4 websites are through another company and it takes like 3 days to hear back from them and you have to fill out a ticket form...I'm about to redesign my wedding site when I get a free day or two so I'm looking forward to dealing with CMD myself.

As much as I love flash sites (my degree is in web media, ie flash) I have come to the sad realization that HTML5 is becoming somewhat of an expectation from the web-world. The ipod/iphone/ipad revolution is certainly a driving force - even if it is just Steve Job's vendetta against Adobe. Have you found any javascript based portfolio site vendors that are to your liking?


Is this a one time fee or a yearly fee?

Patrick Hall's picture

@arnold, it's a one time fee to buy the website. However you still do have to buy hosting space through them or another company like Godaddy but I'd recommend you have hosting space anyways for uploading files to clients. CMD charges $100 a year which is nothing in the big scheme of things.

Kyle, all their sites come with a free ipad/iphone version of the site so everyone can view it on mobile devices.

Doesn't it say $100 PER YEAR on their website under prices not PER MONTH for hosting?

If I understand well, you choose a generic website template and when you want to customize it (add a logo, change the background, change the font size and color), you gotta pay for each and every mod ?

And when you're ready to go live on the web, it takes the CMD staff "a few days" to get it up ?

@PatrickHall Dude... $100 a month hosting fee? Hope thats a typo? haha

Patrick Hall's picture

@Simon, where did you get that idea? No you can log in anytime and change all of that free. The only add on for the $38 site is video and shopping get those included for the Elite sites which only cost $118 : I remember when websites this nice cost thousands of dollars. And a few days is typical, trust me, I've dealt with companies that took a week or never responded to my request to go live.

@Patrick My idea comes from here :

Yes, Patrick meant to type $100 per year. I edited his error

@kyle - The vendor does include an iphone template. However, that won't sit well with iPad users. With mobile/tablet browsers more powerful than ever, I really don't see the point of having an exclusive flash website. Using current html with javascript (not even HTML5) you can definitely recreate most of the features from a flash image gallery.

Regardless, outstanding pricing for well designed and full featured template websites.

Anyone tried to make their own javascript (jQuery!) gallery on their own? I found the "galleria" library/script to be pretty useful for just that.

I used galleria to make my site, but it will take a bit of know-how in the html/css/javascript realm to put together properly. It doesn't play very nice with IE.

With regards to CMD, it looks like a great service and a super low price, but the problem lies at it's core - flash. Like @Kyle and @Makea said, HTML 5 is the wave of the future. Flash may look great, but the reality is that it's not very SEO friendly and it's slow to load. Just my 2 cents.

hmmm.. Flash is so cool, but it's fast becoming passé.
Regarding hosting: I tried GoDaddy - they are def over subscribed and my sites loaded way slow. It's not their core business. I think they sub-contract hosting to a 3rd party. Hosting was always the weak link for me. After years of trial and error, I finally moved to <a href="" rel="nofollow">Lunar Pages</a>. They are "always up", have no bandwidth restrictions and their basic plan is $4.95. Enuff said... Oh, their support is PHENOMENAL!!

Patrick Hall's picture

@F8, strange you have had problems with godaddy. FS is actually hosted there and we have had no major problems. I'd be shocked any photographer would have enough traffic to cause bandwidth restrictions. The best thing about GD I've found is their customer service. Just like CMD, it's worth every penny to be able to call a phone number and talk to a tech within 10 mins. I can't say that for every website company I've used in the past.

I'm not disputing you Patrick... but as I remember fstoppers lost the forum database a few times, yes? I author 7+ high profile sites and I need "dial tone" service quality. What is dial tone quality, you may ask? I come form a telco background; US WEST, GTE - before it became Verizon and a few others. Our landlines were constant and transparent. Whenever a person picked up the phone, you had a "dialtone". Remember those days? No black holes, no dropped calls. We didn't have to ask "Can you hear me now?" 8^) It hust worked. That's the LOS (level of service) I need from my web host. And that's what I get from the good 'ol boys at<a href="" rel="nofollow">Lunar Pages</a>. just saying...

I have one of their websites as my own. Love the site and exceptional service :)

That's a heck of a deal.. signing up for the free trial and will go from there. Thanks for bringing this to the masses!

Patrick Hall's picture

Exactly Beach! I'm shocked by how many of our readers have amazing portfolios but then only have a flickr or deviantart account to show off their work. The free trial is actually how I first learned bout CMD myself.

Good morning all, lovely to see such a lively discussion. Thank you for your kind words and support Patrick. You have covered most of what I'm going to say, but thought I would mention it too.

The cost of our designs are normally $295 and $95 respectively for the Elite and Classic templates. They are 60% off that for fstoppers until the end of Feb (Template fees are a one-time fee). In addition our hosting is $100 per year. You can host the sites yourself, there is a one time fee of $100 for us to transfer the site to your server and to set it up there for you.

I always love FLASH/HTML debates, each team seems to defend it's corner so passionately. Given CMD's continued growth I do not believe that flash is going anywhere anytime soon, there are just things that it simply does better. The flip side is there are also things that it is not so good at;

SEO: Our HTML mirror site, splash page and BLOG tools (free with ALL designs) takes care of this issue.

Mobile and Tablet: Our HTML mirror site and mobile sites (also free with all designs) takes care of this issue.

So FLASH templates are not an issue and there really is no need for a debate, it is really just down to personal preferences, which YOU like best. If it is FLASH, come check us out, you will not find better value or support anywhere. If it is HTML, come let us change your opinion ;-) Or just watch this space, we never said we would not do HTML templates in the future.....
Kind regards

Peter Knight
Website Consultant
Creative Motion Design
+1 704 326 4544
+44 208 123 0911

Hi Simon, I understand the confusion, but this is a list of "custom design" changes that we can make to our templates. In all designs you can add/edit pages, logo, images, links etc. But in different templates you have different control over the design. For example, in our newer designs you can upload your own background images, in other designs this would have to be done by one of our designers.. Peter

@Simon Those prices are for changing aspects of the template. Most website companies don't even offer this as an option. You can make as many normal changes to your site as you want for free.

So just to check, can I buy a website from you and downloaded it, which I can then do as I wish with it (such as put it on my own server?)

I'd rather not pay for a website and then pay another $100 just for you to dump it onto my server.

Thanks for this post. Really.

This might be a reaaally stupid question,(but I new to this kind of stuff so bear with me). So does buying a domain and website mean that I get my own adress as well? Like Or is it just the hosting space and website i'm buying?

@Luke: We would be transferring the flash site, the HTML mirror site the mobile site and the CMS. It is more involved than transferring a few files. The charge is for the time it takes to prepare, transfer and install the site.

@Tom: We do not do domain names, this you would purchase through a company like The rest we woudl provide, the hosting, the website design and the email addresses, so you would just need to purchase the domain name, approx cost $12 per year.

The best argument for staying away from Adobe Flash websites - this from highly acclaimed wedding photographer David Ziser:

And while I’m commenting here, let me just say a word about Flash web sites. Don’t. Flash is a misunderstood technology that was never intended to be used on the Internet. For many years we tried to do that, but it was never destined to last because it’s simply the wrong tool for the job, for so many reasons. It’s not search engine friendly, it’s a train wreck over a slow connection, it still requires a browser plugin to view, and this is a biggie: it’s not being widely supported in the tablet market. When Apple stops supporting something, pay attention. Photographers who have Flash sites would be well advised to replace them in the near future. There are much better tools for the job and google will love you.

I wanted to chime in on the discussion. At MorePhotos ( we offer website templates in both flash and html and the customer has the choice of which to enter from your search engine friendly splash page. This way you can appease customers and the SERPS. By the way David Ziser is one of our customers and we appreciate his business very much. MorePhotos has over 200 variations of website templates, a top notch shopping cart with archiving features, digital printing lab integration with photographer choice of some of the best labs in strategic locations throughout the country and dedicated in-house technical support staff and an in-house SEO specialist - all for $49 per month! The Photographer has full control of content and meta data and can change it at any time, and we train you on the entire process.
Need more info? Give Drew a call @ 231-932-0855 X 11.

Patrick Hall's picture

Hey Drew, thanks for the option. Any chance you guys will sell a site for a one time payment? I think $49 a month isn't expensive but it does add up to about $600 a year. A lot of photographers just starting out definitely can't afford that.