Huge Benefit to user experience

Kevin PaulKevin Paul Big grinsPosts: 49Registered Users Big grins

Imagine a world where my clients can go to my smug mug website, open their gallery, and like or favorite their images. Then, I hope you are seated beause this is huge. Be able to, are you ready.... sort by their favorites!

OMG

DID YOU FALL OVER?

OK, catch your breath.

So They go through their family portraits, their wedding, the pictures of their painted big toe. They favorite their top 5. Then they can press another button and the top 5 are all next to each other in the gallery.

They can show their friends their favorites. Makes it easier for them to under and Smug Mug to take that ridiculous cut for being the middle man.

Ya I know, it kinda works in the event thing. If you want to go and make an event etc etc. But why not just a button in the gallery settings. Allow people to favorite? Little box, click yes. Damm that would be slick.

How much cooler would that be then what is there now. It's not hard, the tech already exists because you have it in the event folder. Just make a little button. DAMM! How cool would that be. I know right. AMAZING

Comments

  • leftquarkleftquark SmugMug Product Team Posts: 2,900Administrators, Vanilla Admin, SmugMug Product Team SmugMug Employee

    Hi Kevin,
    This is one of the more requested features (along with some other items related). I know you've found the Feature Request forum but for those who read this post in the future, feel free to vote here: http://feedback.smugmug.com/forums/17723-smugmug/suggestions/6460649-client-login-create-account-link-favorite-any

    SmugMug Director of Product / dGrin Afficionado
    aaron AT aaronmphotography DOT com
    Website: http://www.aaronmphotography.com
    My SmugMug CSS Customizations website: http://www.aaronmphotography.com/Customizations
  • Lille UlvenLille Ulven Lille Ulven ScandinaviaPosts: 440Registered Users Major grins

    @leftquark I just tested the link you provided in that feature request for my own page and am ending up with an error message:
    The Graphic http://www.lilleulven.com/cookiemonster.mg?SessionID=2950ad16d5ea1af4fe87f2a7a30008e7&skey=2167bae7281fd3b978fc4227683aa27b cannot be displayed because it contains errors.

    http://www.lilleulven.com - The Photos of my travels
    http://blog.lilleulven.com - The Stories of my travels
  • Cygnus StudiosCygnus Studios Commercial Photographer San Francisco's North BayPosts: 2,142Registered Users Major grins

    @leftquark said:
    This is one of the more requested features (along with some other items related).

    This requested feature is mostly nice, requiring a sign in is going to be a major deal breaker for a ton of people. I get that so many photographers love to get names/emails, but you have balance that desire with what most users want.

    Now if it were limited to the fourth part "When browsing the site but not logged in, have a "favorite" button on every photo. " without forcing people to sign in/create account that would be better in my opinion.

    Steve

    Website | Gear
  • leftquarkleftquark SmugMug Product Team Posts: 2,900Administrators, Vanilla Admin, SmugMug Product Team SmugMug Employee

    It would sorta defeat the purpose of being able to save your favorites and do something with them later if you didn't have them saved behind a login.

    SmugMug Director of Product / dGrin Afficionado
    aaron AT aaronmphotography DOT com
    Website: http://www.aaronmphotography.com
    My SmugMug CSS Customizations website: http://www.aaronmphotography.com/Customizations
  • Cygnus StudiosCygnus Studios Commercial Photographer San Francisco's North BayPosts: 2,142Registered Users Major grins

    @leftquark said:
    It would sorta defeat the purpose of being able to save your favorites and do something with them later if you didn't have them saved behind a login.

    In my thinking it would encourage people to buy the images instead of simply coming back time and time again to simply see their favorites all grouped together.

    Maybe I'm the odd man out, but as more and more sites are requiring people to create usernames and passwords it becomes more and more of a pain in the butt. Especially for sites that I'm only going to view occasionally.

    Think about it like this, if people are coming to your site time and time again without buying, the problem isn't grouping favorites for an extended period of time.

    Steve

    Website | Gear
  • leftquarkleftquark SmugMug Product Team Posts: 2,900Administrators, Vanilla Admin, SmugMug Product Team SmugMug Employee

    My hypothesis is that someone who's sure about buying the photo, will buy the photo regardless if it's grouped behind a "favorite". Someone who is on the fence about buying a photo is not going to first favorite a photo, then come and decide to buy it -- that's just extra clicks and time. It sounds like, perhaps, you're asking more for them to have a way to compare images so they can decide which one(s) they want to purchase? The act of favoriting, though, has deeper implications and the purpose of it is to 1) save the photo for you to view later and 2) let the photographer know you've enjoyed the photo. The benefit is that it creates an incentive for visitors to come back.

    SmugMug Director of Product / dGrin Afficionado
    aaron AT aaronmphotography DOT com
    Website: http://www.aaronmphotography.com
    My SmugMug CSS Customizations website: http://www.aaronmphotography.com/Customizations
  • Kevin PaulKevin Paul Big grins Posts: 49Registered Users Big grins

    @leftquark said:
    My hypothesis is that someone who's sure about buying the photo, will buy the photo regardless if it's grouped behind a "favorite". Someone who is on the fence about buying a photo is not going to first favorite a photo, then come and decide to buy it -- that's just extra clicks and time.

    That is a fine hypothesis.

    In the real world though, that is not how it works IME. To be clear, my experience is photographing more than 30,000 sessions and being involved in the sales process and the sales techniques used to sell those sessions. I am not bragging, I just want to make the point that I have done this a couple of times. I was a photographer and a Regional manager for a volume portrait company. The method I'm asking for is something I have seen done hundreds of thousands of times. It is not a hypothesis for me.

    In portrait work people will often want to narrow down similar shots and then see their favorites of every grouping next to each other. When they see their selected 5, 10, 25 photo's they then want to narrow it down from there, or start making their selections.

    Showing the favorite photos on the screen next to each other led to a huge increase in our sales averages. Almost 30%.

    This is not a new method, it is a very popular method going back the 20 years that I have been in this industry. Back when we used to put the favorite 3x5 proofs on the table next to each other.

  • leftquarkleftquark SmugMug Product Team Posts: 2,900Administrators, Vanilla Admin, SmugMug Product Team SmugMug Employee
    edited June 4, 2017

    Sorry @Kevin Paul , I was unclear. I was responding to Cygnus, who thought favoriting would encourage people to buy the photo immediately, instead of coming back to the photos over and over. I 100% concur that favoriting will facilitate purchasing as you described it, and we see that with Event Favorites today. One of the main reasons behind building out a better favoriting would be to facilitate purchasing just the photos your visitors love ... but I don't believe it will encourage someone to buy a photo instead of coming back over and over like he implied. Rather, it will make someone who wanted to purchase photos have an easier time doing so, and encourage them to buy more.

    SmugMug Director of Product / dGrin Afficionado
    aaron AT aaronmphotography DOT com
    Website: http://www.aaronmphotography.com
    My SmugMug CSS Customizations website: http://www.aaronmphotography.com/Customizations
  • Cygnus StudiosCygnus Studios Commercial Photographer San Francisco's North BayPosts: 2,142Registered Users Major grins

    Going back over my responses, it looks as if I were unclear also.

    My response was directed at the link to the requested feature specifically.

    Grouping favorites is a great thing and does in fact encourage buying, we all know this.

    However, the suggested feature request that is linked to this discussion does not address buying as the main goal, it is about gathering potential client information.

    The last line in the request says it all. "If implemented in this way, a client login ability would vastly improve our ability to communicate, market, and ultimately sell to our clients. "

    This entire request is all about forcing viewers to "sign up", it is not about sales. This is my problem with this request in particular, not the idea of grouping favorites.

    While gathering information (name/email/etc) is all fine and dandy, that in and of itself doesn't encourage one time potential customers to make purchases. (portraits/weddings/specific events/etc.) This type of customer is not coming back to the site over and over again looking to make random purchases. They only want to buy their favorite shots and move on.

    The point that I was trying to make in my early replies goes directly to that fact.

    A. Forcing people to create usernames and passwords will discourage a certain number of people. This does not help sales. There are far better ways to gather potential client information than to backdoor them with a forced sign up.

    B. Allowing the saved favorites for extended periods of time will discourage some people from buying. They can simply come back over and over again to see their favorite images. Why buy images if they can just see them forever?

    C. A limited time frame for potential customers to save favorites would be a better option. 5 days / 10 days / 30 days or set by the photographer would satisfy the desire to group favorites while not allowing them to return over and over again forever.

    D. Anonymous grouping of favorites based on cookies or whatever would also encourage potential customers who don't like to sign up at every website that they visit should be an option. Give the potential customer the option of signing up or not.

    Steve

    Website | Gear
  • leftquarkleftquark SmugMug Product Team Posts: 2,900Administrators, Vanilla Admin, SmugMug Product Team SmugMug Employee

    That seems like a very shortsighted view of favoriting, does it not? That assumes that everyone who comes to your site doesn't want to save a record of those photos -- it assumes that every one of your clients goals' is to purchase prints (which we've seen is not always the case). Yes, favoriting certainly can help the case of "Client Proofing" but it can do so much more. Favoriting is different from "liking" and "bookmarking". A bookmark is something that the visitor does so they can view the photo again in the future. Liking tells the photographer "I liked this ... but I don't care to come back to it in the future." Favoriting ties the two together, it's the act of both liking it to let the photographer know, as well as creating a bookmark so you can come back in the future. Being able to come back in the future requires a login. From a Pro business perspective, there's tons of benefits of gathering the client data as well. Perhaps a year from now you want to remind them that they can cherish their favorite photos in another way (for example, now that you can print on iPhone cases, you could suggest they purchase an iPhone case of their photos).

    The biggest issue seems around "having to create a new account." If we were able to take advantage of an account they already had (say a Google, Facebook, Amazon, etc account), and made it easy to login, would that work?

    I also believe, Cygnus, that your use-case may be solved by something that isn't favoriting. The ability to multi-select a number of photos, for example, from a gallery and then take some action (favorite, download, purchase, share, etc) would certainly fit the bill!

    SmugMug Director of Product / dGrin Afficionado
    aaron AT aaronmphotography DOT com
    Website: http://www.aaronmphotography.com
    My SmugMug CSS Customizations website: http://www.aaronmphotography.com/Customizations
  • jasonscottphotojasonscottphoto (I'm not Jason...) Posts: 694Registered Users Major grins

    @leftquark said:

    The biggest issue seems around "having to create a new account." If we were able to take advantage of an account they already had (say a Google, Facebook, Amazon, etc account), and made it easy to login, would that work?

    YES YES YES!!!

    Posts by Allyson, the wife/assistant...

    Jason Scott Photography | Blog | FB | Twitter | Google+ | Tumblr | Instagram
  • jasonscottphotojasonscottphoto (I'm not Jason...) Posts: 694Registered Users Major grins

    Just to add to this... here's the problem with the current set up... (See what happened to Tiffany??)

    This happens all the time where I see clients registering and re-registering and then they are confused about how to find "their" link...

    Posts by Allyson, the wife/assistant...

    Jason Scott Photography | Blog | FB | Twitter | Google+ | Tumblr | Instagram
  • dstacy_scpdstacy_scp OklahomaPosts: 2Registered Users Beginner grinner
    I'm ready for this feature to be added! I shoot season's of games for particular teams and it is common for players parents to wait until the end of the season to look through 8-16 galleries trying to select 6 to 10 images to purchase. I often receive calls right around high school graduation time from parents desperately trying to find images of their sports superstar, by tonight ! When that happens I refer them to another sales platform that I use that indexes each player by jersey number, thus making finding your player a snap.
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