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How to Start a Photography Business - Tip #2 Sell Prints

Updated: Jan 26

At the end of my first tip, I talked about how you need to separate yourself from all of the other new photographers out there in order to make real money. I promised that I’d tell you how to set yourself apart, and here it is:


I am just going to say it again. To separate yourself from most of the photography businesses out there AND to make real money, you need to sell prints.

Do we live in a digital world? Yes. Am I telling you to keep the digitals? No.

Give your clients both. Give them digitals and prints.

That’s exactly what I do. I do the session, clients choose the individual photos that they want to purchase, and they get both a digital and a print version of that image.

When you provide prints to your clients, you are providing a full service. If you only provide digital images, think of all the work you are putting on your client’s shoulders! Now they need to find a print lab, they need to design an album, they need to shop around for canvases or frames. If you don’t print, then you have given your clients a job that they don’t know how to do.

Because guess what? When they have to do it themselves, your client will choose the cheapest option. Now your photos are getting printed and presented by someone who doesn’t know anything about photo papers, print processes, archival, acid-free, you name it. What’s worse is that’s what all of their friends and family will see. Your client is deciding how your work should be seen.

You should be the one who decides how your work is seen.

That means you need to know what you’re doing, and printing is a whole new world for most photographers.

What print products should you sell? What media should you print on? Paper? Metal? Canvas? Acrylic? Albums? Books? SO MANY CHOICES!

I have tried just about all of them. I tried to sell many of the atypical products. I have so many wall art samples and materials, but after eight years in business, I always come back to the standard choices: loose prints, albums, and canvases. I never have to convince a client of the value of one of those print choices. We all know and love them, so stick with the standards.

First, I’ll specify for you what I provide to my clients, and then I’ll make some suggestions if you’re just starting out and experimenting with print sales.

I will also provide links to products when I can. The links are NOT affiliate links, so I don’t make any money off of what I’m sharing here. I just want you to have the resource!