University Photos to Increase Inbound Web Traffic

How to Use Photos to Drive More Inbound Web Traffic and Offset Photography Cost for Universities and Colleges

Universities and colleges take countless photos of their assorted activities – such as sports, graduation, alumni events, and conferences. In the past, these photos were stored in desk draws and file cabinets. To access the original photos, parents, students, and friends of schools had to go through a tedious process involving a series of phone calls. If the person was lucky enough to locate the photo, they had to then deal with even more steps to get a copy of the picture.

With the dawn of the Internet, school websites, digital photography, and low-cost online storage, school photos are accessible at the click of a mouse. However, many schools are still operating in the past – unaware of the advantages their photos can provide. Even if the awareness is there, many schools are constrained by the technology they use – and therefore are forced to place a small number of photos online for viewing, without a way for patrons to easily purchase the photos.

Digipixart believes that schools can leverage these photos to achieve the following:

  • Provide parents, students, and friends with an invaluable service
  • Raise capital to offset school costs
  • Improve the school’s outreach by attracting more users to the school’s website

We have found that a school’s associates are interested and willing to purchase photos when a reasonable price is set. Since our system’s introduction in 2003, we have received very positive feedback from schools that use our online photo store. Their patrons like how they can easily find photos simply by visiting the school’s website – and easily purchase products online, such as prints, frames, digital copies, and specialty products (mouse pads, T-shirts, mugs, etc.).

What Stops Schools from Implementing an Online Photo Store?

Some schools feel that parents and students already pay tuition; therefore, charging for photos is a turn off. I argue that most schools have a bookstore where they sell numerous products with the school logo (sweat shirts, ties, etc.). So why not offer another set of products to those who want them? Product prices do not need to be expensive. For example, schools can set reasonable prices that cover the costs of hiring photographers. We have found that customers understand there is a cost involved with the service.

Other schools believe that it takes too much time to setup an online photo store. Indeed, some online stores take significant time and effort to implement. But our users have been pleased to discover that they can add our online photo store to their existing website in a matter of minutes. We’ve proven this with a variety of schools.

Parents Want to See the Photos!!!

Based on our experience serving schools since 2003, the reality is that parents and students are very interested in viewing and purchasing their photos. Photos are invaluable. They provide lasting souvenirs of life’s special moments. Parents especially enjoy those keepsakes when they are apart from their daughters and sons. The vast majority of parents are very appreciative that schools offer this valuable service, and we have never heard of a parent complaining about the associated costs.

Why Schools Should Offer Online Photos

Today, every school has a website. To get a return on the investment of building a website, you need high inbound traffic. There are many ways to increase inbound traffic – such as social media campaigns and paid Google Ads. Some marketing channels cost money and some don’t. If given a choice, wouldn’t you increase inbound traffic and spend as little as possible to do so? You can – by leveraging photos that have already been taken!

The simple fact is this: schools that use our online photo store experience more inbound traffic. The availability of photos drives people to your site – and keeps them coming back. That’s a win-win strategy:

  • Your associates like seeing photos of various school events. They feel more connected with the school. And they are more likely to peruse additional parts of your website.
  • You increase the value of relationships with your associates. You build a community. And you provide a photo service to those who want to use it.

In summary, schools have been taking many photos that parents, students, and friends are very interested in viewing and purchasing. With your website infrastructure already in place, adding an online photo store is a simple and effective feature that will increase inbound website traffic and provide a valuable service to the school’s community. That’s beneficial for everybody.

To learn more about how to implement an online photo store, please email to dchu@digipixart.com or call, 703-426-5100.

 

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Digipixart 5.2 has been released

The following items are included in this release:

  1. SEO & Marketing Enhancements

    In the new member registration page, capture consent from the professional members to receive promotional emails for discounts and also to subscribe to Digipixart newsletter.

  2. Maintenance upgrades

    Routine maintenance and minor bug fixes.

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Digipixart 5.1 has been released

The following items are included in this release:

  1. Online Photo Store Enhancements

    The following new features have been added to our online photo store:

    • New product category ‘Videos’: This category contains the following product-
      • Video delivered as DVD/CD

      You can now sell a video delivered via DVD/CD to your customers. All video will be shown to customers in a separate tab called ‘Videos’

      Note: Video products are more suitable for dedicated video albums.

    • Coupon Code Enhancements:
      • Coupon expiration notification email will also contain the information about whether a coupon code has been used or not (redeemed by a customer or not)
    • Based on customer feedback pagination has been changed from 1,2,3,4,5,6,7 of 12 to 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11 of 12
    • Miscellaneous user interface enhancements and bug fixes
  2. Client Studio Manager 2.1 (Desktop application)

    Client Studio Manager has the following changes:

    • Support for tax exemption while placing orders for Organizations
    • Various bug fixes

    Note: The previous version of Client Studio Manager (CSM 2.0) will no longer be supported. You will need to uninstall the previous version and install the new version CSM 2.1 on or after July 2, 2013. Please refer to our frequently asked questions for uninstalling previous version of CSM and installing the new CSM 2.1, should you need any help.

  3. Digipixart Lab Re-location

    • Digipixart lab has recently re-located to North Carolina and all our orders will be shipped from this new location
    • Updated the order emails to reflect the new lab location address
    • Updated tax percentage applied towards an order based on Digipixart’s new location
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Digipixart 5.0 has been released

The following items are included in this release:

  1. Client Studio Manager 2.0 (Desktop application)

    We are enhancing our Client Studio Manager (CSM) application and introducing several new features:

    • You can now order print products using CSM 2.0 for pictures present on your computer. You can purchase standard size prints, non-standard size prints, packages and enlargements right from your computer by-passing the online system completely, a facility that is only available to you as our registered business user.
    • You can securely save and manage your payment methods from your CSM and use it during the checkout while ordering products from your new CSM.
    • With this release, CSM is now available to our Regular (Retail) users as well in addition to our professional/business users. Now, our retail customers can also begin using the new CSM and benefit from all the features.
    • We have upgraded the Client Studio Manager to use the latest technology aligning with our objectives of using latest technologies used in the industry giving the best for our customers.
    • All features that were present in CSM 1.0 will continue to be available to you as always e.g. creation of album, image upload, digital image conversion etc.
    • We have added a new automatic way of cleaning up upload jobs. CSM 2.0 will detect all upload jobs that are older than two weeks and perform a cleanup upon login.

    Note: The previous version of Client Studio Manager (CSM 1.0) will no longer be supported due to the technology upgrade. You will need to uninstall the previous version CSM 1.0 and install the new version CSM 2.0 on or after February 1, 2013. Please refer to our frequently asked questions for uninstalling CSM 1.0 and installing the new CSM 2.0, should you need any help.

  2. Online Photo Store Enhancements

    Keeping in line with our tradition of providing regular enhancements upgrades, following new features have been added to our online photo store:

    • Manage Payment Information: This is a new section available under the Studio Manager page in our online system.
      • You can add new payment methods for use when ordering products using the new CSM 2.0
      • You can edit and delete existing payment methods that you added using CSM 2.0. This is an additional option to manage your payment methods in your CSM 2.0.
      • We plan to extend this facility for online checkout as well in the near future.
    • Coupon Enhancements: Coupon Manager section has been enhanced with the following features -
      • All expired coupons can now be deleted in a single click on the Coupon Manager page.
      • Whether a coupon has been used or not (redeemed by a customer or not), is now visible on the Coupon Manager page.
    • Other Enhancements:
      • Based on feedback from you we are moving the ‘Products delivered on DVD/CD’ and ‘Products delivered on email’ from ‘Specialty’ tab to ‘Prints’ tab in the online product ordering section. So, now your customers will be able to purchase these two products from the ‘Prints’ tab itself.
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Digipixart 4.3 has been released

The following items are included in this release:

  1. User Interface Enhancements

    The user interface enhancements that we started previously are now complete giving you a rich and consistent user experience. Following are some of the key screens under Studio Manager that have been enhanced:

    • Create Album
    • View My Albums – Icon View & Tree View
    • Album Templates Manager
    • Pricing Templates Manager
    • Coupon Manager
    • Photo Upload Screens
    • Order Photos
  2. FedEx shipping option available again

    The FedEx shipping option is revamped and available to you and your customers once again. This will be available to you in addition to currently available USPS shipping.

  3. Set Album / Folder Cover functionality has been enhanced and extended to include all folders within an album

    Now you can add a cover photo to a folder, using a photo from the parent album or a different folder within the album’s tree.

  4. Other upgrades

    We have made few technical upgrades to our online photo store to further strengthen the system for rapidly expanding business. We have upgraded our application server to suit our growing needs for service oriented architecture, scalability and robustly support the future archival system.

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Digipixart 4.2.1 has been released

Thanks to our valuable customers, our online system has seen rapid growth in the last few years. To ensure better quality of service and support the rapid growth for the years to come, Digipixart online system has made changes to its infrastructure and application.

The following are the benefits included in this release:

  1. Better system response time even as we continue to add more users.

  2. Photos are now stored more securely with robust backup capability.

  3. FTP upload and watermarking of images will be much faster than before, and with significant performance improvements.

  4. Improved response time in Crop feature (from end user perspective) and preservation of copyright/watermark (if present), depending on the settings or chosen crop area.

  5. Established foundation for a future digital asset management system.

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Digipixart 4.2 has been released

We are excited to announce new features and user interface enhancements to our online photo store.

The following items are included in this release:

  1. Portfolio Offerings

    • Now you can organize and display your portfolio using a layout and theme of your choice from a list of options. Following are the different layouts that are offered with this release:
      • 2 column layout with a light or dark background theme.
      • 2 column layout with no thumbnail image.
      • 3 column layout with a light or dark background theme.
      • 3 column layout with no thumbnail image.
      • 6 column layout with a light or dark background theme.
    • More album sorting options have been introduced in this release. You can choose an album sort order option to present the portfolio to your customers. The album sort order options include:
      • alphanumeric ascending (default) → [0-9] [a-z]
      • alphanumeric descending → [9-0] [z-a]
      • oldest to newest → based on album creation date
      • newest to oldest → based on album creation date
  2. Coupon Enhancements

    • Newly created albums can now be added to an existing multiple-album/global coupon.
    • Pick albums you want to include or exclude from a multiple-album/global coupon. This is applicable to both new and existing coupons.
    • User interface for adding or editing a coupon is enhanced with additional tooltips for your convenience.
  3. User Interface Enhancements

    Included in this release are some additional user interface enhancements.

    • Zoom image in galleries page has been enlarged by 15%.
    • We have enhanced several user interface screens to bring consistent look and feel and we will continue to do so to provide you with better user experience. Following are some of the key screens under Studio Manager that have been enhanced. 
      • My Preferences
      • My Portfolio Information
      • My Personal Information
      • My Order History
      • Order Details
      • My Business Information
      • Sales Reports
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Digipixart 4.1 has been released

We are excited to announce new features and user interface enhancements to our online photo store.

The following items are included in this release:

  1. Simplified Checkout process

    Customer checkout process has been simplified with three easy to use screens and enhanced user interface.

  2. New user-friendly features

    • Review Items in Order: where the customer can review the items in shopping cart without leaving the checkout process.
    • Print Receipt: where a customer can handily print out an order confirmation online in addition to getting an e-mail confirmation.
  3. New coupon Gift Card coupon type and a global coupon feature

    • Gift Card coupon: Now, you can add a gift card coupon for your customers that will allow customers to shop an album, and redeem the gift card coupon during the checkout process.
    • Global coupon feature: One coupon that can be applied to all albums without an active coupon has been introduced. The coupon can be used with the following types:
      • % Discount with minimum amount
      • Percentage Discount
      • Shipping Discount only
  4. Coupon expiration notification

    A notification feature to remind you about your expiring coupons has been introduced. An e-mail reminder will be sent to you for coupons that are about to expire in the next three days.

  5. Photo store integration enhancement

    Your integrated online photo store will now have a reduced height providing better usability experience.

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Digital Wedding Forum – Credit Card Processing

Pamela Lepold, owner of weddingsbypamela.com posted the following comment on the Digital Wedding Forum for a credit card processing discussion. For any information about our unique service, please call 703-426-5100 or email us at dchu@digipixart.com.

“My lab processes credit cards for all members for free! Yes, Free! I could not believe it when they started this service. I too was paying high fees for processing. My clients mostly pay by credit card and now I enter their payments online and my lab sends me a check every month for the total amount charged… no fees taken out. I absolutely love it. They also redesigned my websites, created my blog and host my online galleries. I could not be happier or more impressed with the quality of products and services that they offer. Here is the link to their website. You should seriously check them out. They can service photographers worldwide. WEBSITE: http://digipixart.com

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Digipixart 4.0 has arrived

Digipixart website has been revamped with a new look and feel, dynamic user interface, and blog capabilities. This release also brings new and exciting changes to the online photo store integration.

The following items are included in this release:

  1. New Digipixart Website

    Digipixart website will have a new look and feel, a vibrant user interface with easy navigation to various product offerings and services.

  2. Support for new photo store dimensions of 900px to 1000px wide

    Digipixart supports new photo store dimensions ranging from 900px wide to 1000px wide. Both, new and existing customers can avail this option based on their website requirements.

  3. User interface enhancements

    • We have added easy navigation buttons previous and next while viewing a photo using the zoom feature in the galleries screen. Customer doesn’t need to close a chosen zoom image to view another.
    • Your website’s look and feel is now throughout the site including specialty products and cards customization screens.
    • In order to make customers shop across multiple albums, the “Continue Shopping” and “Return to Albums” feature on the website will now take the user back to your Photo Store Home page/Albums page where all of your albums are displayed/listed.
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