Fotomerchant University

Learn how to make online work for your photography business

The Fotomerchant University exists to enhance learning and knowledge regarding the integral role the web, social networks and e-commerce can play in your photography business.

Available Classes

Our classes cover everything from basic website building to social strategies and SEO


Foundations Class

Covers the essential foundations of web strategy for your business including websites, social networks, SEO, blogging, design and communication. The class will give you the understanding necessary to supercharge the online component of your photography business and enable your to kick a serious web strategy in to gear!

Length: 1 Day
Delivery: Face-to-face
Suitable for: All levels
Pre-requisites: None
Fotomerchant account required: No


Deep Dive Practical Class

Covers all aspects of customising the look and feel of a Fotomerchant website, blog and shopping-cart. This class is designed to make you proficient at modifying your website/blog match your photography brand and stand out from the crowd. This class is ideal for those who want to build a unique on-brand photography business website.

Length: 1 Day
Delivery: Face-to-face
Suitable for: All levels
Pre-requisites: None
Fotomerchant account required: Yes (one will be created if you don’t have one)


Master Class

Covers the concepts relating to your workflow and day-to-day use of the Fotomerchant platform. We cover the full client workflow from uploading, marketing, social sharing, display, proofing, selling and fulfilment. This class is ideal for people who have a Fotomerchant account and want to learn how to get the most out of it.

Length: 1 Day
Delivery: Face-to-face
Suitable for: All levels
Pre-requisites: None
Fotomerchant account required: Yes

What our Alumni are saying

Comments from real photographers who have attended classes

Tearah Fox

Tearah Fox Mackay, QLD

The Fotomerchant University day was both informative and enjoyable. It was run in a very efficient and professional manner with plenty of laughs to keep it light hearted at the same time.

For a non tech savvy person Derek left me feeling confident that I could take on the SEO beast and come out on top!

I would highly recommend it for all who wish to learn more in general and especially for those who need help just getting started :)

Kerry Bergman

Kerry Bergman Brisbane, QLD

The class with Derek was filled with so much worthwhile information and tips for building a great website. It was well worth the time and has helped me create a page I am truly proud of. Being able to brain storm with others helped the process even more.

Karen Day

Karen Day Mackay, QLD

Fotomerchant University was a great way to get started on creating a workable website for my photography business. I found the theory content to be informative and well planned out, and the practical side of the learning to be easy to follow and fun.

Nicole & Peter Taaffe

Nicole & Peter Taaffe Mackay, QLD

We found the Foundations class to be very informative and really easy to follow and relate to.

Current Classes and Details

No classes for 2018 have yet been announced, fill in your details below to Unlock Your City and be the first to receive any announcements.

Class Details

Below is more detailed information on what is offered in each class

Foundations / 1 Day Course / Face-to-face

The “Foundations” class will give each attendee a solid understanding of the capabilities of the Fotomerchant platform as well as a foundational understanding of how web, social networking and blogging can be used to boost the effectiveness of your online presence. The class covers a number of theoretical and practical topics (listed below).

The day is very interactive. The instructor will make sure that each student is getting practical benefit from the exercises performed in class. We aren’t afraid of questions, and make sure that there is plenty of opportunity for questions and robust discussion on how the online component of your photography business might be enhanced.

Below is a summary of what the “Foundations” class covers:


  • Why having a website is more important than you think
  • The importance of knowing your why and how to amplify it through your website and social presence.
  • The importance of developing a customer archetype / avatar
    • Outcome: You will have a clear picture of who your target customer / audience is. This will direct every decision you make whilst developing your web strategy.
  • Social networks. How they are the best and worse thing for your business
    • Outcome: You will develop or refine a social recipe for your business which you will use to draw traffic to your website and turn that in to sales.
  • Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). What is it and how to make it work
    • Outcome: Using your why and customer archetype / avatar you will develop a short compelling argument that can be used as the foundation for your “target words and phrases”.
  • Why mobile matters. Understanding the importance of being visible in the mobile / tablet world.


  • Build your very own website including a blog (if desired) and shopping cart (if desired)
    • The website will be “on-brand” for your brand
    • The website will accurately represent you as a photographer
    • The website will contain a beautiful portfolio of your best work
    • If desired, the website will allow your clients to log in to view and even purchase their photos
    • The website will contain all pertinent information about your business as well as your contact details and a contact form.
  • Connect social channels and enact the social recipe developed during the theory session
  • Connect in-depth metrics / stats to your website (Google Analytics, Facebook Insights, Pinterest for Business)
  • Understand how your workflow needs to change in order to unlock the potential of your web presence and increase sales.
    • Uploading
    • Creating a blog post for each client
    • Promoting the post via social networks
    • Handling enquiries
    • In person sales (IPS) and how it fits in to your new online workflow

What to bring:

  • Laptop (WiFi will be provided)
  • USB Stick containing:
    • High res PSD or PNG of your logo (preferably with a transparent background)
    • High res versions of your best work for all genres that you shoot (this will be your portfolio)
    • High res version of at least 3 client galleries (this is optional, but highly recommended)
  • Lunch. If you know the area and want to buy lunch somewhere locally, that’s fine as well.

Morning and afternoon tea will be provided however lunch will not be provided. Please bring a packed lunch as there may not be food to buy nearby. There will be a 20 minute morning and afternoon tea break as well as a 1 hour lunch break.

Deep Dive / 1 Day Course / Face-to-face / Practical

The “Deep Dive” is a full-day hands on class that will get you going full-steam-ahead using Fotomerchant’s powerful photography website platform. The goal of this class is to create, build, and tweak a photography website using the Fotomerchant platform.

The class is suitable for all. If you do not have a Fotomerchant account you will be able to set up a trial account on the day. Existing Fotomerchant users will work using their current Fotomerchant websites.

The day is broken in to three (3) parts, with the 2nd and 3rd parts being practical. The details of each part have been outlined below.

Module 1 – Overview / Demos

We take a detailed look at what the Fotomerchant platform can do. We look at how things are structured in an account and how the website, store, shopping-cart and blog work together.

There will be some quick demos that show clearly some of the cool things that can be done to speed up your workflow, enhance your online presence and potentially increase your revenue!

Some of the topics covered in this section are:

  • Lightroom exporter / uploading in bulk
  • Dropbox synchronisation
  • Social sharing to drive more traffic
  • Pinterest for Business
  • Facebook insights
  • Google Webmaster Tools

Module 2 – E-commerce

Whether you use online proofing galleries or not, this module will dive in to the details of how Fotomerchant can be used in any photography studio regardless of the sales process.

This is an opportunity for students to get their hands dirty with the advanced e-commerce features of the Fotomerchant platform.

Below is a list of some of the more advanced features that we cover. If any of the items below don’t ring a bell with you… You NEED to be in this class:

  • 1-Click Products
  • Packages (multi & single pose)
  • Coupon / Volume Discounts
  • Tiered pricing [Advanced]
  • Client gallery workflow
  • Advanced store settings (automations, shipping, payment, etc)

Module 3 – Free Play

At this stage of the day, anything goes. You might choose to take what you’ve learnt and put it in to practice or you might have a tonne of completely random questions that are applicable to just to you! That’s fine. The “Free Play” part of the day is where our instructors lean over your shoulder and help you make the most out of the Fotomerchant platform.

What to bring:

  • Note: If you are not a Fotomerchant user or don’t have a current account, that’s fine. An account can be created on the day for the purposes of doing the exercises and participating in “Free Play”
  • Laptop (WiFi will be provided)
  • USB Stick containing:
    • High res PSD or PNG of your logo (preferably with a transparent background)
    • High res versions of your best work for all genres that you shoot (this will be your portfolio)
    • High res version of as many of your client galleries as possible (this is optional, but highly recommended)
    • Any other visual assets that represent your look / feel / brand
  • Lunch. If you know the area and want to buy lunch somewhere locally, that’s fine as well (see below)


Morning and afternoon tea WILL be provided. Lunch will NOT be provided. There will be a 20 minute morning and afternoon tea break as well as a 1 hour lunch break. Usually we wander off to a local pub or restaurant for a meal together at around 12pm however feel free to bring a packed lunch if that suits you best! :)

Quite often there is an informal get together after class for dinner and drinks. Everyone is welcome to come along. It’s a good chance to develop professional relationships outside the classroom and get to know one another better!


A little bit of information about the instructors

Derek Clapham

Derek Clapham Co-founder & Engineering Czar

Derek co-founded Fotomerchant in 2007 after shooting a few professional photography jobs and struggling to find a web / e-commerce solution that suited Australian photographers who needed to get online.

After 15 years in the IT industry with 10 of those years focused on web strategy, online marketing and leveraging social networks in the photography industry – Derek brings valuable experience and knowledge to the table.

Fun fact: Derek plays the piano and enjoys taking long walks on the beach

Steve Saunders

Steve Saunders Support Sherpa

A sound engineer in a former life, Steve has been with the Fotomerchant team almost since it’s inception back in 2009.

Steve has more product knowledge than anyone else on the Fotomerchant team and knows all sorts of tips and tricks that will bring your website to life! During his time at Fotomerchant Steve has handled over 50,000 support tickets from customers!

Fun fact: Steve is a keen surfer and likes taking long walks on the beach.

Gabriel Moreira

Gabriel Moreira Lead Developer

Joining the Fotomerchant team over 3 years ago, Gabriel is now the Lead Developer at Fotomerchant and responsible for driving pretty much all the development of the platform.

Most of the features and functionality within the product as it stands today have been touched by the hand of Gabs at one time or another.

Fun fact: Gabriel lives in Wollongong and likes taking long walks on the beach.