Breaking into the world of elopement photography but aren’t sure how to price yourself compared to traditional wedding photographers? Don’t worry, we got you covered! Depending on how your business is structured and what you provide to your couples, you will want to make sure you price yourself accordingly. Most elopement photographers will double-dip in the planning and photography serves of their business, which can lead to being able to charge higher prices than wedding photographers. In this article, Sean Oblizalo of Vows and Peaks breaks down the best ways to price yourself, how elopement photography pricing is different than wedding photography, and how to create a pricing guide that sells online.
Let’s dive in!
Elopement Pricing vs Wedding Pricing
Elopement pricing is going to range depending on your offerings and you really can upsell your pricing if you’re offering more than photos. For example, I sell myself as a planner for the first half of my Colorado elopement package where I’ll scout locations, team up with vendors, go over permit information and create timelines. The second half of my package is going to be the photography portion which ranges from 4 hours to 10 hours.
Suppose you’re creating value outside of photos. In that case, you should absolutely be pricing yourself accordingly and differently than traditional wedding photographers based on the back-end leg work you are offering. Most wedding photographers work with venues as preferred vendors so their marketing funnel is streamlined to where they can just show up on the wedding day.
Don’t be afraid to charge more than traditional wedding photographers if you’re doing more back-end work than them.
Elopement Pricing Misconceptions
Look, elopements have come a long way from running off to the Vegas chapel with Elvis. Some people might not understand why elopement photographers charge so much, but it really comes down to market demand. There are more couples than ever who are looking to elope and they’re looking to invest their money into things that matter most to them, like photography.
Google Trends is a great way to look at changes in searched terms over time. I went back to 2004 and you can see how the term elopement has evolved over time to where it’s now trending.
There was a big spike when the pandemic started but the arrow is still going up when it comes to couples searching about elopements! So if you’re a photographer and aren’t sure if you’re “worth it” just know that there is a market for elopement photography and you should be pricing yourself higher because of it.
Here are some other elopement pricing misconceptions:
Misconception: Elopement Photography is for Budget Couples
Elopement photography for many is a choice and not a necessity. Elopement couples, just like any other wedding photography couples, will range in their budgets. So while you will get some couples who will try to nickel and dime, if you set up your branding, pricing page, and workflow well, you’ll also get a healthy number of higher budget wedding couples as well.
Misconception: Elopement Photography Packages Need to Be Standardized
Not every Elopement Photography Location is the same! Some are easier to photograph than others. Some are easier to get to than others. So don’t feel like you have to make each and every location the same price in your elopement packages. Be sure to account for the time it takes to travel to and from the location, the permit pricing, and other factors that affect time and overall cost.
How to sell and price your elopements
Elopement pricing is really going to be sold with your public-facing pricing page, which is going to be the most visited and funneled page on your website. Because a lot of couples travel in for elopements, you won’t have the benefit of using an IPS model where you sell yourself and services to couples in person. About 96% of the couples I work with travel from outside of Colorado to elope, so having a pricing page that is clear, powerful, and more than numbers will go a long way in selling yourself to get those qualified leads.
Get Creative and Network
The list of potential partners is vast and could include other wedding vendors like florists and wedding attire companies or even short term rentals like cabins or unique properties listed on websites like Airbnb.
Elopement Photography Pricing Page Tips
Here are some tips for your pricing page:
- Present Clear Offerings – What does every package include?
- Showcase Your Prices – I know this one seems obvious but there is nothing more annoying than a website without the prices – list your prices!
- Describe Your Process – What are the next steps in the booking process? Give couples directions on what to do next.
- Ensure Clear and Bold Calls to Action (CTA) – Your pricing and packages page should have a call to action throughout where it leads directly to your contact page – guide them on their journey.
- Anticipate FAQ – What are some questions couples might be wondering about before they inquire? Think of those and answer them at the bottom of the page!
Offer Value and Upgrades
Are you looking to add some supplemental income to your elopement packages? One thing we have done over the past two years is offer hand-crafted albums and video team-ups with other vendors. This makes it great for the couples as they get to cut out the middle man and also offers them something else that other photographers might not be offering. This gives you a great chance to stand out while also creating supplemental income for your business.
The value you create with your elopement photography will go a long way in your pricing strategy. But most importantly, elopements are more popular than ever and your pricing should reflect the market demand. Charge what you are worth and don’t look back!
For more information on Pricing and Product Design, see the following articles and resources: