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Smugmug Vs PhotoShelter Comparison 2022: Which Is Best For Photographers?

Which is better among Smugmug Vs PhotoShelter in 2022? If you are looking for a professional photo sharing platform to host your pictures and create a virtual gallery for promoting and selling your pictures then this article will help you for sure.

This article will compare SmugMug and PhotoShelter, two excellent online platforms through which users can quickly transfer photos and videos to their clients. Moreover, these platforms also allow users to create photography websites and eventually sell photos and videos.  

However, before comparing SmugMug and PhotoShelter based on a few standard characteristics/features, we would give a brief description of both the products so that users can get a decent idea regarding SmugMug and PhotoShelter.  

What is SmugMug?

SmugMug is a popular online platform that allows experienced photographers to host their photos and eventually create a virtual gallery for promoting and selling those photos. This company started in 2002, and currently, it is one of the best web services for hosting photos among photographers.  

SmugMug is a wonderful host for your site if you’re looking to create a portfolio site only. With low costs for the basic plan, you can have a website for under $50 per year!

What is PhotoShelter?

PhotoShelter is an online platform using which photographers can grow their client base and sales. It also allows users to extend their reach to more potential clients and other existing customers in the cyber domain. Currently, more than 80,000 photographers use PhotoShelter to run their photography business.

We will now move into the primary section of this comparison article as we have already described both the products.

Basic comparison between Smugmug Vs PhotoShelter

Smugmug Vs PhotoShelter: Ease of Use

SmugMug: SmugMug comes with a user-friendly user interface, but the interface may not be too simple for beginners since new users can often become confused regarding a few features this exceptional online platform offers. However, users mostly get used to it after initial exploration and can eventually work smoothly. 

This platform comes with a block-based structure, and hence all the templates are made up of content blocks that ensure fixed photo positions. Experienced users can quickly start using this platform by only executing a few simple steps. 

Is Smugmug Good

After completing the sign-up process, users will get helpful tips on how to go through the web design steps with maximum convenience. SmugMug even helps users select the most suitable design and upload the required content.

PhotoShelter: PhotoShelter comes with an intuitive user interface so users can effortlessly manage this exceptional online platform without using a single line of code. Experienced web developers and beginners can utilize this platform without facing any issues since it is both beginner-friendly and user friendly. 

Winner: PhotoShelter

PhotoShelter is the winner in this category since it has a user-friendly and beginner-friendly user interface. In contrast, SmugMug is ideal for only experienced users because beginners initially face difficulty handling all the features properly.

Smugmug Vs PhotoShelter: Design & Template

SmugMug: SmugMug comes with a limited template collection, but the available photography designs satisfy the current industry standards. It offers eight pre-defined themes which are free and responsive so users can easily open their website on any device irrespective of the screen’s shape and size.

Moreover, if users require more quality samples, they can upgrade to the “Power” pricing plan, which offers 26 professional templates apart from the eight basic ones. SmugMug also comes with design customization tools that allow users to create unique photography projects. 

New SmugMug Gallery Style

PhotoShelter: This fantastic platform currently offers nine templates with different layouts, although the overall structure looks the same. All nine templates of PhotoShelter are responsive. However, it does not provide the mobile preview mode to check how the site will look on smartphones or tablets.

The design tools have basic customization options, which is a slight drawback of PhotoShelter. It allows users to edit or set fonts for the header and other website sections. Furthermore, the colour scheme function enables users to change the colour of the overall layout and its background. 

Winner: SmugMug

Both platforms offer a limited number of templates. However, SmugMug is slightly better than PhotoShelter in this category since, unlike PhotoShelter, it comes with advanced design customization tools that allow users to create unique photography projects.

Smugmug Vs PhotoShelter: E-Commerce

SmugMug: SmugMug offers e-commerce options, allowing users to set up small web stores from where they can sell their services. Through the e-commerce options, users can create photo collections, introduce discounts and coupon codes, etc. 

Moreover, with the help of e-commerce functions, users can offer price lists to potential customers and adjust payment parameters. The brand promotion tools, logo editing feature and watermark creation option make the store unique.

SmugMug provides an integrated shopping cart that makes the entire process of web store creation convenient and straightforward for everyone. 

PhotoShelter: PhotoShelter allows users to connect several payment options. This exceptional online platform supports PayPal and Stripe. 

Furthermore, users can also connect their Merchant Accounts to enable direct sales. PhotoShelter has an integrated shopping cart which makes the entire process of web store creation straightforward and user-friendly.

Winner: SmugMug

SmugMug easily wins this round because, unlike PhotoShelter, it comes with powerful e-commerce tools that allow users to set up and customize professional online stores from where they can sell digital and physical products with utmost ease. 

Smugmug Vs PhotoShelter: Customer Support

SmugMug: SmugMug provides a 24/7 customer support facility. Users can get help from the support agents using email support or by submitting a contact form. Moreover, users can also avail educational materials and video guides present on SmugMug’s YouTube channel.

The “Portfolio” and the Business plan subscribers can also take help from the support staff using the live chat support facility during the US working hours. Last but not least, SmugMug comes with an extensive user community, offering multiple online resources.    

smugmug customer support review
smugmug customer support review

PhotoShelter: Unlike most of its competitors, PhotoShelter does not offer a 24/7 customer support facility. The support agents offer help from Monday to Friday during working hours, i.e., from 9 am to 7 pm. For taking help from the support agents, users need to submit their queries by filling up a contact form. 

Moreover, PhotoShelter also comes with an extensive documentation section that contains many blogs, FAQs, and helpful articles that discuss several problems users may face while using PhotoShelter. Within the documentation section, users will get help regarding how to get started and how to share or store photos, etc.

This exceptional online platform also has a strong community where users can take help and advice from other users whenever they encounter any problem. The community section also contains special blocks representing industry discussions and other topics that also help users a lot.

Winner: SmugMug

Both platforms offer excellent customer support facilities. However, SmugMug wins this round since, unlike PhotoShelter, it provides a 24/7 customer support facility.

Smugmug Vs PhotoShelter: Pricing Structure

SmugMug: SmugMug provides four separate pricing plans, including the Basic Plan, Power Plan, Portfolio Plan, and Pro Plan. The Basic Plan and the Power Plan are available at $9/month and $13/month, respectively, whereas the Portfolio Plan and the Pro Plan cost $28/month and $42/month, respectively.

smugmug pricing review
smugmug pricing review

PhotoShelter: PhotoShelter comes with three different premium pricing plans, including the Basic Plan, Standard Plan, and Pro Plan. The Basic Plan is available at $10/month, whereas the Standard plan and the Pro Plan cost $25/month and $45/month, respectively.

Winner: PhotoShelter

PhotoShelter is the winner in this category since it offers cheaper pricing plans than SmugMug.

Smugmug Vs PhotoShelter: Free Trial

SmugMug: SmugMug does not have a free pricing plan like some of its competitors. However, it offers a 14-day free trial which users can avail for testing the fantastic features of SmugMug. Finally, if they are satisfied with the service, they can only go for any premium pricing plans. 

PhotoShelter: Like most of its competitors, PhotoShelter does not provide a free pricing plan. However, fortunately, PhotoShelter comes with a 14-day free trial. Users can use the 14 days to test out the features of PhotoShelter, and once they are satisfied with the features, they can subscribe to a preferred pricing plan.  

Winner: Draw

This round is drawn as both the online platforms come with a 14-day free trial period.

Frequently Asked Questions: Smugmug Vs PhotoShelter

Do SmugMug and PhotoShelter offer a free plan?

No, neither PhotoShelter nor SmugMug provides a free plan. However, both companies come with a 14-day free trial period. Due to this reason, users can test out the features of SmugMug and PhotoShelter without investing a single penny. After testing the features, if users are satisfied with the service, they can go for an appropriate premium pricing plan. As mentioned earlier, SmugMug offers four different premium pricing plans, whereas PhotoShelter comes with three premium pricing plans.

Is SmugMug good for selling photos?

Yes, users can use SmugMug to sell their photos and videos apart from just displaying them. So we can say that this fantastic online platform has all the essential tools required for making money online by selling photos and videos.

Can users share a folder on SmugMug?

Yes, users can effortlessly share a folder on SmugMug by following a few easy steps. Users first need to select the “Organize” option from the Navigation bar to share a folder. Next, users should choose the gallery, folder, or page they want to share privately and eventually click on the “Settings” option in the Organizer toolbar. Finally, users should select the “Security & Sharing” tab, then navigate to the Access drop-down menu to choose the “People I Choose” option.

What is PhotoShelter for Brands?

PhotoShelter for Brands is a cloud-oriented Digital Asset Management (DAM) system that is appropriate for organizations that require storage, management, and distribution solutions for image and video libraries of all sizes.

Conclusion: Which Is Best Among Smugmug Vs PhotoShelter in 2022?

SmugMug Vs photoshelter
SmugMug Vs photoshelter

As promised at the beginning of this article, we have unbiasedly compared SmugMug & PhotoShelter, two highly renowned online platforms used to store and sell photos and videos. 

Finally, at the end of this comparison between Smugmug Vs PhotoShelter, we can declare SmugMug as the overall winner since it has won in most of the above categories. However, users can also go for PhotoShelter since it is equally good and better than SmugMug in several aspects.  

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