VersusSmugMug vs Photoshelter: a comparison for photographers

SmugMug vs Photoshelter: a comparison for photographers

SmugMug is a popular platform for photographers that gives them the tools they need to make their own websites and galleries to show off their photos. It gives photographers a choice of templates, themes, and layouts, so they can make a unique online presence. SmugMug also has e-commerce features, so photographers can sell prints, digital downloads, and photo packages right from their website. The platform has built-in print fulfillment services that make it easy for photographers to give their clients high-quality prints. SmugMug also has features like client proofing, right-click protection, and SEO optimization to help photographers protect their work and make it more visible.

PhotoShelter is another well-known website that helps photographers show and sell their work. It has website templates and design options that can be changed, so photographers can make websites that look good and show off their work. PhotoShelter also lets photographers sell prints, digital downloads, licenses, and other things through e-commerce. The platform has features like advanced protection against image theft, watermarks, and the ability to change the metadata and alt tags to improve SEO. PhotoShelter also has tools for client proofing, which let photographers share their work with clients and work on it together. PhotoShelter also connects to third-party platforms and software, making it easier for photographers to work and connect.

SmugMug vs Photoshelter Pricing

There are some things to keep in mind when comparing the prices of SmugMug and PhotoShelter. SmugMug has a number of different pricing plans, with the Basic plan starting at $48 per year. They also have plans with more features and more ways to customize them. PhotoShelter, on the other hand, has a Basic plan that starts at $10 per month. This makes it a better choice for photographers who are just starting out or who are on a tight budget.

But it’s important to know that PhotoShelter’s prices can go up depending on how many photos you want to store or how much space you need. Both platforms have different pricing tiers to fit different needs and budgets. Before making a decision, you should think about your specific needs and compare the features of each plan.

SmugMug vs Photoshelter Comparison Table

PricingStarts at $48/year for Basic planStarts at $10/month for Basic plan
Website CustomizationHighly customizable with various themes and layoutsCustomizable with templates and design options
E-commerceIntegrated shopping cart and print fulfillmentIntegrated print sales and licensing
Selling OptionsPrints, digital downloads, and photo packagesPrints, digital downloads, licenses, and more
Image ProtectionRight-click protection and watermarksWatermarks and advanced image theft protection
SEO OptimizationCustomizable URLs, metadata, and alt tagsCustomizable URLs, metadata, and alt tags
Mobile AppsiOS and Android apps availableiOS and Android apps available
Marketing ToolsEmail marketing, social media integrationEmail marketing, social media integration
Client ProofingIntegrated client proofing and commenting toolsIntegrated client proofing and commenting tools
StorageUnlimited storageStorage limits vary based on subscription plan
IntegrationsIntegrates with Adobe Lightroom and other platformsIntegrates with Adobe Creative Cloud and more
Customer Support24/7 email support and knowledge base24/7 email support and extensive help center
Official linkVisit WebsiteVisit Website

SmugMug vs Photoshelter Ease of Use

SmugMug vs Photoshelter

SmugMug has an easy-to-use interface, but it may not be too easy for new users, who often get confused about a few of the features this great online platform has to offer. But most people get used to it after the first time they try it out and can then work smoothly. This platform has a structure based on blocks, so all of the templates are made up of content blocks that keep photos in the same place. Only a few simple steps are needed for experienced users to get up and running quickly on this platform. After signing up, users will get helpful tips on how to move through the steps of web design as quickly as possible.

SmugMug even helps people choose the best design and upload the content they need. With PhotoShelter’s easy-to-use interface, users can manage this great online platform without having to touch a single line of code. Both new and experienced web developers can use this platform without any problems, since it is both easy to learn and easy to use.

SmugMug vs Photoshelter Image Storage Options

With a cloud-based solution, these platforms were made to give photographers more ways to store their photos. Users can upload low-resolution or high-resolution photos and get to them at any time. You can show the pictures on your online gallery or keep them hidden if you just want to store them. SmugMug has four subscription plans, and each one lets you store as many photos and videos as you want. During your subscription to SmugMug, you will never be limited on how many media files you can upload.

You can also store all kinds of image files on SmugMug, such as lossless files and PSD files. If you want to add RAW images to the platform, you will need to sign up for SmugMug Source, which is an extra feature of the platform. PhotoShelter does have storage packages that let you add an extra 10GB or 35GB of storage space for a monthly or yearly fee.

At the moment, you can’t upload videos to PhotoShelter, but you can upload images in any format, including RAW and PSD, for archiving purposes. Since all of SmugMug’s subscription plans come with unlimited storage, it is a little better than PhotoShelter in this way. You can also upload video files to SmugMug, which is helpful for photographers who need to store these files as well.

SmugMug vs Photoshelter Customer Support

SmugMug has customer service available around the clock. Users can ask for help from the support staff by sending an email or filling out a contact form. The SmugMug YouTube channel also has educational materials and video guides that users can use. Subscribers to the “Portfolio” and “Business” plans can also get help from the support staff through live chat during US business hours. Last but not least, SmugMug has a large community of users who offer many online resources.

PhotoShelter is different from most of its competitors in that it does not offer customer service around the clock. Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., support agents are available to help. Users can get help from support agents by filling out a contact form with their questions. Also, PhotoShelter has a large documentation section with a lot of blogs, frequently asked questions and helpful articles that talk about problems that users may run into while using PhotoShelter.

In the documentation section, users can find help on how to get started, how to share photos, how to store them, and so on. This great online platform also has a strong community where users can get help and advice from other users whenever they have a problem. In the community section, there are also special blocks for industry discussions and other helpful topics.

SmugMug vs Photoshelter Integrations

SmugMug vs Photoshelter

When it comes to integrations, both SmugMug and PhotoShelter work with a variety of third-party platforms and software to improve photographers’ workflows. Adobe Lightroom works with SmugMug, so photographers can easily upload and sync their photos between the two sites. This integration makes it easier to manage images and show them off. PhotoShelter, on the other hand, works with Adobe Creative Cloud. This gives photographers direct access to their files and makes it easy to work together and make changes using Adobe software.

Both platforms can also connect to popular social media sites like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. This makes it easy for photographers to share their work on social media and get people to visit their SmugMug or PhotoShelter sites.

Also, both SmugMug and PhotoShelter can connect to other services and tools that photographers often use, like WordPress, Dropbox, and Google Analytics. With these integrations, photographers can simplify their workflows, automate some tasks, and learn important things about their website traffic and how people use it.

SmugMug: Pros and Cons


  • Highly customizable website design options.
  • Integrated print sales and fulfillment services.
  • Strong image protection features.
  • Unlimited storage for images.
  • Integrates with Adobe Lightroom and other platforms.


  • Higher starting price compared to some competitors.
  • Limited storage for videos.
  • Advanced customization options may require technical knowledge.
  • Print products and shipping limited to certain regions.
  • Limited customer support options.

Photoshelter: Pros and Cons


  • Affordable starting price.
  • Customizable website templates.
  • Integrated print sales, licensing, and downloads.
  • Robust image theft protection features.
  • Integrates with Adobe Creative Cloud and more.


  • Storage limits vary based on subscription plan.
  • Additional fees based on image volume.
  • Limited customization options compared to some competitors.
  • Mobile apps have limited functionality.
  • Customer support options can be improved.

Which one should you consider?

SmugMug and PhotoShelter comes down to your needs, budget, and personal preferences. It is best to compare their features, pricing plans, and customer service to figure out which platform fits your needs as a photographer the best.


Do professional photographers use SmugMug?

SmugMug can do both of these things, and it also has a lot of other features that make it useful for both professional photographers and amateur photographers.

What are the benefits of PhotoShelter?

PhotoShelter helps people who are creative get the most out of their visual media easily, quickly, and without making any sacrifices. PhotoShelter makes it easy to tell stories with pictures. We help people and organizations who are passionate about their photos, videos, and other creative assets do more with them.

Amy Hinckley
Amy Hinckley
The Dell Inspiron 15 that her father purchased from QVC sparked the beginning of her interest in technology. At Bollyinside, Amy Hinckley is in charge of content editing and reviewing products. Amy's interests outside of working include going for bike rides, playing video games, and watching football when she's not at her laptop.
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