The other day I was at my computer quietly minding my own business comtemplating how I was going to go about bending light to process the photo of Garden of the Gods. Periodically I check my email and this time I see I have a new email from Smugmug with the subject line:
New Smugmug Pro Account Pricing
That made me pay attention. I have a Pro account at Smugmug which costs me $150/year. For me, that’s about the limit of my being okay with paying for a place to store and sell my photography. When I first got Smugmug years ago it was about the only thing out there and was ahead of all the others. Now, others have caught up. Take a look at Zenfolio, for instance. For only $120 I can get basically the same level of service I now get from Smugmug. There are others out there too. Please leave a comment below with any recommendation you might have about portfolio hosting which includes setting my own prices to sell prints. I’ll be checking them out.
Photographers are human and we think much like every body else. Incremental price increases are expected on quality services. In the email from Smugmug, Chris MacAskill (aka Baldy) Co-Founder & President, was quick to point out that Smugmug had not had a price increase in seven years. Okay, so that is supposed to impress me and make it all warm & fuzzy? Maybe incremental price increases along the way would have felt a lot better to me than getting hit with this 67% increase. I don’t like it and I’m not the only one. There are numerous articles already out there (I’ve given you links to some of them below) talking about this… and some smart companies, like PrintedArt, are already soliciting SmugMug refugees. I’m sure there will be others.