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SmugMug Reviews

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Editor's Overall Rating:
Average User Rating:
(based on 8 reviews)

Category: Photo Sharing Websites (AKA Online Photo Album Sites)
Website: http://www.smugmug.com

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Don't believe the hype
14 September 2012
Reviewer: Michael Walker from Meadville, PA

236 of 387 people found this review helpful

Quality of Sharing Features:
Range/Quality of Prints and Gifts:
Other Features:
Ease of Use / Navigation:
Ease of Joining / Registration:
Customer Support:
Value for Money:
Overall Star Rating:

I'd be the first to acknowledge I have very limited expertise in tech things, but I'm also not as stupid as this site makes me feel. I bought a pro account, assuming it would be the most complete, as I need to be able to share certain galleries to clients, and be able to sell others. I have spent about 2-3 frustrating hours trying to navigate this thing about a dozen times in the last 3 mos and finally got so fed up I closed the account. You can chat fairly easily with tech support, and all but one were patient & tried to be helpful, but they never seemed to understand they were not talking to a programmer. The 'help' verbiage may make sense to professional IT people, but almost none of it did to me. Even the couple of things I did figure out stopped working because they did some 'updates'. This last update wouldn't even allow me to upload pictures unless I did them one at a time - that was quite a step backward.

There appears to be a very wide range of items that can be purchased with your photos on them, but some were rather overpriced - t-shirts for $45, for example. On the other end of the spectrum - people can download your files for $.01, if I understand the pricing. That was huge - the whole pricing scheme was yet another thing that may as well have been written in Mandarin. I am educable - I am an eye doctor - but this was a huge exercise in frustration.

I will try to give ease of use a 0 rating - not sure if it allowed.

To be fair - the site looked good, and they did apparently just process a refund after I sent an e-mail explaining my problems. Again - the tech folks tried their best, but there is no way this should be this complicated. I'll never get those hours back, but the lack of a fight (after an initial refusal) about the refund suggests they are good people to work with. Just make sure you know a lot about this sort of thing before trying to use it.

If you know what you're doing with these things - yes, I would recommend it. If you don't, and all you're trying to do is share photos with friends/family - no way - unless the basic account is much simpler. No one suggested that to me - I may look into it.

In summary, I would not recommend SmugMug to a friend.

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