Considering moving away from Smugmug
A few months ago I discovered that Smugmug have increased the subscription price significantly
|2017-2024||$89.95 (I payed for three years in 2021)|
I remember thinking that $90/year was a lot of money, but since I liked SmugMug I decided to renew. However, the current price for my plan is $138 … a 53% increase compared to the last time I renewed. I also noted that they had removed the cheapest plan, and I’m now on the cheapest plan.
I’m starting to think that $138 is a bit too much money to spend each year for a gallery site. I’m not selling any photos so I don’t make any money that could help offset the cost. These $138 are coming from my “have fun” account … an additional 10 years means $1380 assuming no further price increases, and I can have a lot of fun that amount of money.
My main use for my SmugMug site have been to show off photos from various events, and to let people download photos. I’m very satisfied with how Lightroom and SmugMug integrates with each other, and the site looks good. So I have no complaints regarding the functionality of SmugMug. In other words, my only hesitation is about the price, can I really justify spending $138/year to have somewhere to upload my photos. I really don’t know, right now I’m leaning towards switching to something else.
The good thing is that I’ve payed for another year so I have time to investigate what my alternatives are before making a decision. I’m currently looking at Piwigo and jAlbum which are very different types of software. Piwigo is similar to SmugMug (although not as nice) in that it’s a dynamic web site where you upload you photos and manage them using the site. jAlbum is desktop application where you generate a static web site and then upload it to your server. Piwigo is free, while jAlbum will cost you some money (but you don’t need to upgrade each year). Piwigo and jAlbum assumes that you have a web site where you can upload your site (both have alternatives where they host your site, but I’m looking for the possibility to self-host), I already have this web site space so this is no extra cost for me.
I really don’t know what to do … but I have about 9 months to decide (need a couple of months to actually move my photos if I decide to move).
There is of course an additional alternative, sell enough photos so I could pay for SmugMug with that money … which is a very unlikely alternative 😁.