If you’re a photo studio or photographer who uses Pictage to host and sell your photos, you likely have quite a shock this week. On August 24th, Pictage posted the following message to their users:
The Closing of Pictage
Please accept my sincere apologies for the Pictage web site being down since Thursday. The Pictage web site is currently recovering, but it is an extremely slow process due to the high number of images we store. We are doing everything we can to bring the web site online as fast as we can.
We will credit your accounts for the days down that you have already paid for. We will not charge your accounts for any further subscriptions until the site is restored.
Though the site will be restored in the coming days, it is with a heavy heart that I announce the closure of Pictage on September 27th. It is clear to me that despite my best efforts, problems like the ones we are experiencing will continue to occur and that it is better to close the business gracefully than wait for a future failure from which we cannot recover.
Im sure you will have many questions about how this will impact you. Weve attempted to address them ahead of time via this FAQ. As we identify more questions to be addressed, we will update it.
Earlier this year, Pictage spun off its lab into a separate business called Photo Albums Direct. They are fully functional and capable of processing any orders you submit. If you liked Pictages products, you can order them directly from the source by signing up for a free Photo Albums Direct account. Photo Albums Direct also performs Album Design Services for a modest fee. Many Pictage customers have already migrated to Photo Albums Direct and are very happy with their speed, quality, and price.
In closing, I want to say thank you to those customers who have stayed loyal to us through thick and thin. The staff at Pictage is extremely gratified to have had the privilege of serving you for all these years. All good things must come to an end. Pictage was indeed good. We ? Photographers.
What This Means to Photographers
This is big news. To maintain an online presence these days isn’t just about having a website for your brand. I use it for my gallery, my backup storage, file delivery and I sell prints to my clients. Its the #1 important aspect of my business (besides creating great art of course).
If you are with Pictage, you have options and other companies not only are ready to take care of you but sincerely want to help you make the switch. Ive reached out to three companies regarding Pictages announcement.
Note: I do have to clarify I personally am employed with SmugMug and I want to disclose that. I also believe you need to be able to make an informed choice on what company you end up going with. All three companies have their strengths and bring a lot of great features to the table for your business.
SmugMug not only feels heartache for Pictage users but they are offering a 25% discount to those switching over. You can find the discount and an open letter to Pictage users here. Often the response times from their support team happen within minutes. There are a lot of strengths regarding SmugMug to consider. Vanelli even recently wrote an article on one way he uses SmugMug for his needs. A few of us here at Photofocus swear by SmugMug.
Zenfolio has been a recent partner with us here at Photofocus. There are a few of us here at Photofocus that use Zenfolio. Heres a recent article from Scott Bourne regarding one of the features he enjoys about Zenfolio. Ive reached out to Zenfolio and even though they do not have an official discount, they offered me 20% off because I did email in when I inquired about moving over from Pictage.
UPDATE: Zenfolio has reached out to Photofocus and confirmed Pictage users do receive a 20% discount when they move to Zenfolio. Zenfolio is also offering a free three month trial to Pictage users via this link… https://secure.zenfolio.com/z/promo/pictage
Pixieset is fairly new to the scene and are doing some pretty cool things. Pixieset, does not have any discounts at the moment regarding switching over but said that is not to say there won’t be one implemented. It did take almost a day for them to get back to me. I haven’t researched them enough to know how well their customer service and site truly work but they are worth checking out. They are turing some heads in the way they are presenting themselves and the features they are offering. If I hear more back from them after this article posts, Ill be sure to update any potential discounts.
Look at your options. All three places offer free trials. Im sure there are a few others in the running but these are honestly my top three big players. SmugMug offers unlimited uploads, a special discount and are very sympathetic to the situation. Zenfolio, acknowledges how upsetting this is as well and they too are willing to work with you in getting switched over. Both Zenfolio and SmugMug answered me within minutes. I love that fast service. As soon as Pixieset responds, I’ll update as needed. Ask your other photographer friends which ones they use. Not all them will have every single feature you might be used to with Pictage but each online service has its pros and cons that should be considered. If you have a great or not so great experience, let us know so our friends with Pictage can get their sites back on track.
You can find Pamela on IG & Twitter @pamelaannberry