Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, which means Photography Awesomesauce receives commission if you make a purchase using affiliate links.
If you follow Photography Awesomesauce you’ll know that I’ve been through my fair share of online gallery companies. I’ve tried most of them in the past few years and I’ve learned there are a few things that are really important to me:
- A user friendly interface
- Top notch customer service
- Great downloading options
- Lots of storage
I first tried Shootproof several years ago and wrote this review. At that time digital downloads were still a newer thing for photographers. From there I tried other services as the technology changed and got better. Ultimately, I’ve come back full-circle to Shootproof again and wanted to write an updated review on why I’m loving it right now. There are a lot of great companies to chose from these days, but here is why I’m sticking with Shootproof!
- Unlimited Photo Storage – Shootproof’s unlimited storage option for photographers is one of the more affordable ones. I love that I have no worries about running out of space. I’ve even moved personal photos, travel photos, and really old client sessions onto Shootproof just for that extra online backup. Why not? Shootproof’s unlimited storage is $60 per month right now (at the time I’m writing this blog post – it may change), but there are sometimes great deals like the one I got ($360 for an entire year). I got that price around the time of WPPI (the world’s biggest photography convention). Even if you don’t need unlimited storage there are still a lot of great pricing options.
- Automated Email System – I’m a very busy person and Shootproof’s automated email system makes my life easier. Now, I can set up emails that will go out at various dates based around a client’s online gallery date. If you’re loving online print sales for your clients these email systems will help you sell, by automatically reminding the client of sales you have, gallery expiration dates, etc. Set up a few automated emails to remind your clients about their online gallery and watch your sales increase without much effort on your part!
- Order Fulfillment – Shootproof has some amazing options for print orders. You can self-fulfill when your clients order, meaning you do all the work yourself when it comes to printing and fulfilling the order. You can also have Shootproof fulfill the orders for you from one of the labs they’ve partnered with. ProDPI is my favorite print lab so it’s nice to automate that print process and just let clients order prints and they’re sent automatically when they’re ready!
- Print Release – If you’re selling digital files in any way, shape or form Shootproof has you covered. Anytime a client downloads you can have Shootproof send a customized (and automated) print release right to the email address of the downloader. It definitely helps you enforce any special printing rules you’d like, or usage rights if you’re sharing photos with publishers, venues, or wedding vendors.
- User Interface – One of the things I wished had been changed a lot sooner was the back-end of Shootproof. For many years it wasn’t as user friendly as I would have liked, but this past year they did a MAJOR overhaul and the new user interface is really amazing, easy to use, and easy to understand!
- Easy Downloads – When I’ve had other online galleries offer downloads to my clients I’ve historically had more issues with clients downloading than I ever had with Shootproof. I think the downloading options on Shootproof are easier for your clients to find and the process is easier for them to understand. Some of the other systems I’ve used have confusing wording or the download button isn’t front and center. So far in the last 6 months with Shootproof I haven’t had any reports of clients having trouble downloading their photos!
- Customer Service – There are a few online gallery systems that really focus on building a community of photographers around them. Some of these places ended up prioritizing the community above the actual product and in my opinion the product suffers because of it. While Shootproof does have a Facebook group and a community of users, their priorities are all about creating a great experience for you as a photographer and your clients. Every time I’ve needed some help with Shootproof they’re quick to handle the problem and provide a great experience while at it. While some companies are really focused on their communities I really love that Shootproof puts its customers first and doesn’t want to build a community around them full of exclusivity and drama – they just want to provide a simple and GREAT product. That makes me happy. I’m not a fan of industry drama to begin with and it’s nice that Shootproof focuses on what they do best – online photography galleries.
- Client’s View of the Gallery – I love that Pinterest-y style look and I’m so glad Shootproof now has that option (they have for awhile). I just think it lends itself to storytelling so well!
- Gallery Introduction – There are several ways you can structure and set up a gallery, but my favorite thing about Shootproof’s options is that instead of uploading a photo to a gallery with wording to remind clients how the gallery works, you can customize an intro (like the photo below) to remind people to download or order prints, or whatever else you’d like. I think this simple statement helps improve online gallery sales bunches!
There are a couple of things I’d really like to see in Shootproof’s future. One is the option to move photos around inside the gallery after I upload them. Sometimes I’d like to change the order, but right now Shootproof doesn’t have this function. The other is the layout of a gallery if it has several smaller gallery albums within it. While it’s an okay view to open up a gallery and see 6 or 7 small thumbnails that lead me to different other parts of the gallery (see the photo below), I’d really like that display option to be different. It’s not a big deal to me though and my clients seem to love their galleries regardless. However, these are very small details and knowing how Shootproof prioritizes their customer’s experience, I’m confident updates will be out in the future that create more options for customizing galleries.
I can’t wait to see what Shootproof comes up with in the future and how they can make things even better! I’m pretty sure I’m with them for the long haul! If you appreciated this review at all (or my past one), I ask that you please pay it forward by using my affiliate link when you sign up for Shootproof! Also, if you’d like to get 25% off any annual plan with Shootproof just use the code: SWAILS25!
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