Partner with a European/UK lab to provide timely and cost effective print services in Europe.
Whenever I have been selling prints, customers have pulled away from the option of using the SmugMug system, due to the inconvenience (perceived) and extra cost (significant) of the order being fulfilled on the other side of the Atlantic. I always end up having to use another service to provide prints, which adds unnecessary work I'd rather not be having to do, having paid for the Pro subscription in the first place.
One way around this could be for SmugMug to partner with a European lab, so prints were charged and shipped from within Europe, reducing the shipping costs, shipping time, and unease/inconvenience regarding international transactions. It's the perception of customers regarding the US fulfilment of orders that is key, and all of mine have responded in a negative way (cost, time, etc), to the extent that I had to remove the purchasing options from my galleries to avoid confusion - they now just contact me for for prints. Very inconvenient for all involved.
So, to sum up, are there any plans for SmugMug to link with a UK or European lab, so that I/we can take full advantages of the facilities in our Pro subscriptions?
allow alternate currencies! - British pound £ in particular ********!
A selection of European print labs to choose from.
If you can't use Smugmug due to the UK fulfillment issues lets hear who you are using and why.
Loxley Colour: http://news.smugmug.com/2012/03/23/welcome-loxley-colour/
And native currency support for pricing: http://news.smugmug.com/2012/03/23/pros-now-sell-in-currency-near-you/
When are you going to get a Lab in Australia i know of 2 top labs over here and would love to see you guys using one to make things faster on this side of the world
Serge McGreg commented
Please consider this just as a first step. Add more within Europe, Asia and Pacific. It would be globally awesome!
PLEASE add the ability to add music to each slideshow. I currently use Phanfare and they offer this feature. For this reason, I will have to wait to sign up with SmugMug.
Thanks for considering!
who me? commented
I would like a UK lab and a Hong Kong lab as well as I am based in HK. I have the same problem.
Well, I now viewed the adjacent (horrible) promo video saying what is not said anywhere else: This European lab will only be for the SmugMug Pro customers. - I'm a simple Power costumer. - So I guess I won't benefit from this at all?
@Tricky01: I was with Zenfolio prior to SmugMug, and I was basically very happy with them. VERY easy to set up things and a brilliant backend to administer your (many) photo folders!
My needs changed, and Zenfolio changed their service plans, so I got a better offer at SmugMug. After a year I still long for Zenfolio's strightforward backend tool!
Zenfolio uses PhotoBox as their prime EU lab. It is not as good as their US partner, MPix. Meanwhile they now also use http://www.onevisionimaging.com, which might be a bit better? (Again here, you're not allowed to view prices unless registered.)
By searching the web I managed to find your Zenfolio site, http://www.simontregidgo.com/. Thanks for viewing (you use approx. the same frontpage as I did).
Btw.: Thumbnails are bigger - more pleasing - at SmugMug. Have a look: http://lumi.smugmug.com/
Great news and it was time!
Well. Took you quite a bit of time to get there, didn't it!?
Next, I had to see for myself, what this is all about. Please note that the first 5/6 of everything on the site, http://www.loxleycolour.com, is highly specialized "Products" with a procuction time of no less than 3 days, normally 5. Prices seems to be too high - or low? - to be announced to the public: Please register to get this information!
On the far right side - in the 6th column - you find "Services" including what normal people would normally order: Digital prints with a production time of 1 day. That is: If you want 1 of 3 different shiny surfaces: "Lustre", "Gloss" or "Metallic". If you want some kind of Matte finish ("Press Printed Paper" or "Giclée fine art prints") you are left with no information on the production time. And of course: Please register to find out how much to pay for these services!
My guess would be that my SmugMug login will be useable as direct access to the lab. So why would I register separately?
I guess, I'm just too eager to find out. We've been waiting years, so be carm and wait just another 3 weeks. Then everything will be revealed. Possibly.
Great news, but a month too late. After looking into this back on 7th Feb (see Tricky01 comment), I then ventured forward with zenfolio.com. Have to say I'm very pleased, though probably would have given smugmug a closer look had this announcement come earlier.
Good luck to you UK/EU smugmugers, though do check out my zenfolio site if you get a chance :)
What amazing news! Thank you guys
Thank you, thank you, thank you.......... taken two years but finally you have done it... One very happy Smugmug user :)
AdminAndy Williams (Admin, SmugMug) commented
Hi folks, here's a blog post I think you all will want to read :)
Reinout van Rees commented
I just visited the loxley colour website and was put off by one thing: I can find no information on how much they cost. You have to log in (and thus create an account) before you're allowed to see prices.
My basic internet reaction on something like that is "don't touch them with a 10 foot pole". I didn't attempt to create an account, as it probably means you have to enter all your personal details including shoe size. You might not have to, but not showing prices until your have an account most often boils down to something like that.
Tomasz Nowicki commented
People today I have been on Focus on imaging and today SmugMug has announced that they started cooperation with EU lab - starting from 23 March this year we all will be able to buy print in EU - the lab I am talking about is LOXLEY COLOUR - http://loxleycolour.com/. Great chat with Andy, Baldy and Ana. Thanks for your time and btw - AMAZING Stand!
Marian Müller commented
Smugmug..do you need help in finding professional european labs? Please let us know! I can recommend companies like http://de.whitewall.com/
Jeff King commented
I hear you all saying you've renewed!!!! WHY? I've ended up with abandoning my SmugMug account (just posted a note on the header saying we've moved and giving the new link...).
Honestly Zen is just as good and no more expensive, I believe you'll get your money back soooner than you think by using Zen.
I think SmugMug will just lead you on.... There is no reason why they wont give an update.... See my other posts for referral code giving 10% off when you join...
peter vooijs commented
is my last year with smugmug have enough off it, build my new site its almost done....
goodbye smugmug for me when i done ...
Well written, Del! I have renewed my Pro account for another year. A leap of faith... But they got just this year to fix it otherwise it will be a European/UK provider for me. Love the SmugMug feel BUT as you said, from a business point of view it's not about how I like the feel but what makes sense for my customers. Can't wait to hear what reply you get.
Jeff King commented
I'm beginning to wonder about you guys.... how much of a chance do you want to give Smugmug, it's clear they don't give a **** and can't even answer your queries, it sounds to me like you're almost begging them as if there is no alternative! As I said before I switched to Zenfolio 2 months ago as they do multi currency and UK Labs... WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR????? My Zen account is www.yourpic.zenfolio.com I'm an event photographer and I have daily sales.... AND Zenfolio allows your customer to pay via PAYPAL which makes customers purchases soooooo easy... you can also get 10% off Zenfolio if you use my referral code C9T-UX5-NUR
Del Hunter commented
Below is an e-mail I sent today, it will be interesting to see what kind of reaction we get...
Can I get a straight answer to a straight question please.
When are we getting a UK lab?
Please, please, please don't start busy fingers tapping away at the standard response, "We are working on it,,, We've done so much work on this already,,, You'll be impressed when we roll it out,,,". We've been hearing the same old lines for over 3 years now and I would like an answer. I know what you're thinking now, you're flexing those fingers to start the old classic, "We have a policy of never releasing dates or details of on-going projects,,,"
Spooky ain't it? Be 100% honest, those very lines popped into your head, didn't they? That's because we've ALL heard them for so long now, you guys probably believe them now.
The latest roll-out, to my utter amazement, was yet ANOTHER, US based lab. Just what we all want and have been asking for, for so long. To top it all off, "Baldy" appears on a video, telling us all about how passionate he and Smugmug are, about being pro choice!! Yeah Baldy, so much choice if you live in the States, absolutely NO choice if you live anywhere else!!
There is absolutely NO reason why you cannot tell us what progress you're having with what lab in the UK,,,, no wait, there is one reason,,,, you're not making any progress, with any lab in the UK and you have NO intention of using any UK based lab in the future!!
I'm only talking about a lab in the UK (and I have even made suggestions of pro quality labs in previous e-mails), but what about your clients in mainland Europe, Australia, Asia etc, etc, etc... Here's a solution, until you make this momentous roll-out extravaganza, why don't YOU pay the costs of sending prints outside the States?
As you can probably tell by this e-mail, I am upset and angry by the way I and numerous others have been treated by Smugmug. I will make a copy of this e-mail and will be posting it on various Photographic Society sites in the UK ( EAF, PAGB, RPS amongst others) with a hard learned warning:: Smugmug is NOT financially suitable to anyone outside the US!
Unless you offer me some concrete news, I'm out. I'll cancel my account and let others know why. I'll direct all my friends and collegues to the Smugmug blog site where they can see for themselves. It's not a threat, it's a promise from YOUR client, who's tired of waiting, tired of being told the same old lines, tired of not being heard and most of all, tired of not being cared about. THAT IS NOT HOW A CLIENT SHOULD BE TREATED!!!