You’ve just taken a great photo with your camera or smartphone, but now you’re wondering what you’re going to do with it.
You could always take it to the local drugstore and get prints made, but we all know that’s not going to happen! Or you could upload it to Facebook and worry about where it’s going to end up. In the end, you’re probably going to show the image to one or two friends and family and then let it gather digital dust, trapped inside your camera with all those other great photos that have never seen the light of day.
But it doesn’t have to be that way. There are dozens of quality photo sharing web sites that make the upload and display of your digital photos easy and fun. You can edit them, include them in slide shows, even set them to music. And best of all, they can be as public or as private as you want.
Here are 7 of the best photo sharing web sites for you to consider. Unlock those great photos and start sharing today!
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1. SmugMug 2 of 8The only one of our top photo sharing web sites that doesn't offer a free membership option, but that's because it's the best! The simple layout masks a wealth of editing, display and sharing features that cater to both the amateur and true professional. Flash slideshows can be embedded in your blog or viewed directly on the site. Lots of themes and customization tools for slide shows and galleries. No limit on the number of photos you can upload or the amount you can store. Comprehensive security features, including privacy options and download protection.
Web site: http://www.smugmug.com
Cost: Basic: $40/year; Power: $60/year; Pro: $150/year; 14 day free trial
2. Photobucket 3 of 8Well organized and easy-to-use photo sharing web site. Hundreds of ways to customize and display albums, including adding music for slide shows. Scrapbook builder allows easy drag and drop organizing. One click posting to most of the popular social networking and blogging sites. A huge variety of cards, mugs, posters and other gift items available. No account needed to view photos on Photobucket, although multiple level privacy options are available.
Web site: http://www.photobucket.com
Cost: Basic: Free; Pro: $24.95/year
3. Picasa 4 of 8Google's fast and easy-to-use photo sharing web site. Links with all Google's free photo editing tools. Automatically finds and stores all the photos stored on your PC. Direct upload from Android mobile devices. Dedicated web address for storage and display, which allows individual users to set up RSS feeds and automatic updates. Full support for searching and tagging photos. 1GB of space for free, 10GB for $20/year and then a reduced sliding scale after that.
Web site: http://picasagoogle.com
Cost: Basic: Free for up to 1GB of storage, then a graduated scale after that
4. Flickr 5 of 8A popular and widely-used photo sharing site. Users can upload up to 100MB of photos per month, with no limit on storage. Mobile interface allows easy sharing from almost any mobile device, and iOS and Android platforms usually have direct sharing links. Vast array of editing and display features, including numerous stylish and entertaining special effects. Social networking features allow users with similar interests to connect and share. Photo tagging and geo-tagging features also available.
Web site: http://www.flickr.com
Cost: Basic: Basic: Free; Pro: $24.95/year
5. Kodak Gallery 6 of 8A basic and entirely free photo sharing site that is reliable and family-oriented. Features a variety of ways to upload and share your photos. Sharing options include multiple privacy features and the ability to track who has viewed your photos. Ability to create great looking slide shows. Huge variety of print options, with a streamlined process for ordering. 40 free prints available on sign-up.
Web site: http://www.kodakgallery.com
Cost: Basic: Free, plus 40 free prints when you sign-up
6. Snapfish 7 of 8A photo sharing site but with the emphasis on ordering prints and personalized gifts. Well designed and easy-to-use. Online editing features to enhance photos and fix problems like red eye. Works with any device that can run a web browser. Downloadable software available to help transfer photos from your camera. No mobile upload application, so photos on phones and other mobile devices have to be e-mailed to your account. Private "group rooms" available for family and friends to view photos and leave comments.
Web site: http://www.snapfish.com
Cost: Basic: Free, plus 20 free prints when you sign-up
7. Shutterfly 8 of 8A popular site for uploading photos and turning them into greeting cards, posters or calendars. Easy routines for uploading and sharing. Free, unlimited storage space. Tools for creating a customized web site to display and share your photos. Allows others to add comments. Includes downloadable software to organize and edit your photo collection. Video sharing version of Shutterfly also available. 50 free 4x6 prints on sign-up!
Web site: http://www.shutterfly.com
Cost: Basic: Free, plus 50 free prints when you sign-up
Monica Vila is TheOnlineMom -a community devoted to promoting a healthy understanding and appreciation for the positive role technology can play in our lives. She’s constantly chatting on Facebook here or on Twitter @TheOnlineMom where you are more than welcome to join the conversation.
Photos from developers’ websites and Free Digital Photos.