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Shutterfly Review

Developed by: Shutterfly, Inc
Ranked: 2nd
Overall rating:
Best price: Visit website

Technology should make our lives easier


Review summary

Good points Shutterfly review good points

• High quality prints

• Shared photos on personalized websites

• Unlimited picture storage

• Easy to use

Bad points Shutterfly review bad points

• Not able to upload photos by email

• No live chat support function

Our verdict

Shutterfly is an independent company that’s developed a range of convenient features for photo storage and printing, and some competitive prices. The customer support and design features may not be extensive but the finished product is of a high quality.

Full review

High quality prints and an easy-to-use service make Shutterfly a good choice for your photo printing needs. With unlimited photo storage you can arrange and show all your pictures online before choosing the best ones to print.

Sign Up

The sign-up process for Shutterfly is a matter of inputting your name, email address and password into the site to create a free account. Only after you have done this can you place an order for prints.


Once you’ve signed up to an account, you’ll want to get your photos online so you can order prints and photo gifts. Shutterfly gives you seven uploading methods. One is the Express Uploader, which you download as a desktop attachment before dragging-and-dropping pictures into it. You can view and edit pictures before you upload them into a Shutterfly album. The standard uploader uses Flash to upload through your browser and if you don’t have Flash, you can upload images one at a time although this can be rather slow. You can download images direct from iPhoto through a plug-in, directly from iPhone or iPad, and from Picasa. If you don’t have Flash or the Express Uploader and you have a lot of images to print you can send a CD to Shutterfly with all your images on it. There is no capability to upload images from film. You can store as many photos as you like, and the Shutterfly experience is high resolution – all your pictures are stored as high definition files. Once you’ve uploaded your pictures you can order prints by clicking on them and adding them to your cart from your pictures store.

Friends and family have an easy time viewing the photos you want to share with them – they don’t need to create an account or sign up, they access your photos from a link in the email you send them from Shutterfly. You can choose how many images you want to share, and whether you want to display a whole album to your family and friends.

Design features

Shutterfly offers a few options to make your images more eye-catching and individual. Edit your photos with a basic photo editing program before you upload them into your album, removing red eye and cropping pictures. Enhance your photos with simple borders and add captions. You can also add a free personalized message on the back of the print to give you or the recipient of the print a reminder of when and where it was taken or what the occasion was.

Shutterfly boasts the full quota of photo gifts when prints aren’t enough. The Photo Books are fully customizable and you can create an individual book with your own photos – it may take a little time to arrange and organize your prints as you like them but the results are generally thought to be worth it.

Quality of photo prints

Shutterfly claims to be the choice of professional photographers so the quality of their digital prints should be up to scratch. Shutterfly uses Fuji Crystal Archive paper for bright and clear images and you can take advantage of technology that automatically enhances the quality of your photos when they are printed, including enhancing for color and the sharpness of the image.


The amount you pay for shipping depends on which product you are ordering, for example prints carry a different shipping charge to mugs and mouse mats. Your prints are usually shipped within one business day of your order being placed – no shipping takes place on weekends. Larger format prints and gifts take two to three business days to ship. You can request, for a higher cost, priority delivery which takes three to five business days as opposed to three to seven with standard delivery, or two-day and next-day delivery. The standard and priority shipping times are not guaranteed and you should keep in mind that it may take up to 14 days on holidays for your prints to be delivered. Pick up prints, but only prints, not photobooks as with other suppliers, at Target, Walgreens or CVS in under an hour.

Ease of use

The Express Uploader is a simple thing to use, with its drag-and-drop function and means of arranging and editing the photos within the program. Organizing your pictures is simple and you’ve got quite a lot of choice as to how to display them in folders and albums. Once you’ve organized all your photos you’ll find it easier to decide which ones you are going to turn into prints.

Help & support

Browse through the collection of articles and videos to pick up tips if you are stuck or you need inspiration. If you want a more direct answer to a question, you can email customer support or call during the day. There is no live chat support function.


Choose Shutterfly for a competitively priced service and unlimited photo storage, so you can show off your photos online and in print.

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Ratings breakdown

 received a rating of 5 for Overall
Sign up
 received a rating of 5 for Sign up
 received a rating of 5 for Process
Design features
 received a rating of 5 for Design features
Quality of photo prints
 received a rating of 5 for Quality of photo prints
 received a rating of 5 for Shipping
Ease of use
 received a rating of 5 for Ease of use
Help & support
 received a rating of 5 for Help & support