Many of you told us that the full-screen homepage slideshow was essential to your website. We’ve got something new we think you’ll love: A full-screen slideshow for your pages and galleries!
How does it work?
We’ve added a brand-new background tab to your site customization, which means you can easily add a single image, a series of single images or a slideshow as the background of your homepage.
Additionally, Power, Portfolio and Business users can add unique backgrounds to other pages on their site: Folders, Galleries and Pages. This background sits behind the other content blocks that you’ve added on the page, exactly the same way that a color, texture, or graphic added from the Theme tab currently does.
How do I get started?
1) Open up your Customization and look for the new “Background” tab in the Customize panel.
2) Choose where your new background will show. By default, your ‘background’ will be inherited from your entire site but you can display something across every page on your entire site, have it live just on your homepage, or make it appear on every single Folder or gallery page.
3) Choose the background type. To add a full-screen slideshow to your homepage, open up the drop down menu to choose the Slideshow option. Be sure the “Homepage” location is selected, too:
Note: Choosing “None” will evert your background to whatever is set in your Theme.
4) Save your new goodies by Publishing your changes. That’s it!
Can I customize those slideshow options?
Of course! You can set:
- your images
- playback speed
- transition type and speed
- a splash image to be used to entertain your viewers while the full slideshow loads
What else can I do with the new Background tab?
You’re not just limited to slideshows. Choose the “Photo” option to add an edge-to-edge photo to the background. We recommend setting it so that your visitors see a new image each time they visit your site!
To do this, create a gallery of background images, or select photos from several different galleries on your site. Opting to change the photo “every visit” gives your site a fresh new look each time your fan comes back.
Tip: Be sure that your selection of images play well with your text colors!
Is there anything I should watch out for?
These background images sit behind all of the content blocks on the pages to which that you add them. They will lie under your navigation menus, Galleries Blocks, Text Blocks, and so on. To avoid a completely cluttered experience, we recommend that you remove existing content blocks from your page if the slideshow is the focus of that page.
Is it available on MY SmugMug account?
Yes! Once again, all SmugMug users will be able to add background images or slideshows to their homepage. Power, Portfolio and Business accounts (levels that include additional customization options) will also be able to change the background content on any page on their site.
Where can I learn more about the new Background options?
If you still have questions about this feature, our brand new help page is there to help you. So are our Support Heroes!
So sit back, enjoy the (slide)show, and let us know what you think in the comments below. Don’t forget to share what you’re designing, too, as part of our ongoing Show Us Your SmugMug contest. :)
While we’re getting all wrapped up in the festivities of the season, we’ve also been hard at work on your many feature requests and feedback. Here’s a few of the most recent goodies that we’ve released!
New Updates to the Uploader
Our HTML5 uploader got an overhaul to match the rest of new SmugMug, and now shows you two columns of real-time info: the files you’ve queued and the files that we’ve successfully completed.
We’ll also check for duplicates each time you drag photos in, so you don’t have to refresh or reload the uploader for it to detect files you’ve already uploaded.
And fear not, happy draggers! The new uploader also sports an edge-to-edge drop target, which means you can drop your photos anywhere in your entire browser and they’ll get slurped safely in. More about uploading at SmugMug.
New Options for Your Map and Keywords!
We recently give you the ability to set the scope of what shows up in your Search content block, so we did the same for your Maps and your Keywords.Your Map content block settings will now display pins from the following:
- Recent photos
- Popular photos
- Galleries I Choose
- Photos I Choose
This is a perfect way to showcase your favorite vacation spots, when sharing the most difficult-to-reach photo gems with fellow photographers, or for planning out locations to take your portrait clients. Don’t forget to add a location to your photos if they don’t automatically get tagged!
Your keywords content block now has the additional scope options:
- Current location
- Entire Site
- Location I Choose
Since keywords are an integral part of search and helping your photos get found, it’s easy for your keyword cloud to mushroom out of control. Now you can use the new “Scope” option to refine what your fans see and keep it relevant to the page. More about keywords on SmugMug.
A Better Header
You may have noticed that your logged-in header looks a little different than it used to. Based on your feedback, we shuffled a few things around and moved the options to left side of the bar, for better clickability.
After all, you’re going to be hitting those pretty heavily, so why not make it perfect?
A few simple fixes for your Slideshows: We had a few reports about some slideshows skipping photos, which shouldn’t happen anymore.
Your visitors can now also see photos in your slideshows that are pulled from unlisted galleries. This is perfect for those times you just want to create a secret, separate gallery where you Collect or upload your best images from all over your site.
That’s it from us. As always, we’ve got more great stuff on the way so keep that feedback coming!
It’s that time again, happy SmugMuggers! Here’s a quick update on what we’ve updated and fixed over the last few weeks.
Choose Where to Search
This is just what the doctor ordered for all you folks who want to cordon off your viewers’ searches to a specific portion of your site. Now when you click the settings you can choose exactly which folders and galleries get searched using the input in this field.
So, for example, if you took several galleries’ worth of photos on an epic world vacation 2013, fans who are looking for photos of “elephants” in India won’t dig up photos of elephants from your local zoo. Keep in mind that the regular search tips apply, so be sure you’re up to speed.
Tip: This new setting applies to the Search Box content block ONLY, and not to the search box that appears in your site header. That one will continue to search only the page that you’re currently viewing.
NEW AdSense Content Block
We’ve never forced SmugMug customers to display ads on their site, but we do have a fair number of business customers who wanted the ability to display paid ads to their own viewers. Due to popular demand, Power, Portfolio and Business accounts now have the ability to add Google Adsense units to any page on your site using the new AdSense content block.
You can add up to three of these blocks to any page, but please refer to your AdSense Terms of Service for specific information about what you should and shouldn’t do. Enjoy!
Filenames in Organizer
You gave us a lot of feedback about those thumbnails you’re seeing in your site-wide Organizer, and how you wanted to be able to see the filenames for each and every one. It was one of those “Why didn’t we think of that?” moments, so now we’ve added in a toggle for your organizing pleasure.
Find it in the upper right corner of the browsing pane of your Organizer.
Two Slideshow Improvements
Thanks to your feedback on our forums, we’ve added a randomization option to your Slideshow content block, found under the “Display” tab of the block settings. So now you don’t have to decide which photo gets seen first.
We also brought back edge-to-edge, full screen slideshow displays. This applies to the big slideshow that appears after you hit the “full screen” button in any gallery style as well as the Slideshow content block. Note that this applies only if you have Originals enabled in the photos’ gallery settings and if your Original photo resolution is large enough to stretch across the screen. We also won’t stretch (AKA distort) images to fit screens, so you may still see some letterboxing if your image isn’t the perfect shape.
Last but never least, here are our top picks from the mix of other fixes:
- Added back “Sharpening” settings for Power User accounts.
- Properly updated the preview URL when you click Hide Owner.
- Fixed stuttering video playback in some public galleries.
- Photos in passworded galleries with external linking “Off” will display properly when collected and used as featured photos.
- Gallery privacy levels (unlisted, private, passworded) are shown in all gallery picker windows.
Till next time. Keep the feedback coming!
Autumn is kicking off to a great start. Here are the top features that we’ve added to SmugMug since our last update.
Map This in the New SmugMug
We love taking cues from your feedback, and this was one of the big ones you missed when going from legacy to the new SmugMug.
If your photos are geotagged, we’ll automatically display a little globe icon underneath it in your gallery or lightbox. Click it and you’ll see that pin highlighted on a map that displays pins for all other geotagged photos in that gallery. We’ll group the ones close together until you zoom in enough.
Gone are the old 150-pin limits – If every photo in your gallery is geotagged, we’ll pin every single one of them on your map. Special galleries like your Popular Photos, Keywords and Date are capped at 1000 pins.
One last thing: Map This now works for unlisted and passworded galleries, so anyone you share those with can enjoy browsing by location, too. Catch up on all the mappy goodness on SmugMug.
New: Google Calendar for Your Site
Busy photographers, this one’s for you. We added a new content block for Google Calendar, so you can show your fans (or clients) when you’re busy and when you’re not.
Simply drag in the content block to any page on your site, then copy your Google Calendar ID and paste it in. Voila! There’s plenty of ways to tweak the settings so that it’s exactly what you want.
You’ll also notice that we’ve created a brand-new customization section called “Services” where you’ll find the new Google Calendar content block as well as the Wufoo form block that we recently debuted.
Look to our help pages for explanation on everything you need to know about embedding your calendar, and you can find more help about Google Calendars on their site.
A Fresher Shopping Cart
Since we rolled out a new look for SmugMug, we’ve got some catching up to do on some other parts of the experience. We started with the shopping cart:
In addition to giving it a beautiful, smooth new skin to match the rest of your website, we also added more options to the sidebar to make choosing a print product a heckuva lot easier.
In fact, we’ve gotten so much feedback from you (and your customers!) to display print sizes that didn’t need cropping, so now you can just uncheck that box to see all options that don’t require any trimming.
Happy buying and selling!
New Education Site
Last but not least, we’re proud to point out the fact that this news blog may have gotten a bit quieter in the last few weeks. We’ve officially taken the extra tips, tricks, and guest posts and will be publishing them on our brand new Education Site:
The new School.smugmug.com site will be the place to go if you’re looking for photography advice, how to get the most out of your SmugMug account, money-making business tips and inspirational posts by successful SmugMug photographers. We’ll also include a complete newsletter archive, featured SmugMug photos and dates when you can talk to us next.
You should continue to watch this space for announcements about product-related stuff like release notes, bug fixes, contests and other Smuggy goodness. And, as always, our help pages are the place to go if you need help with your website.
Let us know what you think and what you’d like to see in the coming weeks both on School.smugmug.com as well as in your galleries. Cheers!
We’ve been fixing a lot of stuff lately so we thought it’d be a good time to update you all on a few more things we’ve shipped this month. Without further ado:
Embed Videos from Vimeo
You asked, we delivered! You can now embed your Vimeo videos into your pages, in addition to SmugMug and YouTube videos. You’ll find that content block under the “Video” section of your customization menu.
Want more than just our basic contact form? No problem – the folks at Wufoo specialize in embeddable forms in all shapes, colors and sizes! If you’ve already got a Wufoo account, simply grab the shortlink they give you and look under the “Social” section of your customization menu. You’ll find the new Wufoo Form content block ready and waiting for you to paste it in.
Keep Better Tabs on Us
What’s more important than the status of SmugMug.com? Probably not a whole lot, so we’ve made it better than ever before. Check it out now and get familiar with it, so if you think you’re seeing something strange, you can peek in and see how we’re doing.
Tip: Want to know even faster? Hit the Subscribe button at the top and we’ll send you an email whenever things get exciting.
- Statcounter and Google Analytics work properly on migrated and unveiled SmugMug sites.
- Added the ability to discard your changes while in customization mode.
- Animated gifs display motion at all SmugMug sizes, not just Originals.
- Fixed UTF-8 fonts to display correctly.
- Added navigation arrows to SmugMug gallery style
- Option to hide the Slideshow button in Gallery Settings.
- Added option to add separators between your menu bar links.
- Cleaned up the lightbox so the same arrows and options show up no matter where you’re using the lightbox.
- Favicons should stick. For really-real this time.
- We smacked Smart Galleries so that they fetch new photos faster.
A huge, heartfelt thank you to all of you passionate readers out there who’ve shared your thoughts about the new SmugMug. Whether you’re Tweeting, Facebooking, Dgrinning, emailing or posting comments in our blog, we really do read every single response (even if we can’t always reply personally to every one). Change inspires great feeling in all of us, and it’s been a wild ride seeing just how the new features and tools have affected so many of you.
Since launch day we’ve been hard at work helping you get settled, cataloging your feedback, tweaking and polishing and making things that much better for you to use. So here’s the first batch of updates that gives you a closer look at some of the things we’ve shipped in the last week.
Gallery Comments are back!
When we launched, your gallery comments didn’t migrate with your photos, but we didn’t just chuck them into the trash. Now when you drop in a comments content block, click the wrench in the corner, choose a source and pull in all your previous comments from, say, your legacy guestbook gallery:
Show Off to embed slideshows
You’ve asked for an easy way to embed your photos into external sites, so we brought the Show Off feature into the new SmugMug. When you’re logged in as owner, you’ll see the “Show Off” option in the lightbox view, from the social menu. You can customize a beautiful slideshow of virtually any size to embed in webpages:
Events & Favorites
We’ve gotten a lot of feedback about this feature in the last week, so thank you to everyone who helped us track down and iron out the bumps. We have:
- … fixed issues your clients sometimes had saving and removing Favorites.
- … made it so that Event slideshows play perfectly again.
- … fixed an obscure bug so that all top-level folders display reliably in the Events gallery picker.
- Slicker, smoother video playback.
- “Auto” streams a juicy 640×480 and up.
- Are you in the EU? You’ll feel at home with our new, rule-abiding cookie consent bar.
- Presented a cleaner, new crop page on preview mode and unveiled sites.
- Upped the maximum number of Multiple Photos to 48.
Misc bug fixes
- Site Meta Title and Description SEO tools use YOUR text (not ours, unless you leave these blank).
- Tidied up the logged-out view of comments box.
- Passwords stick to your galleries, even if you move them into Public folders.
- Fixed navigation into Categories on legacy Sharegroups.
- You can set pricing on galleries before you’ve even filled them with photos.
- Gallery descriptions are visible to anyone with permissions to view your gallery.
- You can sort your Collected images in the Organizer.
Enjoy! As always, please don’t be shy about sharing what you love, what you don’t, and what you think doesn’t look quite right.
The SmugMug Family