The best photo storage and sharing sites keep your images safe – securely backed up in the cloud and ready to share with friends, family, clients, and colleagues. Because even the best external hard drives can get lost or damaged or forgotten at the bottom of the wrong bag.
Cloud storage sites for photos aren’t exactly the same as file hosting services. In most cases, these platforms are designed with photographers (and their precious photos) in mind.
They’re not just somewhere to save and share your snaps. They’re a space to view, organize, and present original-quality photos, a bit like an online portfolio or album.
Whether you’re a pro-level photographer or an enthusiastic shutterbug, we’ve put the best photo storage and sharing sites in the frame.
Bring your photos into focus with our handpicked best image hosting websites.
What makes the best photo storage sites the best?
Choosing which photo storage and sharing site is best depends on how you’ll use it.
Professional photographers and media-minded businesses need to consider factors like storage capacity and RAW file support. You don’t want to lose details and data within the image, or run out of space half-way through a project.
Personal users may still want loads of storage space. Because the camera never sleeps. But affordability, simple image editing features, and background uploads you don’t even need to think about may be a higher priority.
To help you decide, when curating the best photo storage and sharing sites, we’ve measured:
- Cost – which platforms offer free storage, and which offer the best subscription deals?
- Capacity – where can you get the most storage space?
- Availability – which devices and operating systems are supported?
- Image quality – are your photos compressed on upload?
- Experience – is the platform easy to navigate?
- Sharing – how simple is sharing photos and videos, and to which sites?
- Features – what optional extras, like AI and editing, are included?
- Security – does the platform keep your files safe?
Which photo storage and sharing site is best?
Our top pick for the best photo storage and sharing site is Flickr.
Flickr’s free storage option isn’t especially large, capped at just 1000 images, but uploading and sharing photos is simple, the portfolio elements will excite pro photographers, and the unlimited storage subscription plan is fair.
Google, Amazon, and Apple all offer excellent photo backup apps for those deep in the different platform ecosystems. These can be great cloud storage apps for photos if you use iOS or Android, or you’re an Amazon Prime subscriber.
Each storage site makes it easy to get photos off your phone and into the cloud. Sharing is quick and clean, especially with users on the same platform. Images can even be shared to screen devices like Google Home Hub and Amazon Echo Show. Although, frankly, the low-price subscription plans might feel like you’re being nickel-and-dimed for vital online storage space.
While all three cloud storage for photos are broadly similar, Google Photos is our second pick for best photo storage site. It edges out the others thanks to its embrace of a multi-platform service and slightly more free space (don’t get too excited, it’s only 15GB). For sheer accessibility across multiple devices and operating systems, it’s near unbeatable.
Professionals may get more from Adobe Portfolio and 500px. Both platforms are explicitly created for photographers. So, they champion designing stunning spaces to reach new audiences and effortlessly show off (and sell) your art.
Whatever your needs, we’ve identified the best photo backup platforms so you can save and share the memories that matter to you.
Best cloud storage and sharing sites for photos
Flickr is the best photo storage and sharing site – and it’s not even close. The platform has been a long-standing favorite among the photo community, with good reason.
Using Flickr is delightfully simple. From uploading pictures to organizing albums, the site is clean and intuitive and straightforward. The same goes for the Android and iOS apps. All the clunky hassle of image management you find with less-than-stellar cloud storage for photos is non-existent here. This makes Flickr a genuinely accessible cloud storage photo platform for passionate enthusiasts and professional photographers alike.
Sharing photos is equally easy. The basic share button unleashes the usual links, social networks, embed codes, and email options. You can also add other Flickr users to photos, the same way you can tag users in a Facebook photo.
That chimes with Flickr’s inclusive community spirit. This isn’t just a photo storage and sharing site to keep precious pics safe. It’s a social space for photographers to follow each other and view public portfolio-style Photostreams. You’re even able to track viewing stats.
Not that you have to get involved, if you’re feeling camera-shy. You have complete control over the videos and photos you upload. Once you’ve got your photos in the Camera Roll, it’s easy to move them around or modify visibility, licensing rights, tags, and safety level using handy drop-down menus and keyboard shortcuts. Take care with setting safety levels – only subscribers are allowed to upload explicit or NSFW artwork
Free users are restricted to 1000 photos or videos. That’s not especially generous, but the Flickr Pro subscription offers unlimited storage at $8.25 / £6.99 a month (with discounts for annual and bi-annual membership). Pro subscribers benefit from an ad-free experience, 6K photo display, and 10-minute video uploads. Professional photo businesses can also generate sales links on their images.
Discover more in our full FlickrPro review.
Google Photos is one of the best photo storage apps out there. Just a few years ago, it might’ve been crowned the best photo storage and sharing site. But that was back when it offered unlimited cloud storage for hi-res photos.
Despite rescinding that perk, it remains a great platform for saving and sharing images. Like everything else Google, the Photos app is as simple as it is smart. Drag-and-drop images into place or set automatic photo backup from the Google Drive cloud storage app or your phone’s camera roll. Google’s built-in AI is a clever time-saver. This makes it easy to find photos of specific subjects and similar images.
Beyond the usual sharing options, photos can be shared with other Google Photo users – useful if your family and friends are all part of the Google-sphere. You’ll also find basic editing and filter options. Too basic for pro and semi-pro shutterbugs. But good enough for quick edits like a crop or a small lighting correction.
When you upload media, you choose between original quality and ‘Storage saver’ size. That reduces image quality, but will prevent you maxing out the (frankly ungenerous) free 15GB storage too quickly.
Extra storage now hides behind the Google One subscription plans. This boosts your space from between 100GB to 2TB. More than enough for most users. Likely not enough for power-user professionals, who may also miss the portfolio element found on Flickr.
If you don’t need unlimited storage, Google Photos is one of the best ways to save and share photos.
Discover more in the full Google Photos review.
Adobe Portfolio is an ideal photo cloud storage choice – especially if you want to showcase your work.
The photo storage platform lets you build portfolio sites. It’s like Wix for photographers, with an effortlessly simple interface for creating online galleries. So long as you’re a Creative Cloud subscriber, that is.
That’s arguably Portfolio’s biggest obstacle: it’s not free (although you can ‘build’ your site for free, giving you a feel for how it all works). You’ll need to subscribe to Adobe Creative Cloud to take advantage of Portfolio’s unlimited pages and web hosting services.
But it’s also Portfolio’s strongest card: the app perfectly integrates with other Adobe products, like Photoshop, Lightroom, and Behance. If you’re already a subscriber, or plan to join, it’s a no-brainer.
Creative Cloud Photography plans, which bundle Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop alongside Portfolio, range from 20GB to 1TB. Although there are plenty of Photoshop alternatives and Lightroom alternatives out there, if that’s what’s swaying you.
As far as cloud storage for photos goes, Portfolio is perfect for Adobe designers and professionals who want to attract new fans.
Discover more in our full Adobe Portfolio review.
Amazon Photos is a pretty good alternative to Google Photos. Although the free storage limit is much lower, the overall experience – and even the tiered subscription model – is a mirror image. You’ll even find the same basic editing tools that leave a lot to be desired.
Like its cloud photo storage rival, Amazon Photos lets you privately share your images with friends and family who use the platform. Elsewhere, sharing options are limited to generating links, emailing images, or sharing via Facebook. But, at least you can share them to Amazon devices like Fire TV and Echo Show, too.
Anyone can subscribe to Amazon Photos, which offers storage from 100GB right up to 30TB. But the pricing isn’t nearly as competitive as Google Photos. Unless you join Amazon Prime.
Prime members get unlimited photo storage at full-resolution. Plus all the other Prime benefits, from free shipping to video streaming. That’s a lot more affordable than subscribing to similar plans on Amazon Photos alone – but, then, Amazon has specifically designed it that way to drive up Prime subscriber numbers.
On the downside, Amazon Photos delivers meager cloud storage for videos. On the 100GB plan, for example, you’re restricted to just 14 hours of video. Even with a Prime membership, you’re limited to 5GB-worth of video.
So, it’s the best photo storage and sharing site if you subscribe to Prime, or you’re not heavy into video editing.
Discover more in our full Amazon Photos cloud storage review.
500px is a photo storage and sharing platform for professional photographers and serious shutterbugs.
Getting your photos on the platform is easy. As are categorization options, letting you quickly set privacy, add locations, descriptions, and keywords, and move photos to your 500px portfolio.
Features are light – not necessarily a bad thing if you edit outside of the site (or prefer presenting life’s cold, unvarnished truths). There is an AI add-on, if you need quick retouching and enhancements, though.
The free plan lets you upload 7 photos a week (and only JPGs). The Awesome and Pro plans offer unlimited uploads, and a few handy extras like offline viewing and statistics to see who’s checking out your work. The top-tier Pro subscription also lets you make a portfolio website.
What makes 500px a serious contender for best photo storage and sharing site is its licensing model. This lets photographers license out their images to commercial enterprises and earn money from their stock photo libraries.
Discover more in our full 500px cloud storage review.
SmugMug is a great all-round photo storage and sharing site, with four subscription packages that serve personal, professional, and business users.
Depending on your plan, SmugMug is either one of the best photo storage and sharing sites or one of the best photo portfolio website builders.
If you’re just looking for a place to store precious memories, the platform’s Basic plan lets you upload unlimited photos at full resolution. More serious photographers can add options like personalized URLs, web customization, and sales & marketing tools. RAW file storage and management is also supported.
Either way, you’ll find the photo storage app a cinch to use. It all starts with creating your gallery homepage (don’t worry, you’re not limited to just one).
During set-up, you’re given full control over appearance, visibility, and access – you might lock it down or let other users upload to your galleries. Artists selling their work can easily add shopping cart options, too.
The editing tools offer simple tweaks and adjustments. Nothing groundbreaking, but the watermark option makes it quick to protect your photographs. At least SmugMug makes it easy to buy and sell prints through the platform.
Discover more in our full SmugMug review.
iCloud may be the best photo storage site – but only if you’re on an iOS device. It’s the iPhone maker’s very own cloud storage for photos and files and, like everything Apple, it operates as a walled garden. Sure, there’s a desktop app for organizing photos, but nothing for Android users.
Navigating iCloud is simple. Sleek, even. Just as you’d expect from a firm that prides itself on its artistic expression, creativity, and a clean user experience. It’s just as simple to share photos and create albums with other iCloud users.
Free user storage is capped at 5GB. That’s not a lot, and you’ll need to subscribe to upgrade your space.
There are just three iCloud+ monthly subscriptions: 50GB, 200GB, 2TB. And that’s for all files saved in the cloud, not just your photos. But the prices – from $0.79 / £0.99 to $9.99 / £6.99 – offer decent value compared to top photo storage apps like Google and Amazon Photos.
Discover more in our full Apple iCloud Drive review.
IDrive is one of the best photo backup tools thanks to its free 10GB storage space. However, this is not a photo-focused platform – it’s really an all-purpose cloud storage solution.
IDrive features three annual subscription tiers: Personal nets you 5TB or 10TB, Team starts at 5TB for five users, and Business starts at 250GB for unlimited users and devices. In total, there are 25 different plans. That allows a huge amount of flexibility, especially for business customers.
Security is impressive. When you first sign up, you choose between the site’s default encryption or set your own private encryption key – the latter will prevent you sharing files, but does offer maximum privacy. When you do share photos, it’s also possible to set a password, download limit, and expiration date. So, you’re always in control.
Unlike many other contenders for the best photo storage and sharing site, there’s no image editing options within IDrive. Not even the ability to crop (in fairness, you can rotate photos). As a business-oriented cloud storage for photos, though, it’s a great option.
Discover more in our full IDrive cloud storage review.
ImageShack is a great platform for those with vast photo libraries, since it gives all subscribers ‘limitless total uploads and space’.
Compared to other platforms vying for the best photo storage and sharing site accolade, that’s a generous offer.
Using the photo storage app is easy enough. And while it lacks the sheen of Google and Adobe (frankly, it looks and feels dated in many parts), performance is grand.
What’s particularly nice is the ability to quickly create direct links and embed codes for images. Regardless of the original resolution, you’re free to use a dropdown to select a specific size, from full-screen to thumbnail.
ImageShack also features a community of photographers – that social media element that sees you ‘follow’ your favorite artist and like & share their work. Other pro-level features, like statistics and watermarking are locked behind the subscription plans,
But what do you get from subscription tiers if everyone already has unlimited space? The main perk is increased bandwidth for Pro and Premium members.Ideal if you’re a power-user or business uploading a metric ton of images on a regular basis. For everyone else, the basic plan will likely suffice.
Photobucket, once upon a time, wasn’t just the best photo storage and sharing site. It was the only game in town. The intervening years have seen an army of rivals pitch in, bringing new innovations to the online photo storage arena and forcing Photobucket to stay relevant.
Happily, Photobucket rises to the occasion. It’s not especially fast. But it remains one of the best photo sharing platforms – especially if you need to host images to be shared or embedded on other websites.
The creative editing tools feel meatier than those found on sites like Google Photos. Cropping, filters, and resizing are present and well-executed. The ability to focus in on specific parts of your photos (and blur the rest) helps create artistic shots, For extra sparkle, you can add overlays, stickers, and frames, too.
Subscriptions offer 25GB, 250GB, and unlimited cloud storage for your photos. All plans strip out adverts, feature ‘easy social sharing’, and the alluring promise of ‘lifetime storage’ makes Photobucket one of the best ways to store digital photos long term.
Keep your digital world safe with best free backup software.
What’s the best way to backup and share photos and videos?
The best way to backup photos is through a cloud storage/hard drive, flash drive, or portable SSD combination. We’ve explored the topic in-depth with our guide to the best ways to backup photos.
This gives you a ‘physical’ version and a secure digital copy. For total security, create a regular backup schedule, too. Just in case the worst happens.
Running both physical and cloud photo backup provides easy access to your media. Unless you forget to pack your external drive. However, external drives are best used as a repository. Photo organization isn’t their strong suit. Sharing photos can be inefficient.
The best cloud storage for photos, on the other hand, lets you manage your portfolio or image library on-the-go. All you need is an internet connection.