The end-of-year shopping season is the busiest for photo-sharing and photo-finishing services such as . More than half of its sales are made at the end of the year.
Unlike most e-commerce companies, which lack brick-and-mortar operations, or rivals that outsource their manufacturing, Shutterfly manages its own plants to print, assemble, and ship personalized photo greeting cards, calendars, and books. Its 77,000-square-foot photo-finishing facility in Hayward, Calif., operates around the clock in the weeks leading up to the New Year.
Shutterfly is the most popular photo-printing site, enjoying a slight edge over Kodak Gallery and Hewlett-Packard's Snapfish, according to InfoTrends. ComScore ranks Shutterfly the ninth most popular photo-sharing Web site in the United States, including services that lack on-demand printing.
Custom-printed presents are the fastest-growing part of this business, as the trend of expands. Personalized gift-giving, enabled by the Web, allows people to put their unique stamp on otherwise run-of-the-mill items such as calendars, mugs, and Christmas tree ornaments.
Caption text by CNET's Elsa Wenzel.
December 20, 2007 1:08 PM PST
Photo by: Elsa Wenzel/CNET Networks
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