Best Photo Book Sites of 2018

Rebecca Spear ·
Digital Photo Editing & Small Appliance Writer
Updated
We maintain strict editorial integrity when we evaluate products and services; however, Top Ten Reviews may earn money when you click on links.

We've made 23 photo books within the last 12 months in order to test 12 photo book companies. This helped us decide which ones are easiest to use, give the most options and create the best printed product. We also noted which books arrived quickly. We narrowed down our picks to the top 10 services, and of those 10, Mixbook was the best photo book company overall due to its ease of use, creative freedom and wonderful print quality. Its books are reasonably priced and come with decently thick pages. You also have access to hundreds of templates, backgrounds, stickers and predesigned books to showcase your photos as you like.      

Best Overall
Mixbook
Mixbook offers a wide range of book sizes and creative options like cover materials, backgrounds and stickers. And it’s incredibly user-friendly. The end products have beautiful print and great paper quality.
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@Mixbook - Save 40%
Best Overall
Mixbook
Best Budget
Amazon Prints
Amazon Prints offers the lowest prices of any photo book company on the market. Additionally, any product over $15 gets free shipping and the print quality is some of the best we've seen.
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Best for Wedding Albums
AdoramaPix
AdoramaPix provides the best value for fancy photo books that you might use for weddings or other formal events. The base product is a lay-flat photo book with luster paper, and we judged it to have the best photo clarity and color accuracy of the services we tested.
View on AdoramaPix
Product
Price
Overall Rating
Quality & Services
Book Options
Album Creation
Shipping & Support
Price for 8 x 8 Hardcover
Standard Shipping
Total Cost
Cost per Additional Page
Print Quality
Template Quality
Number of Backgrounds
Processing Time (days)
Pre-designed Books
Custom Layout
Flyleaf
Large Quantity Discount
Available Sizes
Cover Options
5 x 7
8 x 8
8.5 x 11
10 x 10
12 x 12
11 x 14
Leather Cover
Hardbound Cover
Softbound Cover
Lay-Flat Cover
Fabric Cover
Window Cover
Dust Cover
Ease of Use
Autofill
Online Storage
Online Album Sharing
Import from Social Media
Collaboration Access
Express Delivery
International Shipping
In-store Pick-up
Gift Services
Money-Back Guarantee
Live Chat
Email
FAQS
User Forums
Check Price
9.7 10 9.3 10 9.5
$29.99
$10.99
$40.98
$1.29
93%
100%
5,000+
1 to 2
357
7
5
-
100%
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9.4 9.8 8.8 9 10
$29.99
$11.99
$41.98
$1.39
93%
100%
4,000+
3
246
6
6
-
95%
-
Check Price
8.5 9.3 8.3 6.3 9
$29.99
$7.95
$37.94
$2.00 for two pages
100%
100%
1,000+
3
205
-
15
5
-
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85%
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Check Price
8.4 8.8 8.8 6.5 8.5
$29.99
$7.99
$37.98
$1.99 for two pages
81%
100%
6,000+
3
88
-
5
6
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90%
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Check Price
8.3 9.5 7.8 6 8.5
$34.99
$9.99
$44.98
Up to $1.75
87%
100%
10,000+
3
35
5
6
-
-
-
90%
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Check Price
8 7.3 10 5 10
$19.99
$5.37
$25.36
$0.30
79%
30%
4,000+
4 to 5
200
15
9
40%
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7.7 7.5 8.8 5.5 9
$27.99
$6.99
$34.98
$1.99
78%
100%
2,000+
3 to 5
32
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-
6
6
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90%
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Check Price
7.5 9 7.3 5 4.8
$46.99
$9.99
$63.98
$1.50 for two pages
93%
100%
102+
1
210
10
14
-
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60%
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7.4 8.3 6 7 8.5
$17.99
$0 for orders over $15
$17.99
$1.50
90%
100%
147+
3 to 5
13
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4
3
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90%
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Check Price
6.9 6 8.5 5 9
$23.96
$0.97
$24.00
$1.76
70%
50%
900+
0 to 5
46
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7
6
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40%
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Best Overall
The books we ordered from Mixbook had really good print quality with sharp images and accurate colors. The books were nice and sturdy with decently thick pages. We ordered a matte cover, and in addition to displaying our photos beautifully, it was a soft, touchable texture.
Mixbook's design process offers exceptional creative freedom. You can choose between thousands of backgrounds and stickers as well as hundreds of predesigned books to find the perfect style for your occasion. If you can't find a template that fits your needs, you can easily custom-add photos to a page. If you don't have time to meticulously craft your book, you can use the autofill feature on a predesigned photo book to automatically place photos and quickly create a complete project. There are seven book sizes and five cover materials to choose from. Mixbook's designer warns you if the photos you choose will be pixelated so that you won’t be disappointed by the print quality of your projects. Mixbook offers a "100% Happiness Guarantee" on your purchases. If you plan on ordering a large number of books, the quantity discount will be especially helpful. This service can also get your photo books to you in a hurry by offering express shipping options.
Pros
  • Good print quality and decently thick pages
  • Plenty of backgrounds, stickers, book sizes, paper options and templates
  • Orders come with a money-back guarantee
Cons
  • No in-store pickup option
  • Lacks window covers
  • No user forums
Mixbook - Save 40%
Read the full review
Best Budget
The photo book we received from Amazon Prints was surprisingly nice. It had some of the best print quality of the photo books we received, and the book itself was well built. We also found the Amazon Prints interface easy to navigate and design with.
Because Amazon Prints doesn't offer as many book sizes, backgrounds or cover options as Mixbook, it didn't rank as well against our top pick and other services that have more variety. Fortunately, what Amazon Prints does offer is stylish and inexpensive. Additionally, any purchases over $15 automatically receive free standard shipping; for most photo book services, standard shipping typically costs between $5 and $13. You can manually choose your backgrounds, stickers and photo placement. The interface gives you the freedom to create your own photo layouts and lets you crop and zoom into photos as you please. It also warns you if your photos will print blurry. If you need to make a book in a hurry, you can choose from among the 13 predesigned photo books and use the autofill feature. This service allows you to share photos with other Amazon users to create collaborative photo projects. Amazon Prints also offers a strong money-back guarantee. Unfortunately, the service doesn't offer large-quantity discounts. We recommend Amazon Prints if you just want an affordable photo book. If you want more choices for material and designs, then we recommend paying a bit more to get the look you want.
Pros
  • Much less expensive than other services
  • Has good print quality
  • Free standard shipping for orders over $15
Cons
  • No large-quantity discounts
  • Fewer design options than competitors
  • Offers just four book sizes and three cover options
Amazon
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Best for Wedding Albums
AdoramaPix blew us away with its beautiful print quality and luxuriously thick, textured paper. The base product is a fancy lay-flat photo book with luster paper, which is not only gorgeous but also the least expensive for an upscale photo book we've ever seen.
Typically, 8.5 x 11 lay-flat books cost upwards of $50, but when you take shipping into account, AdoramaPix sells them for slightly less than the hardbound photo books we’ve seen elsewhere. That is a seriously good deal. It’s worth noting that AdoramaPix’s book sizes are slightly unusual. For example, it sells an 8 x 12 and an 8 x 10 instead of the typical 8.5 x 11. AdoramaPix offers 15 photo book sizes, whether landscape, portrait, square or horizontal-spine. Some of the book sizes are a little unusual. For instance, it offers a 12 x 15 photo book but not an 11 x 14 option. There are more than 1,000 backgrounds and stickers to decorate your photo books. While we liked the predesigned photo layouts and design features, the interface for creating a book wasn't as easy to navigate as some other companies. You can create your books from scratch or you can use the autofill feature to quickly create your projects. This service lets you import images from Facebook, Google Photos, Flickr, Instagram, Dropbox and Amazon. You can interact with other AdoramaPix users on the user forum, which can answer your questions or offer ideas for your own books. AdoramaPix doesn't offer softbound books or in-store pickup. However, it does offer a money-back guarantee.
Pros
  • Base product is an inexpensive lay-flat book with luster paper
  • The best print quality of any service
  • 15 book sizes to choose from
Cons
  • Interface is somewhat tricky to learn
  • Doesn't offer softbound books
  • No 11 x 14 book size
AdoramaPix
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Shutterfly offers hundreds of templates, graphics and backgrounds for you to use, including themes from favorite franchises like Sesame Street and Disney.
The photo book we ordered had good color reproduction, and the images themselves printed crisp. It's super easy to create a photo book since Shutterfly's interface is easy to navigate and the tools are laid out in a way that makes sense. You can choose between six different book sizes and 12 different cover options to truly create the book you envision. The uploader allows you to select images directly from Facebook, Instagram and other sources making it easier to find the photos you love.
Pros
  • Shutterfly offers a vast selection of templates, backgrounds and embellishments.
Cons
  • The lack of a shuffle button means you have to move the photos around yourself to find the best order on each page.
Visit SiteShutterfly
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Walmart's print quality isn't the best, but it's the perfect place to go if you need a photo book in a hurry.
This is one of the only services that allows you to create a photo book either online or in the store and have it ready for pickup within the hour. It also happens to be the second least expensive printing service on the internet. There are seven book sizes to choose from as well as seven different book cover options. The templates, backgrounds and stickers aren't as good looking as other services', but there are some options to choose from. You also don't have as much freedom when choosing where to place your images within the page.
Pros
  • You can create a photo book online or at the store and print it immediately after you are done.
Cons
  • The quantity and quality of the templates was disappointing.
Visit SiteWalmart Photo
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Why Trust Us

We have worked extensively with these services. We've made 23 photo books within the last 12 months and ordered books from 12 services before determining which were the top 10 companies. A group of testers with backgrounds in photography and graphic design evaluated the photo books. They looked for color accuracy, print clarity, page thickness and book integrity. We wanted to make sure the evaluations would be fair, so we covered company logos so that testers wouldn't feel partial to a specific brand.

We also wanted to make sure to recommend the best photo book companies that have easy-to-use interfaces. While designing our books, we looked for features that gave us more creative freedom or made the designing process more convenient. All in all, we spent more than 160 hours testing and evaluating photo books this year. To get even further insights into photo book creation, we contacted Lisa Dickson, a professional photographer of four years. We also reached out to Shutterfly and Mixbook and asked them questions about their bookmaking process.

How We Tested

We used each photo book maker to create the same project, which let us compare them on an even playing field. Our print quality score reflects how accurately the colors printed and how clearly the images appeared on the pages. Template designs scored higher if there were plenty of options and if these options were modern and appealing. Templates that covered photos too much or displayed them in unflattering ways scored lower.

We evaluated each service’s ease of use by determining how much freedom each interface gave us. If services were clean and easy to navigate, and we could place photos wherever we wanted – including zooming and cropping images – then we scored them higher. We also looked for the ability to store photos online, import photos from social media, rearrange previously placed images and autofill. Services that limited user options or made the designing process less intuitive scored lower.

We didn't score services based on pricing, but we did note whether a company was on the expensive side. This included the cost of additional pages and standard shipping. We noted the shipping services offered by each company and awarded more points to companies that shipped internationally and offered express shipping.

What to Look For

Pricing
Photobooks can quickly become expensive when you add in a book's base cost, extra pages, taxes and shipping. The best companies are reasonably priced and give discounts when you order large quantities. The best priced, 20-page, 8.5 x 11 photo books typically range from around $30 - $46. On average, photo book companies charge around $1.50 for additional pages and while the price of standard shipping varies from company to company, it isn't uncommon for it to cost $10 or more. To get specific pricing for large quantity discounts, you typically need to request a quote from the photo book service.


Quality & Services

The best photo books provide beautiful color accuracy and sharp print clarity, and make the designing process easy. They offer thousands of backgrounds, stickers and templates to help you personalize your books to fit any and every occasion. These styles should be both plentiful and modern, and should show off your photos to their best advantage. To help make sure your photos come out well, it’s a good idea to send these companies high-resolution images.

Dickson told us that if you edit your photos at 300 dots per inch (dpi), you can print them at just about any size. Shutterfly, Mixbook and other top-brand services will warn you during the creation process if your images will print blurry so you can replace them to keep your project looking good. Mixbook and Shutterfly both provide unlimited picture storage so you can quickly access your favorite pictures for any photo project. 

Book Options
The 8.5 x 11 landscape-oriented photo book is by far the most popular size ordered. If you are looking for something different, make sure that the service you choose offers it. Books should be sturdy and should have paper that isn't flimsy or easily creased.

The cover of a photo book can greatly change the feel of the book. If you are looking to purchase a book for a formal occasion – like a wedding – leather, fabric or lay-flat covers can help fit the scene. You also want to keep your audience in mind when choosing a cover. If you plan to make a book for a child, a softbound cover might not be a good option since it can get bent and damaged.

Album Creation
Aside from having good print and paper quality, the best photo book services simplify the designing process. Most will supply a library of graphics and designs for you to use but the quality and attractiveness of this art varies widely from company to company. Websites that make it difficult to find what you're looking for or that don't offer a wide selection of options can get frustrating very fast. When you're in a hurry, being able to autofill photos to your pages can be a lifesaver. Additionally, being able to store photos on the service's website as well as import photos from social media sites can make the designing process run more smoothly.

Dickson told us that in addition to giving you a design library, it would be better if these services also allowed you to create your own designs and place them in your books. We agree. Dickson also pointed out that when designing your book, you should be aware that many services do not allow you to add foreign characters or symbols to your text. This can be a problem if you are creating a travel photo book that features exotic locations.

Shipping & Support
Services that offer express delivery can really benefit you in a pinch. Similarly, being able to pick up your books from a local store can be really convenient. When looking into a company, make sure you understand what is covered by the refund policy. Some companies offer money-back guarantees and you can feel more confident when making purchases from them. The best companies also offer several assistance features such as live chat, email and FAQs pages to help you find answers quickly.