Online Photo Albums and the Sink In Effect

Over on Smashing Apps a few days ago, they introduced a new photo sharing site – Expono.

Immediately, my thoughts where “Gosh, another online photo album and sharing site?”

Sunk in to Flickr
Photo Credit: rs-foto

Online services like photo sharing sites, microblogs, social networking sites, emails… all have a “sink in” effect. That means, the more you use it, the more valuable it becomes to you.

Let’s take this online photo example. I’ve already spent days uploading and renaming my photos on my Flickr account (thanks Shi for the coupon!)

And while I won’t say that it is a whole lot of photos compared to many other users, I would like to keep my photos in ONE place online, and it feels to me like a lot of work to get on Expono and re-upload the photos (or even import photos from Flickr, if that is possible).

Besides, I like my Flickr account because it has great support (in terms of tools, and linkages from other programs). So unless Expono promises something really revolutionary, I guess I’ll be sticking to Flickr. Even if it costs more or has less features. Similarly, I won’t be attempting to rebuild my Twitter network in Plurk, and nothing is going to make me drop my Gmail and start my messaging in something else.

I’m sunk in. Very sunk in. And its a scary thing if you think about it. If Gmail starts to charge $10 a month for their services, or Flickr raises its pro account price to $249.50 instead of $24.95.

But think about this when you launch you next online service. How do you justify for the switching cost? How do you get people sunk in into your competitor’s products to switch to yours?

Maybe getting people to switch to your product is not that easy, afterall. 😉


  1. I so understand what you are saying.

    I got married before christmas, and that really sinks in on me now. I’ll never change. Even if it costs me an arm and a leg. Switching may prove even more costly.

    There are some lucrative options in the market though.

    I wonder if everybody is flickring or perhaps there is room for somebody better.

    I assume you have uploaded all your photos to flickr, and don’t keep the originals on your PC/Mac.

  2. Jenss – hahaha.. you example is perfect. I’m about to get “sunk in” this August too! :mrgreen:

    Yes I stil do keep my originals in my hard disk. I don’t upload all my photos to flickr too. I know flickr’s server is probably more robust thtn my hard disk, but having them beside me all the time make me feel that I have more control.

  3. This is also why the Freemium (Free+Premium) model works.
    Once people become attached to your service they are much more likely to pay for a premium offer.