Nowadays, budding photographers can see their efforts rewarded when they use the internet to connect to buyers online. It’s not quite being paid money for nothing, but it’s a remarkably easy way to monetize your images once you get the hang of it. Here’s how you can start generating revenue with some straightforward steps.
Find a Stock Photo Website
Have a look around to see what rates of pay different sites are offering. The more basic websites such as freedigitalphotos.net, Dreamstime and Shutterstock are popular as the entry-level platforms that many amateur photographers get started on. Professionals might prefer using ones such as Corbis or Getty Images.
The rates of pay will vary, but you should be expecting 30% commission at the very least. Study the fine print and calculate your projected returns before signing up with any of these sites first. Bear in mind that the case will often be that the more popular the site is the less commission they’ll pay out, so weigh up whether the potential for more exposure makes the choice worth it.
Find Out the Site’s Do’s and Don’ts
Sites will often have a list of requirements for uploaded content, and may only want to offer a certain theme or style of photography. Then there will be further expectations regarding things like file size and picture quality. Make sure your work ticks all the necessary boxes before uploading any pictures.
Sign up for an Account
Registration ought to be free for most sites. If it’s not, carefully consider whether it’ll be worth the financial outlay and what the site has to justify asking you to part with your money, especially it it’s a rolling subscription charge and not a one-time payment. Again, make sure to carefully examine the terms and conditions to ensure that you know what you’re getting into.
Finalise your Payment Settings
Paypal is the standard means of payment for this industry, although some sites might offer payment through postal cheque. Payment options will vary from site to site. Some will only pay when you make a request yourself, while others will simply send you your earnings automatically on a regular day of the month. Be sure that the site you’re registering with is trustworthy before submitting your personal or financial details to them.
Don’t Put your Eggs in One Basket
It can be advantageous to host your imagery on more than one site to enhance the exposure of your pictures. Be careful though, as some sites may not let you keep the same image on sale elsewhere. Certain sites often will only take your pictures on basis of you signing an exclusivity contract with them, so keep this in mind as well.
Diversify your Portfolio
Having a wide variety of photos for sale will broaden the appeal of your collection and attract more browsing. You can still make money from a collection that’s narrow in terms of subject matter, but it’s always a good idea to keep your options open.
Don’t Make your Pictures Overly Specific
More generic images will have more uses for people, and therefore a bigger potential market. Try to keep mass appeal in mind when putting together your portfolio. Business orientated imagery is always a strong seller, and single subject shots of, say, a flowerpot or bookcase also prove popular. Generic tones, such as a vaguely vintage or retro look, also do well.
Maintain Quality Control
Try and pick your very best work for your submissions. Blurry images or ones with overly high contrast won’t sell, and they’ll cast the rest of your work in a more amateurish light. Crisp, detailed high resolution photos are the way to go here.
Improve your Visibility with the Correct Tags
This’ll be a crucial way to broaden the visibility of your collection and connect your images with the right customers. If you have, say, an image of a snowy forest, tag it with names such as frost, winter, chilly, snow, snowy, icy, etc. so it’ll come up in people’s searches.
Watch out that certain subjects aren’t in your photographs to stay out of legal hot water. This could include brand logos, people who haven’t consented to be in your photos, and buildings you haven’t acquired a release form for. Use your common sense here and you should be OK.
About the author
Hello everyone, my name`s Eva. I`m writer, traveller and just cheerful girl! I can’t imagine my life without something new and unusual. Recently I discovered surfing and even tried my skills at web design (you can see my first steps at Book of Ra site). I hope you will enjoy my article! If you want to connect with me – don’t hesitate to visit my Twitter and Facebook