How To Sell Photos Online & Get Paid Up To $100/image

What You Need to Know: How To Sell Photos Online

Stock photography has become a popular and profitable way for photographers to monetize their work. With the rise of digital cameras and the ease of access to the internet, more and more photographers are turning to stock photography websites to sell their images. However, with the high competition in the stock photography industry, it’s important to know what you need to know to make the most of this opportunity. In this article, we will cover everything you need to know to sell your photos on stock websites, including what makes a great stock photo, how to choose the right stock photography website, and how to optimize your photos for search engines.

What Makes a Great Stock Photo

A great stock photo is one that is high-quality, visually appealing, and versatile. Your photos should have a clear subject, be well-composed, and have a clean background. You should also pay attention to lighting, color, and focus, as these elements can greatly impact the appeal of your photos. Additionally, your photos should be free of any distracting elements, such as logos, watermarks, or people.

How to Choose the Right Stock Photography Website

With so many stock photography websites available, it can be difficult to know which one to choose. Some of the factors to consider when choosing a stock photography website include the size of their audience, the commission they pay, and the ease of use of their platform. You should also look into their submission process, as some websites may require more time and effort than others to upload your photos.

How to sell photos online by choosing the right photography website to

How to Optimize Your Photos for Search Engines

In order to sell your photos on stock photography websites, it’s important to make sure they are optimized for search engines. This means using keywords in your photo titles and descriptions, as well as using proper tagging. You should also make sure your photos are properly sized, as larger photos tend to rank higher in search engines. Additionally, you should consider using descriptive file names, as this can also impact your search engine ranking.

Tips for Selling Your Photos on Stock Websites

  1. Choose high-quality photos that have a clear subject and are well-composed.
  2. Research the different stock photography websites to find the best fit for your needs.
  3. Use keywords in your photo titles and descriptions, as well as proper tagging, to optimize your photos for search engines.
  4. Consider using descriptive file names to improve your search engine ranking.
  5. Continuously upload new photos to keep your portfolio fresh and up to date.

By following these tips, you can increase your chances of selling your photos on stock photography websites. With the right approach and a bit of patience, you can turn your passion for photography into a profitable venture.

The Best Places to Sell Your Photos Online

Selling your photos online is a great way for photographers to monetize their work and reach a global audience. With so many platforms available, it can be difficult to know where to start. To help you out, we have compiled a list of the best places to sell your photos online.

How to sell photos online on Shutterstock
How to sell photos online on Shutterstock

Shutterstock

Shutterstock is one of the largest stock photo websites in the world and offers a great platform for photographers to sell their photos. They offer a large audience, a simple submission process, and a generous commission structure. They also have a rigorous review process to ensure that only high-quality photos are accepted, which helps to maintain the quality of their site.

Pros of Selling on Shutterstock

  1. Large Audience: With over 700 million images, Shutterstock has a large and diverse audience of buyers. This means that your photos have the potential to reach a large number of people, increasing your chances of making a sale.
  2. Reliable Income: Shutterstock is a well-established platform with a reliable income stream. As a contributor, you can expect to receive a steady stream of earnings from your photos.
  3. Easy to Use: Shutterstock’s platform is user-friendly and easy to navigate, making it simple for photographers to upload and manage their photos.

Cons of Selling on Shutterstock

  1. Rigorous Review Process: While the rigorous review process is a positive aspect for buyers, it can be a disadvantage for photographers. The review process is strict and can take several weeks to complete, meaning that it may take a while for your photos to start generating income.
  2. High Competition: With over 700 million images on the platform, the competition can be intense. It may take some time to stand out and start making sales, especially if you’re just starting out.
  3. Limited Control Over Pricing: As a contributor on Shutterstock, you have limited control over pricing. The platform sets the prices for your photos, and you cannot change them.
  4. No Exclusive Option: Unlike some other stock photo platforms, Shutterstock does not offer an exclusive option for photographers. This means that you cannot sell your photos exclusively on the platform, and your work may be available on other stock photo sites.

How to sell photos online on iStock
How to sell photos online on iStock

iStock by Getty Images

iStock by Getty Images is another popular stock photo website that offers a great platform for photographers to sell their photos. They offer a large audience, a simple submission process, and a generous commission structure. They also offer a unique feature called the “Essentials Collection,” which is a curated selection of high-quality photos that offer a higher commission rate.

Pros of Selling on iStock by Getty Images

  1. Large Audience: With its vast network of clients and customers, iStock by Getty Images has a large and diverse audience of buyers. This means that your photos have the potential to reach a large number of people, increasing your chances of making a sale.
  2. Reliable Income: iStock by Getty Images is a well-established platform with a reliable income stream. As a contributor, you can expect to receive a steady stream of earnings from your photos.
  3. Exclusive Option: iStock by Getty Images offers an exclusive option for photographers, allowing you to sell your photos exclusively on the platform. This can increase your earnings and provide a higher level of exposure for your work.

Cons of Selling on iStock by Getty Images

  1. Rigorous Review Process: Like Shutterstock, iStock by Getty Images has a rigorous review process that can take several weeks to complete. This means that it may take a while for your photos to start generating income.
  2. High Competition: With a large pool of talented photographers, the competition can be intense on iStock by Getty Images. It may take some time to stand out and start making sales, especially if you’re just starting out.
  3. Limited Control Over Pricing: As a contributor on iStock by Getty Images, you have limited control over pricing. The platform sets the prices for your photos, and you cannot change them.
  4. Strict Quality Standards: iStock by Getty Images has strict quality standards, and photos that do not meet these standards will not be accepted. This means that it may be challenging for photographers who are just starting out, or who are not familiar with the platform’s standards, to have their work accepted.

How to sell photos online on Adobe Stock
How to sell photos online on Adobe Stock

Adobe Stock

Adobe Stock is a stock photo website that is integrated with Adobe Creative Cloud, making it a popular choice among designers and creatives. They offer a large audience, a simple submission process, and a generous commission structure. Additionally, they offer a feature called “Auto-Tag,” which uses artificial intelligence to help photographers optimize their photos for search engines.

Pros of Selling on Adobe Stock

  1. Integration with Adobe Creative Cloud: Adobe Stock is seamlessly integrated with Adobe Creative Cloud, which makes it easy for buyers to find and purchase your photos. This also makes it easier for you to showcase your work to a large audience of potential buyers.
  2. Adobe Stock offers some of the highest commission rates in the industry.
  3. Large Audience: As a subsidiary of Adobe, Adobe Stock has a large and diverse audience of buyers. This means that your photos have the potential to reach a large number of people, increasing your chances of making a sale.
  4. Advanced Tools: Adobe Stock provides a range of advanced tools to help you manage your portfolio and track your earnings. This includes tools for keyword optimization, image management, and more.

Cons of Selling on Adobe Stock

  1. High Competition: With a large pool of talented photographers, the competition can be intense on Adobe Stock. It may take some time to stand out and start making sales, especially if you’re just starting out.
  2. Strict Quality Standards: Adobe Stock has strict quality standards, and photos that do not meet these standards will not be accepted. This means that it may be challenging for photographers who are just starting out, or who are not familiar with the platform’s standards, to have their work accepted.
  3. Limited Control Over Pricing: As a contributor on Adobe Stock, you have limited control over pricing. The platform sets the prices for your photos, and you cannot change them.
  4. Complex Submission Process: Adobe Stock has a complex submission process, and it can be challenging to navigate for photographers who are not familiar with the platform. This can be a barrier to entry for some photographers, and may slow down the process of getting your photos online and making sales.

How to sell photos online on Alamy
How to sell photos online on Alamy

Alamy

Alamy is a stock photo website that offers a unique selling proposition by offering royalty-free licensing for its photos. They offer a large audience, a simple submission process, and a generous commission structure. Additionally, they offer a feature called “Keywording Assistant,” which helps photographers optimize their photos for search engines.

Pros of Selling on Alamy

  1. High Commission Rates: Alamy offers some of the highest commission rates in the industry. This means that you can earn a substantial income from your photos on Alamy.
  2. Large Audience: Alamy has a large and diverse audience of buyers, which means that your photos have the potential to reach a wide range of people. This increases your chances of making a sale.
  3. User-Friendly Interface: Alamy’s interface is user-friendly and easy to navigate, making it simple for photographers to upload and manage their portfolios.
  4. Low Commission Fees: Alamy charges low commission fees, which means that you can keep more of the money you earn from your sales.

Cons of Selling on Alamy

  1. Low Demand: While Alamy has a large audience, demand for stock photos can be low at times. This means that you may not see as many sales as you would on other platforms.
  2. Limited Control Over Pricing: As a contributor on Alamy, you have limited control over pricing. The platform sets the prices for your photos, and you cannot change them.
  3. Strict Quality Standards: Alamy has strict quality standards, and photos that do not meet these standards will not be accepted. This can be a barrier to entry for photographers who are just starting out, or who are not familiar with the platform’s standards.
  4. Complex Keyword Optimization: Alamy requires complex keyword optimization in order to maximize the visibility of your photos. This can be challenging for photographers who are not familiar with the platform’s optimization techniques.

How to sell photos online on 500px
How to sell photos online on 500px

500px

500px is a photo-sharing website that also offers a platform for photographers to sell their photos. They offer a large audience, a simple submission process, and a generous commission structure. Additionally, they offer a feature called “Prime,” which is a curated selection of high-quality photos that offer a higher commission rate.

Pros of Selling on 500px

  1. High Commission Rates: 500px offers competitive commission rates for its contributors.
  2. User-Friendly Interface: 500px has a user-friendly interface that makes it simple for photographers to upload and manage their portfolios. The platform also has a community-driven aspect, where photographers can connect with one another and share their work.
  3. Unique Features: 500px offers unique features, such as the ability to sell prints and license exclusive rights to your photos. This sets it apart from other stock photo platforms and allows you to monetize your work in new and creative ways.
  4. Wide Range of Buyers: 500px has a wide range of buyers, including individuals, businesses, and media companies. This means that your photos have the potential to reach a large and diverse audience.

Cons of Selling on 500px

  1. Strict Quality Standards: 500px has strict quality standards, and photos that do not meet these standards will not be accepted. This can be a barrier to entry for photographers who are just starting out, or who are not familiar with the platform’s standards.
  2. Limited Reach: While 500px has a wide range of buyers, its reach may be limited compared to other stock photo platforms. This means that you may not see as many sales as you would on other platforms.
  3. Low Demand: Demand for stock photos on 500px can be low at times, making it difficult to make sales.
  4. Complex Keyword Optimization: 500px requires complex keyword optimization in order to maximize the visibility of your photos. This can be challenging for photographers who are not familiar with the platform’s optimization techniques.

PlatformCommissionUnique Features
Shutterstock
15-40%Rigorous Review Process
iStock 15-45% or 60% For Essential CollectionUnique Essential Collection
Adobe Stock33%Integration with Adobe Creative Cloud Auto tag Feature
Alamy40-50%Royalty-free licensing. Keyword Assistant
500px60%Prime Feature

Conclusion

Selling photos on stock websites is a great way for photographers to monetize their work. However, with the high competition in the industry, it’s important to know what you need to know to be successful. This includes understanding what makes a great stock photo, choosing the right stock photography website, and optimizing your photos for search engines. By following the tips outlined in this article, you can increase your chances of success and start earning money from your photography.

Next, we will show you how to build a photography portfolio using WordPress

See here: How to Create Your Photography Portfolio with WordPress

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CraigAK
I believe that knowledge is power, and I'm committed to empowering our readers with the knowledge they need to succeed in their personal and professional lives. I have enjoyed sharing my articles for the last 10 years writing for many websites in the past. I hope you enjoy and find something useful in what I write.

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