Stock photography sites have made it easy for photographers to sell their photos online. However, just because you take photos does not mean that a stock photo site, like Istockphoto, for example, will accept them in their market. In order to sell your photos on a stock photography website, the website must believe that your images can be sold. Fortunately, internet photo blogs provide tips on how to sell your photos. Here are some helpful tips:
Narrow Your Focus: Yuri Arcurs, a well known professional stock photographer, writes a blog full of interesting facts about selling stock photos. In his blog post “What should I shoot and what sells well?”, He tells his readers to develop a niche of their own and search endlessly for it. I think this works with whatever you do. I really love food photography and it felt so much better once I realized that this was where I wanted to direct my focus. And guess what? My photos improved. The better your theme, the more competitive advantage you will have in the market. And remember, if you are going to develop a niche, make sure you are honest with yourself. Is this something that you really care about? Do you love photographing it? If you are dedicated to your subject, you are more likely to spend the time it takes to make your photos attractive and genuine.
Add a little edginess: Arcurs also suggests having a selection of photos in your portfolio that have a more edgy feel (for more details, see your ‘I see, I see with my little eye’ article). This bolder feel can be achieved in a way that still allows you to sell your photo. Arcurs calls this adding a bit of “clutter” to your photo. In the photos that are displayed throughout his article, there is always an element of distraction. A portrait is taken through glass or, for example, through grass. By adding a bit of “clutter” to a photo, you make it visually appealing and inspire curiosity in your viewers. Done right, this is a recipe for increasing sales.
Research the marketability of your theme: Is your theme in demand? Are there already a lot of people filming your subject? Do a search and see if your potential topic is something that people are looking for. If you see that there is a market for your subject, but there are not that many photos available for purchase (such as less than 10,000 images), it is probably a good subject to start shooting.
Plan Your Shots – Professional photography doesn’t just happen. Plan your vaccinations in advance. First, find a location or topic. Get an idea of the type of lighting you want by visiting it at different times of the day and remember to take notes. Be sure to bring the appropriate authorizations for the models or owners to sign.
Keyword Selection – Make sure you write the right keywords in your topic so other people can find it online. Use stock photo keyword tools to correctly describe your photos. Another useful tip is to test the popularity of your keywords through the Google AdWords keyword tool to determine the most effective combination that buyers can search for.
Sell your photos on multiple stock photo websites – Most stock photo sites are not exclusive and allow you to sell the same photos on more than one site. The more exposure your photos have, the better your chances of selling them and increasing your monthly income.
Many of these bloggers make it clear that photographers should focus their efforts on producing photos that will be sold on these stock photography sites. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always encourage creativity. Most stock photo sites expect certain types of photos to be sold, often rejecting a lot of good photos in the process. I think things would be better for both buyers and photographers if the stock photography site’s standards for photo selection were less stringent. As time changes, you never know what kind of images buyers will be looking for. I think it is problematic to assume that buyers are not interested in more creative photographs. Why not try putting it on the market and see if it sells? If you give buyers more options, they may use them.