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Author Topic: Shutterstock Question - Do Old Images Continue to Sell?  (Read 3372 times)

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« on: September 05, 2009, 00:11 »
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Question about Shutterstock:

1. I'm curious if at Shutterstock old images continue to sell -or- is it just the newer ones? 

2. Does anyone know how the search engine works there? 

3. If a picture has lots of downloads will it be positioned higher in the search engine or favored over images with less downloads?



« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2009, 01:02 »
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1.  Old images do continue to sell but not as many as on the other site.  I have some from 2 or 3 years ago that sell regularly.
2.  There are probably people here that know more than me but I think the search is more biased towards new images than the other sites but those with regular downloads can remain reasonably high in the order.
3.  Images with lots of downloads are placed higher in the search order but they also need to keep getting downloads.  Some of mine keep going but a lot have fallen too far down the search and are hard to find.

« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2009, 06:28 »
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I think that is the main parameter on SS is views/DLs...

In the start that number is small ( higher position) but through time  is getting bigger and bigger value and (lower pic position)

« Reply #3 on: September 05, 2009, 07:32 »
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What I find - for me anyway, is that new images that have done really well when first uploaded have continued to sell on a regular basis.

If they "shine" at the start, they will have established themselves and will continue to do well as they have pushed themselves up in the 'most popular' search.

At the moment, it appears as if the search doesn't lean as heavily as it did in the past towards new images.
« Last Edit: September 05, 2009, 07:35 by takestock »

« Reply #4 on: September 05, 2009, 09:24 »
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Yes, older images will continue to sell if they're unique enough to compete with the others. I've got 2 images with ID's between 40000 & 45000 that are still within the top 60 on my port sorted by 'Most Popular'. Over 4 years on and 3500 images later they're still amongst my best sellers. I guess that shows that I haven't improved much. :(

« Reply #5 on: September 05, 2009, 10:21 »
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Over 4 years on and 3500 images later they're still amongst my best sellers. I guess that shows that I haven't improved much. :(

I guess this could also show that microstock search engines prefer to show popular images to the buyers and why new images sink unless they catch on quick.

I have lots of old images on SS that sell very well, I even had an image that had never sold before at SS sell the other day, it was over two years old.

On the other hand at BigStock I only sell old images, new ones do nothing there.

« Reply #6 on: September 05, 2009, 12:18 »
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What I find - for me anyway, is that new images that have done really well when first uploaded have continued to sell on a regular basis.

If they "shine" at the start, they will have established themselves and will continue to do well as they have pushed themselves up in the 'most popular' search.


Agreed... this seems to be true in my case. 8)=tom

« Reply #7 on: September 05, 2009, 13:00 »
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Thanks everyone for your valuable information and comments.  SS has been my best seller. In fact, I reached a payout for the first time last month. I was hopeful as my portfolio continues to grow so will my sales.  This gives me even more inspiration. :-*

« Reply #8 on: September 05, 2009, 18:52 »
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My oldest images still sell regularly, but those are timeless, they still look current.

« Reply #9 on: September 05, 2009, 21:28 »
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Congrats on your first payout! Feels good, doesn't it?

« Reply #10 on: September 06, 2009, 00:10 »
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@ elvinstar ~ thanks for the kudos, it was my first payout EVER since beginning my Microstock adventure last year.  I upload to around 8 different agencies, I'm really close at some of the others, but not quite there yet.  It did feel VERY good! ;D

« Reply #11 on: September 06, 2009, 02:24 »
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Congratulations! Wish you many more in future! :)

« Reply #12 on: September 06, 2009, 02:50 »
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Of my twenty most popular images seven of them were uploaded more than 2 years ago as part of my first 50 images I think. They still are regularly downloaded.

« Reply #13 on: September 06, 2009, 16:59 »
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1. I'm curious if at Shutterstock old images continue to sell -or- is it just the newer ones? 
2. Does anyone know how the search engine works there? 
3. If a picture has lots of downloads will it be positioned higher in the search engine or favored over images with less downloads?

1. Old images do sell, but not all of them, only the successful ones. Some of my old images have constant flow of downloads/month.
2. Yes. (Personally I don't know how. But the signs show that if I upload, my downloads do increase. Probably the engine takes in consideration the activity around my account = downloads from my portf., new additions into my portf.)
3. Speculatively thinking - yes. The agency is also interested to sell images so very probably they position first anybody's successful material.

« Reply #14 on: September 08, 2009, 12:28 »
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I think this type of thinking leads into the "feed the beast" mentality, which is a negative one for microstock... contributors, buyers, even the agencies.

A well-executed image -- new or old -- will sell if it is unique and meets some unique needs of buyers.  It will sell on day 1, and it will sell on day 1001 if buyers still need it.  If it's well-keyworded and offers a creative take on a specific topic that's in demand, age doesn't matter.

This makes it essential that you find some underserved part of the market and cater to that niche.

If you're just doing plain old model shots, food shots, stuff isolated on white, etc.... then the "feed the beast" approach is your only hope... cross your fingers that someone will download it before it gets buried by many more just like it.

This is not the way to succeed in microstock.  As many more contributors sign up every day, it will only make things harder for those focused on volume.

To thrive, don't think of your images as new or old, but rather WANTED or UNWANTED.  Wanted images will sell, unwanted won't.  Only produce wanted images.  What are those?  That's the tricky part.  Spend more of your time researching that, as opposed to churning out high volumes of the same thing everyone else is doing, and you'll see your sales soar.

« Reply #15 on: September 08, 2009, 16:56 »
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I think this type of thinking leads into the "feed the beast" mentality, which is a negative one for microstock... contributors, buyers, even the agencies.

Which kind of thinking?

If you refer to the "uploads=increase in sales" this also isn't a way of thinking, it's a fact.

« Reply #16 on: September 08, 2009, 19:46 »
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To find an underserved niche can be very tricky... Technically sound good images from even well served areas can sell very well, there are tons of bad images out there, if yours shine then you will sell.  For those very rare images of rare things or events I would still go for RM, if buyers really want/need them they will pay the price.


 

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