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Author Topic: I love you Alamy, but I'm breaking up with you! (wishing you luck)  (Read 1363 times)

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Brasilnut

  • Author Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock & Blog

« on: September 13, 2020, 07:34 »
+2
Ive always liked Alamys business model. For years theyve worked hard to keep license fees relatively high by carving out an editorial niche in a crowded marketplace. Their commission levels continue to be one of the better ones within the major agencies, at 40% for non-exclusive and 50% for exclusive. In addition, they have top-notch contributor customer services.

However, for the past year Ive noticed within my port, reduced sales and low low prices. Easy to blame Covid but Ive noticed this trend long before March 2020. So lets dig deeper at whats going on at Alamy! Be warned that this way a a very stats-based post.

https://brutallyhonestmicrostock.com/2020/09/13/i-love-you-alamy-but-im-breaking-up-with-you/

How have your sales at Alamy been for the past year?

Alex


« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2020, 07:58 »
+1
Last year was my BYE at Alamy in sales and revenue but this year is WAY down to 2015 levels when I had a lot less images on there

I agree Sales have been few and far between and for mostly merger amounts, many in the $3 range

Disappointing

But looks like this whole industry has past its best before date

« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2020, 15:01 »
+3
I never understood why so many people praised Alamy to begin with. Just because - usually - royalities are higher than with other agencies? (And that's not even really the case for me, I had multiple sales that earned me as little as 2.84 there.)  What's the point if you earn $10 for an image, but only have 1 or 3 sales each month? Even if other agencies pay less per image, I still earn way more for the exact same work I put into this.

At the beginning I uploaded to them frequently, but sales were so rare, it didn't seem worth it and I stopped completely. Then, maybe a year ago, I had one large sale which motivated me to keep uploading again, but after that one big sale it just went back to the 1-2 average sales each month and a refund for a sale that happened months ago (and the image was still being used on a website and I had to run after them for weeks to finally get at least part of that money back) was the final straw for me. It's really not worth the effort. I earn on other agencies in a month what I earn on Alamy in a year. By the way, Dreamstime earnes me about 3x as much as Alamy. Dreamstime is certainly far from doing great, but at least I do actually get money from them regularly, so it's a "little bit extra" that's worth it to me. I don't even know when was the last time I reached payout on Alamy. January maybe? Had enough sales for another payout since then, but you know how it takes months to actually get the money on your account after a sale... another thing I find not acceptable with them.
« Last Edit: September 14, 2020, 05:02 by Firn »

« Reply #3 on: September 14, 2020, 10:26 »
+3
5600 current images. Slow to grow my portfolio. 12 month moving average is $0.30 to $0.22 Per Image Per Year. This COVID year appears to be trending down. The many year long term trend is still fair to decent. I'm not making big money but I'm also not ready to bail out of Alamy. This portfolio is all editorial and RM. These are images different than I sell via microstock (commercial and RF).

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #4 on: September 14, 2020, 13:25 »
+2
I never understood why so many people praised Alamy to begin with. Just because - usually - royalities are higher than with other agencies? (And that's not even really the case for me, I had multiple sales that earned me as little as 2.84 there.)  What's the point if you earn $10 for an image, but only have 1 or 3 sales each month? Even if other agencies pay less per image, I still earn way more for the exact same work I put into this.

At the beginning I uploaded to them frequently, but sales were so rare, it didn't seem worth it and I stopped completely. Then, maybe a year ago, I had one large sale which motivated me to keep uploading again, but after that one big sale it just went back to the 1-2 average sales each month and a refund for a sale that happened months ago (and the image was still being used on a website and I had to run after them for weeks to finally get at least part of that money back) was the final straw for me. It's really not worth the effort. I earn on other agencies in a month what I earn on Alamy in a year. By the way, Dreamstime earnes me about 3x as much as Alamy. Dreamstime is certainly far from doing great, but at least I do actually get money from them regularly, so it's a "little bit extra" that's worth it to me. I don't even know when was the last time I reached payout on Alamy. January maybe? Had enough sales for another payout since then, but you know how it takes months to actually get the money on your account after a sale... another thing I find not acceptable with them.

The point is, why I stay... when we used to get a sale, note a couple years ago, the money was 50% and fair. Low sales volume didn't matter when I was averaging $88 commission for my downloads. Those days are gone. Reason I won't leave is because I already did the hard parts, taking photos, uploading and adding the details.

Different photos will work better or worse, depending on what agency. On DT I'll collect the next $100 in 2026 if I'm lucky. Minimum $100? What's that? But that tells me, you have better works for DTs customers, than I do.

Right, Alamy is slow, and the returns are lower. Minimum is $50? This year I have one sale for $19.99 and they owe me $9 and change. This could be the first year I don't make payout from Alamy. But I've never had a year where I made more on DT than Alamy. I'll also agree that the $3.38 sales for $1.69 (2019 sales) is disappointing. But last sale on DT was $2 in May. Obviously neither one is anything special?  ;)

The point is, fair pay even if there are low sales, the images are already there. Nothing complicated and not a big financial deal. I'll leave everything there because if I close my account, I'm positive I won't make anything at all? Closing my DT account would be less of a loss, as they can keep the $11.52 I made in 2019/2020.

In the past I did close ever agency except SS, IS, DT, Alamy and P5. I only went back to FT after Adobe bought them. I added Wirestock because it's a lazy way to take old files and spread them around. Plus the $35 minimum, which I already cashed once, means I don't have to wait years for DT or the rest of them, it's whenever I make $35. I suppose I could close DT and upload all the same to WS and apply them to DT? Seems like and odd way to make less, and give 15% to WS, just because DT is slow and low.

Oh and what's the point? I'd say I have dropped 20 or more agencies, because they are just a waste of time and didn't pay fair. Only reason I have an IS account is, same as Alamy, I already did the work. IS gets nothing new for years now. Alamy gets something, if it's travel, scenic or that kind of thing, nothing I'd call Microstock.

ps Adobe gets my illustrations, no place else does. I tried vectors and illustrations at Alamy which was a dead end, waste of time, IMHO. Every place has it's better matching images. Alamy is not a good choice for Microstock type images. But you knew that?  ;D

Ive always liked Alamys business model. For years theyve worked hard to keep license fees relatively high by carving out an editorial niche in a crowded marketplace. Their commission levels continue to be one of the better ones within the major agencies, at 40% for non-exclusive and 50% for exclusive. In addition, they have top-notch contributor customer services.

However, for the past year Ive noticed within my port, reduced sales and low low prices. Easy to blame Covid but Ive noticed this trend long before March 2020. So lets dig deeper at whats going on at Alamy! Be warned that this way a a very stats-based post.

https://brutallyhonestmicrostock.com/2020/09/13/i-love-you-alamy-but-im-breaking-up-with-you/

How have your sales at Alamy been for the past year?

Alex

I don't think RPI is a fair way to compare, since "what are the images" matters. But no disagreement that sales are down and the value of downloads are down. Want to make Alamy look good, use RPD, which is also not a good measure. Honestly, since this is about making money, the real measure is, how many dollars did I put into my pocket. I'll assume that for most people, that number is down for Alamy in 2020.

Like I wrote above. If I already did the work, uploaded and tagged thousands of images, how does it hurt to just leave them and take what falls on me, at the same time, stop uploading new, to work harder at places that pay back better?

rinderart

« Reply #5 on: September 14, 2020, 19:48 »
+1
Bailed out a little more than a year ago. Just didn't work out for me. at One time I had 13 sites. I will have 3 soon when I dump DT.123 and BS. and for some reason SS is still very strong.#1 actually,,,, and yes many 10 cent sales But also a LOT of Dollars Plus Sales also. In my 78 year old crystal ball and Very Long stock History going back Long Before Micro. I don't see Much future going forward and If there is..... I personally would hope better submitter's if better commissions and stability is what Ya want. In my time I looked at much More Ports than Most and Being honest it has steadily gotten worse for the last 7/8 years..
Pay them 10 cents and thats what it's worth.
If I were forced to Pick One which May happen sooner than later it would be AB. I was waiting for them to Overtake SS for a long time and even Bet On it with a few Oldies here.
Speaking Of Oldies it was great reading Jim Pickerell again. we go back a "VERY LONG TIME" and suggest you read this.
  https://www.selling-stock.com/ViewArticle.aspx?id=b865e98a-3320-4c60-89b5-574021525673

OK, bring on the haters...... Need a good laugh. I'll be gone for good soon.

« Reply #6 on: September 15, 2020, 04:39 »
0
As a matter of interest do portugese/Spanish newspapers use alamy?

Brasilnut

  • Author Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock & Blog

« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2020, 04:58 »
0
As a matter of interest do portugese/Spanish newspapers use alamy?

On very rare occasions and I do have many pics uploaded in Iberia.

I have seen Eastern European newspapers often license from Alamy, with significant discounts.

I re-read my post, which I thought was perhaps a bit harsh (Covid-pity) but then checked my results for Sept and it still shows 0 sales and $0 earned and maybe I was not harsh enough.

« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2020, 06:12 »
+1
Conversely, I'm having a good month on Alamy - 4 sales so far, over $200 gross.  Not my best month ever, but definitely well above average for me.

Brasilnut

  • Author Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock & Blog

« Reply #9 on: September 16, 2020, 07:04 »
0
Alamy has responded to Photo Archive News that kindly shared my post on https://photoarchivenews.com/news/stock-photographer-i-love-you-alamy-but-im-breaking-up-with-you/

Quote
Alan Capel : Commercial Director:

Our business is in good health, even during these challenging times, with investment and growth plans in place as part of the PA Media Group.

Alex has raised some interesting points but we dont see his experiences as representative of all our contributors. As with any large-scale diverse platform, there will be peaks and troughs for content creators. Many factors play into that, including the quality and diversity of imagery, visual trends, comprehensive metadata and crucially, demand from customers.

We will continue to listen to our photographers and contributing agencies and build a business that rewards great photography and meets the needs of our current and future customers.


« Reply #10 on: September 16, 2020, 07:40 »
0
This year on $10 sale ($4 earnings), not good!

But if i upload images to other sites, it is no effort to upload them to AL

And there's a change for higher sales :)

ShadySue

  • There is a crack in everything
« Reply #11 on: September 16, 2020, 08:13 »
0
Alamy has responded to Photo Archive News that kindly shared my post on https://photoarchivenews.com/news/stock-photographer-i-love-you-alamy-but-im-breaking-up-with-you/

Quote
Alan Capel : Commercial Director:

Our business is in good health, even during these challenging times, with investment and growth plans in place as part of the PA Media Group.

Alex has raised some interesting points but we dont see his experiences as representative of all our contributors. As with any large-scale diverse platform, there will be peaks and troughs for content creators. Many factors play into that, including the quality and diversity of imagery, visual trends, comprehensive metadata and crucially, demand from customers.

We will continue to listen to our photographers and contributing agencies and build a business that rewards great photography and meets the needs of our current and future customers.

Your experiences may not be representative of all Alamy contributors (Live News is a different category, and even there prices can be falling. Though every now and then I see news about a good sale [among people I actually know] in among the general reports of ever-decreasing value sales), but I'm as sure as I can be that it's representive of the vast majority of Alamy contributors. If your port is doing badly, I'm pretty certain that's the case for most non-Live News contributors.

« Reply #12 on: September 16, 2020, 11:05 »
+2
I'm okay with Alamy: yes, up and down along the months, not many sales but the best paid. For me July 2020 was exceptional: 25 sales (almost one/day) and 779 USD gross


 

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