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Poll

Who Has the Best "Best Match" Search Engine?

Shutterstock
10 (22.7%)
IStockphoto
7 (15.9%)
Dreamstime
21 (47.7%)
Fotolia
3 (6.8%)
StockXpert
3 (6.8%)

Total Members Voted: 36

Author Topic: Who Has the Best "Best Match" Search Engine?  (Read 6276 times)

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« on: October 16, 2008, 07:19 »
0
Shutterstock has "Most Popular"

iStockphoto has "Best Match"

Dreamstime has "Relevancy"

Fotolia has "Pertinence"

StockXpert has "Popularity"

They all have different names, but they are all essentially algorithms that are trying to return the most relevant results when a buyer searches for images.

Which stock site do you believe returns the most relevant results when you search for images?

And why?


vonkara

« Reply #1 on: October 16, 2008, 09:49 »
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Where's the Fotolia fans LOL. I voted for Shutterstock and Istock would have been my n1 choice if they wasn't messed up their search lately. But now it seem to be back to something let say.. a bit more normal, but only since yesterday. Fotolia have the worst no sense search

Nice idea btw

« Reply #2 on: October 16, 2008, 10:18 »
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I just did a search using 3 of my common keywords to see how many of my images appear in the first 20 images.

IS  - 0 
SS - 1
StockXpert - 3 
Fot - 12 
DT - 16

Now I know why IS is completely tanking for me and why fot and Dt are doing so well.
At IS my first image takes 265th place.  Before the latest best match change I always had 2 or 3 in the top 50.   The one that is at 265th place has only sold 9 times when I have other images that have sold over 1000 times that I can't even find they are now so far back in the search.

SS is actually doing well at the moment but I haven't uploaded this sort of images for a while so they are not showing as well as othes in the "best match" search.

« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2008, 11:11 »
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Best... for who? The Best results for a buyer rarely are the best results from a seller point of view. So, I've voted as a buyer.

RT


« Reply #4 on: October 16, 2008, 12:47 »
0
I haven't voted because to be honest I don't think any site has or can have a search engine that brings the 'best match' results that any buyer could want.

As a buyer when I search for an image I want the best image that matches what I'm searching for, I don't care whether it's been downloaded once, fifty, or a thousand times, I don't care when it was uploaded or how succesful the contributor is on that particular site, because to a buyer all that information is irrelevent and as a buyer I and only I can make the decision as to whether the image is the 'best match' for the purpose I want.
I'm also not bothered whether an image is exclusive to a particular site because for RF exclusivity is irrelevant.

With that in mind there is no search engine or site that can possibly determine what is 'best match'.

And as a buyer I am aware of this and I'm also aware that if I really want the best match I'm going to have to do it the old fashioned way and go through the pages of results.

Personally I'd like to see more time spent working on making sure that the images that come back as a search result are actually relevant to the search terms, iStock with all the will in the world have tried to do that but to be honest the result is a disaster because their CV is useless and doesn't recognise nearly enough search terms, so if I want an image now I go to another site and search the old fashioned way.

And 98% of my time is as an contributor, for a full time buyer it must be hell.



« Reply #5 on: October 16, 2008, 12:51 »
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Best... for who? The Best results for a buyer rarely are the best results from a seller point of view. So, I've voted as a buyer.

"Best" meaning that the results will accurately reflect the keywords that you are searching for.

For example, if you type in a search such as "red paperclip" or "disco mirrorball" what shows up?

Do the results accurately reflect the search phrase, or do you get something entirely different.

IMO, the DT search engine seems to give the best results.

« Reply #6 on: October 16, 2008, 12:53 »
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Personally I'd like to see more time spent working on making sure that the images that come back as a search result are actually relevant to the search terms...

That is exactly what the poll is trying to reflect.  Which microstock site has the search engine that gives the most accurate results?  I  believe that is what the "Best Match" is supposed to reflect.

« Reply #7 on: October 16, 2008, 13:42 »
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Another maybe marginal but important factor is results when the customer uses a non-englisgh language version. In this aspect, with all it's flaws, I consider Istock the best by far, because of the CV.

« Reply #8 on: October 16, 2008, 22:27 »
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Results don't necessarily reflect a good or bad search engine.  If people spam images and they appear in a search due to the spammed terms, the search engine is working correctly - contributors aren't.

Making no tests I would vote for DT, because their engine takes into account the title and description too.  FT's choice of most relevant keywords on top of the list is also a very good one - unfortunately things don't seem to work well there.

Regards,
Adelaide

« Reply #9 on: October 17, 2008, 00:06 »
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DT seems to return the least number of completely bogus spammed images, and if you get one, you can report it with just a click. I don't much care for seeing a heap of images from one contributor all in a row, which makes me think that that something about the contributor is too important in the search algorithm compared to the specific image. I don't know that the images returned are "best", but at least they aren't completely out of bounds.

IS could be good, but because of the limited CV and most importantly the default mapping it actually doesn't seem to work very well for me. Granted I haven't spent a lot of time trying to figure out how to make their search work for me.

SS seems to have a LOT of bogus returns. Partly this is because they break up multiple word keywords, but mostly I think they let in a lot of spam and do nothing about it. Also when you are searching for something which isn't particularly popular, more popular type images that have those keywords show up at the top of the search.

« Reply #10 on: October 17, 2008, 01:31 »
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I think that Fotolia has the most fair system and thus best in terms of exposure for all contributors. it's relevancy search is now an amalgam of new images that are yet to be sold and old solid sellers.

« Reply #11 on: October 17, 2008, 17:27 »
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It looks like the StockXpert "Popularity" sort order (which is the default) has been changed (from their major revamp last night) and is reporting results which are based on the number of downloads (which is the same as the "Downloads" sort order).

lisafx

« Reply #12 on: October 17, 2008, 17:35 »
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I think DT has the best search results, for the reasons Adelaide mentioned (title and description included) and also because they take rejection rates into account. 

Folks who consistently upload quality work are rewarded by higher search placement and the customer benefits from seeing work that is high quality.

Unlike ratings or views, which are easily gamed, the only way to game DT's search is by uploading good images  :)

ETA that using rejection rates is also fair because a skilled newbie has as good a chance as an established contributor.
« Last Edit: October 17, 2008, 17:38 by lisafx »

« Reply #13 on: November 03, 2008, 00:54 »
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As a buyer, hands down, dreamstime has the best  "best match" search. It has the least spam and the most accurate results of all the sites. However, I am noticing that spam is a growing problem there and they need to start dealing with it - I report spam keywords all the time and it takes months (if at all) for them to be checked following the report - by the time they fix the spam (again, if at all) more has been uploaded in the interim.

SS and fotolia have big problems with spam keywords and hence relevancy - a black hole IMO.

Istock is somewhere in the middle - they still have big issues with spam, which is compounded by having to wade through spamming exclusive photos all up front,  but they have improved and will continue to do so as they continue to tackle and deal with inaccurate keywords. So while Dreamtime holds the lead right now, unless Dreamstime starts to deal with their spam issues, istock will eventually overtake them for relevance ... and i use the word "relevance" intentionally - I know istock exclusives think that buyers seem to care a lot that a photo is exclusive to istock ... I do not believe this to be the case ... in fact I see it as irrelevant ... who cares if the photo can be purchased 100 times on istock or 25 times on istock, 25 on dreamstime and 25 times on SS - what matters is RELEVANCE to what I am looking for.


« Reply #14 on: December 11, 2008, 12:33 »
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DT!
Reasons - everything that Lisa, Hoi Hu and others have already said.


lagereek

« Reply #15 on: December 11, 2008, 12:40 »
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Dreamstime, I agree, seems to be the most effective. SS popularity is also pretty accurate. FT is not bad either.
« Last Edit: December 11, 2008, 13:03 by lagereek »

shank_ali

« Reply #16 on: December 26, 2008, 12:52 »
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Never under estimate the skill and ability of the buyer in using the search engine of any particular micro site to find a file for a project.
"socks" "nobody" " white background" is a simple string of keywords and can be easily  typed into istock's search engine and hey presto my 2 useful images appear.
"businessman" "office" would not be good enough terms for any search engine on a particular micro site to narrow down a search for a  photo but i suspect a buyer would of learnt that along time ago.

Tuilay

« Reply #17 on: December 29, 2008, 12:44 »
0
It looks like the StockXpert "Popularity" sort order (which is the default) has been changed (from their major revamp last night) and is reporting results which are based on the number of downloads (which is the same as the "Downloads" sort order).

That makes better sense of it. This way someone cannot manipulate their images "popularity" by deliberately "finding" them, or getting a network of friends to find each others images to boost their numbers.
Download is more accurate . Good for them !

« Reply #18 on: December 29, 2008, 13:06 »
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Which stock site do you believe returns the most relevant results when you search for images?

Not a microstock, but i find Alamy's algorithms (AlamyRank) working very nicely, much better than any microstock. Keyword spammers and people who upload too many similiars do sink to the bottom of their search.

« Reply #19 on: December 29, 2008, 15:18 »
0
DreamsTime

for me 2

They don't fuck arount with best match
you get what you deserve....


 

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