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Author Topic: September 2010 Monthly Round-Up - Microstock Earnings  (Read 14269 times)

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« Reply #25 on: October 01, 2010, 07:12 »
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For me September was 14% up on August although still 5% down on Sept 2009, very similar to the previous 4 months.

Overall percentages as follows (with 2009);

IS    33%  (37)
SS   29     (23) - BME!
FT   24     (20)
DT   9      (11)
BigStock 2.5   (2.6)

Three months of rising sales generated a BME at SS despite very few new uploads ('feeding the beast' is a myth). I think they've been doing some fairly serious marketing recently, particularly of PPD sales which is where most of the growth is coming from.

Istockphoto continued it's gentle slide backwards and September was the lowest overall percentage since Dec 2008 (when they finally settled on best match 2.0). We are perhaps approaching a tipping point in the short history of microstock.

FT still growing nicely although I can't help noticing that a truly bizarre proportion of my sales are coming from just 3 or 4 images.

DT pathetic as usual. Sales perpetually up and down 'like a whore's drawers' __ although mainly down. Why can't they get their act together and devise a decent sort-order algorithm that actually promotes best-selling images? We might then achieve some stability of sales.

BigStock still in the doldrums. No real change since SS bought them and not worth my time to upload new images for such a minuscule return.

In comparison to September 2009 my earnings at each agency were as follows;

IS   -8.4%
SS  +20.5%
FT  +16.9%
DT  -20.1%
BigStock -8.8%


« Reply #26 on: October 01, 2010, 09:15 »
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Interesting.
My sales are pretty consistant, apart form that foltlia gaining ground, probably because of my european content.
% of september:

SS:   25%
DT:   29%
FOT: 46%

year un til now:
IS:     5,9%
SS:    20,3%
DT:   21,4%
Alamy: 24,4%
FOT:   28%


Delleted everything on IS
New on CS, BS, CD and YAY - no sales there yet - still adding pics.

« Reply #27 on: October 01, 2010, 09:43 »
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A mixed bag.  Down 6% vs. August, down 12% vs. September, 2009.  That's not counting a very large D4C bonus at Veer that gave me a new monthly record.

Individually, DT continues to slide, Ftl fell back after a record month, ThinkStock dropped off considerably at both SX and iStock (iStock itself did very well after the Announcement from Hell), 123 did very well, and SS recovered from our summer slump.

SS
29.7%
+15.0%
iS
23.6%
+59.9%
123RF
13.1%
+81.2%
Ftl
11.8%
-48.1%
DT
6.3%
-35.2%
CanStockPhoto
5.6%
-42.8%
BigStock
5.2%
-13.6%
SX
1.7%
-43.8%
Veer
1.1%
-46.5%
Cres
.9%
+19.0%
Scan
.7%
+33.3%

lisafx

« Reply #28 on: October 01, 2010, 12:06 »
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September was a big improvement over August.  Thank goodness!  I am up 20% over August, which was just dismal.  

I am still down 10% from last September.  But, hey, I'll take it.  It's nice to see any forward movement after such a terrible summer.  

Although most sites gained in % of my income over last year, that is a result of the closure of StockXpert, more than any actual gain in total royalties earned.  As far as royalty % gains or losses, all the numbers below the top four are so small they are pretty statistically insignificant.  

Sept '10   Sept '09    $ down or up
ISP    40% (41)        (-13%)  
SS    18%  (15)        (+8%)
DT    13%  (11)       (+8%)
Fot    19%  (17)       (+2%)
BigStock    4%   (3)        (+20%)
123RF  2%  (=)       (-21%)
Crest    1%  (=)       (-2%)
CanStockPhoto    2%    (1)       (+29%)
Almy    1%   (3)      (-55%)
 
« Last Edit: October 01, 2010, 12:30 by lisafx »

« Reply #29 on: October 01, 2010, 13:03 »
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Lisa, it's interesting to see that FT is still (relatively) not a top player in your totals - you're emerald there and I thought for some at the highest levels, FT was beginning to rival SS & IS for earnings power. Is it the number of subs sales or overall volume?

My September was slightly up over August for $$ and 66% up over Sept 09 - a second BME (March '10 is current BME).

DLs were 17% lower than Sept 09

lisafx

« Reply #30 on: October 01, 2010, 13:13 »
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Lisa, it's interesting to see that FT is still (relatively) not a top player in your totals - you're emerald there and I thought for some at the highest levels, FT was beginning to rival SS & IS for earnings power. Is it the number of subs sales or overall volume?

My September was slightly up over August for $$ and 66% up over Sept 09 - a second BME (March '10 is current BME).

DLs were 17% lower than Sept 09

Actually, for the last year FT has been my number two site, so it has surpassed SS in my totals....

I have always sold best at Istock.  They are consistently around 38-40% of my income.  No other site has ever surpassed 20% for me.  FT has moved up to take the #2 spot, although SS seems to be rallying and they are neck-and-neck. 

Roughly 1/3 of my FT sales are subscriptions, so the doubling of my credit prices has no affect on those.

« Reply #31 on: October 01, 2010, 13:22 »
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...FT has moved up to take the #2 spot, although SS seems to be rallying and they are neck-and-neck. 


Sites rallying and competing in a race up sounds good - we need to look for small positives in the current cut-back-the-contributor-share environment :)

lisafx

« Reply #32 on: October 01, 2010, 14:43 »
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Sites rallying and competing in a race up sounds good - we need to look for small positives in the current cut-back-the-contributor-share environment :)

Definitely!  I am pleased to see sales picking up across the board.  :)

« Reply #33 on: October 01, 2010, 15:09 »
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BME for us at IS (exclusives).
up 11% from last month (before PP's are in).

« Reply #34 on: October 01, 2010, 15:11 »
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Sept '10   Sept '09    $ down or up
ISP    40% (41)        (-13%)  
SS    18%  (15)        (+8%)
DT    13%  (11)       (+8%)
Fot    19%  (17)       (+2%)
BigStock    4%   (3)        (+20%)
123RF  2%  (=)       (-21%)
Crest    1%  (=)       (-2%)
CanStockPhoto    2%    (1)       (+29%)
Almy    1%   (3)      (-55%)
 

Interesting to see your stats Lisa.  I am surprised too that your Shutterstock, Dreamstime and Fotolia are all relatively close.  My SS is way ahead of the others, then Fotolia and DT is way down on the list (You can see my %'s lower down in an earlier post)

lisafx

« Reply #35 on: October 01, 2010, 15:43 »
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Interesting to see your stats Lisa.  I am surprised too that your Shutterstock, Dreamstime and Fotolia are all relatively close.  My SS is way ahead of the others, then Fotolia and DT is way down on the list (You can see my %'s lower down in an earlier post)

It is definitely weird the variations from contributor to contributor.  Seems like I am one of few independents that still gets a majority of sales from IS. Not sure why that is.  I do take extra time to keyword specifically for them.  Maybe that helps.

« Reply #36 on: October 01, 2010, 15:51 »
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BME for us at IS (exclusives).
up 11% from last month (before PP's are in).

Enjoy ... for now. Unless you happen to be amongst the Top 100 or so you've got just 3 more months before it's bye-bye to BME's as an Istockphoto exclusive.

Istockphoto's 'How was your month?' thread is going to be a blood-bath come January and every month afterwards.

« Reply #37 on: October 01, 2010, 16:03 »
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gostwyck: we are not yet at the top 100 or anywhere near that, but working out it  :)
Since we are now at 25%, we will retain our 25% for next year and bump up to 30% sometime near July.
I don't know why you think its going to be a blood bath but we always have the option of becoming independent.

« Reply #38 on: October 01, 2010, 16:15 »
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gostwyck: we are not yet at the top 100 or anywhere near that, but working out it  :)
Since we are now at 25%, we will retain our 25% for next year and bump up to 30% sometime near July.
I don't know why you think its going to be a blood bath but we always have the option of becoming independent.

Why are you exclusive for 25% (or 30% for that matter)? You sound ambitious to earn but you are just * money away by being exclusive at that level. If and when you do claw your way up to the (slightly) higher commission you can be sure that Istockphoto will soon move the goalposts and knock you back down again. I have no idea why you have such gushing enthusiasm and loyalty for Istock but I do know that it will not be reciprocated.

« Reply #39 on: October 01, 2010, 16:43 »
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I'm glad to see people are generally doing OK. I've taken a heavy hit on both iS and DT this month but a few sales from trad-type agencies have offset that so I'm almost at level pegging with last year.

For the last four months, the DT graph looks as if it is going down the side of a mountain, which is very disappointing. It has fallen by almost 50% since May but I suppose it could just turn around again this month .... hopefully.

iStock has dipped behind SS again in terms of earnings, and is roughly 25% of my month's earnings, compared with its usual 30%.

« Reply #40 on: October 01, 2010, 18:20 »
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gostwyck: My only loyalty is to me and my partners pocket! believe you me I have no stocks at IS/getty.
you forget that uploading to many sites has a huge overhead.  uploading, keywording, disabmiguations, and keeping track of submissions and rejections all takes time. a LOT of time.  This is a huge downside for us since we are essentially a one man crew.
In addition, this brings down our upload quota on IS to 20 instead of 60, and I hope 90 soon. add to that a much higher rejection rate.
Our decision was based purly on our own best economic interest.  If we feel this will change in the future we will not hesitate giving up our crown.
If IS decide to play around with the goals (as I do suspect they will) then again, giving away the crown is ALLWAYS a possibilty.

(I appologize for any spelling mistakes, English isn't my daily language)

WarrenPrice

« Reply #41 on: October 01, 2010, 21:18 »
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Still on the road but trying to complete the monthly survey.  Noticed there is no place for Thinkstock.  Is it considered a part of iStock?
Also, if that is the case, what about the stuff still being reported through StockXpert???

Just wanting to know where to brag about my $6.   ::) :P :-[


RacePhoto

« Reply #42 on: October 01, 2010, 22:01 »
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Still on the road but trying to complete the monthly survey.  Noticed there is no place for Thinkstock.  Is it considered a part of iStock?
Also, if that is the case, what about the stuff still being reported through StockXpert???

Just wanting to know where to brag about my $6.   ::) :P :-[

Actually I just fold it into the partner program sales because it's all the same coming from StockXpert or IS at 25c a download. Seems that when IS bought StockXpert and invented ThinkStock, even ProStockMaster decided that they didn't exist anymore, even thought ThinkStock earnings are reported on existing StockXpert accounts. It just vanished? :)

Wow you're doing good, I had five sales on ThinkStock for StockXpert last month for a whole $1.25! Just about to the point of calling is done, sticking a fork in it and cashing out. It's not doing anything that I can look forward to, and if I lose a dollar a month for a year, I'll have to skip going through the McDonald's drive through one night on the way to the office. :D But since I didn't have to upload anything and just left them sit long enough, I wanted to give ThinkStock a chance to earn. So far, I'm not excited about the possibilities or future potential.

On Topic portion of the message. Remember I'm small time haven't been uploading for about two months now. I have been taking some entertaining shots, just not getting around to them.

Just finished culling a couple thousand photos from an event, which are now up for sale on a private site that uses Smugmug. Not my site and I made more there last year than on Micro. No complaints with the 50/50 split that he offers me on sales.

IS Sept. doubled what I got in Aug. Don't have PP sales listed yet and I don't expect to see that for weeks. Regular sales were up.

SS ran about the same as usual. I need to prime that pump because the upload boost only lasts a month, and then everything falls down. Always funny because as soon as I upload something new, it seems some old file that's never sold before, gets a hit?

BigStock last sale was June and where they used to get some sales every month, I'm getting to the point of closing that one as well. Waste of time and energy to sell anywhere but SS and IS for me. (personal decision on time vs returns)

That's everywhere for me, four micro sites, which is really only two if you count owners.

Alamy (which isn't micro so I'm not commenting) and direct sales as a second shooter working some events which also isn't micro. Just an excuse why I'm not uploading and working like I could be. Micro returns according to effort. Small effort, small portfolio, small returns. Seems fair enough for me.

I can add that BW3 / Buffalo Wild Wings just opened near me and they have NTN trivia, so I'll be back to that addiction three nights a week.

« Reply #43 on: October 02, 2010, 03:17 »
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Here's mine.  Fot and DT perform better for me than IS and SS.

« Reply #44 on: October 02, 2010, 04:35 »
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Record month after three years in micro. SS accounted for 45% of it. IS/FT/DT the same. Hope this continues next month, as it will then be in addition to a regular pay packet / check. After what seem's like a lifetime in this business, the numbers aren't adding up fast enought. It's 9-5 in a suit from next week with all my photo work confined to weekends and evenings.

It was either that, or a painful crawl into an abyss.

I'll keep you posted how this affects earnings in the next few months.

Oldhand the newboy

ShadySue

  • There is a crack in everything
« Reply #45 on: October 02, 2010, 04:46 »
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gostwyck: we are not yet at the top 100 or anywhere near that, but working out it  :)
Since we are now at 25%, we will retain our 25% for next year and bump up to 30% sometime near July.
I don't know why you think its going to be a blood bath but we always have the option of becoming independent.
Don't understand how you are going to "bump up to 30% somewhere near July".
If you're 25% in January, that's what you'll get all year.
(e.g. I expect to retain my 30%, but I had expected to go Gold/35% around April, which won't now happen.)

rubyroo

« Reply #46 on: October 02, 2010, 04:52 »
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. After what seem's like a lifetime in this business, the numbers aren't adding up fast enought. It's 9-5 in a suit from next week with all my photo work confined to weekends and evenings.

Oh that's huge, Oldhand.  Just wanted to wish you well with this big change.

Good luck!

« Reply #47 on: October 02, 2010, 04:57 »
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ShadySue: then u missunderstood something in the new system at IS. if in the middle of the year you get to the redeemed credits goal you will be immidietly be upgraded to the higher royalty level in addition to the fact that you sart at that royalty rate the following year.

ShadySue

  • There is a crack in everything
« Reply #48 on: October 02, 2010, 05:03 »
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ShadySue: then u missunderstood something in the new system at IS. if in the middle of the year you get to the redeemed credits goal you will be immidietly be upgraded to the higher royalty level in addition to the fact that you sart at that royalty rate the following year.
Ah, yes, starting from zero sales on January 1st; if you reach the next level up in RCs in that calendar year, you do indeed rise a level.

« Reply #49 on: October 02, 2010, 05:48 »
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. After what seem's like a lifetime in this business, the numbers aren't adding up fast enought. It's 9-5 in a suit from next week with all my photo work confined to weekends and evenings.

Oh that's huge, Oldhand.  Just wanted to wish you well with this big change.

Good luck!

Many thanks. It's probably long overdue. My new salary will be the same as my Micro and Macro earnings, which alone are not reliable enough with a family. I'm hoping the the photography work will be a large bonus in the future as long I still put time into it.

Oldhand


 

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