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Author Topic: Social Media and other Marketing - Get more sales on POD or image sales sites  (Read 1830 times)

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Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« on: May 02, 2022, 11:37 »
+1
Looking for ideas and I know that some people do this and do well. I asked Annie after she mentioned promotion using social media. Anyone else with ideas that have worked, please join in? I created a pseudo account on FAA, the free kind that allows me to have 25 images. Now I'm selectively creating a topical collection and I want to promote it. I expect to create an identity to match for Twitter, FB and maybe Pinterest?

The idea is market under that collection and see if I can create some interest?

Quote
Does that cost money, or some investment besides time or posting to social media? I can't see spamming all my friends, who aren't image buyers, with "Here's my latest upload to FAA" or some Twitter announcement that's sent to everyone. Second account, and then how do I get the right kind of friends, the ones who buy things. :)


I've used social media for free marketing before and plan to get back into it, possibly next month, and to answer Pete's questions above, this is what I've learnt:

Free Social Media Marketing: just requires 15 to 30 minutes a day on the big 4: Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. But my recommendation is to just choose 2 at a time and build those up, otherwise it becomes just too time consuming, and your attention may get too scattered.

There are 2 ways you can do this. The first, the easy way, is just to increase click throughs and therefore views on your products, which will help with their search placement. I've had up to 40 views on a new FAA product from just doing this.  I used to regularly get about 20 to 30 views on products listed on DesignBundles, which really helped with their search placement. Here you just need to regularly post links to your product/website/blog. I recommend that you do this for new listings/uploads especially, because lots of interest on a new product seems to really help with the algorithm.
 
The second is to really go full-on to develop a dedicated audience. And that takes a lot more time and you need to understand how to use hashtags, or write interesting blog posts, create some lead magnets (freebies), or even go as far as developing an email marketing list.

I have separate business social media accounts to my personal ones. It just works much better that way, and yes, you are not then spamming family and friends. Its also best to keep your own political or social views out of your business account. You dont want to alienate anyone. I was starting to use my business Twitter for personal interests, and then decided to stop.

If youre starting out and dont know what to do, then just go on Pinterest and type in a search question for what you need to know. For example: how to get followers on Instagram?, and there should be hundreds of blog posts and quick tips. Some are just click-baits, and some actually have some good answers. For example:

https://www.pinterest.com.au/search/pins/?rs=ac&len=2&q=how%20to%20get%20followers%20on%20instagram&eq=how%20to%20get%20followers%20on%20ins&etslf=9447&term_meta[]=how%7Cautocomplete%7C0&term_meta[]=to%7Cautocomplete%7C0&term_meta[]=get%7Cautocomplete%7C0&term_meta[]=followers%7Cautocomplete%7C0&term_meta[]=on%7Cautocomplete%7C0&term_meta[]=instagram%7Cautocomplete%7C0

 
I found that you dont necessarily need thousands of followers if you use the right hashtags. So, understanding how to best use hashtags is a good place to start. Once again, just type that into Pinterest search and you should get hundreds of blog articles about that.

If you can work out who is your target audience, then you can hone in on those by following these people, and often they will follow you back. The other way is to join social media groups. (People who like vintage postcards? Racing cars? Racing Sports?). For example, my husband joined a FB group who were interested in what he was selling on Shopify and now he gets lots of regular sales and return buyers from there. On Pinterest I found a specific group in my target audience range, and used to just post there because I got far better response than just posting to everyone.

But like anything, just start small and learn as you go. Just post links to your products, and hashtag, hashtag, hashtag. Hashtags will open you up to a greater audience than just your followers. And also perhaps consider joining some groups.

If you start to feel that your account is becoming too sell/sell/sell and starting to put people off then write some interesting (related) blog posts. Maybe something in your area of expertise (vintage racing cars?? Where you find your vintage postcards??) and post those. Or post some interesting articles (from other sources) in that area as well. Think of interesting or helpful things that your audience would like to know more of.


« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2022, 15:12 »
0
Ah, I just noticed you already made a separate marketing thread. Good idea.  I am still posting on the other one (Freepik), is there anyway we can move those comments (and Justanotherphotographer) across too?

« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2022, 15:15 »
+1
Lets try this ...

I used goigle ads, amazon ads and Facebook ads in the past to sell POD stuff and also to drive traffic to my site (when I sold stock direct). You can pretty much set your own revenue if you spend enough on ads. That's what informs my view of how important search placement is on the micros. If you get enough eyeballs you will sell. The problem is I was spending $12 for every $10 to me. Also don't ever give fb your money, much worse results than the others and exposed as BSing ads customers more than once.




Thanks! Very interesting, especially the part about: "The problem is I was spending $12 for every $10 to me."

...


With the POD sites I could never quite make it work for any length of time. It would look like I was turning a profit for a certain period but a couple of weeks later I would be in the red again. Frustrating when the difference was often small enough that a slightly bigger cut from the agency would put me in the green.

With my own site I was doing okay, like the amount I make at a mid tier agency, but I shut it down when the EU rules regarding getting VAT registered came in. I couldnt be bothered with the extra paperwork; I like to keep things simple!


With the PODs, I don't think I would bother marketing them anymore, its not really worth my time. Mainly because my target buyers could be anyone. But promoting sites, blogs and targeted products who have a specific audience (like the examples I used for Pete above) can definitely be advantageous. And yes, I too am finding that my non-microstock sites can out-perform the mid-tier agencies as well.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2022, 15:20 by Annie »

« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2022, 06:37 »
0
Hi,

I was also thinking of an alternative to increase my income from stock photography. But, unfortunately, I don't know how many would be willing to buy products with pictures of food. But I don't want to practice another kind of photography just to sell PODs.

Anyway, I think the best way is to try and see what happens...
 :D

Good luck to all!
 :)

« Reply #4 on: May 03, 2022, 07:17 »
+3
Hi,

I was also thinking of an alternative to increase my income from stock photography. But, unfortunately, I don't know how many would be willing to buy products with pictures of food. But I don't want to practice another kind of photography just to sell PODs.

Anyway, I think the best way is to try and see what happens...
 :D

Good luck to all!
 :)



I've had quite a lot of food photography sell on FAA.  They can sell as wall art for kitchens and dining rooms, holiday food (Christmas, Thanksgiving, Valentine, Easter, etc) does well for greeting cards, I've sold several as jigsaw puzzles, a cake printed on a tapestry (of all things!). Someone even purchased one of my candy photos printed on a shower curtain. So you never know.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2022, 19:12 by Annie »

« Reply #5 on: May 03, 2022, 07:59 »
0
I've had quite a lot of food photography sell on FAA.  They can sell as wall art for kitchens and dining rooms, holiday food (Christmas, Thanksgiving, Valentine, Easter, etc) does well for greeting cards, I've sold several as jigsaw puzzles, a cake printed on a tapestry (of all things!). Heck, someone even purchased one of my candy photos printed on a shower curtain. So you never know.

Thanks for the encouragement! I'm really going to try to see if I can "squeeze" anything out of the photos I already have.

 :)

OM

« Reply #6 on: May 03, 2022, 10:33 »
0
My wife has been studying jewellery vendors on Etsy and has come across others who sell photo prints there. Some also sell digital downloads for around $2-$3 which can be used for printing photo backgrounds for food photography. I suppose that $2-$3 is better than 10 cents.

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #7 on: May 03, 2022, 13:41 »
0
My wife has been studying jewellery vendors on Etsy and has come across others who sell photo prints there. Some also sell digital downloads for around $2-$3 which can be used for printing photo backgrounds for food photography. I suppose that $2-$3 is better than 10 cents.

Are they actually selling images for $2-3 dollars. I ask that because I created some high resolution, high quality images and after paying fees to Etsy, had not so much as an inquiry. I went and looked to see what was comparable. I found people with 18 images for $3.50 in packs. Some with more like 24 for $4.50. I'm not going to say this is a problem with all images, but just some ideas I had and some of my sets.

People are aggregating, downloading, collecting, and some don't bother making high quality, just right click and make a set.

If someone is selling images on Etsy, please explain the cost and listing expenses and then what kind of actual sales someone might get? If I could get $3 downloads for $1 in expenses, I'd still be doing better than dimes or scraps.  :)

I have some fairly unusual images, that I created from scans of blueprints and uncommon sourced materials from estate auctions. Some are special interest, some maps from WW I and WW II and just some odd items. Never had a sale yet. I thought someone who's a fan of railroads, or old maps, or maybe some other subjects would want a personalize or decorative item. So far, I'm wrong.

I just want to say, I'm not saying, this is bad or don't do it, I'm looking for ideas that have produced success that I might use to improve my results? I'd like to make some more money?


« Reply #8 on: May 03, 2022, 15:41 »
0
My wife has been studying jewellery vendors on Etsy and has come across others who sell photo prints there. Some also sell digital downloads for around $2-$3 which can be used for printing photo backgrounds for food photography. I suppose that $2-$3 is better than 10 cents.

If anyone is interested in selling on Etsy, there is an app called eRank, that gives you average price and best keywords to use for Etsy. I use it to also set my prices on designer resources agencies.  I just checked 'digital photography', and it said the average price, out of 100 listings analysed, is $6.31.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2022, 19:12 by Annie »

« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2022, 15:43 »
0
For POD sites, it helps increase sales but it takes effort and a "village." I used to share daily on twitter, G+ (when it was around) and Pinterest, with occasional shares to FB, but I did it with a group of 6-8 other photographers.

Each day, we'd post two images we wanted to share - either from FAA redbubble, Photo4Me, or our personal websites - with three hashtags for each. We'd share each other's work as well as our own on twitter and a site of our choosing.

We also would retweet/like/share each other's posts. It took about 15-30 minutes a day. I'm not sure if a few hundred dollars extra average a month was worth that time, but it was social and helped me grow my twitter following from <100 followers to 7,200+ organically (fallen to <7K since Covid).
(The sharing group also helped us all get on the front page of Crated (now gone) and I made a few nice $$$ sales there).

The group disbanded early on during Covid and I've seen my sales decrease by more than half on FAA (my best site) since then.

I liked sharing on twitter because none of my friends were on there so I didn't feel like I was bombarding friends with my photos every day and I'd generally sell at least one or two of my featured images each month to people all over the US and Europe, so it seemed to be getting eyeon my stuff. These days, I only get a few sales a month on FAA, and I think the lack of mutual promotions may be to blame.

If anyone is interested in mutual promotions - either via a formal sharing scheme or just interested in following each other on social media, send me a PM. It could be as little as once a week or something more frequent.

I hate how much time social media takes, but if you are doing it with others, you get a lot more bang for your buck since their followers see your work too.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2022, 15:45 by wordplanet »

« Reply #10 on: May 06, 2022, 21:34 »
0

"My wife has been studying jewellery vendors on Etsy and has come across others who sell photo prints there. Some also sell digital downloads for around $2-$3 which can be used for printing photo backgrounds for food photography. I suppose that $2-$3 is better than 10 cents."

The biggest problem with ETSY is they you used to be able to upload you product and got charged when it sold now thwy have a fee to upload and a fee every couple of weeks and an other fee when you sell Oh! and the big Oh is that you can't get direct payment anymore they take your money andf hold onto it for another several days.

Gone are the days for selling on thid platform ust another fee charging PROFIT making enterprise.

I sell POD on 3 or 4 sites, one is a good seller the others are just to get my images promoted.

I also license images now on only a couple of sites both give me good returns on my images and it took me a longtime to work out where to have them, I have NEVER been paid .10c an images and regularly license images for credits and get paid between 5 and 25 US per image.

« Reply #11 on: May 07, 2022, 00:25 »
0

I sell POD on 3 or 4 sites, one is a good seller the others are just to get my images promoted.


Which one is a good seller?

« Reply #12 on: May 07, 2022, 00:33 »
0
Several months ago I set up a shop on Etsy (inspired by someone selling in the same niche / different country and how he gets his sales - primarily from a Facebook group as he showed on his Youtube channel), complete with mockups, pricing and print paper options, but have not published it. I still need to test out prints on various paper to see how they look and then adjust options accordingly. Thing is, I actually lost interest before I even got started and with all these fees people talking about, makes my interest wane even further. Figure if these platforms are losing revenue from customers and are beginning to hit sellers to make up for it, with fees in the 'hope' of making sales, then unlikely this shop will ever see the light of day.   

ETA just went back to Etsy to look at that shop I mentioned above and it is no longer selling on Etsy! Maybe (just maybe I don't have any proof) he joined the boycott or whatever is happening there with sellers. No mention on anything on his Facebook group other than he was still selling on Etsy in March. If this is the case, hope they get some better results with their protest than what MS did.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2022, 00:48 by Pacesetter »

« Reply #13 on: May 07, 2022, 01:43 »
+2
.... I actually lost interest before I even got started and with all these fees people talking about, makes my interest wane even further. ....

for all the whinging here about agencies, folk should look at reality before complaining about fees on etsy - these sites are not agencies - you sell your product at your price & they take a small cut (10-15%). you're looking at net $3-20+/sale vs the pittance from MS agencies. FAA has potential, but there's no SEO - i make just enough (barely) to justify their annual 'pro' fee

i've sold (non-photo) items on ebay & amazon for over 20 years & these are my most profitable venues (unfortunately neither allows digital sales). the fees are reasonable for the SEO & other benefits of listing w them.
 as theremy problem w etsy (& zazzle) is the cumbersome upload/listing process so i'm looking seriously at shopify as there looks to be a bulk listing ability

« Reply #14 on: May 07, 2022, 02:07 »
+2
I just closed my Etsy account but not because of fees or lack of sales. In fact, kind of the opposite.

The fees are fine. Less than eBay, and less than agencies (up to 85%!) and then set their own prices. Even less than designer resource agencies who take about 30% but at least let you set your own price.

But the problem is, when your sales start to take off, you are faced with a new kind of problem: buyers. Some of them are wonderful, kind, understanding people, but about 10% are absolute nutcases. They don't read your listings, they mistakenly buy the wrong thing, they expect you to answer their messages immediately (even within an hour is too long for them), they don't take responsibility for their own mistakes, everything is your fault, and they are so full of anger. You do all the right things, you explain everywhere throughout the listing, in both pictures and words what this listing is actually for. But they don't read the listings!

Normally with enough time and patience, you can work through these problems, but I just had 2 in a row, and I feel like I've been hit by a sledgehammer.

The point is, you have to 'man your messaging' 24/7. The more sales you make, the more of this stuff you have to deal with.

Anyway, the reason why I've closed my shop is that I have to go away for a few months to work for my husband's business and I can't have all this drama going on in the background. I think I could have put the shop on holiday mode or something, but for now, it was just nice to close the whole thing for a while, and have some peace and quiet.

So this is what you pay the agencies for. Managing buyers.  Food for thought, everybody!



PS. I loved being on Etsy and loved 80% of the whole 'selling direct/running your own little business' thing, but it can get you down if you have a bad week.

« Last Edit: May 07, 2022, 02:23 by Annie »

« Reply #15 on: May 07, 2022, 03:00 »
0
I just closed my Etsy account but not because of fees or lack of sales. In fact, kind of the opposite.

The fees are fine. Less than eBay, and less than agencies (up to 85%!) and then set their own prices. Even less than designer resource agencies who take about 30% but at least let you set your own price.

But the problem is, when your sales start to take off, you are faced with a new kind of problem: buyers. Some of them are wonderful, kind, understanding people, but about 10% are absolute nutcases. They don't read your listings, they mistakenly buy the wrong thing, they expect you to answer their messages immediately (even within an hour is too long for them), they don't take responsibility for their own mistakes, everything is your fault, and they are so full of anger. You do all the right things, you explain everywhere throughout the listing, in both pictures and words what this listing is actually for. But they don't read the listings!

Normally with enough time and patience, you can work through these problems, but I just had 2 in a row, and I feel like I've been hit by a sledgehammer.

The point is, you have to 'man your messaging' 24/7. The more sales you make, the more of this stuff you have to deal with.

Anyway, the reason why I've closed my shop is that I have to go away for a few months to work for my husband's business and I can't have all this drama going on in the background. I think I could have put the shop on holiday mode or something, but for now, it was just nice to close the whole thing for a while, and have some peace and quiet.

So this is what you pay the agencies for. Managing buyers.  Food for thought, everybody!



PS. I loved being on Etsy and loved 80% of the whole 'selling direct/running your own little business' thing, but it can get you down if you have a bad week.

That's sad, Annie. But the customer issues you describe I've heard from many other contributors.

A microstocker we both know offers Photoshop mockups at Creative market. Customers buy that even though they don't know how to use Photoshop at all. And then they expect immediate and extensive help from the contributor....

That's exactly the reason why I haven't done anything about it yet. You don't get paid for this time.

« Reply #16 on: May 07, 2022, 03:40 »
0
.... I actually lost interest before I even got started and with all these fees people talking about, makes my interest wane even further. ....

for all the whinging here about agencies, folk should look at reality before complaining about fees on etsy - these sites are not agencies - you sell your product at your price & they take a small cut (10-15%). you're looking at net $3-20+/sale vs the pittance from MS agencies. FAA has potential, but there's no SEO - i make just enough (barely) to justify their annual 'pro' fee


If these are the fees, then I'd happily pay these. Sites need their income of course. Fees were not the initial reason why I haven't published the store anyway. Just been busy doing other things.


« Reply #17 on: May 07, 2022, 05:15 »
0
I just closed my Etsy account but not because of fees or lack of sales. In fact, kind of the opposite.

The fees are fine. Less than eBay, and less than agencies (up to 85%!) and then set their own prices. Even less than designer resource agencies who take about 30% but at least let you set your own price.

But the problem is, when your sales start to take off, you are faced with a new kind of problem: buyers. Some of them are wonderful, kind, understanding people, but about 10% are absolute nutcases. They don't read your listings, they mistakenly buy the wrong thing, they expect you to answer their messages immediately (even within an hour is too long for them), they don't take responsibility for their own mistakes, everything is your fault, and they are so full of anger. You do all the right things, you explain everywhere throughout the listing, in both pictures and words what this listing is actually for. But they don't read the listings!

Normally with enough time and patience, you can work through these problems, but I just had 2 in a row, and I feel like I've been hit by a sledgehammer.

The point is, you have to 'man your messaging' 24/7. The more sales you make, the more of this stuff you have to deal with.

Anyway, the reason why I've closed my shop is that I have to go away for a few months to work for my husband's business and I can't have all this drama going on in the background. I think I could have put the shop on holiday mode or something, but for now, it was just nice to close the whole thing for a while, and have some peace and quiet.

So this is what you pay the agencies for. Managing buyers.  Food for thought, everybody!



PS. I loved being on Etsy and loved 80% of the whole 'selling direct/running your own little business' thing, but it can get you down if you have a bad week.

That's sad, Annie. But the customer issues you describe I've heard from many other contributors.

A microstocker we both know offers Photoshop mockups at Creative market. Customers buy that even though they don't know how to use Photoshop at all. And then they expect immediate and extensive help from the contributor....

That's exactly the reason why I haven't done anything about it yet. You don't get paid for this time.

Thanks Wilm. That's so kind of you to respond. In a funny, indirect way, it actually helps to know you are not the only one with these problems.

I guess there is good and bad with all avenues that we can take with our work. We have to weigh the options, and go with the ones that we can work with.

Thanks again.

« Reply #18 on: May 07, 2022, 06:01 »
0
I just closed my Etsy account but not because of fees or lack of sales. In fact, kind of the opposite.

The fees are fine. Less than eBay, and less than agencies (up to 85%!) and then set their own prices. Even less than designer resource agencies who take about 30% but at least let you set your own price.

But the problem is, when your sales start to take off, you are faced with a new kind of problem: buyers. Some of them are wonderful, kind, understanding people, but about 10% are absolute nutcases. They don't read your listings, they mistakenly buy the wrong thing, they expect you to answer their messages immediately (even within an hour is too long for them), they don't take responsibility for their own mistakes, everything is your fault, and they are so full of anger. You do all the right things, you explain everywhere throughout the listing, in both pictures and words what this listing is actually for. But they don't read the listings!

Normally with enough time and patience, you can work through these problems, but I just had 2 in a row, and I feel like I've been hit by a sledgehammer.

The point is, you have to 'man your messaging' 24/7. The more sales you make, the more of this stuff you have to deal with.

Anyway, the reason why I've closed my shop is that I have to go away for a few months to work for my husband's business and I can't have all this drama going on in the background. I think I could have put the shop on holiday mode or something, but for now, it was just nice to close the whole thing for a while, and have some peace and quiet.

So this is what you pay the agencies for. Managing buyers.  Food for thought, everybody!



PS. I loved being on Etsy and loved 80% of the whole 'selling direct/running your own little business' thing, but it can get you down if you have a bad week.

That's sad, Annie. But the customer issues you describe I've heard from many other contributors.

A microstocker we both know offers Photoshop mockups at Creative market. Customers buy that even though they don't know how to use Photoshop at all. And then they expect immediate and extensive help from the contributor....

That's exactly the reason why I haven't done anything about it yet. You don't get paid for this time.

Thanks Wilm. That's so kind of you to respond. In a funny, indirect way, it actually helps to know you are not the only one with these problems.

I guess there is good and bad with all avenues that we can take with our work. We have to weigh the options, and go with the ones that we can work with.

Thanks again.

You're welcome, Annie!

You write that the buyers no longer read. And that's true. It's the same with the Creative Market contributor. She writes pages and pages of tutorials on how to handle the Photoshop files. But no buyer reads through that. And even if they do: if they don't know what a layer is, or a Smart Object, or a layer style, or, or... then of course it's useless.

I myself have sold something on eBay from time to time. And have always written that I do not ship to foreign countries outside the European Union (because of shipping problems, customs declarations, shipping insurance, etc.). Of course, then someone who didn't read that buys it and you start all over again.

Time is Cash, Time is Money! I can really understand your decision and would have done the same for sure.

The reading thing is also a problem in microstock. Hardly anyone reads the license terms. We lose a lot of money because many licenses that should have been extended are bought as standard licenses. And these are then often enough used illegally by POD stores.

« Reply #19 on: May 07, 2022, 07:35 »
0


You're welcome, Annie!

You write that the buyers no longer read. And that's true. It's the same with the Creative Market contributor. She writes pages and pages of tutorials on how to handle the Photoshop files. But no buyer reads through that. And even if they do: if they don't know what a layer is, or a Smart Object, or a layer style, or, or... then of course it's useless.

I myself have sold something on eBay from time to time. And have always written that I do not ship to foreign countries outside the European Union (because of shipping problems, customs declarations, shipping insurance, etc.). Of course, then someone who didn't read that buys it and you start all over again.

Time is Cash, Time is Money! I can really understand your decision and would have done the same for sure.

The reading thing is also a problem in microstock. Hardly anyone reads the license terms. We lose a lot of money because many licenses that should have been extended are bought as standard licenses. And these are then often enough used illegally by POD stores.

Ah, I just realised who the contributor is. A very talented lady who is a graphic designer, and a very successful microstocker..

Yes, I agree with what you said above. I may go back to Etsy later, but for now its nice to have a 'sanity' break.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2022, 07:37 by Annie »

« Reply #20 on: May 07, 2022, 13:08 »
+1
....
But the problem is, when your sales start to take off, you are faced with a new kind of problem: buyers. Some of them are wonderful, kind, understanding people, but about 10% are absolute nutcases. They don't read your listings, they mistakenly buy the wrong thing, they expect you to answer their messages immediately (even within an hour is too long for them), they don't take responsibility for their own mistakes, everything is your fault, and they are so full of anger. You do all the right things, you explain everywhere throughout the listing, in both pictures and words what this listing is actually for. But they don't read the listings!...

all true, but that's the case with ebay & amazon and any kind of independent site - one reason for agencies taking a cut is they have to deal with those clowns

« Reply #21 on: May 07, 2022, 13:31 »
+1


You're welcome, Annie!

You write that the buyers no longer read. And that's true. It's the same with the Creative Market contributor. She writes pages and pages of tutorials on how to handle the Photoshop files. But no buyer reads through that. And even if they do: if they don't know what a layer is, or a Smart Object, or a layer style, or, or... then of course it's useless.

I myself have sold something on eBay from time to time. And have always written that I do not ship to foreign countries outside the European Union (because of shipping problems, customs declarations, shipping insurance, etc.). Of course, then someone who didn't read that buys it and you start all over again.

Time is Cash, Time is Money! I can really understand your decision and would have done the same for sure.

The reading thing is also a problem in microstock. Hardly anyone reads the license terms. We lose a lot of money because many licenses that should have been extended are bought as standard licenses. And these are then often enough used illegally by POD stores.

Ah, I just realised who the contributor is. A very talented lady who is a graphic designer, and a very successful microstocker..

Yes, I agree with what you said above. I may go back to Etsy later, but for now its nice to have a 'sanity' break.

Yes, Annie, you know her!  :)

« Reply #22 on: May 07, 2022, 17:03 »
+1
If people are interested in designer resource agencies, the main 3 that I know of are: Creative Market, Design Bundles, and The Hungry JPeg. You have to apply to get in and some are fussy, so do some research beforehand so you know what they want. I used to have a list of some smaller ones, but I have to go and find it.

You can sell things like photography, backgrounds, styled product mockups (things like frames), styled stock photos (eg. blog hero headers for websites, etc), Illustrations, Patterns, Textures, Clip Art, Lightroom Presets, All sorts of Templates (using Canva, Powerpoint, Google Slides), Printables, Fonts, 3d designs, all sorts of overlays (eg things like bokeh lights, filters, shadows, lens flares, etc).

Straight out photography may not sell very well, but I have sold things like sky replacement bundles, as an example, and lots of backgrounds and backdrop shots. You have to think of the type of photography that graphic designers may need. People who create fonts may need photography backgrounds to showcase their work. 


I haven't checked these out, they are just some articles I quickly found:


https://www.creativebloq.com/career/sell-design-online-912746

https://www.techtricksworld.com/best-sites-like-creative-market/


« Last Edit: May 07, 2022, 18:15 by Annie »

PaulieWalnuts

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« Reply #23 on: May 07, 2022, 22:28 »
+3
My wife has been studying jewellery vendors on Etsy and has come across others who sell photo prints there. Some also sell digital downloads for around $2-$3 which can be used for printing photo backgrounds for food photography. I suppose that $2-$3 is better than 10 cents.

Art and print buyers are more willing to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars for the right printed photo. You should reconsider your approach otherwise art will just be a repeat of what micro did to stock photography. I'd rather sell one print for $50 than 50 for $1.

Check out using drop shipping companies like Bay Photo, WHCC, or Circle Graphics.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2022, 22:44 by PaulieWalnuts »

PaulieWalnuts

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« Reply #24 on: May 07, 2022, 22:44 »
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I just closed my Etsy account but not because of fees or lack of sales. In fact, kind of the opposite.

The fees are fine. Less than eBay, and less than agencies (up to 85%!) and then set their own prices. Even less than designer resource agencies who take about 30% but at least let you set your own price.

But the problem is, when your sales start to take off, you are faced with a new kind of problem: buyers. Some of them are wonderful, kind, understanding people, but about 10% are absolute nutcases. They don't read your listings, they mistakenly buy the wrong thing, they expect you to answer their messages immediately (even within an hour is too long for them), they don't take responsibility for their own mistakes, everything is your fault, and they are so full of anger. You do all the right things, you explain everywhere throughout the listing, in both pictures and words what this listing is actually for. But they don't read the listings!

Normally with enough time and patience, you can work through these problems, but I just had 2 in a row, and I feel like I've been hit by a sledgehammer.

The point is, you have to 'man your messaging' 24/7. The more sales you make, the more of this stuff you have to deal with.

Anyway, the reason why I've closed my shop is that I have to go away for a few months to work for my husband's business and I can't have all this drama going on in the background. I think I could have put the shop on holiday mode or something, but for now, it was just nice to close the whole thing for a while, and have some peace and quiet.

So this is what you pay the agencies for. Managing buyers.  Food for thought, everybody!



PS. I loved being on Etsy and loved 80% of the whole 'selling direct/running your own little business' thing, but it can get you down if you have a bad week.

This is totally accurate. Oddly, for years I only had an occasional problematic client. This year I've had more problems than the past ten years combined. One buyer angrily messaged me that I sent him the wrong size print and the quality was horrible. After dozens of messages back and forth, turns out he received the exact size he ordered. And he based judging the quality of the print while it was still wrapped in plastic for shipping. I told him to take the print out of the plastic and he responded that it looked amazing. I just about lost my mind dealing with this person. This is one reason I like FineArtAmerica. They handle most of the customer service BS.

The fees are starting to get a bit out of control though. I realize Etsy has lower fees than Amazon but they're definitely slowly working on increasing fees to catch up with them. And now with inflation, profits are getting squeezed.




 

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