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Author Topic: What happens if I stop uploading for awhile?  (Read 5560 times)

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« on: March 17, 2011, 10:51 »
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I have been uploading about  30 images a week  to microstock sites for the past 2+ years.  My sales have shown a nice linear growth over that whole time.   The question I have.... is what would happen if I stopped for a month or so?   Would the sales stay flat at my current level?  Would they slowly drop?  Would they drop quickly?

I have heard lots of microstockers say you have to "keep feeding the monster"!

Just curious?


traveler1116

« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2011, 11:01 »
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Depends on the site.

« Reply #2 on: March 17, 2011, 11:11 »
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Depends on your stuff.

« Reply #3 on: March 17, 2011, 11:34 »
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The Earth's core will freeze and it will start raining exploding hamsters. Just a guess, but I'd say not much will happen other than your portfolio will stop growing.  ;D

lisafx

« Reply #4 on: March 17, 2011, 11:41 »
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I don't think much will happen after a month either.  If you went six months or a year you would probably see a decrease in earnings. 

« Reply #5 on: March 17, 2011, 11:43 »
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I've been at this microstock a few years now, and what I notice when I stop uploading for any period of time, is that I see my sales start to drop. By period of time, I mean that I stopped uploading for at least a month...just busy with other things here in the studio. Once I started uploading again, the sales seemed to return to their normal level.

LSD72

  • My Bologna has a first name...
« Reply #6 on: March 17, 2011, 11:45 »
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The Earth's core will freeze and it will start raining exploding hamsters. Just a guess, but I'd say not much will happen other than your portfolio will stop growing.  ;D

Oh I hope not. We just had our new Hamster for 3 weeks now and I am getting ready to train her as a Stock Model. Dont need her exploding on me! Keep uploading for Gigits sake!

« Reply #7 on: March 17, 2011, 12:18 »
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Oh I hope not. We just had our new Hamster for 3 weeks now and I am getting ready to train her as a Stock Model. Dont need her exploding on me! Keep uploading for Gigits sake!
Just keep your hamster hydrated that way he won't evaporate and rain down as the exploding kind.  ;)

Back to the topic, I have periodically stopped uploading as well for several months at a time and haven't seen a significant decline. Nothing that couldn't be explained as normal ebb and flow.

grp_photo

« Reply #8 on: March 17, 2011, 13:19 »
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Depends on many things.

« Reply #9 on: March 17, 2011, 20:59 »
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Hi bobkeenan,

 I think people are correct about the content but I can say that with the exception of Istock ( because of their upload limits ) I haven't uploaded to Micro in a couple of years and I am having my biggest month ever right now at Fotolia. My Shutterstock has stayed consistent with the exception of my first three months uploads which were big then they settled and have stayed the same for two years now. Same at Dreamstime the shelf life in Microstock seems to have much longer legs than I ever gave it credit for.

best,
Jonathan

PaulieWalnuts

  • On the Wrong Side of the Business
« Reply #10 on: March 17, 2011, 23:12 »
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I have been uploading about  30 images a week  to microstock sites for the past 2+ years.  My sales have shown a nice linear growth over that whole time.   The question I have.... is what would happen if I stopped for a month or so?   Would the sales stay flat at my current level?  Would they slowly drop?  Would they drop quickly?

I have heard lots of microstockers say you have to "keep feeding the monster"!

Just curious?

Ask Charlie Sheen.

caveman

  • Photography and Design Nut
« Reply #11 on: March 18, 2011, 05:41 »
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That's a lot of images, do you make much income from that?

« Reply #12 on: March 18, 2011, 06:48 »
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Hi bobkeenan,

 I think people are correct about the content but I can say that with the exception of Istock ( because of their upload limits ) I haven't uploaded to Micro in a couple of years and I am having my biggest month ever right now at Fotolia. My Shutterstock has stayed consistent with the exception of my first three months uploads which were big then they settled and have stayed the same for two years now. Same at Dreamstime the shelf life in Microstock seems to have much longer legs than I ever gave it credit for.

best,
Jonathan

Yeah i think the shelf life of a top seller is pretty long. On the sites that use sales as a factor in best match it becomes pretty hard to knock the top sellers down into the second page of results. They will keep on selling strong until the search algorithm is changed.

« Reply #13 on: March 18, 2011, 09:09 »
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I didn't upload a single image since last August, and my sales didn't drop. I guess it's because I don't shoot business people, and other typically stock stuff.

« Reply #14 on: March 18, 2011, 12:57 »
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Hi Caveman,

 I am making about 6K a month with 10 agencies. About 5K of that comes from Shutterstock, Istock, Fotolia and Dreamstime. The rest from the balance of the smaller agencies. I still have about 2,000 images to upload to Istock but that will take a bit of time at 30 a week. They have the toughest accept rate but the issues are mostly technical mistakes on my part so we will reload the rejects once we are done with all the originals first.
 About 25% get rejected at Istock but they are watching closely and the errors are either their misunderstanding or my missing a logo. I have had a lot of images rejected at Istock because we made up name tags for our doctors and business people and the editors are not aware that they are false so they push them back. Istock has been very friendly about the issue and just told me to re upload with an explanation. Eventually when we run out of new work we will retouch and upload the rejects.

Cheers,
Jonathan

caveman

  • Photography and Design Nut
« Reply #15 on: March 19, 2011, 05:23 »
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Wow, 6k a month is nice. Think I must start uploading more!

SNP

  • Canadian Photographer
« Reply #16 on: March 19, 2011, 12:04 »
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Hi Caveman,

 I am making about 6K a month with 10 agencies. About 5K of that comes from Shutterstock, Istock, Fotolia and Dreamstime. The rest from the balance of the smaller agencies. I still have about 2,000 images to upload to Istock but that will take a bit of time at 30 a week. They have the toughest accept rate but the issues are mostly technical mistakes on my part so we will reload the rejects once we are done with all the originals first.
 About 25% get rejected at Istock but they are watching closely and the errors are either their misunderstanding or my missing a logo. I have had a lot of images rejected at Istock because we made up name tags for our doctors and business people and the editors are not aware that they are false so they push them back. Istock has been very friendly about the issue and just told me to re upload with an explanation. Eventually when we run out of new work we will retouch and upload the rejects.

Cheers,
Jonathan

Hi Jonathan - as an aside, I don't believe you're allowed to create even false name tags. it's not that inspectors don't realize they're fake. I don't think they'll accept them even knowing they're made up. I could be wrong, but I contacted iStock about this last year and that's what I was told. maybe it's different now.


« Reply #17 on: March 19, 2011, 12:37 »
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...I am having my biggest month ever right now at Fotolia...
My impression is that a few weeks ago FT changed its best match to favor older images. Such changes are one of the things which makes it difficult to guess what the effect of stopping submitting will be.

« Reply #18 on: March 19, 2011, 13:33 »
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Hi SNP,

 Thank you for the insight. I will contact them soon and follow up on this issue. It seems funny to not accept such an image as the tag really adds a sense of reality to the shots. I'll let you know what they say.

 Hi michaeldb,

Also very helpful information. I have seen big growth there in the past two months and was wondering why the spike in sales. Your reply is a big help.

Best,
Jonathan

« Reply #19 on: March 19, 2011, 13:48 »
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There was a big thread about name tags, documents, etc., anything with a name, fake or not.  They do throw a fit for whatever reason, so it isn't that they didn't understand it.  You can probably find the thread by searching a bit.

« Reply #20 on: March 19, 2011, 16:46 »
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Thanks Sean that is a big help.

I must remember to stay away from such props in the future when producing for Microstock and I will do some searching to find the link you mentioned.

Best,
Jonathan

« Reply #21 on: March 19, 2011, 17:41 »
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You're unlikely to see any effect in a month or so __ but nonetheless you will inevitably be earning less in future than you might have done if you kept working & uploading. 

According to my SS statistics my 'earnings from new content' in the last 3 months accounted for about 6% of total earnings over the same period. Over 6 months it is 15% (but I had a couple of unusually successful shoots in there). I've been on SS for about 6 years and uploading about 50 images per month on average.

I reckon on one month's work being worth about 2% to my earnings, so it is imperceptibly small with the seasonal variation. I've taken a month off quite often. The bad news is that I know it will cost me that same 2% every month onwards for years to come.

« Reply #22 on: March 20, 2011, 15:43 »
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That's a lot of images, do you make much income from that?

While I submit about 30/wk only about 5-25 make it.    The toughest are istock and fotolia.   The easiest are Canstock and 123rf.   My portfolios run from about a low of 300 (istock) to 1300 (canstock).   Shutterstock is in the middle with about 800 images.   I get about 50% of my sales there.   The next closest is Istock and Dreamstime @ 15% each.    This past month  I made $235 total.   I have seen photographers with smaller portfolios make much more money than this.......So I can tell I have to improve not only my acceptance rate but also the commercial quality of my images.

The good news is that I am having fun and I think I can, within a few years, get to my goal of about  $800/month.


 

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