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Poll

How do you sell your stock images direct?

Ktools store
9 (8.3%)
avidimages
3 (2.8%)
photoshelter
7 (6.4%)
clustershot
7 (6.4%)
something else...
23 (21.1%)
I don't and don't see the point
10 (9.2%)
I wish I did
50 (45.9%)

Total Members Voted: 98

Author Topic: Places and ways to sell your images direct  (Read 27968 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

« on: February 27, 2011, 17:15 »
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There has been a fair bit discussin lately about selling images yourself so I thought I'd try and make a list of all the places to do that.

For those that are already on the 'sell yourself' train.. where are you selling?

Did I miss anywhere?

edit: I am thinking of sites that cater directly to those who want to sell stock photography.  There are probably hundreds of sites that allow you to sell prints or the odd 'digital download' - those are not what I'm after.  I am looking for a list of strictly stock photography selling platforms.

Here is some discussion searches for selling yourself
photoshelter
ktools
clustershot
avidimages
« Last Edit: February 28, 2011, 03:26 by leaf »


« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2011, 17:57 »
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I'm in the "wish I did" camp. I would have to sell different stuff and could only sell RM. I have a small portfolio on Alamy and have done an RM deal for some photos for a book that was private, but otherwise it's IS only.

The decision to build a separate portfolio for RM was one I put aside in 2008 as it seemed not to be worth the effort given how things were going at IS. I'm now thinking about it again, but will probably spend time putting some editorial only work onto IS first and then see.

« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2011, 18:12 »
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2 people said something else.... What is that something else software?

« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2011, 18:58 »
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You didn't say just stock images so went with
something else:
Art fairs
Galleries
Gift stores
Friends and relatives
Classic car shows
Golf courses

nruboc

« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2011, 19:11 »
0
2 people said something else.... What is that something else software?

Mine is custom made

« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2011, 20:20 »
0
Never used it, but looks good:
http://ifp3.com/

« Reply #6 on: February 27, 2011, 21:47 »
0
Never used it, but looks good:
http://ifp3.com/


240.-U$ per year is on the expensive side.

« Reply #7 on: February 27, 2011, 22:10 »
0
Leaf, you may add Smugmug and Zenfolio to the list.

I still have my Clustershot Pro account, and wait to see what the new owners will make of it. But as I try to concentrate my efforts towards macro / RM / editorial, the only hosting solution that seems to fit my needs (for now) is Photoshelter which allows RM licenses with a price calculator. I particularly like Photoshelter's ability to be seamlessly integrated to an existing website / blog, and also the virtual agencies that could be used to collaborate with other photographers and drive more traffic to the group. Because whatever software or hosting solution is chosen, the main challenge is still to drive traffic and buyers to our websites.

« Reply #8 on: February 28, 2011, 01:07 »
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I am at www.clikpic.com.  They offer the possibility for selling your photos, but so far, I did not choose that formula, so I cannot say if it works well or not.  I just like them because it is very easy to add images.

« Reply #9 on: February 28, 2011, 09:46 »
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http://www.xpoze.org/
http://www.pixaria.com/
http://cmsaccount.com/
http://www.stockboxphoto.com/
http://www.stockphotoscript.com/
http://www.eodessa.com/
http://www.photographyshoppingcart.com/
http://www.photodeck.com/

These were in my bookmark folder when I was doing my research. I think a lot of them got eliminated because they didn't do vectors or some other reason, so I didn't do much investigation into them. I went with Ktools, but that doesn't mean another solution isn't better.

« Reply #10 on: February 28, 2011, 15:06 »
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I bought stockphotoscript about 2 years ago, it was very basic including only uploading 1 image at a time, didnt bother with it. looking at the page it doesnt seemed to have changed.

I have slowly started looking around at them again, noticed comments on pixaria forum mentioning requests that hadnt been brought into v3, including having different sizes, so that has been ruled out for me.

« Reply #11 on: February 28, 2011, 16:49 »
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Never used it, but looks good:
http://ifp3.com/

240.-U$ per year is on the expensive side.

One reason I never used it. :D

« Reply #12 on: February 28, 2011, 17:03 »
0
I used to have a KTools site, but maintaining it and marketing it properly was just too time consuming. It was live for almost 3 years until I finally took it down, earlier this year. The sales I made through the KTools set-up barely made up for hosting costs of a few Gigs of images, and I sold more images in direct sales than through that website. I haven't given up on the idea just yet, though, but, currently, it's a very low priority.

RacePhoto

« Reply #13 on: February 28, 2011, 18:49 »
0
I used to have a KTools site, but maintaining it and marketing it properly was just too time consuming. It was live for almost 3 years until I finally took it down, earlier this year. The sales I made through the KTools set-up barely made up for hosting costs of a few Gigs of images, and I sold more images in direct sales than through that website. I haven't given up on the idea just yet, though, but, currently, it's a very low priority.

Which should bring up the next question. Is anyone having success selling on their own site? It's fine to have one, but does it make anything?

« Reply #14 on: February 28, 2011, 21:30 »
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Race,
   Like anything else you've got to spend money and time to drive folks to your own site. I sell only occasionally from my site because I devote little resources to promote it. I get maybe one inquiry a month regarding a specific image and one sale every two or three inquiries. It's all Google-search-engine-driven searches, not like they're looking specifically for me. As humbling as that is. I sell a CD on my site of 200+ antique frame images in medium res jpgs for $39. That sells maybe 2-3 per year as a result of a Google search on "antique frames" or some such key word. Other than that it is pretty much the odd image sale here and there with one or two scam buyer attempts thrown in.

« Reply #15 on: February 28, 2011, 22:06 »
0
flickr. i've had buyers coming direct from google image searches over my website

RacePhoto

« Reply #16 on: February 28, 2011, 23:31 »
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louoates,

That wasn't a negative it was a question.

There are some people with their own sites that appear very well done, which might make sales, I don't know. There are also some plane Jane sites with specific material, that might make money too. I've seen people who tried and dropped their sites and stuck with the agencies doing all the marketing work.

I'm wondering about how much it takes to cover expenses and then make a profit?

I still have my niche market ideas, but don't want to make it full time job dong promotion so I can make $100 a year. Not that I expect to get rich and retire either. Just wondering what people have found who have tried it.

« Reply #17 on: March 01, 2011, 09:31 »
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I'm still figuring out what would be the most interesting option. Stockboxphoto seemed like an interesting option, but very expensive. I looked a little bit further into it, and for me it's not an option anymoreanymore.

You can't use stockboxphoto on a server that has php 5.3 or higher, it just won't work, because Zendoptimizer is not working with php 5.3. I was intrested in the entreprise version, not that I want to have an entreprise, but with that version it's possible to have your images on Amazon and to have the software on your own site. When you want to put a lot of images on your store, you definetely need space. And with my provider every 500mb extra above the 2gb I have, will cost me 24 euro's a year extra. I think 500mb is nothing, so that will cost me a lot. With the entreprise version you're provider also needs to have ImagMagick to have installed.

For now I'm happy with my provider, so no Stockboxphoto for me

Also looking into options like Oscommerce. You can change a lot on an OScommerce site, but you have to know how to do it. . I did that before, so maybe I'm going to try that one. See if it will work. But I still don't know If the download section can be made safe enough (of course it can work if you spent a lot of money hiring a pro, but I want to keep my budgets low for now)

« Reply #18 on: March 01, 2011, 16:58 »
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i use smugmug pro

there's also the open source GALLERY2 which is relatively easy to install and maintain, but does require some php knowledge;  it has excellent support onlineif you do encounter problems.

i ran a GALLERY2 site for about a year, but my hosting company was somehow incompatible with a GALLERY2 upgrade and i decicded not to invest the time debugging, so switched to smugmug

s

« Reply #19 on: March 04, 2011, 13:08 »
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Can you sell vectors in these places? I guess this isnt an option if you are an exclusive artist to a microstock bank, right?

« Reply #20 on: March 04, 2011, 13:29 »
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I've been selling through various stock sites plus my own custom built stock site for the past 3 years, it's all automated so I don't have to lift a finger once uploaded :) Working on an extended marketplace project at the moment hopefully should be ready to unleash in a couple of months.

Len

« Reply #21 on: March 12, 2011, 17:40 »
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I am also on Sumgmug!

« Reply #22 on: May 17, 2011, 08:21 »
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I wanted to throw in my 2 cents about selling photos online and all the stuff I have learned over the past 7 years.

My Story:
Before selling online all the prints my wife sold were done through order forms given to bride/groom in post wedding meetings. Sales that way were not the greatest, no one hardly ever sent in order forms for any additional prints. I was already making websites back then but I wanted a solution already built so I wouldn't have to pull time from my original job to work on it, that is when I ended up purchasing photostore. I purchased photostore version 2.8.3 about 6 years ago. We started using photostore and immediately print sales started to take off. The cost of the store back then was $299 just for the store alone. I paid around $360 for the store and no-branding add-on. The store paid for itself in one wedding event being posted online. I liked the store so much, that I started making add-ons for it, and Jon eventually hired me full time, and I have been working there ever since. I am not here to advertise one or the other or which one you should purchase. I just want to talk about my experience in selling.

What people sell (break this into three categories):
Events - If you are selling event photos, you will most likely make money having your own store online.
Agency - These do fairly well if you have a lot of printing agencies needing your work. Agency is kind of a broad term covering everything from new papers to businesses.
Stock - This is a very tough, and it will require a lot of dedication from you to promote and generate traffic to your site to get sales.

Event sales do the best, I have seen people selling over $40k - $50k in print sales a year with their event photography. Kids sports seems to be a real money maker, behind that I would say racing (bikes, cars, marathons, etc..). Those even out sell most wedding, gatherings type of events. So if you are doing event type photography and you are looking to open your own store and sell online you should! Remember to advertise at the event so everyone there knows where to go to order prints. Example of this would be like my wife handing out business cards with website address on it to all guest at the weddings she photographed.

Stock sales is a tough market, there is a lot of competition for stock photo sales. However don't let this discourage you, I have seen people just happy to have their own site to display their work and then link it to all the other places they may sell (shutterstock, istockphoto, and other similar to that). Overall to sell stock it will require a lot of dedication from you to promote your work. I see a lot of stock guys team up with other photographers to kind of create their own co-op stock or microstock sites where they all upload photos and sell them. I seen others create blogs, forums, and tie them all together with their stores.

Agency sales are not bad if you have a good group of businesses that depend on your work. I don't see this as often as the stock or event guys, but there are people that use online stores to grant access to agencies they sell to. An example would be like selling photos to multiple news paper agencies  (which seems to be the most common). Most of the people I see doing agency type of sales usually allow the agencies to download as much as they want and then bill them for it at a later date (like a subscription).

There is kind of a fourth category but it is for free photos. I seen people use the store just to give away photos. Example a person buying a store and running the site to share photos with their family/friends. I also seen this at a city/town level where the city or town will share photos.

« Reply #23 on: May 17, 2011, 09:36 »
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Interesting story, Jeff. Thanks for sharing it. It makes me wish I was an event photographer. Actually, I take that back. I'm pretty sure I wouldn't enjoy that.  ;D

lisafx

« Reply #24 on: May 17, 2011, 11:49 »
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Interesting story, Jeff. Thanks for sharing it. It makes me wish I was an event photographer. Actually, I take that back. I'm pretty sure I wouldn't enjoy that.  ;D

Agreed on both counts :)

Very interesting to hear your background, Jeff.  Thanks for sharing the different ways Ktools can be used.

I am very happy with the way my site is set up, and its look.  Haven't had a lot of sales yet, but the ones I have had went very smoothly. 

I agree wholeheartedly about the need to market.  I have about 2/3 my portfolio on the Ktools site now and haven't started a marketing initiative yet.  Even without marketing, site traffic is pretty steady, but sales are not.  I am hoping that once I have time to get serious about marketing things will pick up :)


 

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