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Author Topic: Thinking of joining SS  (Read 10904 times)

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« on: July 23, 2016, 15:46 »
0
Hi All.  I've been with iS since about 2008 and last week I deleted all my images and asked to drop exclusivity.  Sales dropping dramatically there for me and new rules prompted me to try some new places.
I'm thinking of joining SS but don't know anything about the company.
I know these answers can vary from person to person but...
Compared to iS, how are sales in SS?  Any advice like things to avoid or things to do at SS?
Thanks for reading.


« Reply #1 on: July 24, 2016, 01:15 »
+19
SS were great but I fear they are going the same way as istock in the long term.  Since they lowered the standard to get in and started accepting almost everything, the number of images on the sites has gone crazy and its obviously going to be harder to make money with so much competition.  I've lost motivation to upload to SS, I really hope they don't go the same way as istock but putting in many hours of work when the future isn't looking promising doesn't get me motivated.

« Reply #2 on: July 24, 2016, 06:15 »
+5
The new contributors selling nothing on shutterstock. Im started in 2012 and i sell the old pictures 2012-2015. I working hard but nobody buy the newest images from 2016.
Maybe my istock is going up a little bit. Shutterstock going down.
« Last Edit: July 24, 2016, 06:17 by Groman »

« Reply #3 on: July 24, 2016, 06:59 »
+3
The new contributors selling nothing on shutterstock. Im started in 2012 and i sell the old pictures 2012-2015. I working hard but nobody buy the newest images from 2016.
Maybe my istock is going up a little bit. Shutterstock going down.
Not my experience too much generalisation based on own sales on here

« Reply #4 on: July 24, 2016, 07:51 »
+6
Bluemoon, deleting entire IS portfolio was really stupid move !
Why???
Sorry, but are you from Yesterday?

« Reply #5 on: July 24, 2016, 11:59 »
+1
why???
you would have been better off as exclusive with istock, really.
ok, so somehow miraculously ss has 105.7 to the right column here..
but istock exclusive has 207.1

plus the comments above by sharpshot groman enstocker
and the thread re new images not sticking to the wall
as well as experienced contributors complaining about shortfalls of 50% and more
must surely not be the impetus to get you to leave istock.

it cost you nothing to keep your port with istock
why waste the energy going to ss where things are really getting totally scr*wedup!!!

so sorry to hear this!
« Last Edit: July 24, 2016, 12:01 by etudiante_rapide »

« Reply #6 on: July 24, 2016, 12:31 »
+4
I also dont understand why you deleted your whole portfolio. The files were already uploaded, just leave them there and add them additionally to shutterstock, fotolia, dreamstime and a few others.

If you have a series or theme that you want to upload exclusively to an agency like stocksy, getty,alamy,fotolia or that you want to place only on macro sites like offset or stock food, then yes, I would delete those.

But the whole point of being non exclusive is to work with many different agencies. No agency is perfect, they all have their ups and downs.

However, if you have a mix of exclusive and non exclusive content and maybe also add video or illustrations to the mix, you can do really well and will sleep a lot better.

But istock is still one of the biggest agencies, so to exclude them completely when you have already uploaded everything, seems extreme to me.

I dont upload much to istock now, because I am non exclusive, but older content, or test shots that also go to deposit photos etc..I also send them to istock.

I currently earn less than 100 dollars now with over 4000 files, but I dont have to do anything for it, so why not. It would probably be more if I uploaded regularly, but I only have files for them every few months. It would probably be 400-600 dollars with regular uploads. And some people still make 1500 as non exclusive.

It wont be your first agency to work with, but with all the changes in the industry, you never know what will happen. Fotolia had a very shoddy reputation and now with Adobe they are cleaning up their act, improving the site and sales etcOther agencies with a great reputation like pond5 suddenly fall from grace with new owners.
« Last Edit: July 24, 2016, 13:21 by cobalt »

« Reply #7 on: July 24, 2016, 12:58 »
+4
I can see why people want to remove their portfolio from istock when going non-exclusive.  Getting less than 20% is an insult.  Not being able to remove images could cause problems.  The amount of money you can make there as a non-exclusive isn't worth it.  I don't regret removing all my best images and leaving them the dross.  It motivated me to work harder with Alamy and they have replaced any earnings I lost from istock.

« Reply #8 on: July 24, 2016, 13:25 »
0
maybe Locke can chime in, he had to take a similar route

Rose Tinted Glasses

« Reply #9 on: July 24, 2016, 13:51 »
+2
maybe Locke can chime in, he had to take a similar route

Unfortunately Locke's next moves were reactionary, whereas the OP's move were action oriented so it's not remotely the same route at all.

Rose Tinted Glasses

« Reply #10 on: July 24, 2016, 13:56 »
+1
why???
you would have been better off as exclusive with istock, really.
ok, so somehow miraculously ss has 105.7 to the right column here..
but istock exclusive has 207.1



Nobody knows this for fact as individual results will vary based on your subject matter, abilities, keywords, and good old dumb luck of SEO to find the one image that is yours among the kazillions that are all up and done to death in every way in every possible shooting style/subject.

That said, IS Exclusive keeps providing well for me, even if overall sales have gone down over the last few years, but I am also getting this is happening across the board which only makes sense due to current market conditions.
« Last Edit: July 24, 2016, 14:01 by Rose Tinted Glasses »

« Reply #11 on: July 24, 2016, 14:36 »
+6
I'm a diamond level footage contributor at iStock. I didn't delete my iStock portfolio, but at the end of June I gave my notice that I was dropping iStock exclusivity after being exclusive for over 9 years. Working hard to get everything ready to start selling on Shutterstock and several other sites.


« Reply #12 on: July 24, 2016, 14:47 »
0
I only can say that joining SS is a no brainer. Also belueving that Istock exclusives makes standard more is questionable. Most SS contributors that reports earnings here use their time to submit also to other agencies while Istock exclusives only to istock. This means that istock exclusives have possibility to add mote images. Istock exclusives should be only compared to people that submit only to SS. Also SS edit photos while istock accepts everything. SS shows also strong numbers regarding payouts to contributors.

« Reply #13 on: July 24, 2016, 16:33 »
0
why???
you would have been better off as exclusive with istock, really.
ok, so somehow miraculously ss has 105.7 to the right column here..
but istock exclusive has 207.1



Nobody knows this for fact as individual results will vary based on your subject matter, abilities, keywords, and good old dumb luck of SEO to find the one image that is yours among the kazillions that are all up and done to death in every way in every possible shooting style/subject.

That said, IS Exclusive keeps providing well for me, even if overall sales have gone down over the last few years, but I am also getting this is happening across the board which only makes sense due to current market conditions.

good point. i think it is good to all give varying opinion so the OP can decide whether or not it is a good idea.
my point was that it is not as if ss is doing well with established contributors and there is a long history of good faith with us. then no doubt, it would be a good time to skip boat.
but this is not the ss of the old time which deserves to still be #1.
this is an ss that is riddled with a lot of questionable deeds and yes, to a certain
section of established contributors have been seen dropping earnings even falling off a cliff into
a crevice.

i have never been an istock exclusive. but i have never seen anyone complain as an exclusive
for not making good money there. 
i am sure mr. locke made a lot more money there as an exclusive then he is now with ss
even though he did make a stellar earning in his initial days with ss
which he himself reported to us here...
but i just don't think he is making as much as he did as an istock exclusive.

unless he is in some special deal with ss like yuri with whatever whoever...
this is my guess. or else he would not have pushed for stocksy so hard.
just a feeling... as a business man to another.

Rose Tinted Glasses

« Reply #14 on: July 24, 2016, 18:31 »
+2
why???
you would have been better off as exclusive with istock, really.
ok, so somehow miraculously ss has 105.7 to the right column here..
but istock exclusive has 207.1



Nobody knows this for fact as individual results will vary based on your subject matter, abilities, keywords, and good old dumb luck of SEO to find the one image that is yours among the kazillions that are all up and done to death in every way in every possible shooting style/subject.

That said, IS Exclusive keeps providing well for me, even if overall sales have gone down over the last few years, but I am also getting this is happening across the board which only makes sense due to current market conditions.

good point. i think it is good to all give varying opinion so the OP can decide whether or not it is a good idea.
my point was that it is not as if ss is doing well with established contributors and there is a long history of good faith with us. then no doubt, it would be a good time to skip boat.
but this is not the ss of the old time which deserves to still be #1.
this is an ss that is riddled with a lot of questionable deeds and yes, to a certain
section of established contributors have been seen dropping earnings even falling off a cliff into
a crevice.

i have never been an istock exclusive. but i have never seen anyone complain as an exclusive
for not making good money there. 
i am sure mr. locke made a lot more money there as an exclusive then he is now with ss
even though he did make a stellar earning in his initial days with ss
which he himself reported to us here...
but i just don't think he is making as much as he did as an istock exclusive.

unless he is in some special deal with ss like yuri with whatever whoever...
this is my guess. or else he would not have pushed for stocksy so hard.
just a feeling... as a business man to another.

I don't think anyone is making what they were making as an IS Exclusive circa when SJL got the boot regardless if they have branched out or remained exclusive. I also don't think too many have kept the numbers up to what they were in that era of a few years ago.

As for what he makes, it's really nobody's business at all. I am pretty sure he will do fine as he knows his game and how to make it happen, and the end result is he will work hard to keep it going, similar to anyone who does this for a full time gig and knows what they are doing. My bet is he will do more than fine for one reason, he works it, works it, works it. It's the only way to make it in this industry.

SJL just like anyone will have to accept and adapt to the industry and all the crap it throws at you.


« Reply #15 on: July 24, 2016, 19:35 »
0
The new contributors selling nothing on shutterstock. Im started in 2012 and i sell the old pictures 2012-2015. I working hard but nobody buy the newest images from 2016.
Maybe my istock is going up a little bit. Shutterstock going down.
Not my experience too much generalisation based on own sales on here

In another thread, people are complaining about SS favoring new contributors.

« Reply #16 on: July 24, 2016, 20:11 »
+2

In another thread, people are complaining about SS favoring new contributors.

Sure does seem to be true. Why else would an experienced contributor's newest images die on the vine as soon as they're uploaded to SS?


« Reply #17 on: July 24, 2016, 20:14 »
+2

In another thread, people are complaining about SS favoring new contributors.

Sure does seem to be true. Why else would an experienced contributor's newest images die on the vine as soon as they're uploaded to SS?

I believe that's true as well. I'm getting less number of downloads after reaching top tier. Pathetic.

ShadySue

  • There is a crack in everything
« Reply #18 on: July 24, 2016, 20:36 »
0
i have never been an istock exclusive. but i have never seen anyone complain as an exclusive for not making good money there. 

Lots of us are earning much less since the introduction of subs, and even for a while before that when they just kept jumping from pillar to post with no plan. I'm down c40% on e.g. 2012, and I've read other exclusives being >60% down.

« Reply #19 on: July 24, 2016, 21:32 »
0
The new contributors selling nothing on shutterstock. Im started in 2012 and i sell the old pictures 2012-2015. I working hard but nobody buy the newest images from 2016.
Maybe my istock is going up a little bit. Shutterstock going down.
Not my experience too much generalisation based on own sales on here

In another thread, people are complaining about SS favoring new contributors.

Right because new or old some people will find something to be wrong and complain about what they get, because somebody else gets a better deal, in thier imagination and gloomy outlook. Some new pictures do better then old, some old pictures do better then new. The generalization and the blame on the search are just crying babies. We all get the same poor but equal treatment, no one gets better treatment.

Competition and the dilution caused changes that some people are unwilling to accept. New images don't get the grab they used to, so that's another complaint, making old better. But Old gets less downloads which makes new better. There's nothing better then complaining both sides, with no proof, because it's always right as long as sombody else agrees.

Rose Tinted Glasses

« Reply #20 on: July 24, 2016, 22:38 »
0
i have never been an istock exclusive. but i have never seen anyone complain as an exclusive for not making good money there. 

Lots of us are earning much less since the introduction of subs, and even for a while before that when they just kept jumping from pillar to post with no plan. I'm down c40% on e.g. 2012, and I've read other exclusives being >60% down.

Yep the sub thing killed it. Glad I never supported it till I was put into a stranglehold to do so.
And now I realize the reality. Check Mate.

« Reply #21 on: July 24, 2016, 23:24 »
+4
Thanks everyone for replying.  Great insights that I will read again in more detail.
The main reason I pulled all my images from iStock is because of an email recently that stated that on or about Aug. 20th first of all keywords will not be able to be changed once a file is uploaded.  I many times add or change keywords to make the image more find-able.  The bigger reason I pulled my images is because on this day also they will require us to have a legal reason to deactivate our images.  I'm not in the habit of deactivating images but I felt that my work was being hijacked and that I would not have control over my images.  Big issue with me is that my sales have dropped like a rock to very little.  Sub sales have cannibalized my regular sales.  My portfolio was not very big but I tried my best to put up quality images.  I don't like having my work out of my control and being given almost no money for it.  This is why I'm looking elsewhere.

I understand that the microstock business is being oversaturated and flooded with new images and contributors.  Nothing I can do about that.  I'm just looking for a better alternative to iStock which is not the same company at all that I joined in 2007.

« Reply #22 on: July 25, 2016, 02:42 »
+3
Well, if you are looking for a replacement to the original istock exclusive system, please let us know. I think everyone will want to join.

There are several agencies that take exclusive images and also many smaller places like blendimages, tetra, plainpictures, offset etc...the macro world has many niche agencies that you can apply to, stocksy is not the only option. But going macro makes a lot of sense.

Personally I am trying to find a "theme" that sells well on a certain agency and then send them more of that content. It is very time consuming to figure out what sells best where, but I am slowly getting there.

Then I have normal content that can be sold anywhere and strange content like the overfiltered smartphonestuff.

Once you are non exclusive there is a whole world of options out there, literally everything you shoot can make you money,including editorial.

But rebuilding your income..it will take 2 years, maybe more.

But for the me the best was that I have my mojo back and really enjoy shooting again.

gyllens

« Reply #23 on: July 25, 2016, 06:40 »
+2
SS were great but I fear they are going the same way as istock in the long term.  Since they lowered the standard to get in and started accepting almost everything, the number of images on the sites has gone crazy and its obviously going to be harder to make money with so much competition.  I've lost motivation to upload to SS, I really hope they don't go the same way as istock but putting in many hours of work when the future isn't looking promising doesn't get me motivated.


True. Takes years to build a reputation but only minutes to destroy it. Clearly SS is going the same way as Istock.

Rose Tinted Glasses

« Reply #24 on: July 25, 2016, 09:22 »
+1

going macro makes a lot of sense.



And going micro never made sense.

Funny how one of the largest advocates of micro and "test" shots for pennies is now suggesting macros makes sense.




 

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