Sales

Things to Know Before Selling Stock Photography

Stock photography refers to photos that are licensed for public or commercial use. Nowadays, stock photography would instantly mean images that are in online databases. Obviously, these images would be delivered online too.

The good thing about being a photographer is that there are many areas in it you could explore. There are wedding photography, fashion photography and the latest field that’s making a buzz, stock photography.

What It Is

Stock photography refers to photos that are licensed for public or commercial use. Nowadays, stock photography would instantly mean images that are in online databases. Obviously, these images would be delivered online too.

The Different Types

When it comes to online stock photography, there are two major categories. If you want to get into the business of selling stock photos, you should know these categories so you could maximize the profits that you will earn from them.

Rayalty- Free Photos

In the stock photography context, “free” means that you won’t be paid each time your photo is used (royalties). But do not misconstrue this with free images- a user needs to purchase a license from the stock photography database before they can download your photo.

With royalty-free (RF) photos, as long as you pay a one-time fee, you can use the image multiple times for multiple purposes and there is no limit on how long the image can be used.  But usually, there would limits as to how many times the photo can be reproduced by the user.

Rights- Managed Photos

Just like RF photos, rights-managed (RM) photos can be downloaded online but there are many conditions when a buyer can use this. A RM photo’s license can be determined by: purpose, duration, location, size, industry and exclusivity.

With RM photos, the license of the photos are defined and negotiated.

Steps to Make Money

Even though selling photography is easier and takes lesser time than actually putting a photography business, you still need to follow some steps to make sure that you can make decent cash out of it.

Step 1: Of course, the first thing that you have to do is to find the best stock photography websites today. You can submit to just one or more- it depends on you. But if you are just starting in stock photography, don’t bite something more than you can chew.

Step 2: Learn about the different processes and regulations of your top picks. You should read through their guidelines and make sure that you won’t violate any rules as a contributor.

Step 3: Now that you have a list of the stock photography websites that you want to contribute to, it’s time to do some research. Look for the type of photos that are most in demand in their website.

Create a portfolio about this topic and make sure that they are all of high-quality. Of course, you shouldn’t stick with just one topic or photo subject so go ahead and submit more photos. But be sure that these are photos that are worth something- you want to establish a reputation and earn at the same time.

Step 4: Now that you have a good collection in the stock photography website or websites that you’ve chosen, all you have to do is wait for your royalties to pour in.

But if you want to earn as much as you can, be sure to keep your portfolio updated. Add more photos consistently. You should also consider the timeliness of your photos. Is Thanksgiving Day coming up? New Year fast approaching? You know what to do!

Final Tips for Stock Photography

In stock photography, you have a lot of competition. You are not just competing with other photographers; you’ll be competing for demand as well.

So here are a few tips to make sure that you will earn as much with stock photography.

1. Make sure that your photos are impressive and creative.

2. Images must have a clear concept.

3. Use the right keywords or tags for your photos.

If you’ve had a yearning to get into this area, go ahead and give it  a shot. There’s more detail and step by step instructions for you here if you want to earn an income from it but if you just wanted to put your toe in the water this article hopefully gave you a little to think about.

Ray Baker