Do you bring your camera everywhere you go, snapping perfect shot after perfect shot? Do you enjoy clicking photos of the world around you? Then you can start earning money by selling stock photos online. Photographers have a wide array of options to sell their photos online. The great thing about selling stock photos is you don’t need any special training, the opportunities are plentiful, and you don’t need a website to get started. As long as you provide images that have good lighting and color, a captivating moment, and correct composition – you can make a decent amount.
The basic step is to find out where to sell your photos that usually is based on your style. In our previous post, we have listed the ways you can earn money from Photography. This post discusses on some top sites where you can sell photos online.
#1 Shutterstock – www.shutterstock.com
Shutterstock is a famous microstock agency and heads the list of sites for photographers who want good earnings. A photographer at Shutterstock will be paid between $0.25-$2.85 for each image. The higher rates are reserved for photographers with extremely worthwhile images. Shutterstock also has an approval process in place – and you’ll have to submit ten initial images for approval before you can proceed with any others. There are many online forums on their website where you can pick up hints and tips for getting this right first time.
#2 iStock photo – www.istockphoto.com
Sell your images through iStock Photo and you’ll earn a royalty rate of 15% for each download. There is also an option to become an exclusive contributor and earn up to 45% instead, which is pretty impressive. Before contributing your photographs, you need to be a member of iStock after which you need to apply as a contributor. The last step seems to be of great importance where you upload your application along with three samples.
This website has a good community feel to it, there are lots of forums and group discussion, which really helps when you’re trying to figure out which of your photos will sell online better than others.
#3 SmugMug – www.smugmug.com
SmugMug can be the ultimate option if you want to create a professional and sleek showcase to display your photos besides selling them. The “Pro” option of SmugMug gives you an appealing storefront along with e-commerce galleries for a single-click shopping experience. The pricing can be set on your own and you can earn a royalty rate of 85%. But that’s not all, besides selling digital downloads, you have the option of selling prints and greetings cards too, which is good for those who want more selling options.
#4 Fotolia – www.fotolia.com
Fotolia is a widely used microstock site and can be a great platform to sell your photographs. A photographer wanting to sell his collections of Fotolia will get paid based totally on his ranking on the site along with the exclusivity of the image. The payment usually ranges from 20%-63% for every download.
#5 123rf – www.123rf.com
This site has over 45 million files on offer, with almost half a million being added each week. The royalties payable vary between 30% and 60% depending on your level of contribution. This means that the more photos you upload, the higher your payout. If you upload less than 250 images to the site, you’ll earn 30%, which equates to $0.216 per download. If you upload over 1 million images, you’ll receive 60%, which equates to $0.432 per download.
#6 PhotoMoolah – www.photomoolah.com
If you want a different way of selling your photos, try PhotoMoolah. This is a site where you can submit relevant photos to different contests. If your photo is picked as one of the winners, you get paid while retaining your rights. The site isn’t yet massively popular, meaning there’s less competition for aspiring photographers.
As a couple of examples, there’s currently a contest looking for photos of “Australian and European kids playing outdoors”, offering a prize of $200. There’s another looking for “Unique selfie shots in Singapore”, where you could also win $200. Prizes have been known to go up to $500, but most are $100-200.
#7 Alamy – www.alamy.com
There’s a reason why Alamy has over 60 million images and videos for sale on its website. It’s because it offers photographers a huge 60% royalty payment on each photo sold. Also, Alamy doesn’t pressurize photographers to give exclusive rights to the image. This has enabled Alamy to become the world’s largest marketplace for stock photos, and it now has a huge number of monthly visitors, all of whom are potential customers for your photos.
#8 Can stock Photos – www.canstockphoto.com
If you’re looking for an easy option for selling your photos, Can Stock Photo is a great choice. You will need to be approved first, which is a simple process where you have to submit three images to the site’s editors. You’ll usually have a response within 24 hours.
When uploading photos (you can upload several hundred at once) onto the site, the metadata and keyword data is read automatically, saving you the pain of needing to categorize each photo. You can earn up to 50% in royalties on the site and can withdraw your money into PayPal once your balance reaches $50. If you want a mailed check, you’ll have to wait until you have $100.
#9 Dreamstime – www.dreamstime.com
In the stock photography world, Dreamstock is a reputable player. It achieved this status by ensuring that all uploads are reviewed to check they meet their standards “technically, aesthetically and commercially”, thereby guaranteeing quality.
Once your photos are approved, you’ll receive royalties of 25-50%, though this could increase to 60% on all images if you sign an exclusivity contract. If you do sign that exclusivity deal, you’ll also receive an additional bonus of $0.20 for each approved submission. The sale price of each photo is based on the number of times it has been downloaded.
#10 Snapped 4U – www.snappped4u.com
If you’re a photographer who takes photos at events, parties, gigs, festivals, weddings etc. Snapped4U is a website that makes the sale of those photos extremely simple. It’s also a great way to use the sales of photos to raise money for good causes. By uploading and selling your photos here, you don’t need to deal with the nightmare of order processing, printing, and postage. Snapped4U deals with all of that on your behalf. The cost to you for each photo sold is just $0.50 on photos that are priced $5 or less. If the photo is sold at more than $5, Snapped4U will charge a 10% commission.
#11 Flickr – www.flickr.com
Flickr and Getty images entered into a partnership in 2010 to devise a platform to allow users sell their photographs as rights managed stock and royalty free images. This led to the creation of image sharing as well as stock sales in one particular place. Just submit your best work to the site and wait for an approval from the editors. After this, you’ll start earning a royalty of 20% for your bought images.
#12 Fotomoto – www.fotomoto.com
Fotomoto is quite different compared to the other sites mentioned in the list. It gives you a widget which blends with your present site and permits you to sell your photos. The product fulfillment is handled by the site for you. The pricing includes a monthly fee varying from $0 to $25 per month along with a transaction fee ranging from 10% to 22%.
#13 Zenfolio – www.zenfolio.com
With Zenfolio, you can create a portfolio site for your work. The site allows you to upload images, create galleries and password to protect your galleries besides displaying your images for sale. In the case of e-commerce, you can opt from various labs while fulfilling your orders or settle for fulfilling them on your own. The prices vary from $25 each year to approximately $250 per year. It also has a free trial available for 14 days.
#14 TourPhotos – www.tourphotos.com
TourPhotos is basically a platform for tourism and activity companies that enables to sell or share (to their tourists) the professional photographs taken during their excursions/activities. These places are scuba diving, rafting, paragliding, northern lights excursions, amusement parks, cruise ships and much more. So, if you are into these activities then TourPhotos is just the thing for you.
#15 Etsy – www.etsy.com
Etsy is the ultimate platform for selling prints to a waiting audience. However, the site has a major drawback since you are expected to make prints and mail them. This will increase your price and make it tough to sell. The flip side is that you exercise total control on deciding over the price and also the way your art looks.
Did you find any of these sites useful? Do you know any other cool site? Please share it in the comments. Meanwhile, if you love our articles, subscribe to our NEWSLETTERS, so that you can get them easily! and also follow us on facebook.