Thursday, November 29, 2007

November earnings


A slight improvement (+15 %) over last month despite few holidays in US and Europe. All major sites had their BME except FT and DT. I started also submitting pictures to two upcoming midstock sites: mostphotos and symmetrical and was accepted on the Photoshelter collection a macrostock agency. A few words about MP and ZM below, I will go back to PS in another post:

Based in Sweden and described itself as “the most democratic photosite ever”, Mostphotos does not review the pictures. Prices at fixed at 25 euros and photographers get 50 %. There is no uploads limit and up to three pictures can be sent by http pretty quickly with automatic IPTC reading (ftp is available as well). People can vote for pictures and competitions are organized.
Some photographers @ microstockgroup have reported sales lately. It is certainly interesting to get paid in Euros for a change…. If you want to have a try at mostphotos you can click here

Zymmetrical is another midstock agency with a pretty sophisticated multilingual platform. Photographers can set their own prices from $ 3 to $100 for the largest size and get a generous 70 % royalty fee. Up to 5 pictures can be submitted by http with a minimum size of 640 pixels. Zipped pictures can be sent by ftp as well. Some photographers @ microstockgroup have also reported some sales. If you want to visit zymmetrical please click on the banner below:

Worth mentioning also, a new version of Prostockmaster is available this month which now includes Stockxpert and Alamy (123RF works again as well). Trial version allows to upload up to 5 pictures a day to 10 sites. It can be downloaded here. Note that for SXP, your password has to have less than 10 characters for PSM to work properly.

Microstock one by one
  • SS (+50%) BME. Clear winner once again taking a bit less than 50 % of earnings and another BME due probably to regular uploads all through the month. Performance is up compared to last month with 50 % (0.50 c per picture of the portfolio). It has also the highest downloads to uploads ratio of all sites with 5.27.
  • FT (-16%) Second again this month but despite uploading new pictures earnings went down and performance is only 7 % this month. It is the largest portfolio with quite a lot of exclusive pictures that is why FT can maintain its position. Like previous month an average of a bit more than $ 1 per picture sold. I have serious doubts about the search engine and some bugs from V2 are still there…. On the good side, rankings are working again.
  • IS (+54%) BME. It is always quite difficult to get pictures accepted there but performance is up this month to 21 % just after SS. Second also on the UP/DL with a value of 0.86
  • 123RF (+78%) BME. For the first time, 123RF did better than DT and got another BME. Performance is still low (3%) but sales are more frequent right now.
  • DT (-43%) Sales went down quite a lot this month. Global performance went down from 6 to 3%. Acceptance ratio: 64 %.
  • SXP (+15%) BME. Sales are progressing this month with some credit sales and two subscription sales. Reviews are still a bit lengthy but I think it worth staying there. Same performance than DT but gets two times & per download.
  • CT (+500%) BME. Less then 2 % of earnings but few sales this month made a BME. 100 + portfolio this month. They lowered the minimum payout form 100 to $50.

  • The others... I was surprised to get two sales at CSP (I do not upload there anymore). LO Piggy bank is stuck at $2.40: no sales this month despite a portfolio of almost 300 pictures. A new platform is up, we will see what happens in the next coming weeks. BSP still dead as well as SV and FP.

Miscellaneous stats

  • 377 pictures sold (277 on SS)
  • Days without sales: 0
  • Best day: $ 10.875 (21/11)
  • Most pictures sold in one day: 31
  • Top seller made $ 5.75

Detailed earnings

Figures in USD. Note: 100 % global performance is defined by a portfolio with an average of sales of $ 1 per picture. Ratio DL/IS is the ratio of all the time downloads over the total pictures of portfolio

% earning for each microstocks

Best seller november $ 5.75 (SS, new upload)

What's next ?

Investigate few midstock sites and resubmit some pictures on SS and IS. Also work toward the $ 100 a month on SS.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Experiment 4: horizontal versus vertical

Inspired by the post of Lorraine Swanson about shooting “both ways” ( I decided to put the idea to the test with three of my pictures. Like probably most of the photographers, I am always more inclined to take pictures horizontally than vertically . However sometime if the horizontal shot does the job, having its vertical version will be very useful if it has to be squeezed on a webpage or on a side of a magazine.
The pictures I used for this test were all accepted on their horizontal and vertical version on shutterstock and one them on Fotolia and Crestock.

So what happened ? For the billboard photo, the horizontal version is the clear winner and was sold on CT and FT as well. As far as the blue track lanes concerned, vertical has the advantage over horizontal. For the architectural picture, vertical and horizontal are very close, only time will tell if one of them takes the advantage.

In conclusion, this is no clear winner between vertical and horizontal but shooting both looks like a good option since it gives more choice to the customers.
Even if the horizontal version is the most popular, a vertical shot can bring an additional value to the picture which is the case of the billboard.
So I will definitely continue shooting and uploading both ways and will give a update in few months about this experiment.