Friday, October 12, 2012

Microstock portfolio trends since 2009

The end of the year is coming soon and  I wanted to share some trends I observed for my portfolio  since  2009. I uploaded regularly (every month) but less in 2012 compared to 2011 and a lot less compared to  2010 to focus on footage and right managed pictures.

Earnings variation among my top 5 photo agencies between 2009 and  2012

+11.5 %
- ?
-19.6 %
- ?
- ?
-26 %
-43 %
+ ?
+ ?

Note: no uploads to Istock in 2010 and 2012.

  • Shutterstock (1570 images) is still my number one agency since 2009 with very stable earnings and taking now close to  50% of my total microstock earnings  (the figure was 30% in 2010).
  • Fotolia (1808 images ) and Istock (522 images) portfolio value peaked in 2010 and 2009 respectively  with no sign of recovery.
  • Dreamstime had a very slow progression over the years (1511 images)
  • Surprisingly, 123RF (2098 images)  still managed to increase  value but is still far away from Shutterstock.
  • Amongst the low earners, YAYmicro (2196 images) and Mostphotos (2097 images) are doing the best. Stockfresh, Photodune, Veer  are dissapointing.
  • Complelety dead (at least for me): bigstockphoto, Panthermedia, Crestock, Zoonar.

  • Shutterstock and 123RF were  able to increase  portfolio value  despite not uploading much the past two years. In addition, Shutterstock is still able to sell pretty well some of  my pictures uploaded in 2007 and 2008.
  • Istock and Fotolia  experienced a dramatic downfall for over 2 years now  due a less favorable search engine  placement and technical platform problem.
  • Competition is getting tougher in microstock as databases are getting bigger and bigger (Shutterstock has now more than 21 millions pictures on line (compared to 9 millions at the end of 2009).
 This leaves some answered questions for  2013:
  •  Will the  gap between Shutterstock and other agencies grow  bigger following their successfull IPO in October 2012?
  • Will successfull footage agencies like Pond5 be able to get some market share in 2013?
  • What agencies will close the door in 2013?
  • If Jon Oringer reads me, will Shutterstock increase commissions in 2013 ?:)
I will updated this post at the end of the year but you can follow my  updates on Twitter. You can also join my facebook photo page here.

I put some referral links if you interested to join the agencies below

Shutterstock, Yaymicro

Royalty-Free Stock Video at Pond5