What is Microstock Photography?
When a company wants to advertise for its product, traditionally, it is rather large-scale as they need to look for models to pose for them and a good photographer to take these photos. All these cost a lot of money. So stock companies became a trend. They take ready photos, burn them into CDs and let customers view these photos. They would order from these companies for their advertisements. Stock photos can cost hundreds of dollars.
In a fast pace world where almost everything is quickly accessible online, advertisers have to compete with similar companies to come out with advertisements quickly and at a low cost to maximise profit. As internet has become a norm in every household and every place, the trend now is designers sourcing for photos on the internet and these microstock companies are the source of their photos. The demand for these photos and illustrations, became very high that almost everyone, including you and me use these photos for designing websites.
Why Microstock Photography?
Simply because there is a huge demand for it! Microstock photography has become more and more popular with designers and webmasters because of their royalty free images and cheap costs. Microstock photography is like a photographer taking photos and putting them in shops for people to buy them. These photographers take pictures of almost anything and the microstock agencies select what they think would sell and help you promote them for free. Prices of the photos ranges from as low as 20cents for royalty free to as high as few hundreds for extended license.
Can I generate passive income out of microstock photography?
Definitely! You do not have to pay any sum to join these microstock photography agencies like Dreamstime, Istockphoto, Canstockphoto, Bigstockphoto, fotolia, fotomind, and fotosearch. They would select quality photos which are suitable for their agencies portfolio and display them online for customers to choose.
I personally joined Dreamstime and have earned more than $300 since. This year, I started to join them as an exclusive member and they paid me 20cents for every picture accepted by them, including the past photos that have already been online! Exclusive photos in their site sells at a higher cost and they have different levels. The more downloads you have for a particular photo, the higher the level of the photo, the more expensive the cost would be to buy them, which is good news for contributors.
Other microstock photographers prefer to expand their streams of income by uploading their photos to different agencies and not be exclusive. It’s your choice. The reason why I went exclusive in Dreamstime because I have more sales in there than any other agencies. The key to generating more income is to expand your portfolio by having more photos for customers to choose from. Isolated business photos and photos of business people always sell. Landscape and food photos are very popular too.
Can I quit my job and do microstock photography only?