Earnings from stock photography in November 2016
Another month goes by – amazingly quickly it seems. I must be getting used to the new normal of Shutterstock – fewer downloads in total and far fewer enhanced and single sales – which really hits my earnings from that site, but on the upside, Adobe Stock continues to perform nicely. Overall, I increased by a $120 over October to reach a total of $2163 for November. With Thanksgiving being a big US holiday, that isn’t too bad. Pity December has some big holidays as well!
As I mentioned, Adobe Stock is turning out to be a pretty good site these days. They accept most of my images, rejecting some that they think are too similar (which I have no issues with) but they are now happy with both travel and studio shots. Fotolia used to be terrible with some of my travel shots in the past, which is why I only have 5014 on Adobe compared to 6500 on Dreamstime, for example. As I mentioned before, I’m using Microstockr Pro to identify best sellers that don’t appear to be on Adobe, and uploading either that, or the entire shoot, depending on whether I can find similar ones online on the site. I’m also continuing to go, one page at a time, through my old files, updating the keywords to add some important ones to the top of the list. Adobe is one of the few sites to prioritize keywords and Lightroom doesn’t allow you to do that (although that is now a feature request in the product team), and so most of my old files are alphabetic on Adobe. As I mentioned earlier this month, I’m seeing sales of images that have never sold before on Adobe Stock due to this keyword change. That continued right to the end of the month. Too soon to say if the sales will change the overall revenue line, but I’ll watch for it. Unfortunately, it is quite hard work and I try to do one complete page of 100 images and then take a break!
Shutterstock was, well, its usual disappointment. Just two Enhanced licenses (one for $14.61) and two Singles over $15 (and only a few dollars above that level) and so I ended the month at $655. Adobe was next with $249, iStock with an estimated $244 and finally Canva with $236. I did have one of their enhanced licenses this month for one image and received $35 for it.
I did get one Fine Art America sale this month, one sale of an enhanced license for a very large (48 inch wide) panorama print for resale to a client from BackyardStockPhotos (my own agency) for $35, and of course I did get an incremental $200 license from ImageBrief, but I think I will report that in my earnings when I get the money!
I’ve been doing more studio work this past month and will continue with that. A friend of mine who started in stock photography after he read my book focuses almost entirely on studio and still life work and has become very skilled at it – he told me he hit a new record of $3400 this month. So that should give some hope to us all!