Review of Stock agency sales in November 2019

After I published yesterday’s post about earnings in November from stock photography, I realized that I hadn’t mentioned how the specific agencies had performed in the month. So this post fills that gap (and also reminds you that those sales on Edelkrone, Jixipix using code BLK40 and Luminar are still on today!)

Shutterstock really performed well in the month with total earnings of $1101 of which $317 came from videos. I talked about some of the bigger photo sales yesterday and overall I had 861 downloads. I was thinking that was my best month ever on Shutterstock, but going back in history I found a couple of months in early 2015 (!!) where I earned more than this. Somewhat sadly, I have to report that I had 5100 files online in early 2015 compared with 13700 now! Talk about a drop in earnings per online asset!

Here is a graph of the rest:

How much can you earn from stock photography at each agency in 2019
Earnings from the main agencies I submit to in November 2019

As you can see, Adobe Stock maintains its very strong performance with $578. I’ve been adding my illustrative editorial shots to Adobe recently and will do an analysis of the difference that those images have made to my earnings once I have a little bit of history there.

iStock was also pretty good with $456. I had a couple of months in the $300’s, but hopefully that was a summer low and we are back on a higher track. The Snapwire earnings are definitely a one-off (unless the company starts looking for more restaurants in my area). Although I’m really scraping the barrel with this one, I did sell an image from my personal stock agency Backyard Stock Photos in November for $9.99:

Stock photo of surfboards lined up on Lumahai beach in Kauai
TIps of surf board or surfboards at Lumahai beach in Kauai Hawaii on sandy shore by ocean

What is more interesting is that this is the third month in a row that I have sold an image from this site – perhaps I really should put some of my more recent shots there! It might help pay for the hosting costs of the site!!

Canva seems to be picking up a bit and the new subscription earnings are helping there. However, EyeEM is going nowhere – just $40 after the $22 last month. I’ve even tried to contact their CFO to explain why they are leaving a lot of money on the table with their stupid keywording approach for Getty, but no response so far! I’ve stopped uploading there – I only ever sell the very restricted set of images where the keywords seem to match the image and so everything else I have uploaded has vanished without trace into Getty’s library.

Alamy (my own account) is performing as poorly as ever – about $90 in November and my CTR is hitting a new low of 0.26. I created a new pseudo to hold my better shots and try to create a better zoom ratio. I have 1000 images in that, but the CTR is only 0.15 there! Not sure there is anything I can do to rescue this account now. It seems like Alamy works best when you only upload your best images and keyword them carefully to avoid them coming up in inappropriate searches – and who can afford the time to do that?

Society6 surprised me – it was dead in October with zero sales but bounced back in November with six sales for $66. My widescreen panorama of Chicago made up most of this via framed art prints, but I did have two new images that made the sale list. One was a black and white with hint of color called “The Road goes on forever”:

Art print of road across a black and white desert with the yellow lines leading the eye to the distance
The Road goes on Forever

The other one was an image I got from the Library of Congress which I cleaned up in Photoshop and posted on these art sites. In the US, copyright expires for most things in the 1920s currently, and so these high resolution scans of photos that the Library of Congress holds are freely available. I think you can sell them as stock (although it might be a hassle getting the agencies to agree), but fine art prints seem to be fair game. This is the one that sold:

Old 1906 photo of the Law School at Harvard College or University
The Law School at Harvard College in 1906

I’m not saying this is a great use of your time, but worth investigating for interesting prints of your own college perhaps (if you are in the USA, that is!).

Well, I think this really does finish my report of earnings for November 2019!

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