How To Sell Photographs Online

by | November 4, 2018 | Business, Making Money

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Here’s A Guide On How To Sell Photographs Online

Selling photographs isn’t reserved for professionals and doesn’t have to be a niche career. In fact, thousands of amateur photographers are taking their skill and turning it into a consistent stream of money. It’s all about leveraging your skillset, understanding what’s needed, and selling in the right places online.

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Traditional Methods

In the past, selling photographs meant finding microstock websites, applying, and putting up photos to your library. This has been an age-old approach that has been used by several microstock companies with great effect. The idea has been to leverage stock photography and present it in a manner that provokes buyer interest. Whether the goal is to sell physical prints or digital copies, artists are able to licence their work and sell it to interested parties. These methods would often lead artists to fork over 70+% of the earnings back to the microstock website. This meant it wasn’t as lucrative as it could have been for the artist.

Over time, photographers have started to take initiative and built personal websites to advertise their projects. They’ve taken the time to design full-fledged portfolios detailing what they’ve done, what they’re selling, and what they’re all about as a professional. It’s become a wonderful step away from what has been done in the past and is working for thousands of people around the world. A lot of professionals are turning this into a career along with their photo-shoot sessions.

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Contemporary Methods

As you look to learn how to sell photographs online, you’ll begin to appreciate contemporary methods and what professionals do these days. Most professionals are taking advantage of self-publishing solutions (i.e. Online portfolios, blogs, websites) and using this as a launching pad for their careers. Along with these self-publishing solutions, they’re also taking advantage of modern microstock websites, which are aimed to help artists leverage their skillset with high commissions. Whether you are an amateur or a professional, this has become the way to go because of how much is coming back into your pocket. These websites are also offering a wide array of licences, which provide different uses based on what a person is looking to get out of their photos.

In the past, these photos couldn’t be used without an established purpose but that’s changed. It’s become more about using photos for flyers, websites, posters, flyers, blogs, company newsletters, and other documents that are prepared using computers. The demand continues to rise and this has become the best way to sell. Photographers with a sense of professionalism can create a robust portfolio that is built to sell to these clients. With a good amount of hard work, photographers are able to build a profitable portfolio and sell to the masses. If you ever glance at some of the recent sales on microstock websites, you’ll realise the power of online marketing and how much demand there is for your type of work.

Each niche has some type of demand and that’s what makes it empowering. Even simple concepts can lead to major sales and a continuous stream of clients wanting your work. It’s important to note, the best way to go about selling photos and getting started is to sell stock images using microstock websites. These websites include Shutterstock, Dreamstime, iStockPhoto, Getty Images (Flickr) and 123RF to name a few. Find the one that is suited to your needs and sign up as soon as possible! It’s important to think about selling through multiple avenues, which can include a stock agency as well. Many people go through this path as a way to sell and believe it is a great option when it comes to making money.

This is also a route you can go with because thousands of people visit these agencies to grab good photos. Of course, you have to realise there is going to be competition for these clients and you have to be the one that puts up a good collection of photos to win them over. In some cases, you are able to get away without having to pay a commission on the sale but there are some websites that charge a small fee. This will vary depending on which platform is used and what your agreement is like.

It is also going to depend on the licences being offered (i.e. You get paid more for full rights). This can lead to a tiered commission system. It’s also going to come down to the price that’s put up alongside each photo. You have to play around with the different price points to see which one fits the best. Some people like to set their prices as low as possible while others don’t mind the idea of making it a premium. It’s best to think about all of these details in advance so you have a good launching pad to work with.

Over time, you can continue to develop new marketing strategies and build a network of options based on your needs. This is important when you learn how to sell photographs online! Personal Website Another option that people need to think about would be putting together a personal website. This is something people are afraid of because there’s additional legwork to do before putting up the photos. However, it is also a good way to keep 100% of the profits because it’s sold through your website. Just set up a payment gateway and that’s how you are going to sell images. WordPress is ideal when it comes to setting up a simple website and making sure the portfolio looks as clean as it is supposed to be.

You can set up your portfolio using a plugin and it won’t take as long as you assume. Marketing can be done using social media platforms (i.e. Facebook, Pinterest) and people will start pouring in as long as you target the right audiences. Be smart and this is one of the most lucrative options on the market! Final Thoughts Keep these details in mind as you learn how to sell photographs online. This will lead to world-class results and you’re going to feel on top of the world as the sales pour in.

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