Depending on your contributions as a stock photographer, the more you earn, the more you get paid. This obviously depends on many factors, including how many agencies you upload to, your skill in keywording, and the uniqueness of the images.
Since stock photography sites are a global market, competition is also very high.
How much will I earn?
It really depends on the stock agency but most of them have quite similar price tags. First of all, you have to remember that it’s the stock agency that determines the price and not you. So you can’t affect it in any way. It all depends on the subscription plan the customer has bought.
Each stock agency has its own pricing policy. And the price depends on which subscription the seller has bought. In other words, you can sell the same photo for $0.25 or $100. It’s really not up to you. You’ll get only this much for a single photo but don’t forget that you can sell the same photo again and again. You can sell up to 100 and more photos a day. So it’s not the price, it’s the number of times the photo has sold, that counts. Also, every stock agency has a price upgrade policy. So the more you sell the more expensive your photos become.
Shutterstock earnings breakout
As you can see, at first you start with quite low prices at only $0.25 per photo and once you earn your first $500 you get upgraded to the next level, where you see some rising in prices.
Shutterstock made a deal with Facebook. Every time someone uses an image that Facebook makes available in its advertising system, the contributor gets paid a subscription-rate download royalty which goes from $0.25 up to $0.38 per image.
Who buys them?
You might wonder who really buys photos these days? Actually, lots of companies do it. If you run a company and you need to use a photo for your marketing campaign, you can’t just use Google images, it is illegal, and if you get caught you will end up with pretty large fines.
So to keep it safe, most companies go to stock photography websites and buy photos, videos, and audio from them, where everything is legal. Every day millions of photos are being purchased and it can be your photos too. Shutterstock states that they are selling a photo every 5 seconds.
On this page you can find some of my published photos. It’s very exciting to see my photos on websites. Also, you will find quick links for different stock photography agencies below. Click on them and become a contributor. It’s that easy!