Many websites buy pictures from photographers to sell stock photos online. However, some stand out in terms of price, quality and efficiency.
Best Sites Where You Can Sell Photos Online
GOBankingRates has compiled a list of the best websites based on the factors mentioned above.
At Shutterstock, your earnings rate increases as more of your content is licensed. As a level one contributor, Shutterstock pays 15% commission for up to 100 licensed photos, illustrations and vectors — or up to 10 videos. At level six, you get paid up to 40% commission over 25,000 licensed photos, illustrations, vectors and videos. Levels are reset each calendar year.
2. Getty Images
The Getty Images brand, which includes iStock, serves over 1.5 million customers. For each license purchased, you earn a royalty, which is a percentage of the price paid by the customer.
They only accept applications through the Contributor by Getty Images app:
- Download Contributor by Getty Images from the App Store or Google Play
- Upload up to six images, illustrations or videos via YouTube links
- Wait to be notified if you made it within seven days
For content licensed through iStock, royalty rates start at 15% for photos and 20% for videos and illustrations. Exclusive contributors can earn between 25% and 45%. For content licensed through Getty Images, rates are 20% for royalty-free still images and 25% for royalty-free videos.
Royalty-free licensing allows usage of content for an unlimited amount of time in multiple projects.
Good To Know
You do not have to be a professional to make money from your pictures. Select a website that you want to use, upload your photos and start making money.
SmugMug allows you to sell photos at your price and personalize your seller website on the platform to take care of private galleries and personal events. Plans range from $7 to $42 a month depending on the features offered. They also offer a free 14-day trial.
Picfair gives you a store with a personal domain, where users can purchase printed products and digital downloads for multiple uses. Picfair also helps improve your skill, by giving you access to Focus — a collection of articles written by photography experts. To increase your account’s features, upgrade to Picfair Plus for $5.99 a month.
The website adds 20% of your price on top to come up with the selling price. After your photo sells they keep the 20% and you get the price you set.
On Foap, you upload your videos and photos and earn cash. When someone purchases something from your online Foap portfolio, they split the profit with you 50/50. Everything is done through the Foap app.
Alamy pays out 50% commission to exclusives and 40% to non-exclusives. Alamy buys photos from photographers, amateurs, museums, news agencies and other stock agencies. There are currently over 250,000,000 stock photos, vectors and videos on the platform.
7. 500px Prime
500px allows you to have a non-exclusive license, which means you can sell your images elsewhere. First membership is charged at $3.99 per month, while a Pro membership goes for $5.99 a month.
A standard 500px Prime license will go for $250. The website will pay you 70% for each license sold. You also have the option to submit your images for commercial licensing.
Fotolia is now Adobe Stock. Sign up to become an Adobe Stock artist with your Adobe ID for free and start uploading. Earn 33% royalties when you sell images on Adobe Stock.
Dreamstime sells photos from around $0.35 to $3 for beginners. Prices go up as your photo gets more downloads. Dreamstime will pay up to 65% of the selling price for exclusives.
Tips To Make More Money From Your Photos
GOBankingRates has some tips that will see you earn more from your photos:
Ways To Earn More from Photography:
- Take quality photos. High-quality pictures will sell more and at a higher than low-quality ones.
- Upload pictures to multiple websites. Sell more copies of your photos by uploading to more than one stock photo site.
- Use keywords. Ensure that you use relevant keywords when you upload your photos.
- Sign up for newsletters. Getting newsletters from different websites will keep you informed on which type of pictures are in demand.
What Kind of Photography Pays Best?
Although you can make money by selling all images, some factors increase the chances of making money fast. Event photography, beautiful sceneries and photos tied to a certain cause — such as terminal illness awareness or freedom of expression — are high in demand.
Be sure to check out tips and guides from stock websites. Most will be gracious enough to give you clues to what their customers are looking for.
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Information accurate as of Sept. 30, 2021.