It seems I know... (what helps our sales the most)
Being registered here since December 2007, I really started to upload in 2008, August. Before This I had read a lot of articles written by happy photographers who made good money on stock. What they said sounded very optymistic - a sort of "shoot what you want and sell each photo 500 times". Yuri Arcurs was the example, and things seemed easy and fun.
But reality showed that not all was so simple.
I got my first sale very late, in three months after first upload. Here is this image
I began to read message-board, look who sells how much, compare the difference between best-selling portfolios and portfolios with poor sales. What is the difference between "to sell" and just "to shoot and upload"? To tell you the truth at that stage I didn't see any logic. Some portfolios looked fabulous, but didn't sell well compare to others. The only thing which I noticed at that moment was the fact that illustrations were sold better than photos.
My sales continued to be miserable. And I couldn't blame keywording, because the pictures were visible in search. May be their colors were too pale?
The ones who sold a lot said that the most important was the diversity of portfolio, the creativity, some guys mentioned the importance of good acceptance ratio. One photographer wrote that he began to have a sale per day since his portfolio became 400 images. So, I assumed, the amount was also important. I was encouraged by "upload and wait". Wait for what?
I continued to upload and didn't plan to leave stock. Because despite the fact of poor sales I enjoyed tutorials, experience exchange, chatting with artists and felt my own improvement in photography. I can say that here during these months I probably learned not less than before in photoshool. But still something was wrong with my sales...
I began to explore searches. What made best-sold images special? Why from two equally good pictures (bright, with good idea and composition, technically well-done) one could have 50 sales and the other zero? I began to look more carefully at best-sold photographer's portfolios and you know what I found? They have all been here for quite a long time!!! Biggest sales have the ones who came earlier than 2006, which is very logical, because their pictures were longer "in the window", portfolios, of course, large and diverse, and probably they already got some permanent buyers!
Meanwhile, my time also counted, and sales began to come faster. I'm still far from being a sale champion, BUT last week I had a sale, yesterday I had a sale, today even two! My portfolio is 153 pictures, more diverse than at the very beginning and people get to know it. And it's funny that I even thought about disabling some pictures for being "too grey", when suddenly somebody needed them and desided to buy.
So, what I can say now to all guys and girls who like me worry about slow sales:
- Don't hurry to think that your portfolio is bad. It's probably just small and recent.
- Don't ever delete a single image from your portfolio. It may be needed by someone unexpectedly.
- What effects stock SALES the best is TIME ;)
Photo credits: Julia161.