Small tip to all new photographers

At the beginning I see that many have to struggle with getting many images accepted. This is because some of us have to get used with the rules of getting images accepted or because you just started with photography. I would like to let you avoid starting with an low acceptance rate. As you know this affects also the search rank.

I started with Dreamstime in 2009. I was just into photography so I had a lot to learn. My error was that I started to submit hundreds of photos. The result was a lot of rejections leading to low acceptance percentage that again cause a lower search ranking. So I had finally hundreds of images online BUT a low acceptance rate. After years of experience my skill of photography are far higher than at the beginning so I am uploading images with better acceptance results. However it builds my acceptance rate up slowly because of my larger amount of rejected files at the beginning of my Dreamstime career.

My tip for everyone who just starts with microstock or photography:

Upload first few images to see what gets accepted and what are the rejection reasons. Try to do it better on the next shoot and repeat uploading few images until you have the knowhow. In this way you get also only few rejections instead what I had ….. many rejected images for the same reason. After you know how to get images accepted your can start the build of you portfolio. Remember it is better to have 100 images on high search results then 400 low.

Photo credits: Tonylivingstone.

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September 24, 2014


Thank you very much for your small but very important tips. Best wishes for more and more sales. I am waiting for my first sale and learning a lot from people like you. Just a 2 month old baby on dreamstime.

God bless you sir

July 31, 2014


Hello Cheri,

I am Mirco :). I used a photo of Tony for the article. But i understand it can be confusing. I would say start with 10. It is a good amount. It is not to many but also not to less to get a good imagination how your images are doing in the review process. Have some patience wait and then see if you have rejections. If yes check them out one by one and if you need more clear explanation you can write support with the file number.

Good luck CHeri.


July 30, 2014


Hi. I'm Cheri. I joined DT a few months back, hoping to find some free photos for my designs. Got busy with other things and DT sort of got put on the back burner, but now I'd like to try to get into the photography end of it. I always liked taking photos. Anyway, I consider myself as a complete newbie, for all intents and purposes. I'm glad to read your blog here, Tony, but a couple of questions (forgive my ignorance, please):

When you talk about putting up a "few" images first, in order to get a higher search ranking, how many would you consider a "few"? 10? 50? 100? I have nothing to compare to, so if you could give me a ballpark figure, I'd appreciate it. By the same token, what is a good Acceptance Rate, and what exactly does that signify?

Thanks for any help you or anyone else can give me!
- Cheri

May 27, 2014


Hi tony thank you for the advise it is very helpful I am very new to photography but I enjoy taking photos and collecting my images more then anything when I first found dreamtime I thought it would be great to just get my images out there and get reviews maybe also if you do make any money it can go towards getting all your equipment thanx again for the knowledge. Simon

May 14, 2014


Thank, never known before.

May 14, 2014


The very first time I submitted photos to Dreamstime, my acceptance was very low. The second time it was up to about 45%. The third time about 65%. So that part of being a stock photographer looks reasonable. Now, I need to start concentrating on what will sell. That's actually more difficult.

May 12, 2014


My current is around 50% only,I will continuing effort, great tips for me, Thanks!

May 06, 2014


Really useful blog :) I'm going through the phase where I'm getting images accepted and having to wait patiently for sales ... Starting to build my own site in the background.

May 04, 2014


Great tip for beginners. Thanks!

April 28, 2014


Thanks I had the same learning process as you...

April 28, 2014


I completely concur! Even if you have submitted to other agencies before, you'll find that each agency has their own "style".

April 27, 2014


Thanks! And how do acceptance rate influence to search ranking?

April 26, 2014


My current is around 60-70%. It could be still better.

It indeed also affects the search ranking together with keywords, being exclusive or not. It are many factors and yes acceptance rate is one of them. This was mentioned by the admins in the forum.

April 26, 2014


Right, better not upload anything hoping it will be accepted.
I suffered too because I did not have a DSLR which made things too hard. But now that I know what I am doing, I can use pretty much any camera to create acceptable photos. :)

But sometimes those rejections are hard to avoid...
How much is your current overall AR? And are you sure it affects search ranking?

April 25, 2014


I consider myself as a new photographer. In the beginning I've also tried a few but with different quality pictures. In think now I have a pretty good idea of pictures that will be excepted. But sometimes I can't resist to try and uploading a picture that I'm not completely sure about, but I just have to try. If it gets rejected it's usually for the reason I doubted to upload, but I've tried. For example, these are from a few years ago when I just started to get interested in photography. My feeling is that these pictures are not my best, but they got accepted and even one sold already so ... I'm glad I tried! ;-)
[imgr]37007803[/imgr] [imgr]37007577[/imgr][imgl]37007513[/imgl]

April 24, 2014


I think that most of use had the same DT experience; rejection and AR issues at the beginning. To clear the low AR, I am thinking about creating another account and start from scratch instead of try to improve the Acceptance Ratio. My AR is about 95% monthly now with 50-70 pictures per month.

April 24, 2014


My acceptance ratio still suffers from my beginner time when I submitted anything to get something accepted. Especially at the beginning it is more or less a "TRY AND ERROR" but it is better to do it only with a few photos.

April 24, 2014


Excellent advice, after only a few weeks of being with DT I'm quickly learning the old adage, 'quality' rather than 'quantity'. Thanks to Mirco for the sage advice.

April 24, 2014


I think many of us did the same mistake, thinking "more is better". Another case where the quality is more important than quantity.
Congratulations.. Well done.. Thanks for sharing.. :-)

If you have time have a look to my portfolio, I need your comments!

April 23, 2014


A very useful tip. Unfortunately I made the same mistake as you, but I have learnt a lot and am still learning. Thanks for sharing :)

April 23, 2014


Very true. My acceptance rate is up over 75% and I and now watching what is refused and reading he reasons why and learning from that.

April 23, 2014


and then how much accept rate in the past and now?
It affects the ranking of search obviously?

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