Hello everyone. I wanted to share an opinion with you, and see if there are more people with similar views to mine.
In my opinion, the system that Dreamstime offers us, new contributors, is highly unfair, due to the fact that the images that have 0 or 1 level simply are not viewed and bought at all. The only images that appear high in the search results are those that are lvl 5. Which means that if you are new to this site, even if you provide the best quality and most creative images, you will not make any sales during a long, long time (maybe never in the worst case). At other stock portals, where I uploaded a similar number of photos, I earned around 8-10 times more than at Dreamstime. So I really do not see any point, why should anyone waste his/her time for keywording here. I tried contacting the people who work as support team, but the only reply that I got was 'oh, you have too low potfolio/database exposure, so you have to upload more photos'. Which means more time wasted, because I have no guarantee at all that it will actually work.
Do you guys have similar feeling about what Dreamstime is doing (or rather not doing) for new contributors? I will be grateful for your opinions and I hope that my post will not be deleted by DT staff.
Your logic has one flaw and that's the premise of "fairness." There is nothing that says any stock agency is supposed to be fair to you or anyone.
But it is apparent that DT is failing to gain market share. Revenue overall is going down for everyone at all agencies but from what people say, DT is becoming the worst place for contributors to devote their time. It's a shame because DT treats contributors the best but an extra 10% of earnings doesn't mean much when it's 10% of nothing. Same goes for being Exclusive, it doesn't mean much now when Exclusives are ranked lower in the search algorithm compared to before.
Nowadays an agency is as good as loyal its users are. Huge budgets and efforts will pale in comparison to what contributors can do for promoting a site. So if you feel your portfolio is not expose itself, try to take a look at the big picture. Dreamstime is a place that has twice the number of contributors of its next competitor. This means that whatever your chances there, they are half with Dreamstime. Nonetheless, having the largest community of designers in the world means your work is seen by most buyers. Start with small expectations and work your way to the top. The 5 digits checks are not available that easy. It is not enough to post and wait, you need to see what sells, adapt your work, improve, promote the site. Promotion is a big factor for Dreamstime and every contributor or user should try to share a word about it. A review, a post on social media, a comment in an article, everything helps bringing awareness. Community is not just a word, help Dreamstime to increase your sales.
Very good Achilles . If we want to sale we need Marketing. We can promote our portofolio and try to be better than the rest. Fevredream you have 124 sales at 602 photos.that is good in my oppinion. Im a newbie and i am glad that i sold 4 :)) but till winter i bet i will have at least 200 sales and 1000 photos online :D
Hi Fevredream. Quick answer to your question is: No, this is not the worst site for new contributors. It is friendly and you can learn a lot from the rest of the contributors. Even you can have some fun helping to the newbies.
But said this, and from a business point of view, I trully understand your frustation. We can upload more images, promote the site or even dance tango, but as per the search engine, new images are hardly sold. I hope thet this will change in the future.
In the meantime, do not get dissapointed, try to enjoy and spread your work.
Oh, yes. That is really convenient. We will give you 20% of what we get from your files and you have to not only devote your time to making photos, uploading them, keywording them properly, but you should also advertise us, so that you sell anything!! Clap, clap, clap, a great business model. /Sarcasm off
Thanks for your opinions guys, I can see that not only I have a similar problem. I think DT should really do something about it or it will start loosing contributors like myself (I decided that I will not upload even a single photo to DT, until they change their search policy). I understand that for some people just having their photos online for sale can be rewarding (it was my case at the beginning as well), but as I noticed that my work is actually valuable to the customers and gets sold pretty well at other portals, then I really do not see any point in uploading any more photos to DT. It is simply a waste of my time, which I can devote to uploading more images to where they actually bring me some $$. And just to give you a small comparison of my sales from the very same photos:
******** and ********: around 500 each ********: over 1,3k Dreamstime 124.....
I think I do not have to mention that the earnings are also comparably higher at those 3 than at DT.
Oh and one more thing. I am a travel photographer, I sell photos that I take during my vacation mostly. And in case of this kind of photography it is important for the customers to get the most recent photos of a place/landmark/city/cityscape. In case of DT the clients get photos that were taken 5-7 years ago high in search results. Take Dubai for example, the fastest growing city in the world nowadays and imagine that DT is selling content that does not have even half of the buildings that were finished in the recent years... See my point?
P.S. Luis, I would gladly help others (although I do not reckon myself as an advanced photographer), and I always try to learn from people better than myself, but unfortunately I am working full time at the University, so I cannot devote as much time to photography as I would like to, and that is why I can only work with what I've got, therefore I select those sites that offer me something more that 'friendly atmosphere'... However, DT is really nice and friendly, I do not argue with that.
I have found that the older images sell best, but the good news is that time can never stand still and our life clocks are ticking away every second, so we will all have old images on here eventually. Even if we do not benefit from it our great grandchildren are going to thank us for leaving them such profitable legacies.
Hi Tomasz, according to your stats Dreamstime is on the fourth place. I know about 10 agencies involved in the business of stock images and footage and I suppose their number is bigger in reality so, the fourth place is not the worst.
Nikon D600 and lenses with different focal length; Olympus SP-320
I can understand the frustration. I've felt it, too. I've adapted my expectations, though. I went in thinking that I'd gather up some money every month, but now I see that it's a slower growing thing than that. And really, it's probably better that way. Even in the short time I've been here, my photography has improved by leaps and bounds. I went from shooting in JPG to shooting in RAW and developing a workflow. I've gone from DPP to DXO Optics, from not having a remote shutter release to having one, and so on.
Also, I think the days are dead where you can expect a company to do the promotion for you. I know published authors who have to promote their own paper books -- and I've seen their stuff for sale in B&N. I know it's been common in the music industry for a long time. Why should it be any different here?
From my experience self promotion never works. If I want to buy an ebook I always look on Amazon and if I want an image I search the agencies. I never look for them on Twitter, Facebook or blogs. With 60,000,000 images on Dreamstime everyone should be very pleased to get any sales. It means that out of tens of thousands of options the buyer has preferred yours. If you like it for a hobby take photos but if you want to make money be an estate agent or a banker!
Fevredream, Your points concerning rapidly evolving locale and the obsolescence of old images is a powerful one and undeniable.
Admin Achilles, Your points of "loyalty" are well founded but the truth is that incentive fuels initiative. When I started contributing to DT a few years ago, the search priority was "most relevant" and I received regular sales ... few ... but regular. I posted my sales in my circles, I used the DT URL in all of my related posted, I plugged it at every opportunity. Now ... I never plug DT. Rather, I plug the portals that have rendered exponentially more sales with half the images (now 2/3 as I am now uploading to those portals vice DT). Just being honest.
I think at some point, DT is going to have to weigh the possibility/probability that "part" of the reason that they are losing out on market shares is that they are losing the "loyalty" of a great number of its contributors and with it, their incentive to promote the DT community. Sure, leave an edge to the Exclusive contributors. They deserve it. BUT ... find a way to throw a bone to the rest of the lot (i.e. search priority). It'll pay off.
Quoted Message: Nowadays an agency is as good as loyal its users are. Huge budgets and efforts will pale in comparison to what contributors can do for promoting a site. So if you feel your portfolio is not expose itself, try to take a look at the big picture. Dreamstime is a place that has twice the number of contributors of its next competitor. This means that whatever your chances there, they are half with Dreamstime. Nonetheless, having the largest community of designers in the world means your work is seen by most buyers. Start with small expectations and work your way to the top. The 5 digits checks are not available that easy. It is not enough to post and wait, you need to see what sells, adapt your work, improve, promote the site. Promotion is a big factor for Dreamstime and every contributor or user should try to share a word about it. A review, a post on social media, a comment in an article, everything helps bringing awareness. Community is not just a word, help Dreamstime to increase your sales.
Hello everyone. I wanted to share an opinion with you, and see if there are more people with similar views to mine.
In my opinion, the system that Dreamstime offers us, new contributors, is highly unfair, due to the fact that the images that have 0 or 1 level simply are not viewed and bought at all. The only images that appear high in the search results are those that are lvl 5.
Life is fair....DT is fair....SAID NO ONE EVER! I can safely assume you probably thought of getting into stock, researched it, saw the money that can be made...& jumped both feet in. Went out & burst your camera card at the seams filling it with pics of everything you saw, then came home & uploaded your pictures, patiently waited while they were being accepted one by one, & finally put out there for the world to inspect (& hopefully buy)> But alas...your little get rich quick scheme failed to come to fruition. It goes that way for some (the making money off their products)....those are the HARD WORKERS who KNOW success isn't easy nor is it cheap. They are NOT WHINING about DT ain't fair. My story is similar to yours, except that I KNEW this wasn't a get rich overnight deal. Frustrated? Certainly I am...but only at myself... for not working HARDER. I have been a member since February. I have uploaded 86 pics...& have only sold 2. Now, some would say that's good, because there are some people been a member here wayyyy longer than me...& have yet to sell 1, even though they may have 500 pics uploaded.. You can't cry about DT just cause YOU aren't making the effort. Some person in this thread said they won't promo DT anymore....not DT's loss, I can guarantee you that. They have THOUSANDS of photographers & videographers & artist who sell the vector stuff... THEY DON'T NEED YOU....they have people signing up every day. On the flip side, they lose people every day, too. I promo my pics through my public Google+ page....AND I ALSO PROMOTE OTHER PHOTOGRAPHERS, TOO. People taking WAY better pics than I. And I put DT out there on G+, also. When you have a product (stocks, videos, vectors)YOU HAFTA ADVERTISE. Advertising is the lifeblood of capitalism. Without it, business dies...same as you & I...no blood, we dead. I'm trying to make a go of this, because I can no longer work my preferred occupation ( pipefitting) because of age & physical limitations that have came about with age. So... this is more than JUST A HOBBY to me...I'm, trying to break in. Posts & threads like this that I come across every now & again (Thank God there are few) INCITE me to have to put MY 2 cents worth in, so that hopefully my ranting will motivate you to become BETTER...not WHINE about how DT ain't fair, or you ain't gonna promo DT anymore because of blah, blah, blah. Hey...That's all good & fine...but opinions are like B**tholes...they all smell & nobody wants to hear from them. As for me...I'm going to keep grinding. Oh, & one last thing...about where DT ranks among stock sites....if you do a search for one of those lists like..."Who are the best stock photography sites?" or anything like that....those sites come up that list & rank stock sites...& if you go to each & every one that you are able to...you will see... DT ranks in THE TOP 5 ON ALL SITES!!!!! So I would say, to those who must complain...you are on a TERRIFIC site selling your product...shut up, sit down...& keep click, click, clicking away....MAKE THAT MONEY!!!!! And one final note: for those of you who think I am brown-nosing DT...no, I am not...defending DT? Maybe... but only because THIS is the ONLY place I upload my pics...so basically...you can say I am defending MY products. Peace out, yall.
Sony Cybershot 7.2 megapixel
I also use a Samsung Android smartphone.
I work freelance for at least 18 AD-agencies, art-directors! sounds impressive doesnt it but really only 3 or 4 gives regular commissions. So having a million designers as customers dont mean a thing if they doint tap in and search for a picky!...and when they search they hardly want to see some damned subscription-package right up front. i.e. they dont want to get told what to buy they want to make their own choice!
To the OP!! fair??? since when have business become fair? you want a fair business? oh well mate youre in the wrong game, this is cut-throat! this is the biggest commercial cogwheel in the world of photography!...as it happens DT is famous for looking after newcomers and smaller contributors, at some expense of established contributors of course. However we dont mind, hehe! we have sort of become used to that.
Here is a free tip!! rather then shooting 20 almost identical shots of the same subject. Try be a bit versatile instead, try getting yourself a bit of a niche and if not then try all different subjects instead.
I just started here and signed up for Exclusivity more because I can't keep track of what is on one and not the other. With barely 50 photos uploaded and a month in, I sold 3 photos. Woo, I made $1.19 that I made never see because who knows if I will sell more. One photo was unique (lambeau field) with only two pages for search. The other two photos were from my travels to Belize (37 pages of search - could not find my photos in the first 5 pages, gave up after that many)
I don't think I will become one of those 5 digital a month/bi-monthly payout or even a 3 digit payout anytime soon. Anyone thinking they can get to top of searches in a day is a daydreamer.
I like that DT has blogs, and has a community. I tried flickr for such a long time and was unmotivated when you respond or try to start conversations and you get crickets. So far, I like the community feel and don't feel like my 3 sales makes me any less of a contributor.
Okay, yes... it is frustrating to not see my photos in the editorials for Houston Astros anywhere and are current 2017 games and players. All I see are games and players from 2006. Seriously, Editorials should be most "CURRENT" and my photos are pretty good, clear, and relevant. But, we wait...we continue to push at it. Mom always said good things come to those who wait.
Quoted Message: I just started here and signed up for Exclusivity more because I can't keep track of what is on one and not the other.
I'm not sure if it's a good thing anymore being exclusive here. It appears being exclusive carries less weight in the search algorithm.
I also requested to sell a product on another site, it was a Photoshop tool but I was told there are no exceptions. I can't sell items that do not compete with DT?
Both amateur and professional contributors say sales are better elsewhere.
DT has spent all their resources the past few years on SEO strategies but that is not how you grow market share. Social media is a fad, not the new way of doing business. Even before the internet, there was a difference between getting exposure versus getting the Job done.