Sell Your Photos
There seems to be an emerging trend in the world of photography where more and more photographers are happy to give their photos away for virtually nothing. What I am referring to here is the emergence of more and more micro-stock sites.
It was just last week that I was invited to join another such site in New Zealand. The payout figure per image was less than $1 NZ, not really the way to make a descent living. To rub salt into the wound, what a lot of these types of sites do is have a minimum payout figure of around $100. So to make a measly $100 you need to have more than 100 downloads of your images, some photographers simply don't get there.
Don't get me wrong, micro-stock sites have their place, just not if you are a photographer. If you are looking for images to purchase they are great! You can get lots of images for your next web project or presentation very cheaply.
We've had a look at the different ways that you can go about getting your images on-line for the world to see including: micro-stock sites, stock image sites, your own gallery and free or paid image hosting. There is also another possibility which we haven't discussed but can be a very effective way to show off your pictures a photo-blog.
Photo-blogs are weblogs or diaries arranged in a chronological order but primarily convey a message with images rather than text. Each image may be accompanied by text but the emphasis is on the pictures rather than the written word. If you opt for this type of site it is important that you keep your content fresh with new images at least several times a week, or daily if possible. If they are of a high standard your visitors will keep coming back.
Getting Visitors to your site...
So, you've built your brand new image gallery website but there are very few visitors. If your website and business are going to be sustainable you need to do something about that!
There are a number of simple things that you can do that will result in an increase in traffic. By targeting the right sort of visitors to your site and having fresh high quality content your visitors will keep coming back time and time again.
Get your site Indexed
You need to get your website indexed by all the major search engines. At the time of writing this article (and my experience over the past couple of years), google and google images will be the most important to you.
Search Engine Optimization...
There are lots of good sites on the internet that specialize in SEO, detailing different ideas and techniques. We are not trying to duplicate those sites here! We will focus on a few key areas that we feel are important for a successful image gallery website.
In order to achieve good rankings in SERP's (Search Engine Results Pages), which ultimately results in increased visitor’s and revenue you need to start thinking about things before starting to build your site!
Deciding on what software to use...
You've had a look at the different gallery software available to you. You're still not sure yet which one to go with. If you are not comfortable with an Open Source platform for your portfolio you can always start looking at commercial software packages - I won't be recommending any here.
Just remember, commercial software is not necessarily going to be better or more functional than Open Source software. The one point of difference is that you should be able to get some more structured support.
How to get your images online...
You've done all your research. You know your target audience and your competition, you have an understanding of what you are trying to achieve by putting your images online. Your portfolio has a sufficiently diverse range of images ready for display. It's now time to start attracting some customers!
Let's explore some of the methods that you can use to get your pictures online ready for the world to see.
This is the first in a series of articles about selling you photos online! Over the coming weeks we will explore in greater detail what we have discussed here.
So, you're a photographer? You want to sell your photos online? But, you don't know where to start!
When it comes to selling your images on-line or anything else for that matter there are a few things that need to be understood and lots of questions that you need to research and answer:
- Know your target audience.
- Find your niche. Don't try to be everything to everybody.
- Know your opposition who they are, what they can offer and how they do it. What are they doing that you can do better? How are they marketing their products or services?
- What makes your product or service better than theirs?
- Have a business plan and marketing strategy.
You're probably thinking that this all sounds a bit cliche right now. You might be right! But, the above points are all very important!