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why are my photos not selling on shutterstock? are my images bad?


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There are very saturated themes, such as flowers and fireworks. On the other hand, photos of specific places and moments, such as "fireworks in" (name any city) and "field of flowers in" (name the place), can attract more sales. Photograph your city, photograph editorial content (buildings, people on the street). Try to capture images that only you, from where you are in the world, could capture and that do not exist in the image bank. Do not neglect hashtags, always try to use the maximum amount, be specific. Either way, you have very few images (think of hundreds, then thousands). It's a slow process, just keep going, be patient and have fun along the way.

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Honest opinion.

The photos are snapshots.  Lots are very underexposed and have extremely harsh lighting.

They're badly composed.

For example Beautiful Photo Cherry Blossoms Stock Photo (Edit Now) 1731747844 (shutterstock.com).  Its a very underexposed photograph of a cherry blossom with an ugly power line background.  It looks like you've just pointed a mobile phone at a tree and taken a photo.

Look at your competition in the same area.  Again an example, Cherry blossom.

Cheery Blossom Images, Stock Photos & Vectors | Shutterstock.  7100+ images.  And look at the quality.  Now think if, as a buyer you'd choose your distant, under exposed, power-line version over any of those.  Bluntly, they wouldn't.

Again you have a badly underexposed snapshot of a Rhododendron with a cluttered background full of weeds.  Why would a buyer choose that over the 1000s of images here ( Rhododendron Stock Photos, Images & Photography | Shutterstock )?

Same for fireworks and everything else.  Do a search for the topics you have and look at the standard of the competition.  Thats what you need to beat in order for a buyer to choose your images over the 10s of thousands already online.

To add to the technical errors the keywording is small and inaccurate.  No thought given to them at all.

You're taking mobile phone style snapshots with no thought of technical standards or composition in VERY crowded fields where there are (i) huge numbers already online and (ii) of far higher quality.  Thats even IF a buyer could find them.

Ultimately Shutterstock used to have standards.  During those times every single image would have been rejected as it simply isn't of the standard needed to go into the library.  Sadly they've axed all quality standards now and accept at random anything.

Finally, you have 15 photos. You need 100s or most likely 1000s of images to start to see regular sales.

SS has a 250,000,000+ images to chose from.  15 low quality images just isnt going to work.

Always think of yourself as a buyer and ask "why would someone buy my image over another one on here".  If you cant think of a reason, its not going to sell.

Thats my brutal opinion.  SS isn't a dumping ground for low quality mobile phone snapshots.  If you want to sell you need to massively improve both the technical and create aspects of images and then improve keywording.  Once thats done, upload a few thousand more and you'll see sales.

 

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7 minutes ago, Former_Poster said:

Look at your competition in the same area.  Again an example, Cherry blossom.

Cheery Blossom Images, Stock Photos & Vectors | Shutterstock.  7100+ images. 

 

And that's only the people who can't spell 'cherry'.  If you look at the images of people who can actually spell cherry, there are many more ie 1,098,687

https://www.shutterstock.com/search/cherry+blossom?kw=shutterstock&c3apidt=p11180842815&gclid=Cj0KCQiAhP2BBhDdARIsAJEzXlFFfjA0fFr6rKzSz-NktrDAFfCHWvGVJwotdinKJ1rF6CjHNnsVWmUaAnntEALw_wcB&gclsrc=aw.ds

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12 minutes ago, Former_Poster said:

Honest opinion.

The photos are snapshots.  Lots are very underexposed and have extremely harsh lighting.

They're badly composed.

For example Beautiful Photo Cherry Blossoms Stock Photo (Edit Now) 1731747844 (shutterstock.com).  Its a very underexposed photograph of a cherry blossom with an ugly power line background.  It looks like you've just pointed a mobile phone at a tree and taken a photo.

Look at your competition in the same area.  Again an example, Cherry blossom.

Cheery Blossom Images, Stock Photos & Vectors | Shutterstock.  7100+ images.  And look at the quality.  Now think if, as a buyer you'd choose your distant, under exposed, power-line version over any of those.  Bluntly, they wouldn't.

Again you have a badly underexposed snapshot of a Rhododendron with a cluttered background full of weeds.  Why would a buyer choose that over the 1000s of images here ( Rhododendron Stock Photos, Images & Photography | Shutterstock )?

Same for fireworks and everything else.  Do a search for the topics you have and look at the standard of the competition.  Thats what you need to beat in order for a buyer to choose your images over the 10s of thousands already online.

To add to the technical errors the keywording is small and inaccurate.  No thought given to them at all.

You're taking mobile phone style snapshots with no thought of technical standards or composition in VERY crowded fields where there are (i) huge numbers already online and (ii) of far higher quality.  Thats even IF a buyer could find them.

Ultimately Shutterstock used to have standards.  During those times every single image would have been rejected as it simply isn't of the standard needed to go into the library.  Sadly they've axed all quality standards now and accept at random anything.

Finally, you have 15 photos. You need 100s or most likely 1000s of images to start to see regular sales.

SS has a 250,000,000+ images to chose from.  15 low quality images just isnt going to work.

Always think of yourself as a buyer and ask "why would someone buy my image over another one on here".  If you cant think of a reason, its not going to sell.

Thats my brutal opinion.  SS isn't a dumping ground for low quality mobile phone snapshots.  If you want to sell you need to massively improve both the technical and create aspects of images and then improve keywording.  Once thats done, upload a few thousand more and you'll see sales.

 

More than 350,000,000 images right now.

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 "SS isn't a dumping ground for low quality mobile phone snapshots"

Since SS slashed the commission payed to contributors those are the only type of photos worth uploading. Who in their right mind would pay to travel, pay models or pay location fees to upload to SS now? 

 

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19 hours ago, Tani._16 said:

https://www.shutterstock.com/g/Tani+__?rid=265033120&utm_medium=email&utm_source=ctrbreferral-link

this is my profile and i have 15 photos in total. why are they not selling?

  1. You need hundreds of good quality images to start making sales.
  2. Your images don't have much commercial utility.
  3. For each of your images, there are hundreds or thousands of the same topic that are much better quality than yours.

For each of your images, do a search on Shutterstock of the same subject and see what you have to compete against.

If you want to succeed, find subjects that haven't been covered yet, or subjects with little coverage and do them better.

Then use good titles and relevant keywords. Using keywords that don't apply just frustrates the buyers and will negatively affect your sales potential. For example, your photo https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/image-grass-water-droplets-on-them-1928038271 of water on grass, why did you use the keywords animal, brown,  construction,demolished, fence, hardwood, lumber, oak, tree, wall, and most of the others you used??? None of your keywords are relevant.

I looked at a couple of your other images and they didn't have relevant keywords either. Even if you had good images (which you don't) you won't sell anything if you don't use relevant keywords. Use relevant keywords that apply to the image, not random keywords pulled out of nowhere that have nothing to do with what the potential buyer sees.

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17 hours ago, Wilm Ihlenfeld said:

More than 350,000,000 images right now.

Just a fine point:

Photos Only = 231,937,756 stock photos

But still that's a bunch of competition for common subjects, and anyone who does those subjects shouldn't really expect many sales. I'll only speak for myself. There are enough good advise comments here already for anyone new.

Fireworks the entire site 500,643 fireworks stock photos and then Myself - fireworks images 24 fireworks stock photos, so lets see I have 24 and the rest of the competition has 500,619. I'd better have the best ever fireworks shot in the world, or the next time I get a download for a "fireworks" it's got to be that magic right one, that someone wanted. Assuming mine are buried somewhere down the list of the 5,000 pages of Fireworks.

Highly Unlikely!

fireworks-against-black-background-compo

Sold twice since 2010 I'm amazed at that and could only guess why, or how anyone found it, but that would only be a guess. What I'm pointing out is, I may upload these, but I don't expect them to sell. Anyone who uploads a fireworks photos shouldn't expect them to be good selling, because of the competition and numbers.

@Tani._16

Find things to shoot that aren't already uploaded in the tens or hundreds of thousands. Or make a version that's better than anything else already here. Or make something that's different from most of the versions already online for sale.

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