How to Sell Photography Online

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Learn how to sell photography online with this complete guide. Visit https://www.payloadz.com to start selling your photos and pictures.

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How to Sell Photography Online

  1. 1. HOW TO SELL PHOTOGRAPHYONLINEA BASIC GUIDE FROM EQUIPMENT TO SUCCESSFUL SALES
  2. 2. CONTENTSIntroduction to Sell Photography Online......................................3Equipment Necessary for Professional Images.........................3Software Programs for Editing...........................................................4Traditional vs. Microstock....................................................................4Agent vs. Selling on Your Own............................................................5Licensed, Royalty Free, Managing Your Rights..........................6Exclusive vs. Non Exclusive..................................................................7Test Samples- What will Sell................................................................7Marketing Strategies for Success......................................................8Bringing Your Photography Together............................................8
  3. 3. INTRODUCTION TO SELL PHOTOGRAPHYONLINEAnyone can try to sell photography online thanks to the beauty ofthe Internet. If you have photographs that you believe wouldsell,it’s time to learn how you can sell them successfully. It takesproper equipment, an understanding of copyrights and the law,testing samples and the right marketing. This eBook focuses oneight sections, all designed to teach you tosell photography onlineand to make the right choices for creating a successful setup toensure your photography sells, including website information,using an agent or going through the process by yourself.To sell anything, including photographs, successfully, you need aproduct someone will want and a good marketing strategy. TheOccupational Outlook Handbook from the Bureau of LaborStatistics estimates that the job outlook for professionalphotographers will grow 13 percent between 2010 and 2020. Thisoutlook is about average. There were 139,500 jobs available forprofessional photographers in 2010. The handbook, however,doesn’t include independent photographers in its estimates.Anyone with creativity, a good eye and technical understanding ofphotography can become a success.EQUIPMENT NECESSARY FOR PROFESSIONALIMAGESYou need a digital camera and a tripodfor this business. Thebiggest names of the numerous digital cameras on the market areNikon and Canon. Once you choose a proper body for your digitalSLR camera, invest in different lenses, a flash and filters to
  4. 4. enhance your photographs.You also need a powerful computer for running the photo editingsoftware that hogs memory and computer storage. Memory cardsare one option; however, you will need an external hard drive foryour computer strictly for storage and to create a backup for allyour images.SOFTWARE PROGRAMS FOR EDITINGPhotoshop by Adobe, the most well known software programamong professionals, allows you to manipulate a photograph toany degree you wish. It’s possible to create layers to improve thecoloring, contrast and brightness. Photoshop can turn a colorphoto into black and white or vice versa. You wouldn’t want todisplay imperfect photographs on your website or sellers’ page. Aphoto software program that allows editing ensures that youdisplay only the best.Photoshop is only one of the software programs available.Arcsoft, another photo editor, is a good program for home userswho send photographs to friends and family. It can get youstarted with basic edits, like removing a spot on the photo. SerifPhoto Plus, Xara Photo and Graphic Designer, ACDSee PhotoEditor, Photo Explosion and Photo Impression are other softwareprograms available to professionals who sell photography online.Check out some or all of them and compare the features with thecost. You want a program that can ensure your prints are perfectbefore you upload them online for purchase.TRADITIONAL VS. MICROSTOCKTraditional stock photography is licensed for specific uses. Ownersof stock photographytypically copyright their creative works.Traditional stock is often sold in full sizes, whereas microstock issold in smaller sized images.
  5. 5. The Internet made microstock photography possible, andthousands of photographers took note. Their best avenue becamemicrostock photography sites. Microstock companies are definedby three parameters: The source of the image is exclusively on theInternet. A wide range of photographers, often hobbyists andamateurs, supply Microstock. Microstock photographers sellphotos at low rates, starting from as low as 20 cents, which mayinclude a royalty-free license. Also, an agent usually runsmicrostock photography, and a newcomer needs to be acceptedbefore they sell photography online.AGENT VS. SELLING ON YOUR OWNAn agent has access to tools and resources that you might not.When you sell microstock photography online, your customerpurchases the right to download the image. Microstock agenciesact as middlemen to help promote their clients’ work. Theirmarketing arm is often larger than yours. Any agent can advertiseand market your work, whether it’s exclusively online or not.Agents typically get a commission or feethat ranges from 30 to 65percent of your sales.If you wish to sell photography on your own instead, you need awebsite, a marketing plan and a way to secure your images soyourwork isn’t downloaded by unauthorized people. You also need tounderstand copyrights, trademarks and the law to ensure propersafety of your photography. When you sell photography online byyourself, your budget may be limited for marketing, equipmentand software. But you’re not charged an agency commission oraffiliate fee.Another method of selling photos online is through online sellingplatforms such as PayLoadz. Such platforms facilitate the processof selling photos by providing the payment gateway for accepting
  6. 6. payments and ensuring that photos are stored and deliveredsecurely. The fee charged by these platforms is nominal becausethey charge a transaction fee only, not commission as agents do.LICENSED, ROYALTY FREE, MANAGING YOURRIGHTSSelling your photos online requires you to learn something aboutthe law and various terms you might come across. But, it’s best tospeak with a lawyerto manage your rights when you sellphotography online. That way, you can understand your rightsand have any questions answered about breach of licensing orcopyrights. If you go through an agency, your rights are governedby the policies laid down by the particular agency.Copyright—A copyright registers your work with the governmentto protect it.Trademark—A trademark is the name you operate under.You alsoregister this with the government.Licensing—Licensing concerns the rights you allow another partyto have.Commercial Rights—This refers to a photo that’s designed tocreate incomefor use by a commercial entity. The photo is oftenusedin a brochure or magazine advertisement.Noncommercial Rights—This refers to a photo that’s not designedfor a commercial group, individual or other entity.It’s for personalenjoyment. A landscape photo for sale to be hung in a homemight have noncommercial rights.First Rights—This means that one person has the rights to thework before anyone else can purchase the license. The personwith first rights can also decline the work, freeing it to be sold to
  7. 7. another interested party.Serial Rights—This applies to magazines in which one magazineholds the rights to the photo.The photo cannot be sold elsewhere.One-Time-Use Rights—This occurs when you allow a customer topurchase the right to buy your image for use one time.Royalty Free—This occurs when you sell photography withoutgaining any royalties for the rights you hold.EXCLUSIVE VS. NONEXCLUSIVEWhen you sell photography independently, decide whether youwant tooffer exclusive or nonexclusive rights for use. When yousell a photo and its exclusive rights, you cannot sell that imageagain: You have sold all rights to it.You would typically chargemore for your photo if you also sell exclusive rights. When youown the photo and its exclusive rights, you typically wouldn’tallow purchasers to reprint or resell prints of the image unlessthey pay more for exclusive rights. You might allow one downloadof the print before you lock it again. If someone wants multiplecopies of that print, he would need to pay each time.Nonexclusive rights are just the opposite. You have the right tosell your photographyover and over again to many interestedbuyerswhen you sell under nonexclusive rights. People whopurchase the image would not ownit. People typically pay less fora photo with nonexclusive rights. While the one-time pay is lower,you can make up for that by reselling the image. You hold thelegal rights to sell the image how and when you wish withnonexclusive rights.TEST SAMPLES—WHAT WILL SELLBefore you begin to sell photography online, produce some test
  8. 8. samples, and take them around to different places. Merchandisemarts, local fairs and local craft festivals are good places to testyour photography. You’re trying to determine what sells.During the test phase, learn what price you can fetch for yourphotographs. Use that information to price your art online. Testmarkets also tell you which subjects, such as landscape, wildlife,portraits or graphic art, will sell. The subjects that sell well canchange based on trends; however, testing the current marketbefore you sell photography can give you an idea of what is likelyto sell.MARKETING STRATEGIES FOR SUCCESSSites such as Deviant Art, ShutterFly and iStockphotos sellphotography online. Some specialize in microstock and promoteyour images to companies and corporations. You might becharged a fee for those types of websites. Free- or agent-basedwebsitesdo the marketing for you; however, you can market, too,by setting up a blog that directs readers to wherever your photosare. You can also drive traffic to your photos via Twitter, Facebookand other social media.If you sell photography as an independent site, you should alsouseTwitter, Facebook, social media and blogs for marketingpurposes. Consider using Google and Yahoo! Advertisements asadditional means to promote your photography. If you post yourphotos in Google Images, Yahoo! Images or independently fromyour main website, make certain they have a trademark orcopyright to prevent free downloading. The more places youadvertise, the better your chances to sell photography online.BRINGING YOUR PHOTOGRAPHY TOGETHERYou have learned the basics about the equipment you will need toedit your photography for sale, as well as how to sell photography
  9. 9. online. You now know the difference between microstock sitesand selling traditional photography. The information in this eBookprovided you with some insight into agency websites, yourlicensing rights and the law regarding selling photography. ThiseBook recommended testing your photography before launchingyour business online to determine what pieces will sell. Finally,you learned about some marketing tips and methods about sellingphotography online.Bringing what you have learned together puts you in a position tosell photography successfully online. Once you have completedthe legworkfor creating images to sell, have determinedwhichavenue you want to sell through and how you will sellphotography, get busy attracting visitors who can view andpurchase your work through third-party websites or through yourown independent e-commerce website.Find us at: www.payloadz.comFacebook: www.facebook.com/payloadz Twitter:www.twitter.com/payloadz

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