If you will carefully read this ultimate guide you will came to know that how can you start earning with stock photography sites. So, Keep rolling down and find out how ?

Do you want to start earning with stock photography sites ? By selling some of your amazing photos you can start your online money making.

Ultimate Guide to Start Earning with Stock Photography sites

By selling your images to stock photography sites you can get started with your earnings. Do you know these stock photography sites are considered to be the powerhouse of creativity and global deposits for amazing photographs.

Ever heard about this name, Shutterstock ? I'm pretty sure while looking for images under google images section you have seen some images with a watermark of shutterstock.

Shutterstock is one of the most famous website which puts it on the top of stock photography sites. Market reputation is also amazing of this stock photography website. Shutterstock has over 14.3million photos from around 280,000+ photographers globally. This is why it is among the best multidimensional search engines of any stock photo site.

Millions of photographers are making money by selling their amazing photos on these stock photography websites. Whether you are a webmaster or a designer, Stock photos are necessary for your online business.

Designers need high quality photos every other day especially when their clients don't have their own graphics or images. In such cases these stock photography sites seems to be very useful for designers.

Designers are very busy and in such case if they find design resources like (vectors, textures, icons, PSD files) then they can actually save a lot of their time. For photographers and graphics designers, selling their stock graphics or stock photos can be an excellent idea for making money online.

By reading this guide carefully you can know some of the basics of stock photography and how you can start making money with these sites.

How to Make Money with Stock Photography Sites

What is Stock Photography ?

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Before getting started with this guide, you need to firstly know that what does Stock Photography means ?

By this term it refers to the supply of some existing photographs which can be used for specific use that are well arranged and licensed.
In other words it is a portfolio of photographs where people gathers and uses those photos and images on their website, brochures, magazines, web designs and development, graphics design etc.

Using stock photos you can get appropriate photos without even hiring any photographers for your website or designing work, that will save your lots of time staying under budget.

Undoubtedly, Stock images get popular very fast as people promote their products from these images online. On the other hand photographer gets their commission rate from these stock photography websites.

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Start Your Earnings ! But how ?

We have just discussed above about stock photography now it comes how to make money by selling photos online.
If you are a professional photographer and wanted to share some of your amazing clicks to the world then this way could bring you some extra cash in your pocket.

Yeah ! Your photos could help you earning few bucks if you know how to correctly utilize your work in correct places. You just need to pick up some best websites where you can submit your work and start your stock photography earnings.

Though, before I tell you those photo submission sites, here are some other ways which can also be beneficial for your work :-

1. You can upload your work i.e, portfolio of photographs on your website. Allow users to download some of those photos and then restrict other stuffs to purchase. You can even sell your website advertising space.

2. For your private clients you can build a separate gallery where you can deal with those clients.

3. Selling your photos for merchandise such as cups, calendars, t-shirts etc. can also be done.

4. But if you are not having your own website then don't worry, Upload your portfolio to stock photography websites and start earnings through commission rates.

These are some most popular ways by which you can start making money online as a professional photographer. If you are not satisfied with these ways then you can search online for some more ways but these are the regular and trusted ways for making money from your photos.

From Which Photography Sites You Can Start Making Money ?

There are a large number of websites for buying and selling stock photographs but some of them are still withstand due to number of reasons.

Each photography sites has their own rules and regulations on which they accept your photos. There are some strict rules upon the photographs which are submitted by the owner.

There are various payment structures and commission rates offered by different websites. So, In order to understand the website’s rules and guidelines you must go through the FAQ's section properly and submitting your work.

Below I have listed some of the best and most useful stock photography sites that works on pay per download. This means the number of download is directly proportional to your earnings, more your photos will be downloaded more commission you will get. Here's some of them :-


These top 5 stock photography sites should be considered. Here you can register for free and start selling your photographs. But let me tell you that submitting your photographs to these websites are not easy, because tons of photographs are submitted over these websites which effects on beginners not performing good. You should follow rules and guidelines carefully before submitting your great work over these stock photography sites.

I'll suggest you to signup for these popular websites and try to submit some of your amazing photographs. I'm sure you'll get a positive response from them.

Keep in mind, you have to try multiple times in order to get your work approved. You'll start making money with stock photography sites but till then just remember DON'T  LOOSE HOPE!

How Much Money You Can Make Selling Photos ?

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The answer is quite simple, more the number of photos you get approved more chances will be there for making money.

Sometimes payment per download gives you only few cents but you should remember you can increase your earnings if you manage to make a set of quality stock photographs. There are some websites which even pays more for photographs if reached over various download levels.

Example : You can be paid more if your photograph manages to download over 5 to 10 times per photo.

Another thing, You can also get paid more for your stock photographs if you able to submit exclusive photographs that will be included on their exclusive programs.

Example : iStockphotos pays upto three times more commission rates to their exclusive photographers. Apart from this website, Dreamstime also pays additional bonus for each exclusive photo.

One of the great thing which I like about these stock photography sites is that once you able to get approved your photos then you can make a decent income even when you are not active over these sites. Greater your portfolio, More your earnings will be. Isn't cool !

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Which Photos Help you Earning More ?

This is one of the best question till now.

Let us discuss this topic in detail and make it more easy to understand.

Before getting started with your Stock Photography career you have to deal with bit of rejections.

Many of your photos could get approved but some of them contains issues and violates some rules.

On the basis of customers demand almost all of the stock photography websites lead to their company. Ever thought about why your photo get rejected even if it's an amazing click. Answer is simple, Stock Photography sites have to target market places according to their customer's demands. They have to satisfy their customer’s need that's the reason why they don't approve all type of photographs.

People open these stock photography sites to download images and photographs which can be used for their own purpose. Designers uses these images for their logos, icons, graphics elements, websites or merchandising purpose.

You have to target your portfolio on this market so that you can get your photographs approved without facing much rejections. I have seen many successful stock images which are very simple on white backgrounds.

More Sale Means More Earnings!

Example : Many people search online for simple images of dogs, cats which can be easily used for various purposes.

In all I would like to mention that, More simple your photograph would be more it's chances for getting successful over stock photography sites.

How You Get Paid After Selling Images ?

This is one of the most important question in my ultimate guide to Start Earning with Stock Photography sites.

For every photographer this is the desired question.

When it comes on action, each stock photography websites has it's own rules and regulations for paying their members. Normally, for money withdrawal you have to reach to certain level i.e, $50 or $100. Before getting registered to any site you should check their payout or withdrawal rates. In this way you can be aware about payment rates and procedure.

Many of these sites has common method for paying their members like Paypal, Bank Transfer or Cheque.

FAQ'S on Stock Photography.

Below are some FAQ's on how to make money with Stock photography that you might ask to yourself after reading till now.

Who can participate in this program ?

People who join these stock photography sites are all professional photographers or you can say experts in photo shooting. But if you are not related to this professional then you need not to continue reading this tutorial anymore because here in this tutorial we're talking about photographers only.

If you are not a photographer so you can't participate in this market. If you are thinking of downloading some images and then editing it or making some changes to it, then let me tell you that this won't work.

What things you will need ?


If you want to be a professional photographer then you need some kind of instruments. These instruments must be there if you want to make career in stock photography.

1. Professional Digital Camera such as SLR or DSLR cameras.
2. Proper Internet Connected PC or Tablet.
3. Adobe Photoshop (Optional)
4. Adobe Illustrator - If you want to create your own graphics or images other than photos.

How to get your photos Noticed More - More Earnings

Millions of people participate in such website for earning money without facing much problems. Stock Photography Sites are the best way by which you can make money online day and night without even putting much efforts. But to achieve this position you have to work quite hard.

You have to face lots of problems and competitions in starting. But for increasing your online earnings you have to increase your sales.

So, by what ways you can increase your online sales and earn more commission rates.

There are some best ways to get your photos noticed. You can easily make your stock photos popular quickly over these websites if you carefully follow below tips.

1. If you are having a website, Facebook Page, Twitter account, Instagram account, Linkedin or other social accounts then try to promote your portfolio over these social media networks.

2. You can take help of Google Trends, Keyword Planner, Bing Keyword Tool or other keyword targeting tools by which you can easily find highest search topics and tag your photos. Make sure to optimize images properly so that it can be easily found over search engines.

3. Check your photos before submitting it to the competition.

4. You should also read some stories over different forums sites. This will help you in submitting more amazing photos and getting it approved without any rejection.

5. Try to make your photos simple as possible. Too much touch up by photo editing software can lead to rejections.

6. Use of comment marketing, blogs, reviews, guest posts should be properly done in order to make backlinks for the photos submitted to stock photography sites.

7. Try to remove unwanted elements and backgrounds from your photos and making it more simple.

8. Participate in stock photography websites forums debates in order to learn more.

9. Click exclusive images and upload it to exclusive section of stock photography sites.

10. Bidding on some photos just to attract buyers look into your portfolio.

But what if you are not good at photography ?


Okay, let me explain this question in detail.

Above we have discussed about making money with stock photography but the competition keeps on increasing and it's keep on going hard for getting approval for your photos. But there's no doubt that after getting approved you will be surely making money from these sites. But what if you are related to this profession.

There are lots of ways available online where people make money on the basis of their academic knowledge, experience and some special techniques. You have to learn how to make money from these stock photography sites effectively by reading this guide carefully.

I'll be recommending you to start with freelancing. Millions of active freelancers are making money through stock photography. If you have your own websites then you can post your portfolio and can also sell your ads spaces to your clients.

Out of these ways you can also make money through paid surveys, pay-per-click, review hosting and lots other ways available online. But before getting started with any stock photography sites you must carefully go through the site review. If you follow the above steps and precautions then you can easily start making money from these stock photography sites.

That's it with this ultimate guide. Hope, this guide helped you in making your career with stock photography sites.

If you have any other questions after going through the above guide properly then do tell me by leaving your comments below in the comment section, I'll try to figure out your problems soon as possible.

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