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How To Sell Photos Online: Earn Passive Income

How To Sell Photos Online: Earn Passive Income

Are you a photography enthusiast looking to earn some extra cash on the side? Fortunately, with the rise of digital photography and the internet, there are now more opportunities than ever to make money from your photos. In this article, we’ll explore different methods covering how to make money from photography, including selling photos online and starting a photography business on the side.

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How To Sell Photos Online

One of the most popular and accessible ways how to make money from photography is to sell photos online. There are a number of websites that allow you to upload your photos and earn money each time they are downloaded or licensed. Shutterstock is one of the biggest and most well-known stock photography websites, but there are also other options like Adobe Stock, iStock, and Alamy.

Sell Stock Photos

The stock photo industry is a lucrative one, with photographers and artists around the world earning money from selling their work to businesses, bloggers, and other users. With the rise of the digital age, it’s easier than ever to sell your stock photos online and earn passive royalty income. Here’s 5 steps to get started;

1. Choose the Right Stock Photo Site

The first step in monetizing your stock photos is to choose the right stock photo site. There are many stock photo sites available, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. Some of the most popular sites include Shutterstock, iStock, and Getty Images. Before you start uploading your images, it’s important to research each site to determine which one is right for you.

2. Optimize Your Images

Once you’ve chosen your stock photo site, it’s time to optimize your images. This means ensuring that your images are of high quality, and that they are properly tagged and captioned. This will help your images rank higher in search results, and make them more likely to be found by potential buyers.


3. Create a Portfolio

Creating a portfolio is an important step in monetizing your stock photos. This is where you will showcase your best work and attract potential buyers. When creating your portfolio, make sure to include a variety of images that showcase your skills and interests.

4. Promote Your Work

Once your portfolio is complete, it’s time to promote your work. This can be done through social media, your own website, or by reaching out to potential buyers directly. The more exposure your images receive, the more likely they are to be purchased.

5. Set Your Prices

Finally, it’s important to set your prices. This will vary depending on the stock photo site you choose, as well as the quality and uniqueness of your images. Make sure to research prices for similar images, and set your prices accordingly.

How to make money from photography
How to make money on your photos

How To Sell Photos On Shutterstock

Shutterstock is one of the most popular stock photography websites, with over 350 million images available for purchase. To sell photos online at Shutterstock, you’ll need to sign up for a contributor account and submit your photos for review. Once your photos are approved, they will be made available for purchase on the Shutterstock marketplace.

There are 6 different levels of earnings depending on the volume of licences sold ranging from 15-40% commission. These earnings levels are reset every year to help encourage new and fresh images. In addition to photos you can also upload and earn money from your videos.

To increase your chances of making sales on Shutterstock, it’s important to understand what buyers are looking for. High-quality, visually appealing images that are in demand are more likely to be purchased. This includes photos of people, nature, travel, food, and more.

Sell photos online at Shutterstock

Who Do Shutterstock Sell Photos To?

Shutterstock sell photos online and other visual content to a wide range of customers, including individuals, businesses, marketing agencies, publishers, and media companies. These customers use the images for a variety of purposes, such as advertising, marketing, editorial content, social media, and creative projects.

Shutterstock has a global customer base and offers a diverse range of images to meet the needs of different industries and markets. The company also provides customizable subscription plans and pricing options to suit the unique requirements of each customer.

Selling Photos On Shutterstock: Tips For Success

To make the most of selling photos on Shutterstock, here are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • Focus on high-quality, in-demand subjects.
  • Use relevant keywords and descriptions to help your photos show up in search results.
  • Regularly upload new photos to keep your portfolio fresh and attract buyers.

Don’t limit yourself to just one stock photography website. Upload your photos to multiple websites to increase your exposure and potential sales.

Whether you are a freelance photographer or just looking for a little side hustle, selling your photos can give you a handy passive income stream.

What are the pros and cons of active vs passive income

Sell photos online to make money
Make money from your photos

Create Courses

If you have any photography experience then why not also sell your knowledge and expertise? You could create an online photography course. This will provide another online income stream that is aligned with your hobby or skills.

Creating online photography courses involves creating and selling courses that teach people how to take better photos or improve their photography skills. The courses can range from basic photography tips for beginners to advanced techniques for professional photographers. The courses can be offered as pre-recorded videos, live webinars, or a combination of both.

One of the biggest advantages of creating online photography courses is that they can generate passive income, meaning that once you have created the course, you can continue to sell it without much additional effort. Additionally, you can reach a global audience and potentially earn more money than you would through traditional in-person photography workshops or classes.

However, there are some downsides to creating online photography courses. It can take a lot of time and effort to create a high-quality course, and there is no guarantee that it will sell well. Additionally, there is a lot of competition in the online education space, so it can be difficult to stand out and attract students.

Learn how to build your course with this FREE Teachable webinar

This 40-minute webinar is jam packed with need-to-know tips and strategies for creating a course on Teachable. You’ll walk away knowing how to:

  • Build your course inside the Teachable platform
  • Customize your site with your own branding and colors
  • Publish your content and set up payments
  • Structure your pricing options
  • Organize your course content, module by module
  • Build your sales page
  • Upload videos (including bulk upload)
  • Plus, much more

How To Sell Photos Through Print On Demand Platforms

Applying your photos to products and selling them through print on demand involves taking your photographs and using them to create products such as t-shirts, mugs, and phone cases. Print on demand companies handle the printing and shipping of the products, so you don’t have to worry about inventory or fulfillment.

One of the advantages of print on demand is that it is relatively easy to set up and requires little upfront investment. You can also potentially earn passive income as people continue to buy your products. Additionally, this method allows you to showcase your photography in a unique way and reach a wider audience.

However, there are also some downsides to print on demand. While there is little upfront investment, the profit margins can be relatively low, especially when compared to other photography selling methods. Additionally, the quality of the products can vary depending on the print on demand company you use, which can impact customer satisfaction and repeat business. Ensure you use a reputable company offering high quality products such as Printful.

How to start a photography business on the side

How To Start A Photography Business On The Side

If you’re looking to take your photography skills to the next level, starting a photography business on the side can be a great way to earn extra income. There are a number of different types of photography businesses you can start, from wedding and portrait photography to commercial and product photography.

To get started, you’ll need to invest in some basic equipment, such as a camera, lenses, and lighting equipment. You’ll also need to create a portfolio of your best work to showcase your skills to potential clients. Once you have your equipment and portfolio, you can start promoting your services on social media, your own website, and other online platforms.

View the 25 questions to ask when starting a business

How To Make Money From Photography: Final Thoughts

Whether you’re going to sell photos online or looking how to start a photography business on the side, there are plenty of opportunities to make money from your photography skills. By following these tips and staying focused on producing high-quality work, you can turn your passion for photography into a profitable side business.

Sell photos online at Shutterstock

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