How To Earn Money With Shutterstock

If you take good pictures, it's great fun to share them with the world using online photo sharing services. But if your snapshots could pass for professional grade photos, then you can submit these as stock photos and actually earn money. Shutterstock is one site where you can upload and sell your photos to people who want to use stock photography for their websites or just about any purpose.  Here is how you could turn that photography hobby of yours into a profitable business.

  • Photo samples. Before you are qualified to sell photos on the site, you will be asked to upload 10 photographs, so the Shutterstock staff can review the quality and potential.  They judge whether your photos are good, and whether buyers would be interested in them.  If seven out of 10 submissions are approved, you are then allowed to upload and sell your pictures on their site.  If you have four or more rejected pictures, you have to wait a month until you can upload a new batch of 10 sample pictures for evaluation.

Here are a few tips on making pictures that Shutterstock would accept.

  • Create quality pictures. Make them clear, and make them interesting.  A quality picture contains no visual noise and no editing errors.  Make use of effective image editing tools to check for mistakes and make the necessary corrections.  A clear picture means that the subject is in focus and that there are no irrelevant items included in the image.
  • Take interesting snapshots. An interesting picture means that a lot of buyers are willing to pay for it.  You can tell if a picture would sell by taking a look into other photographers’ galleries and seeing whether they have sold images similar to yours.  Subjects you should feature are colorful and striking ones. Subjects to avoid are things that are too common or can’t be sold because they are too drab.

Once you are accepted as a seller at Shutterstock, you can upload as many pictures as you want.  When a customer buys and downloads a photo you’ve uploaded, you receive 25 cents.  When you have earned $500 from downloaded images, your earnings will increase to 30 cents each.

At Shutterstock, you earn not only through selling your photographs, but by referring other photographers and buyers as well.  When a photographer you referred gets their photos downloaded, you earn 3 cents for every downloaded image.  When a buyer you referred pays the subscription fee, you earn 20% of the amount.

You can then choose to receive your earnings through PayPal or by check.  The minimum cashout is $75 for PayPal and $300 for checks.  You don’t need to make a request to get your money, because the system will automatically send you money once you reach the minimum amount required for cashout.

Turn that shutterbug hobby of yours into a business with Shutterstock. You could be earning money doing what you love to do.  Register now and make a profit out of those pretty pictures.


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