How to sell stock photos online is a question with very simple answer. There are a number of stock photography websites that gather buyers and photographers. A great deal of stock photo online business happens on this sites and listed here are the most popular of them. However, the essence of making money with stock photography is quality.
So, the question is not really how to sell photos online, but where to sell photos. Each of the websites described below has its own way of doing business. You will choose the one that suits you best and start working. But how successful you will be is determined by that essence of making money with stock photography.
There is nothing mysterious there, though. Actually, a bit of simple logic is enough to find out how to sell stock photos successfully.
It is a digital age, with internet being an open stage for everyone, not just for top professionals. There are many photographers and many photographs online. It is not easy, but in order to earn more than just extra money, you have to be different in some way. Of course, quality work should be part of this, but also uniqueness of any sort. Give buyers a good reason to choose you over other photographers and you will be making money with stock photography, rather than making some extra cash.
However, I should point out that making money with stock photography is not exactly for everyone. Requirements are not too big, but it is still expected from you to have a certain level of knowledge and skill, or your photographs won't even be accepted to the following sites.
iStockphoto is currently the most popular site for earning from stock photography. It pays 15 - 20% for non-exclusive online sales and up to 45% for exclusive ones. Photographers receive their money via PayPal, Moneybookers, check or Payoneer MasterCard.
Fotolia also pays according to exclusivity of the photograph, as to the way of online selling (20 - 63% for single downloads and 0.25 - 0.40 credits for subscription downloads). This stock photography website uses PayPal and Moneybookers. Wire transfer is available only to people that cannot use the main two payment methods.
Shutterstock offers a specific way of making money with stock photography, but that doesn't seem to have negative effect on its popularity (quite the contrary). You earn between $0.25 and $28 for every subscription download (a download of the whole set of photographs) and get paid through PayPal, Moneybookers or check. Unfortunately (or maybe not), you cannot choose how to sell stock photos here, because this website doesn't sell single photos.
Dreamstime will give you 25 - 50% and additional 10% if the photograph is exclusive. Exclusive photographers, on the other side, have the right to 60% revenue share on this stock photography website. You choose how to sell stock photos and payments are made via PayPal, Moneybookers, check or Payoneer MasterCard.
123RF gives 50% for single downloads and $0.36 for every subscription download. PayPal, Moneybookers and checks are the ways of taking your payment.
GettyImages offers a different way of making money with stock photography. You don't directly make money selling photos. Instead, you apply for a job by sending them your samples. If you get accepted, they offer you a contract. Then you work with them on shooting for their collections. They sell photographs online and you get paid through PayPal (direct deposit or electronic funds transfer, if you cannot use the major payment method).