Many of you might be uploading photos on Facebook and other social networking websites and getting tens of comments and hundreds of likes but you never earn a penny from them. In this post I have compiled a list of the top stock photography websites where you can earn money online by uploading your photos. For years I have seen people uploading their commercially potential photos on social networking websites and wondered how they were missing their customers and dumping their talents. This made me write this post so that I can guide you in joining some lucrative stock photography websites where you can earn money online by uploading photos.

What is Stock Photography?

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Image courtesy of Stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Stock photography refers to photographs that can be licensed for either public or commercial use. They can usually be found on professional stock photography websites. Stock photographs can be used for many purposes such as marketing, advertising, web designs, graphic designs and so on. Rather than hiring a professional photographer to take photos, many advertising companies, graphic designers, web designers, and other professionals often use stock photographs.

There are different types of stock photography licenses. When you buy a royalty free license, you have the permission to produce the image a limited number of times for a fixed price. To use the image beyond the permitted number, you have to pay a certain amount for each additional usage. With royalty free stock photography, you are not the only owner of the image. It can be purchased and used by multiple buyers, so one photo may appear in many ads or brochures. Royalty free images are priced as low as $0.1.

When you buy a rights managed stock photography license, you must pay for each use of the image, and the fees can be much higher than those for royalty free images. It might even cost thousands of dollars. However, with a rights managed license, the buyer has exclusive possession of the image for a certain period, generally one year. During this time, no one else can use the image for any purpose, and the photographer does not have the right to resell the photo until the rights managed license has expired.

Today, many photographers take photos exclusively for the purpose of stock photography. If a photographer has a large portfolio of stock photos, he can earn several thousands of dollars a month uploading photos online to stock photography websites even if he does not add new photos on a regular basis. Many stock photo websites keep an option for contributors to become exclusive if they want. An exclusive contributor should sell royalty free images only through that particular website. He can however sell rights managed photos on other websites as well.

Below I have compiled a list of the top 20+ Stock Photography websites where you can earn money online by uploading photos; the only thing you have to do is upload good photos.

I have provided a detailed description of each website alongwith their respective criteria so that the main task of joining these websites and uploading your photos become a cakewalk. Join the websites of your choice, upload your photos and earn money online.

So, here goes the list…start uploading your photos and earn money online

123rf.com

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A very easy to enter and photographer friendly site. 123rf is great for amateurs as well as pros. Just join as a contributor and upload your best shots. 123rf allows you to mark 5% of your portfolio of images as favorites and these images are given better search rankings. View my portfolio on 123rf.com.

Royalty Rate: 30% to 60%

Exclusive Program: Yes

Minimum Payout: PayPal $50; MoneyBookers $100; Cheque $200

File Format: JPG

Minimum Resolution: 6 megapixels

join 123rf.com now and start selling your images.

dreamstime.com

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Dreamstime is a popular choice in stock photography and a marketplace of awesomely shot high quality digital images at very affordable prices. A new comer to stock photography will surely find dreamstime his first choice to display his photographic talents. As soon as your application is accepted, your files will be available for sale on dreamstime.

Royalty Rate: 25% to 50%

Exclusive Program: Yes (60%)

Minimum Payout: $100

File Format: JPG

Minimum Resolution: 3 megapixels

join dreamstime.com now and start selling your images.

depositphotos.com

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First you have to register as a contributor and you need to submit 5 images to be reviewed and provide your identity (driver’s license, passport, etc.). A very good site for new as well as professional stock photographers.

Royalty Rate: 44% to 52%

Exclusive Program: Yes (50% to 60%)

Minimum Payout: $50

File Format: JPEG/JPG

Minimum Resolution: 3.8 MP (2400 x 1600)

join depositphotos.com now and start selling your images.

bigstockphoto.com

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Once you join bigstockphoto, you will be asked to read a tutorial to understand the rules and quality standards of the site. You won’t find it tough, rather you will get to learn many new thingsNow you will have to take a test and pass it to upload photos. Once you hit the right chords, you will be a part of one of industry’s big players.

Royalty Rate: 30%

Exclusive Program: No

Minimum Payout: $30

File Format: JPG

Minimum Resolution: at least 800 pixels on each side

join bigstockphoto.com now and start selling your images.

canstockphoto.com

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A very good stock photography website. Easy to register and upload.  I too like the site very profoundly. View my portfolio on canstockphoto.com.

Royalty Rate: 20% to 50%

Exclusive Program: Refer Website

Minimum Payout: $50 (paypal); $100 (cheque or Moneybookers)

File Format: JPG

Minimum Resolution: 3.0 megapixels (approx.1500px x 2000px)

join canstockphoto.com and start selling your images.

pixmac.com

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Pixmac offers images sourced from other microstock sites via reseller agreements. Perhaps not a great place for selling images but pixmac is growing from its present stature.

Royalty Rate: 30% to 60%

Exclusive Program: No

Minimum Payout: $50 (PayPal or Moneybookers)

File Format: JPG

Minimum Resolution: Refer Website.

join pixmac.com and start selling your images.

cutcaster.com

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Cutcaster is different from the mainstream  micro stock sites as you can set the prices of your images here. 

Royalty Rate: 40%

Exclusive Program: Yes (55%)

Minimum Payout: $25 (Paypal or cheque)

File Format: JPG

Minimum Resolution: 1200 x 1600 pixels (2000 x 3000 pixels preferred)

join cutcaster.com and start selling your images.

photaki.com

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It is one of the fastest growing archives on the Web. Photaki  has decent commission rates. You can get upto 80% commission depending on how many downloads you get per image.

Royalty Rate: 50% to 80% (depending on number of downloads)

Exclusive Program: Refer Website

Minimum Payout: €50 (1 euro=1.30 US dollars approx.)

File Format: JPG

Minimum Resolution: Refer Website

join photaki.com now and start selling your images.

mostphotos.com

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Images on mostphotos are not reviewed by moderators or website officials but by actual site users who vote for the images. The site has a comment column under each image where users can submit their comments.

Royalty Rate: 50%

Exclusive Program: No

Minimum Payout: €10 (1 euro=1.30 US dollars approx.)

File Format: JPEG

Minimum Resolution: 5 megapixels

join mostphotos.com now and start selling your images.

crestock.com

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I have a few images uploaded here but is awaiting approval. The quality of images on crestock.com is very high.

Royalty Rate: 20% to 40%

Exclusive Program: Yes ( 60 percent fee and an added bonus of $0.20 for each approved submission)

Minimum Payout: $50 (PayPal or Moneybookers)

File Format: JPEG

Minimum Resolution: 6 megapixels, 8 megapixels or higher is preferred

join crestock.com now and start selling your images.

graphicleftovers.com

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Create an account on graphicleftovers.com. Then you will have to submit 20 images for initial review. Applications will not be considered: if you upload less than 20 images or fail to provide IPTC metadata.

Royalty Rate: 52%

Exclusive Program: No

Minimum Payout: $50

File Format: JPEG

Minimum Resolution: 4 megapixels

join graphicleftovers.com now and start selling your images.

stockfresh.com

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Stockfresh is sophisticated and easy to navigate. Just register as a contributor and start uploading images. Stockfresh even accepts images in far less resolutions compared to others.

Royalty Rate: 50% to 62.5%

Exclusive Program: No

Minimum Payout: $50

File Format:  JPEG

Minimum Resolution: 640×480

join stockfresh.com and start selling your images.

photodune.net

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Register yourself, read the tutorial and take a quiz. Once you pass the quiz, you are authorized to upload photos to photodune.net.

Royalty Rate: 33%

Exclusive Program: Yes (50% to 70%)

Minimum Payout: $50 (PayPal, Moneybookers or Payoneer); $500 (wire transfer)

File Format: Refer Website

Minimum Resolution: Refer Website.

join photodune.net and start selling your images.

fotolia.com

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Create a contributor account and start uploading. The more images you sell the higher your commission percentage gets.

Royalty Rate: 20% to 46%

Exclusive Program: Yes (35% to 63%)

Minimum Payout: 50 credits (paypal or moneybookers) or 500 credits (wire transfer) {credits can be converted into cash at the time of payout}

File Format: JPEG

Minimum Resolution: 2400 x 1600 pixels (4 megapixel)

join fotolia.com now and start selling your images.

clipdealer.com

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ClipDealer is Europe’s largest online marketplace for royalty-free photographs.

Royalty Rate: 50%

Exclusive Program: No

Minimum Payout: €50 (1 euro=1.30 US dollars approx.)

File Format: JPG

Minimum Resolution: 4 megapixels.

featurepics.com

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This is one of the less popular sites. A nice site to start your journey as you are offered some great commission. The site is overall professional looking and it might be worth investing some time in uploading your collection.

Royalty Rate: 50%

Exclusive Program: No

Minimum Payout: $50

File Format: JPG

Minimum Resolution: 1200 pixels.

istockphoto.com

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The most visited stock photography website. Millions of people depend on iStockphoto for affordable prices and great quality. For becoming a contributor to istockphoto, you have to join as a member. Then you have to read the manual to learn the basics of stock photography and then take a quiz. After you pass the quiz, you will be asked to submit three of your sample images. Submit your best collections so that they don’t find it difficult to accept your application.

Royalty Rate: 15% to 20%

Exclusive Program: Yes (22% to 45%)

Minimum Payout: $100

File Format: JPG

Minimum Resolution: 1600 x 1200 pixels

shutterstock.com

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Shutterstock is the largest subscription based photo agency in the world and probably the toughest stock photography website to get into but one of the highest paying once joined. To join as a contributor, initially you will need a valid form of identity, an International passport serves the purpose very well. As I am from India, I submitted my PAN (permanent account number) card, but was rejected by shutterstock.

Royalty Rate: 20% to 30% (depending on contributor’s lifetime earning)

Exclusive Program: No

Minimum Payout: $300 (cheque) or $75 (electronic payment)

File Format: JPG or TIFF

Minimum Resolution: 4.0 megapixels

freedigitalphotos.net

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A very uniquely created stock photography website which is able to sustain its customer base even after providing every image for free at a low resolution, with the binding to give acknowledgement to the artist and providing a link to his portfolio. All images are downloadable at higher resolutions after being purchased. I believe the contributor gets a great exposure with the link provided with the free image. As a blogger, I found freedigitalphotos.net a bit more awesome than I could ever expect.

Royalty Rate: 75%

Exclusive Program: No

Minimum Payout: $10

File Format: JPG

Minimum Resolution: 1900 pixels across the shortest side.

fotosearch.com

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All images submitted on canstockphoto.com are also displayed on fotosearch. Canstockphoto processes all the images and displays it on its sister site fotosearch.

Royalty Rate: Refer Website

Exclusive Program: Refer Website

Minimum Payout: Refer Website

File Format: JPEG or TIFF

Minimum Resolution: 3.0 Megapixels.

inmagine.com

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Register and provide your photo ID. Then submit 5 of your best images for initial review.

Royalty Rate: 50%

Exclusive Program: No

Minimum Payout: $200 (paypal or moneybookers); $500 (cheque); $1000 (wire transfer)

File Format:  JPG

Minimum Resolution: above 8 MegaPixels (DSLR camera)

veer.com

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A leading stock photography website. Moreover, it’s very tough to get into. Veer is a subsidiary of Corbis, a major player in the stock photography business.

Royalty Rate: $0.25 and $4.95 per image download

Exclusive Program: Refer Website

Minimum Payout: $100

File Format: JPEG

Minimum Resolution: 1600 x 1200, preferred 3000 x 2000 or larger.

alamy.com

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A trademark name in the stock photography business. Alamy boasts of its millions of customers for the past decade.

Royalty Rate: 60%

Exclusive Program: No

Minimum Payout: $175

File Format: JPEG

Minimum Resolution: 6 megapixel DSLR.

There are many other Stock Photography websites where you can sell photographs on royalty free and rights managed licenses. But I have not included those as they rank very low. The above 20+ sites are more than enough to spend a lifetime dealing in stock Photography.

 

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