14 Ways To Make Money Selling Photos Online

These days you don’t usually require a professional camera to take beautiful looking photos because our phones are packed with some crazy camera setups already.

This makes it easier for us to take beautiful photos and there is a huge demand for good photos between business owners and bloggers and both are ready to pay you for your pics.

If you think you are gifted with the photography skills and your photos usually turn out good then there is a high chance that you can start to make passive income through your photos.

This is a really great way to make money online as you only need to click the photo once and sell it over and over to customers.

Why will People Buy Your Photos?

If this question is wondering in your mind then let me tell you, the rules for copyrights have got a lot strict these days especially with the latest article 13 release. so no one can just download images from Google and use for commercial purposes.

This has led to a growth in stock photography purchases.

And another reason is, business owners are always looking for fresh new content that has never been seen before as it catches the attention of people more than if they use the overused photos.

Therefore if you are able to provide them good quality photos you are in business.

Best Websites To Make Money Selling Photos

These 15 websites are some of the top paying and also some of the most popular stock photo sites which can make you a good profit 

1. Shutterstock

Shutterstock is one of the biggest, if not the biggest stock photo selling company online and has been running since 2003.

They currently have 1000s of contributors on their platform who have contributed over 200 Million photos, illustrator and vectors to their site which is really amazing.

They also claim to have paid over 500 Million Dollars to all of their contributors combined since they first started their company.

As a contributor, you can expect to make about 20% to 30% cut per image downloaded which is low but considering the millions of customers they have your photos could get sold more than on any other site.

2. Adobe stock

As the name suggests it is a part of the popular company Adobe which sells award-winning editing tools like Photoshop, illustrator, Premiere pro and much more.

The best part about Adobe stock is that the photos uploaded on their websites can also be accessed through their apps which makes it really easy for people to buy and edit photos as they want then and there.

They also have some of the best pay, ranging from 20% to 60% and there is no restriction on exclusivity as they allow you to upload to as many sites as you want.

3. Getty images

It is one of the largest online stock photos selling companies and has a lot of people contributing.

As they are considered to be one of the top players they also have a very strict reviewing process before letting you upload your images.

In your review process, you will be asked to upload some of your best photos for review and after a week you’ll receive an email about the results of your application.

Once you are selected you can accept to make up to 20% to 40% per sale.

4. Alamy

Alamy has over 165 Million photos, vectors, illustrations and videos in a variety of different categories.

The company was started back in 1999 and has developed quite a good reputation, although the company has a few negative reviews but a lot of positive ones too.

With alamy, you will split the sale amount 50-50 with the company.

The best part about Alamy is they give out full sale price to students without any commission but your University should be a part of their program.

They have a lot of subscribers who are actively buying their stock and they even claim to have paid over 180 million to all of their contributors. 

5. Deposit photos

Deposit photos offer some of the most affordable plans and that’s why they have a lot of members are actively buying and also many of them also recommend them.

To work with them you’ll first need to pass their review test by uploading some of your best samples.

After getting cleared you can start to upload your images for sale on Deposit photos.

Their paying system is a little bit different, it depends upon the type of license the image is uploaded and also at the resolution it has been downloaded by the customers so differs their commission that’s why there is no fixed pay to get per image.

6. 123rf

123 rf was launched back in 2005 to serve the needs of royalty-free web-based content and has grown a lot since then.

As of now, they have over 5 million potential buyers.

They even have a great commission system ranging from 30% to 60% depending on the type of licencing and image resolution. 

But the only thing I didn’t like is that they have a min threshold for payments which is 50$ so you can only withdraw your money when you have reached 50$.

They don’t have an exclusive image policy so you are free to upload your image to any other website you want without any hesitation.

To work with them all you need to do is fill in a short application form by uploading your best shots and after reviewing you’ll be selected.

7. Big Stock

Big stock is a US-based company launched in 2010 and has grown to one of the leading stock image selling company.

As a contributor, you’ll get a starting commission of 30% per image and as the sales of your image grow your commission will grow with it.

To get started as a contributor you’ll need to sign up with a contributor account and after a small review process, you’ll be allowed to start uploading your images to their website.

8. 500px

It is a huge online marketplace for photographers to build their portfolio.

To get started you just need to fill up a short application form and start uploading.

In between, they do have some contests which will help you to make more money so keep an eye on them.

9. Can Stock Photos

Cas stock photo is a really great option if you are looking to start as soon as possible because of their superfast reviewing times.

To get started, all you need to do is fill out the application form and send 3 images for review. Your application will be reviewed in 24 hours or even less.

Once accepted you’ll be making 50% of every sale of your images depending upon the quality downloaded. 

10. Etsy

Better known for selling handmade stuff Etsy is also trying their hand in selling stock photos.

They already have a huge audience for your advantage and as it is a marketplace you can set up your own prices on your images and sell them however you like without any restrictions.

Unlike others, customers don’t have to be a member of a monthly plan in order to download your images.


Crestock is another great stock image company launched back in 2005.

If you want to get started quickly, then this is a place to go. To start uploading images you just need to create a free account and it will be activated quickly.

As a contributor, you’ll get commission ranging from 20% to 40% depending upon the downloads your images get. If you get more downloads your commission will increase.

12. Dreamstime

This company has a really good reputation in the stock image industry and has been running since 2000.

They have achieved this by reviewing each and every image and accepting only those who meet their high standards.

With Dreamstime, you’ll get a commission from 20% to 50% for non-exclusive images and up to 60% for exclusive images.

The commission will depend upon the no. of downloads your images get so keep that in mind.

13. Foap

Unlike other companies, Foap has an IOS and Android App and only works through it.

Customer who wants to buy images has to buy coins and exchange them for images. Foap is completely free to join and has instant approval. 

You can start uploading images right away and start to make money.

You’ll be splitting the price 50-50 with the company right off the bat and your image downloads don’t matter.

14. Snapped 4 u

Snapped for you offers some of the great pricing for all the photographers.

They allow you complete freedom on what price you want to sell your images min being 5$ and they only charge 0.50$ for each image sold for 5$.

Images Sold for more than 5$ will be charged a fee of 10% which is more than any big names in the stock Image industry. 

What Photos Work The Best

In the stock photo business, there are a few types of photos that sell more than other types.

The no.1 and the most selling type is portraits of people.

Like playing a sport, a happy family, different types of facial expressions, Kids, Elderly people, and much more.

The 2nd most selling type is photos that are related to business. Like People Working, Working Desk, Laptops, Different Machines and much more.

Other top-selling genres are Travel, Food, Tools, Cities, and Nature.


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