Ideas for Making Cash Online from Photography
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Whether you are a professional photographer or simply a hobbyist, there are numerous opportunities for making money through selling photos online. Some people are even making cash from photos taken using their mobile phones. This means that you don’t need expensive equipment to succeed, but just a little creativity.
Here are some ideas for making money online from photography:
1. Sell stock photography
Selling stock photography is one of the most popular ways of making an income online. The platforms that allow you to upload your images for sale include Dreamstime, iStock, Shutterstock, Getty, and Stocksy. When someone buys your photo, the stock site pays you a commission. However, before signing up with any platform, read the terms and conditions carefully. Some contracts will forbid you from selling your photos elsewhere. Others will not allow you to withdraw your earnings before they reach a minimum account.
2. Sell prints
Though stock photo sites are convenient, they take a huge chunk of the profits from their sales. If you want to make better returns, consider selling prints and digital downloads via your own self-hosted site. However, you will need to put in some extra work to drive traffic to your site. The good news is that there are platforms that can handle the design and hosting of your site, as well as printing and shipping of your photos. These include Pixieset, Photoshelter, and SmugMug.
3. Enter photography contests
Photography contests give you a chance to polish your skills, with the possibility of making some money. Besides cash prizes, some contests also offer winners photography gear or gift cards. However, to avoid wasting time with contests, take the time to read the participation guidelines carefully. Make sure your submission adheres to the rules to enhance your chances of winning. Looking at previous winners could also give you a good idea of what the judges are looking for.
4. Tap into affiliate marketing
Affiliate marketing is an opportunity to make some extra cash selling other people’s photos or products such as photography courses or equipment. Several photography sites, as well as companies such as Adobe and Amazon, have affiliate programs. Once you’ve signed up as an affiliate, you will be given a link to a product. Whenever someone clicks on the link and makes a purchase, you get paid a commission.
5. Find photo editing jobs
When overwhelmed with work, many professional photographers prefer to outsource their editing. You can, therefore, make some extra income through such editing gigs. These jobs are usually advertised on different freelance job boards. To qualify, you’ll need to have good skills in editing programs such as Photoshop.
6. Build a following on social media
If you have a large audience on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, companies would be willing to sponsor posts on your platforms. This could simply be an image of a product with a link to the company’s website. However, to enhance your chances of success, it would be advisable to narrow your focus. For example, focusing on food photography is likely to attract paid posts from hotels and restaurants.
Many people who are interested in photography don’t have the basic skills. You could consider offering free basic photography lessons through an online class, a blog or a YouTube series. Teaching will position you as an authority in the field, thus enabling you to attract clients. With time, you can start offering paid courses for advanced photography.
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