Microstock Group 2011 Industry Survey Results

Posted on 2/15/2012 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (0)

Microstock Group has published the preliminary results of its 2011 survey of microstock contributors. So far more that 700 people have responded, but there is still time for anyone involved in microstock to add additional information before the final results are tallied.

Based on those responding so far 369 report they submit images to iStockphoto and 147 of them (39%) indicated they are exclusive with iStock. This is a much higher percentage of exclusives than the 15% that istockcharts reports. This would seem to indicate that a disproportionate share of iStock exclusives (who are probably among its higher earners) responded to the this survey.

On average the respondents have 2191 “images” online up from 1450 in 2010. It is unclear whether the word images was understood to mean photography only, or both photography and illustrations. A separate question determined that on average respondents had 744 illustrations. Readers may want to compare these numbers with the averages of the 500 most successful iStock contributors in our previous report.

The respondents have been contributing images to microstock for almost 4 years on average. The person with the highest income reported $900,000 and one person reported no income at all. The average income was $17,016 and the median income was $3,000.  The average income was up from $13,439 in 2010, due no doubt to the $900,000 top income and the 26 people who reported income over $100,000. The top income in 2010 was $211,708.

Medium income was down slightly from $3,173 in 2010. This is probably a reflection of the lowering of royalty rates at iStock at the beginning of 2011. 169 people, or 24% of those who responded to the question, reported a decline in revenue for the year.

Shutterstock Number One In Revenue Generation For Non-Exclusives

The question that produced the most surprising answers was “Where do you generate the most income?” Shutterstock was the clear winner with 397 indicating that it was their top grossing site. Only 60 respondents said iStock was their top income producer. Dreamstime was third with 40 responses and Fotolia was fourth with 29. All the rest had 3 or less responses.

Be sure to check out the full survey results at http://blog.microstockgroup.com/2011-microstock-industry-survey-first-look/ for more insights into the microstock business

Dreamstime was third with 40 responses and Fotolia was fourth with 29. All the rest had 3 or less responses.

Be sure to check out the full survey results http://blog.microstockgroup.com/2011-microstock-industry-survey-first-look/ for more insights into the microstock business.

Copyright © 2012 Jim Pickerell. The above article may not be copied, reproduced, excerpted or distributed in any manner without written permission from the author. All requests should be submitted to Selling Stock at 10319 Westlake Drive, Suite 162, Bethesda, MD 20817, phone 301-461-7627, e-mail: wvz@fpcubgbf.pbz

Jim Pickerell is founder of www.selling-stock.com, an online newsletter that publishes daily. He is also available for personal telephone consultations on pricing and other matters related to stock photography. He occasionally acts as an expert witness on matters related to stock photography. For his current curriculum vitae go to: http://www.jimpickerell.com/Curriculum-Vitae.aspx.  


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