March 28, 2009

Taking Photos for Cash

Selling photos online, doesn’t mean you need your own business, or even your own website. Some online services even provide a website for you to sell your work on. Normally you would have to hire a web designer, get a merchant account, setup up a credit card account etc. With today’s technology that is a thing of the past. Instead of using the photo networks, you can also build your own website online, free of charge in a matter of minutes with a Site Builder. Several companies have been experimenting to put together, “Do It Yourself” systems that make building a website a breeze. Google has caught on to this and came up with their own version like this blog here, called Google Blogger. You can find lots of these online, just type in “free websites” and check them out.

 Once you have shot enough images and feel pretty comfortable with your digital camera, start looking online to find out what other Photographers are taking pictures of. See what is selling on some of the top sites, like I-Stock Photo or Getty Images.

Really dig deep into these sites and see what others have to say. See if any of the photos are rated and see which ones come up on the home page. Some of these sites have quality guidelines when selling though, so you have to read their Terms and Conditions pretty thoroughly. Some of these larger photo networks may be too competitive for you if you are just starting out. Another good idea is to really focus on selling photos in your local area. You can shoot photos of kids at the local baseball games, soccer games, football games, etc. and sell the photos to the parents. You could talk to restaurant managers at any of your local restaurants and see if they need any photos for upcoming ads or menu additions. Is your community growing? Are there new businesses popping up? Go to your local Chamber of Commerce and ask them if they can provide you a list of all the companies in your area or new businesses coming soon. Sometimes it is a paid list, but is usually worth it. Depending on where you live this business list can be anywhere from $15-$50, but again, it will give you an entire list of Names, Numbers and Addresses. There are plenty of photo opportunities out there, just do a little homework and start shooting.
© D. Gould Photography