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Hi There,

Does anybody know if views and zooms by other contributors are added to the stats in Alamy measures? I know I quite often browse other contributors work and am conscious that they may show as zooms that are are of little or no significance to the contributor?

Thanks,

Steve

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No, apparently just some registered customers are recorded as zooms.

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When I first uploaded my first submission to Alamy, I latched on to the idea that I might register zooms from someone else's PC - as if I could clock up activity on my own work - and so clicked and clicked until bored. This of course was nonsense and I soon realised that, yes - only registered buyers activate zooms.

 

:ph34r:

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I was sort of focused on zooms - but then got a sale.  I figured that to monitor my progress I would see view numbers, then get some zooms, then a sale.   I have still not had a single zoom.  I now treat zooms as a sort of curiosity - interesting but not necessarily relevant.

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16 minutes ago, Starsphinx said:

I was sort of focused on zooms - but then got a sale.  I figured that to monitor my progress I would see view numbers, then get some zooms, then a sale.   I have still not had a single zoom.  I now treat zooms as a sort of curiosity - interesting but not necessarily relevant.

 

Zooms are very relevant. They aren't directly linked to sales, but  they are significant as your view/zoom ratio = Click Through Rate (CTR) feeds into your Alamy search ranking (how precisely is known only to Alamy).   For myself, and I think many other contributors, sales also tend to follow a proportion of zooms; For me it is one sale every four zooms.  If a contributor consistently gets a CTR  of a lot less than the Alamy average of (currently 0.58) it would tend to suggest their images are being returned in irrelevant searches and their keywords would bear some scrutiny. If that contributor is getting good sales in spite of a low CTR, then well done, but it is probably not what most contributors will experience.

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7 hours ago, Joseph Clemson said:

 

Zooms are very relevant. They aren't directly linked to sales, but  they are significant as your view/zoom ratio = Click Through Rate (CTR) feeds into your Alamy search ranking (how precisely is known only to Alamy).   For myself, and I think many other contributors, sales also tend to follow a proportion of zooms; For me it is one sale every four zooms.  If a contributor consistently gets a CTR  of a lot less than the Alamy average of (currently 0.58) it would tend to suggest their images are being returned in irrelevant searches and their keywords would bear some scrutiny. If that contributor is getting good sales in spite of a low CTR, then well done, but it is probably not what most contributors will experience.

I am definitely getting images appearing in irrelevant searches - but the keywords searched are correct if that makes sense.  For example (one of the weird ones that stuck in my memory) someone searched badger faced horse - and my image of a Jacobs sheep was returned - because the sheep was photographed at the top of Westbury White horse so location given in the caption, and "badger faced" is in the keywords as it is a description of the facial markings of Jacobs sheep.

The sale I made had appeared in searches several times - but was never zoomed.

I have a CTR of zero - but as far as I can tell am doing nothing wrong with my keywording or captioning.  I am fully open to advice if others look at my images/keywording but I check my searches every morning and can always see why my image was returned even when it was irrelevant.

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16 minutes ago, Starsphinx said:

I am fully open to advice

 

OK... 'Non-news' news stories won't sell. Pigeons too. And trees with berries. And steam engines at a steam engine rally.

 

Too many 'undecisive moments', and streets scenes without a point.

 

My advice? Start afresh. The pix you have online don't do you any favours...

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1 hour ago, Starsphinx said:

I am definitely getting images appearing in irrelevant searches - but the keywords searched are correct if that makes sense.  For example (one of the weird ones that stuck in my memory) someone searched badger faced horse - and my image of a Jacobs sheep was returned - because the sheep was photographed at the top of Westbury White horse so location given in the caption, and "badger faced" is in the keywords as it is a description of the facial markings of Jacobs sheep.

The sale I made had appeared in searches several times - but was never zoomed.

I have a CTR of zero - but as far as I can tell am doing nothing wrong with my keywording or captioning.  I am fully open to advice if others look at my images/keywording but I check my searches every morning and can always see why my image was returned even when it was irrelevant.

 

False positives are a fact of life in stock photo work but they need to be minimized. To use your own example: assuming the main subject is a Jacob's sheep, is the Westbury white horse significant in the photo? Would a person looking for Westbury white horse find your image useful, or would they wonder why a photo of a sheep was showing up in their search? If some aspect of the image  is not significant, don't put it in the caption or keywords if it may lead to a false positive. You can put such information in 'additional info' which is non-searchable. As to 'badger-faced',  your images show you know something about sheep, but this probably too much knowledge in this case. Try to think like a non-expert picture editor, who is more likely to search for 'Jacob's sheep' or perhaps 'horned sheep' or 'rare breed'. Few, if any, will search for 'badger-faced' and in the meantime you are probably getting many false positives on badger and the rare bod looking for a badger-faced horse. 

 

With every picture you caption, look at each keyword you enter and ask yourself if your image would be a genuine candidate for a sale if a buyer searched on that particular keyword. Sometimes secondary aspects of the image add context to the main subject and warrant a keyword, but don't list everything you see in the image if what you see is just incidental to the main subject.

 

 

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1 minute ago, Joseph Clemson said:

 

False positives are a fact of life in stock photo work but they need to be minimized. To use your own example: assuming the main subject is a Jacob's sheep, is the Westbury white horse significant in the photo? Would a person looking for Westbury white horse find your image useful, or would they wonder why a photo of a sheep was showing up in their search? If some aspect of the image  is not significant, don't put it in the caption or keywords if it may lead to a false positive. You can put such information in 'additional info' which is non-searchable. As to 'badger-faced',  your images show you know something about sheep, but this probably too much knowledge in this case. Try to think like a non-expert picture editor, who is more likely to search for 'Jacob's sheep' or perhaps 'horned sheep' or 'rare breed'. Few, if any, will search for 'badger-faced' and in the meantime you are probably getting many false positives on badger and the rare bod looking for a badger-faced horse. 

 

With every picture you caption, look at each keyword you enter and ask yourself if your image would be a genuine candidate for a sale if a buyer searched on that particular keyword. Sometimes secondary aspects of the image add context to the main subject and warrant a keyword, but don't list everything you see in the image if what you see is just incidental to the main subject.

 

 

That is a difficult one - as it means in some way assuming the degree of knowledge from the person searching - whether that is they know a lot or know a little.  The livestock on Westbury White horse is significant enough for there presence and relevance to be mentioned on information boards there - and alternatively, there is the argument that people may want to know where a photo was taken.  As to the badger-faced - my assumption, possibly wrongly,  was that customers might also include specialist rare breed magazines who may use that search term, the way Latin names are used on animals and plants (also a google search of badger face has sheep as the top answers at least on my google - which does not mean anything as Google responds to your history).  To be honest, the search term "badger faced horse" threw me - as I have never heard a horse referred to in that way - turns out it is a rather specific and quite rare colour pattern.

I find it quite difficult to work out what keywords others will use in searching for things - I am blessed with (or on a bad day cursed) with one of those sideways brains.  My general workflow is go with the obvious (sheep wool etc), look it up on Wikipedia (which is where the badger-faced comes from) and then have a quick look at Alamy for similar images to see if I have missed something really obvious (like animal lol)

Just thought to do a search on Alamy of badger faced - results are actually more sheep than badgers - so I guess it's in more common usage than we thought lol.

I may have to just start testing my keywording before using it - and do Alamy searches of the more unusual terms to see whether they bring up pictures of the same subject as my own.

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1 hour ago, John Morrison said:

 

OK... 'Non-news' news stories won't sell. Pigeons too. And trees with berries. And steam engines at a steam engine rally.

 

Too many 'undecisive moments', and streets scenes without a point.

 

My advice? Start afresh. The pix you have online don't do you any favours...

 

Harsh but true.. so good advice here.

 

Pigeons will sell as will trees and berries... but not in great numbers. And there are nearly 80,000 images tagged 'pigeon'. While I am very much of the opinion that 'you have to be in it to win it',  your odds are slim.

 

I wouldn't go as far as starting again but you might want to think about what else you can shoot. Maybe think of going to your nearest town and taking a picture of the front of every store.... I sell a surprising number of images of shop fronts.

Edited by Matt Ashmore

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2 minutes ago, Matt Ashmore said:

 

Harsh but true.. so good advice here.

 

Pigeons will sell as will trees and berries... but not in great numbers. And there are nearly 80,000 images tagged 'pigeon'. While I am very much of the opinion that 'you have to be in it to win it',  your odds are slim.

 

I wouldn't go as far as starting again but you might want to think about what else you can shoot. Maybe think of going to your nearest town and taking a picture of the front of every store.... I sell a surprising number of images of shop fronts.

That is actually already the plan - in the whole spirit of it being a marathon, not a sprint, my general planning has been more long-term, which is a good job as things have not exactly stayed on course since the summer.  The idea was my son would pass his driving test - and I would be free (free I tell you...) to focus properly on the photography.  Unfortunately, it took ages for a slot to come up - and he failed the first one.  As he works 2 jobs my days have consisted largely of driving him to work and I have had to shoot around his hours - which meant shooting for as much pleasure as stock.
He has now passed - and I am able to start planning target shots more - instead of having 2 hours shoot whatever catches my eye it will be a case of pick a town, see what its known for, look around for stuff common to many towns, have a list of must get shots then see how much is left on the parking to grab what catches my eye (if I have not already cheated lol)

I think part of the challenge is going to be trying to keep a good variety of subjects, locations etc while still paying attention to what sells.  It's the age-old conflict - if what sells does not inspire me to shoot it I am going to lose the enjoyment - if I focus on the enjoyment I am depending on buyings liking similar things.

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11 hours ago, Joseph Clemson said:

 

Zooms are very relevant. They aren't directly linked to sales, but  they are significant as your view/zoom ratio = Click Through Rate (CTR) feeds into your Alamy search ranking (how precisely is known only to Alamy).   For myself, and I think many other contributors, sales also tend to follow a proportion of zooms; For me it is one sale every four zooms.  If a contributor consistently gets a CTR  of a lot less than the Alamy average of (currently 0.58) it would tend to suggest their images are being returned in irrelevant searches and their keywords would bear some scrutiny. If that contributor is getting good sales in spite of a low CTR, then well done, but it is probably not what most contributors will experience.

 

A recorded zoom against an image will also promote its position in future search results if exactly the same search term/s is/are used again. Or at least it used to.... Alamy do have a habit of changing things.

 

Mark

 

Update - A quick look at some of my test searches indicates that this still appears to be the case

Edited by M.Chapman

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1 minute ago, Starsphinx said:

I think part of the challenge is going to be trying to keep a good variety of subjects, locations etc while still paying attention to what sells.  It's the age-old conflict - if what sells does not inspire me to shoot it I am going to lose the enjoyment - if I focus on the enjoyment I am depending on buyings liking similar things.

 

Yes,I totally get that. You have to consider what your reasons for submitting to Alamy are.  Are you in it to make a little money or more as a hobby, Alamy giving you a reason to do somethign with the images that you shoot? If you take the approach that you shoot what you enjoy  then you might have to accept that the subjects you enjoy might not sell often due to lack of demand, high competition or both. If trying to make more regular sales is important then you need to figure out what sells and accept that this might not be your first preference of subject matter to shoot.

 

I also think that a wide variety of subjects helps. I shoot everything and anything. This month I have sold everything from a photo of a shop front, to a photo of a monument, to a jack in a box to a photo of my bathroom window sill (you don't have to go far form home to take pictures that sell! :-) )

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2 minutes ago, Matt Ashmore said:

 

Yes,I totally get that. You have to consider what your reasons for submitting to Alamy are.  Are you in it to make a little money or more as a hobby, Alamy giving you a reason to do somethign with the images that you shoot? If you take the approach that you shoot what you enjoy  then you might have to accept that the subjects you enjoy might not sell often due to lack of demand, high competition or both. If trying to make more regular sales is important then you need to figure out what sells and accept that this might not be your first preference of subject matter to shoot.

 

I also think that a wide variety of subjects helps. I shoot everything and anything. This month I have sold everything from a photo of a shop front, to a photo of a monument, to a jack in a box to a photo of my bathroom window sill (you don't have to go far form home to take pictures that sell! :-) )

It is a bit of both.  I have a chronic variable health condition which severely impacts my ability to find normal paid employment - photography started as a hobby because I hate to sit around doing nothing and it offers a brilliant mix of being active when I am able and providing mentally stimulating stuff for when I am stuck in bed bored.  However, as I improved technically I started getting asked to do stuff for money - I now shoot an awful lot of football matches and people pay for the results (much to my surprise).  I am not in the position to charge for taking photos before I do it - because I may very well be unable to do so on the day - so it is a pay for results model.  Alamy fits into this as I can upload shots I take for sheer enjoyment with no real expectation of sales while also take time to focus on taking things that have sale value that don't particularly grab me.   I am not expecting to make a fortune - or even a full-time income - I just want to bring in a little bit of money that I can say "I did that" to.  As well as learn new things, improve skills, see life from different angles.  

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Oh and anything and everything - I do that.  I am much more likely to take a picture of something I have no idea what it is than something I know (a habit I have to break) because when I have taken a photo I get to find out what it is.

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3 hours ago, Starsphinx said:

I am definitely getting images appearing in irrelevant searches.....

Sadly very common, and it is worth making allowances where you can as Joseph says though maybe that wasn't the best example if you feel there are reasonable links. I've had many requests for 'xxx from space', because I have 'space for copy' as a term. There are also curious people out there. I have a number of images of people taking part in events naked, which will come up for a search for that event which would normally be partaken fully clothed - yet they zoom the naked person knowing full well it isn't the image they're looking for!

Edited by Avpics

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2 minutes ago, Avpics said:

Sadly very common, and it is worth making allowances where you can as Joseph says though maybe that wasn't the best example if you feel there are reasonable links. I've had many requests for 'xxx from space', because I have 'space for copy' as a term. There are also curious people out there. I have a number of images of people taking part in events naked, which will come up for a search for that event which would normally be partaken fully clothed - yet they zoom the naked person knowing full well it isn't the image they're looking for!

Don't forget the ones who don't know what they are looking for - but will know it when they see it (so always safer to have a look)  ROTFLMAO

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Right on cue in this morning's measures; search term 'Pinocchio', zoomed:

 

JC8CY1.jpg

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11 hours ago, Matt Ashmore said:

Pigeons will sell as will trees and berries... but not in great numbers.

 

Well, let's stick to pigeons. Not much interest from the bird-watching angle... so better to illustrate some behaviours. Or, since most people see feral pigeons as pests, maybe illustrate anti-pigeon measures... or the damage pigeons do. Or??? My point is that there's no point in snapping a pigeon just sitting there. There has to be a reason to take the shot, and a reason why a picture-buyer wants such a shot...

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15 minutes ago, Avpics said:

Right on cue in this morning's measures; search term 'Pinocchio', zoomed:

 

JC8CY1.jpg

Now, there's a picture to greet the eyes first thing in the morning - I have my browser to open on the same place it was when closed - come down bleary-eyed, turn on the computer to be greeted with Pinocchio lol.

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Just now, LawrensonPhoto said:

Can we stop quoting it please :lol:

 

My tuppence-worth: Eat breakfast before scrolling through this forum.

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10 minutes ago, John Morrison said:

 

Well, let's stick to pigeons. Not much interest from the bird-watching angle... so better to illustrate some behaviours. Or, since most people see feral pigeons as pests, maybe illustrate anti-pigeon measures... or the damage pigeons do. Or??? My point is that there's no point in snapping a pigeon just sitting there. There has to be a reason to take the shot, and a reason why a picture-buyer wants such a shot...

This is where my aforementioned issue of seeing things differently.  Oh and my micro subject obsessions mentioned on a different thread.  Anyway the pigeon thing - I had pictures in my head of that black and white card range that takes fairly plain pictures and adds speech bubbles making witty comments or observations.  I also deliberately veered away from the pigeon as pest thing (despite keywording pest) because its one of those situations where everyone is so used to seeing pigeons as dirty annoying drab pests they fail to open their eyes and see actually pigeons can be quirky, attractive to look at, and have their good points.  I am however hopefully over my pigeon thing - as now able to walk past without getting fascinated lol. 

I just don't see the sense in leaving a technically acceptable image on my hard drive not doing anything when there is an outside chance someone, one day, might actually want it.

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5 minutes ago, LawrensonPhoto said:

Can we stop quoting it please :lol:

 

3 minutes ago, Richard Baker said:

 

My tuppence-worth: Eat breakfast before scrolling through this forum.

Yeah sorry guys I am still half asleep

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