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Alamy was never an agency where I had a lot of sales. But I had sales, not often, but well paid. That has changed.
Alamy has been dead for me since January, almost half a year now. Absolutely nothing. Not a single sale. I find that very regrettable, because I appreciate Alamy because of his other characteristics (transparency, fairness, etc.) very much. 

Is this a general problem, is Alamy moving in the direction of dead, dead, dead? Or am I just unlucky and it's a normal fluctuation?

With the three other agencies, with which one can earn money in the microstock area, my income has increased significantly in the same period, with one agency even massively. Could there be a connection, has Alamy worsened his marketing?

What does that look like for you?

 

Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator

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Posted (edited)

We have a very similar size portfolio to you. Since the beginning of this year we have had 15 sales. 

We expect 2 sales a month so at the moment our sales numbers are slightly above average.

 

So, no, in my opinion Alamy is not dying!

 

(All our images are exclusive to Alamy, we do not supply microstock.)

Edited by Thyrsis
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I think Alamy is thriving - I've had 50 sales since 1st January so death is not coming soon.

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I think that the life is being sucked out of stock photography by excessive supply, microstock and a dwindling print market, I've seen prices fall dramatically during my brief career with Alamy.

 

However I continue to make regular sales here, so no sign of a terminal problem with Alamy.

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31 minutes ago, Thyrsis said:

We have a very similar size portfolio to you. Since the beginning of this year we have had 15 sales. 

We expect 2 sales a month so at the moment our sales numbers are slightly above average.

 

So, no, in my opinion Alamy is not dying!

 

(All our images are exclusive to Alamy, we do not supply microstock.)

 

 

I also have a similar number of images, and a similar number of sales so far this year (as Thyrsis).  Nearly all of my images are RM, maybe that has something to do with it.  All my sales except one this year has been RM. Just a guess.

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Posted (edited)

Alamy is in rude health.  One only has to look either at a UK newspaper or the pictures sold threads.   I have sold well over sixty newspaper sales so far this year.  I read of contributors making thousands of dollars and some of my friends make a tidy sum from Alamy sales. 

 

As I have often said, the experience of any one contributor is just statistical “noise”. There are, as I understand it, over seventeen thousand contributors with thousands of photos being added every day.  

 

We all have dry periods, moaning about it in the hope of attracting attention is meaningless and attacking Alamy on the basis of one contributor’s experience is highly counterproductive. 

 

None of us are forced to use Alamy, you “pays your money and you makes your choice.”

 

 

Edited by IanDavidson
Typo
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Regarding number of sales up to now this year is the best ever for me. (Another issue is the money I will get at the end because of Alamy's cutting photographers split.)
But I do not supply microstock...

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On a slightly separate issue, all your images appear to be RF, including (at a cursory glance) brand names and logos for: Aral, Zeiss, Hasselblad, VW, DB, Mercedes Benz, Nike, McDonalds.

 

Not sure that’s wise.

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Can't say I subscribe in the slightest to the view that Alamy is dying. What I can say is that it's having a tough time as microstock continues to drain the life blood out of the stock photography industry. The effect of microstock has been to make prices here much lower than they once were.

 

You shouldn't be too surprised at the level of sales you are experiencing. You have a relatively small portfolio and a significant proportion of them seem to be available on microstock as well. Why should a buyer pay Alamy prices for your imagery when it can be obtained much more cheaply elsewhere?

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Posted (edited)

My dashboard tells me I’ve had 86 sales this year. This increases year on year, as does my portfolio admittedly,. but I think you’ll have to consider other reasons why you are not selling anything, as suggested by others.

Edited by Sally
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Posted (edited)

Alamy is certainly not dying in my experience, as far as number of sales are concerned.  Since January 1st I have sold 23 images (not included 2 refunded) so almost 4 a month with 2,300 images.  What has shrunk of course is the price - I have been on here long enough to remember when the price of a pic was something to get excited about.  It has been obvious for years that contributers to microstock agencies have been cutting all stock photographer's throats, not just their own, so my images are exclusive to Alamy and mostly RM.

Edited by Sue Heaton
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5 $$ sales this morning so Alamy is not dying for me. You only get out what you put in.

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Numbers OK but averages down to about half of last year's.

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You have a good number of photos demonstrating excellent technique and have travelled far for some of them. Why anyone would put them on microstock sites for peanuts is beyond me, but that's your decision. If your shots are available as RF on microstock. then they have to be RF here as well, even though many don't really match Alamy criteria. Not every client will search around looking for the best price but many will. Would you be any different?

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40 minutes ago, Craig Yates said:

You only get out what you put in

 

True. Making even a minor success of stock requires a positive attitude (not unreasonable optimism... and certainly not the negativity of one or two doom-mongers on this forum... whose default setting seems to be to complain that the world does not align itself with their desires)...

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3 hours ago, spiegel said:

Alamy has been dead for me since January, almost half a year now. Absolutely nothing. Not a single sale.

 

I find it a bit surprising, I saw your port and there are many beautiful images there.
I have much fewer photos than you here, and I've already had sixteen sales, this year; it sounds to me strange you haven't had a single one, so far.

Yet, I have some things to ask you and/or point out:

1) You said you use three other agencies, including a Microstock one, in addition to Alamy. If you have the same photo on sale on both Alamy and a Microstock agency, you'll hardly sell it on Alamy, since the prices are usually higher than Microstock's.

2) You have many interesting and original pictures in your port; yet, you have also many other pictures which are more "generic". In my very personal experience, a photo usually sells better on Alamy if it has a unique and clearly identifiable subject. 

3) Your pictures have bit-too-short titles and too few keywords; I'd suppose they could sell much better with longer and more detailed titles and more keywords.

 

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3 hours ago, Malcolm Park said:

On a slightly separate issue, all your images appear to be RF, including (at a cursory glance) brand names and logos for: Aral, Zeiss, Hasselblad, VW, DB, Mercedes Benz, Nike, McDonalds.

 

Not sure that’s wise.

Why not? RF is just a licence type, and many Alamy RM licenses nowadays are very near to being RF.

I can't see how RF and brand names are connected?

(I know Alamy formerly didn't sell RF-editorial, but that has changed)

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4 hours ago, spiegel said:

Alamy was never an agency where I had a lot of sales. But I had sales, not often, but well paid. That has changed.
Alamy has been dead for me since January, almost half a year now. Absolutely nothing. Not a single sale. I find that very regrettable, because I appreciate Alamy because of his other characteristics (transparency, fairness, etc.) very much. 

Is this a general problem, is Alamy moving in the direction of dead, dead, dead? Or am I just unlucky and it's a normal fluctuation?

With the three other agencies, with which one can earn money in the microstock area, my income has increased significantly in the same period, with one agency even massively. Could there be a connection, has Alamy worsened his marketing?

What does that look like for you?

Could be normal fluctuation. If you read other stock forums, most people report earning much more on micro than on Alamy, which is the case for me*. That can be borne out by looking at the monthly thread here, where it's often shocking how little most people are earning (bearing in mine most people report gross earnings) with large, diverse and good ports - and that includes those who are happy with their sales.

*I'm waiting for my May earnings report from my one micro site. May might be the first month where Alamy out-earns it, usually it's c2x the other way. (Different files on each.)

People who sell on Alamy prefer a model of a larger sale per download, whereas micro submitters prefer a larger total per month.

But perhaps you're new on the block in micro too, in which case I have to say the glory days there were around 2011/2. After that, I and most others experienced a sharp downfall in sales and earnings. Video held on for a few years more, but is now on the slide too, according to what I read.

For me, this year on Alamy has been up and down. More sales, lower earnings. Only one sale so far this month.

Overall, probably oversupply everywhere.

 

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1 minute ago, Cryptoprocta said:

Overall, probably oversupply everywhere.

 

Indeed... this is an industry-wide issue, not specific to Alamy. The demand for imagery has probably never been higher, but the number of potential suppliers is higher still...

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97% of the people I see on the street are carrying a camera. 

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Can I just throw this blog post in for the "selling as microstock cuts your throat" point.  That argument has been actually studied and analysed and while there is no certainty all the evidence suggests that this is not that simple and that having the same image in multiple places is not anywhere near as damaging as some believe.

https://brutallyhonestmicrostock.com/2018/02/06/do-alamy-buyers-search-elsewhere-answers-from-alamy/

 

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1 minute ago, Ed Rooney said:

97% of the people I see on the street are carrying a camera. 

Yep this conversation is taking place on other boards about other agencies - same issues.

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Thank you all for your answers.

I think the "right" answer is towards fluktuation and market saturation. 
Because I've always taken my pictures with Alamy and other agencies. Until this year, that had no effect. 
I reject the idea of exclusively contributing at Alamy.
The reason is that, despite the mostly miserable RPD, I get nearly ten times as much return with MS as with Alamy. 
But I also suspect (without any real evidence) that the massive slump at Alamy is due to the comparatively lower market power. 
The three major MS agencies are probably now so powerful (and rich) that they can simply put more money into marketing.
But I hope Alamy comes up again (for me too), because their QC system and payout ratio are really better than the Big Three.

 

Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator

 

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22 minutes ago, spiegel said:

Thank you all for your answers.

I think the "right" answer is towards fluktuation and market saturation. 
Because I've always taken my pictures with Alamy and other agencies. Until this year, that had no effect. 
I reject the idea of exclusively contributing at Alamy.
The reason is that, despite the mostly miserable RPD, I get nearly ten times as much return with MS as with Alamy. 
But I also suspect (without any real evidence) that the massive slump at Alamy is due to the comparatively lower market power. 
The three major MS agencies are probably now so powerful (and rich) that they can simply put more money into marketing.
But I hope Alamy comes up again (for me too), because their QC system and payout ratio are really better than the Big Three.

 

Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator

 

 

I would still, without malice, suggest you are reaching the wrong conclusions.

 

Market saturation and fluctuation affects all contributors so would not explain your recent lack of sales.

 

It is possible that you have only just seen this decline in sales because new contributors are given an initial boost in the search rankings. If your zooms and sales are comparatively low in the first year or so, you will slip down the rankings. Comment was made in one of the posts above about your captions and keywords could be improved and this might contribute to that effect.

 

You don't have to contribute exclusively to Alamy,  just place here those images which play to Alamy's strengths and don't put them on microstock.

 

You maintain there is a massive slump at Alamy, because of its lower comparative marketing power. Slump is too strong a word and it is just wrong to suggest that Alamy is dying. It is true that the big agencies have much more marketing zing, but microstock contributors are not really benefitting much from that, having to run to keep still as RPD returns keep dropping. Piling ever more near-identical images into microstock does nothing to combat that overall trend.

 

Alamy has a niche market which means it punches well above its weight. RPD's at Alamy have declined as well, but it remains the case that well-shot and carefully curated imagery at Alamy sells, and numerous successful contributors demonstrate that.

 

At the end of the day, the way you associate with Alamy is your decision, but I would want to suggest that things at Alamy are not as bad as you seem to think.

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I think that Alamy is doing remarkably well considering all the competition from microstock, free photo sites, etc. I'm not exactly getting rich, but both my sales numbers and gross income are up so far this year despite lower average prices. Microstock still doesn't strike me as being a sustainable business model, so I believe Alamy is on the right track. That said, my crystal ball remains very cloudy indeed.

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