Outsource titles and keywords to freelancers
After this new way of making money, let's talk about a fundamental principle in digital business: scalability.
I have a title and keyword writing service, which relies on freelancers with a lot of experience on search engine optimization (SEO), which is the key to success, not only on microstock but on any internet business. These freelancers watch your photos and videos, write the title and keywords, and you can just focus on the production. In other words: the dream of every contributor.
Implementing such a service in your workflow can change everything. Before, it took you, let’s say, an hour to shoot and edit photos, and then you had to spend two hours to describe them. By using this service, you can triple your production, using the three total hours of your time only on content creation, with the wonderful side effect of getting rid of an activity, writing titles and keywords, that none of us love.
Of course, if you produce unsaleable images and footage—and, therefore, you do not earn from them—you will lose money by outsourcing to other titles and keywords.
If, on the other hand, you produce content that portrays subjects that have a commercial value, then your earnings not only triple by tripling the production, but increase much more, because the algorithms that rank the photos and videos that show up to buyers looking for content in microstocks reward producers who have a consistent portfolio and a good average of sales per file.
Having said these boring but useful concepts, I quote a message that one of the customers of my service wrote to me, because my answer can teach something to all of you listeners:
Some stock images I sent you to be described with titles and keywords have actually already been uploaded to Adobe Stock. In the past, they gave me good earnings (in total about 200 sales), but:
For at least a couple of years, I have not sold them anymore.
The first time I entered a bad description and very few keywords.
If I were to delete the currently published photos before uploading their duplicates with the new keywords, do I get any damage in terms of the algorithm?
The key to earnings
Dear friends, I’m sure you all love to shoot. If you also love to earn, this is one of the key questions in the microstock business, and for this reason, I would like to share my answer with you.
By focusing on these aspects of production, you make money. If you don't care about earning, you will certainly have a lot of fun with microstock, but the money at the end of the month does not come as much as it could.
On microstock forums or Facebook groups, people just talk about sales and agencies. They don’t even know what search engine optimization is. As a result, they earn nothing and say that microstock is dead and those who run agencies are stupid. Actually, their problem is that they don’t understand how this business works.
The software that doesn't allow double uploads
To answer our friend’s question, let’s start from the beginning. Most agencies have software that recognizes double uploads. So if you upload a photo or a video that you already have for sale, Pond5, for example, understands it and won't even let you upload it. I believe Adobe Stock does the same.
So the first scenario—you upload duplicate photos in addition to the original photos uploaded years ago—it's not even technically possible. Even if it was, it would be a bad strategy not to erase those unsold photos, because if you get rid from your portfolio of old photos that haven't generated income, you're just doing yourself a favor in terms of ranking.
The real question could be whether to keep your best sellers online or not, because it is a good thing to have photos in your collection that have generated royalties for you and the agency, even if the algorithm no longer shows them to customers and they do not sell anymore.
From a technical point of view, I am not aware of any agencies that have software that can track content that was previously present in the collection and that you later removed.
Analyse data to make more money
So my advice is: delete all the photos that have sold less than 20 times and upload them again. Before doing it, try to understand why those photos have not sold:
if it is a matter of SEO or of subject?
One of the advantages of digital over the analog world is that there is an enormous amount of data that you can analyze to get useful elements to improve your production.
If, on the other hand, dear friend, you have photos that made at least 100 sales, you can keep them there, and therefore, you will not be able to upload them again.
Actually, I am about to do something very similar, so I answer you after having already thought about it. I now only produce historical stock footage. The first archive videos I uploaded 8 years ago were poor in quality. And I hadn't even written good titles and keywords, because at the time I knew almost nothing about SEO.
So the decision I made regarding my portfolio is to redo the videos: delete the old ones with few sales among those already uploaded, keeping only the ones that have made me more than 500 dollars on Pond5, and then upload them again with new titles and keywords written by the freelancer that I have selected for the service that I also sell to the other contributors.