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03/16/2012 07:35:32 AM · #1
i just recently joined 500px and they have a pretty easy way to sell photos. i'm not sure how well they will do, but i was wondering if i should opt in or not. I'm getting many page views and its seems like an easy way to get noticed as I've had random people comment on my images just by uploading them.

you get $2 for every digital download and about $40 per print that gets ordered.

am i selling myself short?

i know I'm not going to be raking in the dough, but if someone likes my picture and wants to buy a print I'd be happy to sell one, but I also don't want to give it away either.

thoughts?
03/17/2012 01:06:18 AM · #2
You know that the only kind of print they offer is a canvas print? And that it's one size only? When they launched it a few weeks ago the cost of the print wasa flat $500 but everyone complained so much they reduced the price to $199.

I don't know what the sales are like, but I am a bit skeptical.

Message edited by author 2012-03-17 01:06:53.
03/17/2012 01:57:09 AM · #3
You do know you can sell your prints from here ...? You even have a (sort-of) direct link to your gallery, like this, abd even if they don't buy one of your pictures, if they remain online and buy someone else's print during the same session you will get a 25% referral commission on that sale as well. You can set your own markup over the base price, and you get 50-75% of that markup upon sale, depending on whether they were referred by your link or another.

FWIW I'm going through my gallery and raising my prices significantly, so if you see somethng you like and it seems cheap, better grab it now ... ;-)
03/17/2012 06:54:15 AM · #4
i know i can sell prints here, but the exposure is so limited. I love 500px, the layout is beautiful. i just uploaded a new pic and just from that it got tines of views. quite a few of my pics have favorites and a few followers without any self promotion.

maybe they'll add some better options.

have you guys had luck selling prints here? if i actually wanted to pursue trying to sell my prints what would be the best avenue to go down. personall website?
03/17/2012 10:12:39 AM · #5
There are so many options...my philosophy is the more places where you have items for sale, the more you have exposure to sell.

Things to consider: yearly fees, commissions, and traffic. Of the sites I use, here's a quick review:

Yearly Fees: DPCPrints is the cheapest of the sites I use -- FREE! Next is FineartAmerica (FAA), at $30 per year. Zenfolio is $99 per year. (Smugmug, which I used to use, is $150)

Commissions: FineartAmerica seems to have the least commission. You set your print price. They add the materials cost. And since it can be framed, they make money on the framing, and pay you a commission on the frame purchase. Zenfolio isn't bad at 12% for orders, and 4% for self-fulfilled orders. DPCPrints is the highest commission at 50% (25% if your link is the referral). Smugmug's was a higher than Zenfolio, around 15% I think.

Traffic: The most traffic generated by the site is from FineArtAmerica. DPCPrints is probably next. Zenfolio requires you to do your own promotion, and thus you must generate your own traffic. Smugmug similarly.

Other: FAA has the best matting and framing options. Printing on Zenfolio is by Mpix, a good, but expensive lab. Smugmug now allows WHCC (my favorite lab that I send my own work too; unfortunately, started after I left)

End Result (Sales): I've made the most money on Zenfolio, but then those are my customers/referrals. Next is DPCPrints, though I've been there the longest and my prices are high enough to "work" despite the high commission. Next is Fineartamerica. I think that one has the most potential, since it generates the most of its own traffic.

Here are my various sites you can explore:

http://nrshapiro.com (Zenfolio)

That's a real URL. For FAA, you have to redirect or use their URL. But there are really two sites and looks...the one you get free from FAA, and the custom one (both the same, but can be different color schemes.

http://neilshapiro.fineartamerica.com or http://neilshapiro.artistwebsites.com [check out the different look and feel..then go to fineartamerica.com, and see what the customer sees, in comparison to DPCPrints]

DPCPrints, you probably already know:

http://neil.dpcprints.com

There's another one:

http://www.artwanted.com/artist.cfm?ArtID=25809&Tab=Store

That does pretty well generating it's own traffic. You can offer prints for sale too, and there's no commission for paypal sales (you self-fulfill). I changed from using their store though over to the links to my zenfolio site just so I'd have one less price list to manage.

That's one caveat to my "the more the merrier" approach. It is work to manage prices in multiple places. I try to keep them similar, and of course, if you change pricing, you have to do it in multiple places.

I did just look at 500px. I have a free gallery there too. I would probably not sell there because you don't control pricing, profit is small, and they give away a copy of the digital file. And the 2.99 price is pretty much a giveaway there too. One other thing: I try not to sell canvases that I don't control the edges! If they wrap your edges, then the composition changes. That's a problem with FAA--I can't turn off products like canvases, but I don't have control over the edges there. Zenfolio I don't enable canvas in the price list, but rather I have a self-fulfilled product for that (I use Canvas on demand, and I use my own edges).

Hope that helps.

Message edited by author 2012-03-17 10:15:15.
03/07/2017 09:46:14 PM · #6
Originally posted by Neil:

I try not to sell canvases that I don't control the edges! If they wrap your edges, then the composition changes. That's a problem with FAA--I can't turn off products like canvases, but I don't have control over the edges there. Zenfolio I don't enable canvas in the price list, but rather I have a self-fulfilled product for that (I use Canvas on demand, and I use my own edges).


Thanks for that piece of advice.
03/07/2017 10:11:59 PM · #7
Originally posted by johnbrennan:

Originally posted by Neil:

I try not to sell canvases that I don't control the edges! If they wrap your edges, then the composition changes. That's a problem with FAA--I can't turn off products like canvases, but I don't have control over the edges there. Zenfolio I don't enable canvas in the price list, but rather I have a self-fulfilled product for that (I use Canvas on demand, and I use my own edges).


Thanks for that piece of advice.


I'm not seeing that in 12253.gif Neil's message now, maybe he edited it out. FAA offers the buyer five choices in canvas prints and in none of them is the composition altered.

Originally posted by Neil:

. . . Next is FineartAmerica (FAA), at $30 per year.
. . .


FAA allows you to sell up to 25 images free. I always recommend that people interested in the site select this option initially and, if they decide the site is for them, upgrade later.

FAA is the only place I sell, so I can only speak to them - not to say anything negative about any of the other options.

This is my personal website hosted by FineArtAmerica: Nikolyn McDonald Photography
03/07/2017 10:19:03 PM · #8
No I didn't edit it out, though the whole message is 5 years old.

What I mean by composition changing is when you wrap 1.5" or 2" of your photo around the edge, the front of the photo, which is the main part, changes in composition. You lose the outer 1.5 or 2" in all directions. That may work with portraits with negative space, but usually not good for landscapes where all the edges contribute.

Of course, that's not true if you pick an option where the site mirrors edges, or otherwise provides new edges for you.

And it's not true if you don't let the image itself wrap, but rather chose solid edges.

And of course, on FAA now, you have more choice as to which products to offer, and what sizes.

Plus now you can use your own domain name with them...no redirection required. The advantage of that is that the paths to galleries show in the URL and can be saved.

My new URL there:

http://fineartbynature.com

Message edited by author 2017-03-07 22:20:11.
03/07/2017 10:22:31 PM · #9
Originally posted by Neil:

No I didn't edit it out, though the whole message is 5 years old.

What I mean by composition changing is when you wrap 1.5" or 2" of your photo around the edge, the front of the photo, which is the main part, changes in composition. You lose the outer 1.5 or 2" in all directions.

That's not true if the site mirrors edges, or otherwise provides new edges for you.

And it's not true if you don't let the image itself wrap, but rather chose solid edges.

And of course, on FAA now, you have more choice as to which products to offer, and what sizes.

Plus now you can use your own domain name with them...no redirection required. The advantage of that is that the paths to galleries show in the URL and can be saved.

My new URL there:

http://fineartbynature.com


Okay, 12253.gif Neil. Thanks for the clarification. FAA now offers either solid color OR mirrored sides and does not offer an option that wraps part of the image. I wanted 31.gif johnbrennan to know that since I know he is considering FAA as a host and the part about not being able to "control the edges" seemed important to him.
03/08/2017 04:03:15 AM · #10
That's good news to hear that you do have control of your aspect ratio and dimensions. Thank you 21_F.gif nam for clarifying that for me.

Today, I registered with Fine Art America but will not be uploading until I know a little bit more. As suggested by 21_F.gif nam, in a previous post, I'm currently looking at 'Behind the Scenes' on the FAA site.

12253.gif Neil provided me with a lot of useful information that I have also taken on board. I thank you, both for your help. I have also taken on board information posted by 1031.gif GeneralE, 30861.gif Bear_Music and others. Thank you all.

I do, however, have a query regarding image size. My images are predominantly at 3:2 ratio, lending themselves to a 12 x 8 or up to a 36 x 24.

In 'Behind the Scenes' they only mention One Dimension.

Is it the long side or any side that they have listed?

default-print-prices.png

Message edited by author 2017-03-08 04:25:27.
03/08/2017 06:31:36 AM · #11
Another thing that I am worried about when uploading to FAA is the resolution.

I have not uploaded any images yet.

I saved my psd file as a jpeg and when I looked at the properties, this is what I saw:

Dimensions: 5184 x 3456
Vertical Resolution: 72 dpi
Horizontal Resolution: 72 dpi

Size: 7.09 Megabytes

Correct me if I am wrong, but surely 72 dpi is unsuitable for printing?
It would create a 72" x 48" print, but at 72 dpi!!!!!!

What shall I do while I am still in the psd mode?

Any suggestion would be most welcomed.
03/08/2017 07:50:59 AM · #12
The resolution is irrelevant -- the number of pixels is what counts. If you want to feel more comfortable about it, go to the "Image Size" dialog, uncheck the "Resample" box, and change the resolution to 300dpi -- the dimensions will suddenly change to about 11 x 17 inches ... or change it to 150dpi and it will print about 22 x 34 inches, etc. For that matter, you could print it 144 x 96 inches at 36dpi -- it's all the same file. I think we have a Tutorial on understanding resolution ...
03/08/2017 08:01:01 AM · #13
Originally posted by johnbrennan:

That's good news to hear that you do have control of your aspect ratio and dimensions. Thank you 21_F.gif nam for clarifying that for me.

. . .


You CAN have control of your aspect ratio ON PRINTS at FAA. But you can also allow the buyer to crop to a standard print ratio. If you want to INSIST on your original ratio, do not allow cropping. You CANNOT insist on your aspect ratio with products, though you can customize images individually so that they will look the best (in your opinion) on a given product, but you cannot lock in that customization in the sense that the customer will be unable to change it.

To help you understand some of this, I suggest you upload at least a couple of images so you can play around with them there.
03/08/2017 11:02:24 AM · #14
Originally posted by GeneralE:

The resolution is irrelevant -- the number of pixels is what counts. If you want to feel more comfortable about it, go to the "Image Size" dialog, uncheck the "Resample" box, and change the resolution to 300dpi -- the dimensions will suddenly change to about 11 x 17 inches.


I did exactly what you said and I now feel more comfortable. I am glad that you told me to uncheck the Resample box.
It did not affect the image in any way.
I see now that the figure of 72 or 300 is irrelevant, the pixels remain the same.
Phew, at least I don't have to backtrack.

I understand now that the pixel count is the only important thing.

After I upload the image, they can produce:

1. 24" x 16" @216dpi
OR
2. 48" x 32" @108dpi
OR
3. Another size using the same mathematics.

Thanks for all of that, helping me understand.
It was that 72 that was staring me in the face and it gave me concern.
03/08/2017 11:06:01 AM · #15
Originally posted by nam:

You CANNOT insist on your aspect ratio with products, though you can customize images individually so that they will look the best (in your opinion) on a given product, but you cannot lock in that customization in the sense that the customer will be unable to change it.

To help you understand some of this, I suggest you upload at least a couple of images so you can play around with them there.


Thanks for that 21_F.gif nam, I shall have a play around.
03/08/2017 11:15:29 AM · #16
Originally posted by johnbrennan:



In FAA 'Behind the Scenes' they only mention One Dimension.

Is it the long side or any side that they have listed?

default-print-prices.png


Anyone know the answer?
03/08/2017 11:36:26 AM · #17
Originally posted by johnbrennan:

Originally posted by johnbrennan:



In FAA 'Behind the Scenes' they only mention One Dimension.

Is it the long side or any side that they have listed?

default-print-prices.png


Anyone know the answer?


Yes. And for what it's worth, your profit prices are extremely low. Don't sell yourself short. You won't be selling quantity on the site, so if you want to make money, you have to price it that way.

I'm sure mine are considered relatively high for the site, and I don't sell a lot, but when I do, at least I make money on the deal.

For example, in that order, mine are:

24
29
39
75
85
135
175
225
250

03/08/2017 10:25:04 PM · #18
Thanks Neil. Your prices have given me a benchmark as to how I should set my pricing.

The image that I posted did not include my prices but the system generated prices by FAA.

In the left-hand column,

That's 8" 10" 12" 14" 16" etc.

Do those dimensions refer to the LONGER of the two sides of an image?
03/08/2017 10:44:10 PM · #19
Originally posted by johnbrennan:

Thanks Neil. Your prices have given me a benchmark as to how I should set my pricing.

The image that I posted did not include my prices but the system generated prices by FAA.

In the left-hand column,

That's 8" 10" 12" 14" 16" etc.

Do those dimensions refer to the LONGER of the two sides of an image?


Yes. Like the first word of my last response. :)
03/08/2017 11:08:28 PM · #20
Originally posted by Neil:

. . .
I'm sure mine are considered relatively high for the site, and I don't sell a lot, but when I do, at least I make money on the deal.

For example, in that order, mine are:

24
29
39
75
85
135
175
225
250


And my prices are quite a bit lower than 12253.gif Neil's but quite a bit higher than yours.
03/09/2017 01:41:06 AM · #21
I believe that Neil has adopted The Fifty Cents Rule.

That's fifty cents for every square inch.

I may use a similar style of calculation but not as high as fifty cents.

I may look at The Thirty Cents Rule returning $30 for a 12" x 8".

Mind you, I am just stabbing in the dark here, I've got no idea what to charge.
It's great to have a benchmark.

And on another subject, FAA sell Shower Curtains and a whole bunch of other stuff.
When I submit my price list, do I give those a price too?

Message edited by author 2017-03-09 04:36:38.
03/09/2017 10:28:01 AM · #22
Originally posted by johnbrennan:

. . .

And on another subject, FAA sell Shower Curtains and a whole bunch of other stuff.
When I submit my price list, do I give those a price too?


Yes . . . or no. If you want, in general, to sell your images as products, put the price in default settings as you put the print prices in. There are site suggested mark-ups on those and since the FAA price is already pretty much top-dollar, I suggest just going with those (which means you don't make much on sales of products). If you only want to sell, say coffee mugs and totes, just put prices there. Don't put ANYTHING in the other boxes. That means do NOT put a ZERO! The program will read a zero as a number and assume you want to sell the print or product but at no profit to yourself at all. Leaving the box blank will say you do NOT want to sell the product (or a particular print size) at all.

And you can always leave the product prices blank in default but pop them in on individual images when you upload. That's what I do on mugs, for example, because I don't like the way over half of my images would come out on a mug by default. When I upload or edit something, I take a look at whether I can "fix" that or not and if I feel I can, I do so and add my mark-up then.
03/09/2017 08:29:20 PM · #23
Originally posted by nam:


Don't put ANYTHING in the other boxes. That means do NOT put a ZERO! The program will read a zero as a number and assume you want to sell the print or product but at no profit to yourself at all. Leaving the box blank will say you do NOT want to sell the product (or a particular print size) at all.

And you can always leave the product prices blank in default but pop them in on individual images when you upload.


Thank you so much for that advice. Right now, I am preparing my keywords and descriptions, as you suggested. Once all that is in order I will upload a few images.

Message edited by author 2017-03-09 20:29:52.
03/10/2017 05:10:13 PM · #24
OK, so I was discussing this with Neil a few weeks ago, and it made me dig up what are a representative sampling of prints I have here with an eye toward setting up a trial account at FAA.

However, I never got around to posting them and asking for pricing suggestions, so this seems like as good a place as any.

Any comments about which to post (or to NOT post) and suggested sale prices (not mark-up) are welcome.

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_751979.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_749668.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_749677.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_614865.jpg

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_878837.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_841595.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_320634.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_320631.jpg

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_843473.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_732498.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1003870.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_637774.jpg

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_415582.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1016245.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_505142.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1031621.jpg

I also have a whole gallery of quotations here, but I'm not sure if I want to put them at FAA or on their own site ...
03/10/2017 09:06:38 PM · #25
Originally posted by GeneralE:

Any comments about which to post (or to NOT post) and suggested sale prices (not mark-up) are welcome.


I uploaded my first 4 abstract art photographs yesterday.
What I found was a huge help, as suggested by Nikki, was to research the site FIRST so that you get an understanding of how they market your material.

I spent two days deliberating over pricing and received great help from Neil and Nikki.
The more you understand about the Fine Art America process, the better off you are.

Nikki suggested that you prepare your list of KEYWORDS first before you do any uploading.

I would suggest choosing your best four photographs from your list, but do NOT upload them.
Determine keywords and descriptions BEFORE you upload.
I created a word document of keywords and descriptions first, and at the time of upload I just cut and pasted from the word document.

Remember that you get up to 25 uploads FREE so choose your prints carefully in the beginning.
Don't exceed 25 until you have sold a print.

If the site works for you, sales wise continue and place more prints. Check out Neil's FAA website it is better than the FREE FAA website that you receive in the first instance.

Actually, it's just a URL link provided by FAA.

I would choose images 1, 2, 3 and 10 and market those on the FAA site.

Message edited by author 2017-03-10 21:12:14.
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