2008 vs 2009 Microstock Statistics

Back in May I released the statistics from the 2009 Microstock Survey.  As we look forward to the data from 2010, I thought I would take a look at how things changed from 2008 to 2009.  These results should be taken with a grain of salt as we can’t be certain that same users responded to the 2008 poll as responded to the 2009 poll.  Additionally, there were nearly 200 more respondents for 2009.  Depending on whether these new respondents were full time pros or hobbyists will affect the results.  That said, by looking at a few key questions we can see the sample profile is fairly stable and a number of comparisons can be made.

Average Income

2008: $10,077
2009: $10,654

Average Age

2008: 41
2009: 41

Number of Images Online

2008: 1156
2009: 1156

Are you iStock Exclusive?

2008: 15% Yes
2009: 19% Yes

Is Microstock Your Primary Source of Income?

2008: 14% Yes
2009: 18% Yes

Do You Feel the Future of Microstock is Positive?

2008: 69% Yes
2009: 74% Yes

Percentage of Total Income That Comes From Microstock?

2008: 13%
2009: 28%

Initially, I am surprised at how similar the results are from the two years.  The average income for the two years is basically the same as is the number of images online.  This shows us that the new poll respondents were of a very similar sample to the previous year.  If we look at the iStock exclusive results however we see a larger representation of exclusive photographers.  It would be interesting to know if this was a result of more photographers choosing exclusivity or simply more photographers from the iStock forums responding to the poll.  It will also be interesting to see if this number changes after the recent changes to iStock’s royalty structure.

The other change I found interesting is the larger percentage of respondents who found the future of microstock to be positive as well as a larger group who had microstock as their primary source of income.  It looks like people, on average, have the same amount of images online, are making a similar amount to previous years, yet more people are jumping on board and considering microstock their primary income source.

Jim Pickerell of PhotoSellingOptions asked a number of interesting questions in first 2009 Survey post.  I’ll try to answer some of those in the next stats blog post.

What do you think of the results and are there any stats you wish to see?

[2009 Microstock Survey Forum Discussion]

About The Author:

Tyler Olson works as a microstock photographer who also runs the MicrostockGroup forum and blog. Being so closely involved in the microstock community as a submitter, forum moderator and blogger, Tyler is able to keep updated in the constantly changing microstock marketplace.
Posted on September 27th, 2010 in Microstock Survey | tags: , , , ,