Microstock Agencies: price comparison 2013


We've received this interesting 2013 microstock pricing analysis by Photaki Team.

The prices of the images on microstock agencies vary depending on the price of the images, the license, the quantity, the credit package and of course depending on the agent.
There are lots of things to take into account when weighing the cost of an image, that's why it's almost impossible to know the exact price and be totally objective, but we looked for the best prices to try and show where should we sell our images, or buy them. Where to buy?
A lot of times we don't really know how much would an image costs in a single purchase, given that many agencies don't require a minimum amount to buy, different purchase plans.
microstock price comparison

It's impossible to measure this because of what we said, but we can get other conclusions as well, that will give us an idea of how much would prices vary on agencies and what they offer:

  • If we want to make a small purchase, with little credits, the best options are Photaki, Dreamstime, Crestock and Stockfresh.
  • The agencies that increase the least their prices depending on the size of the image are: Photaki, Canstockphotos, Photodune and Depositphotos.
  • The agencies that have more variety on the photo size are: Shutterstock, Depositphoto, Photaki and Crestock.
  • The only companies that have XXSmall photos (500x400px) are: Photaki, Shutterstock and Photodune.
  • Shutterstock is one of the most expensive agencies if we want to buy a single image, since you must buy a minimum off 39€ for a pack of credits, no matter the size of the photo.
  • The agency that lets you buy the smallest credit pack is BigStockPhoto (6) and the one biggest credit pack, Depositphotos (50). For the price of those 6 credits (10€) we can buy 10 in Photaki, Stockfresh or Crestock.
  • The agencies with the cheapest cfredit are Dreamstime, Crestock, Stockfresh and Photaki. (Depositphoto has the credit at 1$, but you must buy 50)
microstock prices 2013

Microstock Prices 2013 – Click to Zoom Out

To sum things up: Analyzing the best microstock sites and comparing prices we notice that the oldest microstock pages have the highest prices (Fotolia, Istock y Shutter). The mid-sized ones claim their market share with competitive prices, making them better every day. Photaki and Dreamstime have the most economic prices for a medium sized demand of content and  Depositphotos if the quantity is  high.
P.S.: I've received some criticisms about the accuracy of this comparison. I invite to add your comment to this post if you'd like to suggest corrections.
@peter_hamza  Stockfresh founder: “On SF min purchase is $4.99 or $2.50 with instant DL, vectors are $10, we start with 1:1 credit ratio unlike most others” / “Pixel sizes vs size categories are also wrong in some cases and I'm not sure where you've seen those istock prices :)”… full discussion at https://twitter.com/peter_hamza/status/304198842742607872

About Author

I write about the stock photo and microstock industry since 2006 on my several online-magazines. My goal for MyStockPhoto is to teach photographers and stock photographers how to sell more photos and earn money with their photography hobby.

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