Selling images is the aim of many photographers. Especially those who are working towards a successful business. Getting paid means being able to continue your photography passion.
Today, we are reviewing Foap. Whether this new platform is a viable way to make money from your photography or not.
What Is Foap?
Foap provides photographers with a platform. There you can upload photos and videos you have taken, and sell them.
Brands and agencies see the photos you upload and buy them through the app. Even bloggers or website builders can buy them to use royalty free.
The price you get for each image is $10. This is then split down the middle with Foap. Their 50% commission is for using their platform to sell your videos and photos.
It is simple and easy to use. You only need to upload the photos and videos on the app to start earning money. To start using Foap immediately, you need to download the app and register.
You can register within a few clicks by using your Facebook account or through your email.
You can head over to foap.com, but that is the website where you can buy the photos online. The Foap app is where you need to be for uploading, either from the Apple iTunes store or google play.
What Makes It Different
Foap was created in 2012 by a team in Sweden. It is a start-up, meaning a small team of people working to create a company from the ground up.
As for their platform, Foap is no stranger to photographers. It is a stock photography website, aimed at making you, the photographer, money. It does sell photos, a platform to make money online.
Unlike other photography sites, this one presents each image at $10. They keep 50% of this, which is better than most of the large, big-name stock photography websites.
Dreamstime, Getty, iStock and/or Fotolia, all take commissions. You can expect them to keep anything from 37% up to 80% of the price they sell for.
Selling to these websites will give you more percentages, yet, those images might not sell for $5. Alamy, Shutterstock and Stocksy give you 50% to 75% of the price. But these images might sell for cents, not dollars.
This website is a little different than the regular stock photography platforms. Uploading images is one part of their company’s business plan. They also offer contests and missions.
If you have every used Image Brief or Guru Shots, you could be familiar with these terms. The website gives you a few briefs that ask for certain images. Photographers submit their images in the hope of winning.
These images have to meet strict requirements, but if they win, you make $100.
This imaging platform also allows you to rate and comment on images. From research, it seems that rating images were necessary to be able to upload your own images.
Rating images as a necessity created problems. Many were down voting images to tank the competition. Or they found that a 3-star rating made the uploading process faster.
Currently, this is no longer the case, but still a sought-after process from the creators. It seems they listen to the reviews and comments that the users make.
How Does Foap Work?
Foap is easy. You download the app for iPhone or Android smartphones and register. If you have Facebook or an Email (who doesn’t), then you can do so in a matter of seconds.
It takes your profile image from Facebook and adds your name. You need to input your location and date of birth to continue. Once you do, you are ready to go.
Uploading an image is also easy peasy lemon squeezy. You click on the camera icon at the bottom, and it will pull any image you ask from your camera roll.
While it is loading, you get to add a title and then suggested keywords. You select from ones it believes fit your image, and you can add more if you don’t see ones you would like.
By clicking ‘Publish’ in the top corner brings you to a very short legal page. The two questions are ‘Are there any people in your image?’ and ‘Are the faces in this photo recognisable?’
As long as there are no recognisable people, you won’t need a photo or model release contract. And that’s it! You image is published.
It took me about 5 minutes to register and add my first image. It is now there for all people to see, either other photographers or brands and potential clients.
To get paid, you need to first sell your images. Once you do, you’ll get notified. You will need a PayPal account to receive the money, which they will send you each month.
You will need to claim it before the 15th of that month. If not, you’ll get it the following month.
To be honest, I hadn’t heard of Foap until today. There are many ways to sell your images. For stock photography websites, the big names stick in your head. Smaller ones? Less so.
As you can see, more and more platforms are popping up to help you sell your photography work. From researching Foap and looking at the user comments, they were very split.
Many people didnt like it’s marketing campaign. Foap always came across as being very lucrative. Yet no one managed to sell more than a few images after many months of work.
Also, other photographers complained about the upload rate being very slow. I’m happy to say that it was as fast as it could have been for me. It loaded faster than it took me to choose keywords.
Many people asked ‘Is Foap Legit’? From reading reviews, I saw the photographers’ frustrations. But many articles focused on the legitimacy of the stock photography website.
Also, others had a problem with authenticating their Foap registration. They required users to send an image of their passport or driving license for proof. Many were not happy or willing to provide this.
Again, I didn’t come across this situation. They must have listened to their users on how to improve their platform and service. You can still find app reviews that give it great press.
On Apple iTunes, 6 reviewers gave it 4.5 out of 5 stars. Over on Google play, over 20,000 reviewers gave it a little under 4 stars.
Advantages of Foap
- 50% Commission – Foap sells your images for you, giving you 50% of the commission. This is better than the majority of the larger stock photography websites.
- $100 for Foap Missions/Contests – The payout for missions and contests is $100. This is much higher (even if you don’t know how much money the company is making).
- Smartphone App – Everything is done through the smartphone app. This makes it easy and accessible for all sort of photographers.
- Free to Register – It is free to register and sell your images online.
- Doesn’t Require DSLR images – Many stock photography websites require a certain level of resolution. This is usually limited images to those from DSLR. Here, the min is 1280 x 960 pixels. This means you can use iPhone images.
Disadvantages of Foap
- Monthly Payments – The payments are made each month. It can be a hassle to wait for your money. Especially if you forget the 15th of the month deadline for requesting payment.
- Need Smartphone App – You definitely need the smartphone app to upload images. This might not be cost effective for the older generation of photographers. Or those without smartphones.
- No Rating with the BBB – Currently, there is no rating with the Better Business Bureau. You can’t be sure if their business operations are considered safe and correct.
- Can’t Upload Multiple Images – You can’t upload more than one image at a time. This makes the process slow and painful.
- Lots of Competiton – There are a lot of users here. It is attractive for other users to down vote your images to cut out their competition.
Like any other stock photography websites, Foap requires great looking images, lots of time and patience. They all offer very low monetary value of your images through varying amounts of commission.
Unlike the bigger stock photography names, there is no exclusivity with Foap, or limitations of quality. However, Foap doesn’t have the number of potential clients that Getty or iStock does.
If you are willing to put the time in, Foap is just as good as any other stock photography pages. the problem is, you can only upload images from your iPhone.
So, if you want to include images from your DSLR, you need to send the images to your phone somehow. I don’t understand why they don’t have a desktop uploader.
Unless they want to stop the photographers from ‘carpet bombing’ the site with hundreds of images in one go. Here, the uploaders might forget to add relevant tags.
My last line is, they must be making money to be in operation for around 7 years. They can’t survive without people selling images. Someone somewhere is making a profit.
If you have the time and energy, it make sense to add your images to another stock site. After a while, they start working for themselves. If this is your first taste of stock photography, I wouldn’t start here.