25 Jun 2007 Which Microstock Website has the Most Photos?

This chart shows the total quantity of “online images” across the microstock websites where the figures are available.

Microstock Agency Portfolio Size Chart


The definition of “online images” may vary from agency to agency. In addition, some figures are published by the agency while others are obtained from the database (see below on How to Find the Figures). This may or may not compromise the accuracy of this comparison.

The Fotolia figure has dropped dramatically since the upgrade to their website. Previously, their website reported 3.3 million images, placing them in the top position. The current figure may jump back up to its previous controversial level, or it may not. The drop may be the result of a database cleanup that was part of the upgrade.

The larger agencies understandably publish their total portfolio figures. It’s a marketing statistic for them. The smaller agencies don’t publish their figures as it isn’t in their interest to appear small in comparison to the market leaders.

I charted the portfolio size of these microstock websites against my acceptance rates. The websites with the largest portfolios had the lowest acceptance rates. This seems logical – the agencies with the most photos can be more selective in what they accept.

I also compared the portfolio sizes against my earnings per photo, but there was no correllation. Perhaps in more substantial contributors’ portfolios there may be.

How to Find the Figures

If you want to track these numbers yourself, here’s where to find them on each microstock website.

  • ShutterStock – written directly beneath the logo on the website’s front page (the public website, not submit address)
  • Fotolia – written directly beneath the logo on the website’s front page
  • iStockphoto – written at the bottom of the left-most column on the website’s front page
  • Dreamstime – written on the Statistics & Community page
  • BigStockPhoto – perform a search leaving the keyword field blank
  • 123rf – written in words beside the logo on each page
  • CanStockPhoto – perform a search leaving the keyword field blank

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