Is ShutterStock A Scam? ShutterStock Complaints

is shutterstock a scamToday we are going to see is ShutterStock A Scam or a legit way to make money online. ShutterStock considers you a contributor and allows you to post your own photos available for purchase on their site.

Making a living online as a photographer isn’t easy, and there is a lot of competition, but ShutterStock is a great site to get your photos out there and start making money online taking pictures. Along with photos, you can also sell your drawings and videos.

If you’d like the most comprehensive guide to starting your own freelance photography business, check out this e-book on Amazon.

Within this ShutterStock review, we will be going into the details of being a contributor and will cover some ShutterStock complaints!

ShutterStock Contributor

As a ShutterStock Contributor, you can get paid to upload photos, drawings, and videos. You’re paid on a per download basis, but I will get into that more a bit later on.

There is a bit of an application process you will have to get through, just because they want to make sure all the media available is up to their standards.

But as long as you put out quality work you should have no problem becoming a ShutterStock Contributor.

Joining ShutterStock

When you join ShutterStock, you will be required to confirm your email. After that, you will need to upload some of your best work before you can get accepted.

Depending on the medium you will be required to upload ten photos, ten drawings, or 1 video. You will also need to verify your identity with a photo id or passport.

Once you’ve completed the uploading of these documents it usually takes ShutterStock under 48 hours to get back with you.

If accepted you will be contacted and can start uploading media for purchase immediately.

How Much Does ShutterStock Pay?

The pay grade is pretty confusing, so I’ve included a table below that explains it a bit better, but you will be paid on a per download basis and not just for uploading your photos. This means people have to use the photos for you to make any money.

shutterstock pricing

As you can see, there are a lot of different variables that go into how much you get paid per download. First, it does matter how much you’ve made in the past with ShutterStock, but as a beginner, you’re still going to be paid pretty good rates.

For videos, you will be earning 30% of the sell. From what I can see most HD videos sell for $79 so you would be receiving $23.70 per sell.

There is no way of telling you exactly how much you will be earning, but I’ve included all the rates above!

How Will ShutterStock Pay You?

ShutterStock makes payments via PayPal and Check. For PayPal, the minimum cash out amount is $100, and for check, the minimum is $300. I was not able to find when they paid, but I’m assuming once you reach the cashout amount you can get PayPal payments within 72 hours and a check within a week or two (based on similar sites payments), but I’m not 100% on this.

ShutterStock Complaints

Getting Accepted

One of the biggest draw backs of paid for pictures sites, in general, is that it’s a very competitive field. Since it’s competitive, ShutterStock can be very picky with who they choose to become a contributor.

Not to say that you can’t get accepted, but if you’re not an excellent photographer most likely you won’t get accepted to this site.

Of course, there are plenty of other sites that you can apply to, but once again the field’s competitive and they are usually pretty picky.

High Cash Out 

The next issue with this site is the high cash out amount. I’m not even worried about the $300 check amount because you should be getting paid by PayPal. The PayPal cash out amount is $100 which is very high to me.

You’re not going to be getting paid huge commissions on your downloads so it could take a while to reach this amount. Not to say that you can’t make that kind of money with this site, but for most people, it will take a while to reach the cashout.

So keep in mind that you should not be relying on this money to pay a small bill that you might have because you will need to reach $100 before you can cash out.

Photos Accepted

The last concern has to do with a very competitive field again. Once you’re accepted, every photo you submit must be approved by ShutterStock. They are very selective and only take the best photos in categories that they’re looking for.

Most likely if your photo doesn’t get accepted it’s not something someone would buy anyways, but getting a bunch of pictures turned down can be discouraging and doesn’t lead to any income.

Is ShutterStock a Scam?

ShutterStock is not a scam. It’s a completely legit site that will pay you for downloads of your content. The site seems to be pretty selective so if you’re not a really good photographer or drawer you might as well check out some of my other work from home jobs.

Overall the field is very competitive, so this might not be the best online job for everyone, but if you want to give Shutter Stock a shot you can apply here.

As long as you can get accepted and get a few photos approved you can make some extra money with this site, but don’t expect to be quieting your job just from joining.

To see some other sites, I recommend that can supplement your photography income visit scam free extra income. For more information on selling your photos online, check out this e-book on how to start a freelance photography business.

More interested in a full-time job replacement income? Check out my #1 recommendation on how to work from home.

A Member of ShutterStock? Think ShutterStock Is A Scam? Have you’re own ShutterStock Complaints? Let me here your thoughts in the comments below!


My name is Brok and I am the Owner of Full Time Job From Home. I started making money online in 2013 and created this site to teach others how they can do the same. To see exactly how I make money online visit Start A Profitable Blog

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Work At Home Job Leads – All June Reviews | Full Time Job From Home - July 9, 2015

[…] ShutterStock: Difficult to get accepted, but after you upload photos for purchase. Buyers can purchase different usage rights of your photos. Rates depend on rights and past earnings with ShutterStock. […]


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