How To Take Payment For Your Photography
Photography is an art, and for many, the subject of selling and monetising that art can feel crass.
On the flip side, photography is an art that gets undervalued by those who do not practice it. How many social media posts start with ‘looking for a cheap photographer for my wedding’ or similar? Far too many. How many photographers see their work lifted from the internet and placed on people’s social media accounts? Photo theft is rife, meaning the modern photographer has to become savvier when it comes to monetisation.
There are many ways you can monetise your work, but you have to consider this; the days of cash being king are long gone. In today’s world, you need to offer payment options and different methods for people to purchase your work. It is simple if you're booked for an event - an invoice before you go and payment into a bank account is standard. However, what if you wish to sell your pictures? Your method of receiving funds may differ for in-the-flesh payments and remote online sales in that instance. It might get a little confusing, so we’re going to take you through some of the options for both, should you wish to maximise the earning potential of your photography hobby.
Sales made in person are certainly easier than those made online. You might have a small shop for your photos or have space in someone else’s premises. If it’s the latter, you don’t need to worry; you’ll likely be accepting cash from the business owner. However, if you sell in person off your own back, things might be a little different. That includes small exhibitions in public spaces that are one-off events.
If you wish to maximise your sales potential, you must offer card facilities and accept cash. Suppose you are at a small exhibition in your local town hall, and your pictures are framed and priced at £75. If someone who pops in off the street is taken with your image, are they likely to have the cash on them? In the modern age, it is unlikely. Luckily, help is at hand; mobile card readers are available, allowing you to take and process a payment there and then. Most modern card readers also accept solutions such as Apple Pay, Android Pay and Samsung Pay – there is no excuse for losing a physical sale again.
Selling online is a little more challenging in terms of options. However, the premise is the same; selling through a third party alleviates some of those issues. This might be via a stock photography site that primarily sells images for digital marketing. If you go down this route, whatever you sell will likely be collected and paid to you in a single transaction, so there’s no need to worry.
If you choose to sell online on your own site, things get more challenging. A rudimentary website might run a WooCommerce plugin, which allows you to present your items for sale, but accepting payment is more complicated. That’s because you must either sign up for merchant services or use a payment facilitator such as PayPal or Square. A payment gateway tends to be cheaper, but you will still see a small portion of the sale paid out in fees.
Alternatively, most online e-commerce applications allow you to take payment through a service such as PayPal. PayPal tends to be a popular method of payment online, with most major retailers taking payment that way, and it is easy to implement into your online shop. Again, there is a small fee for the transaction, but there’s far less to do in terms of setting the shop up.
The modern photographer has to be conversant with far more than a Canon or Nikon. To get the right recompense for your efforts, you must be aware of modern payment solutions and outlets for selling your work. Hopefully, this article has helped you towards that goal.