Outside of dropstock.io, one of the biggest nightmares in stock photography is that if you are working with multiple stock agencies, is to upload your photographs to all of them, one by one. Imagine having 100 photographs you have to upload to 10 agencies, write descriptions and keywords to each of the images, etc. This would be a nightmare.
What is Dropstock.io and how does it work? Dropstock.io is a service that allows you to upload images, videos or vectors to multiple microstock agencies at once using Dropbox. The advantage of using this service would be the simplicity of dealing with a large number of stock agencies at once, aiding you to save a huge amount of time.
There are advantages and disadvantages of using dropstock.io and will require you to have a dropbox account in order for this to work. Moreover, to expect, there is also a pricing system for contributors who are uploading large numbers of stock photographs but also have a free option.
I have to disclose that this review is not sponsored by Dropstock.io or Dropbox, nor I have an affiliate program with them and this is based on my real experience of using it. More information will follow in the post.
Dropstock.io advantages and disadvantages
You remember the old days as a stock photographer when you had to upload your images to each agency one by one right? As everything evolved until nowadays, the same did the possibility to deal with multiple microstock agencies at once, but consider this, in general, most of the options are based on FTP services.
Furthermore, let’s take a look at the advantages and disadvantages of dropstock.io
- The possibility to upload the same image(s) to multiple microstock agencies at once, saving you plenty of time.
- Drastically cut the internet upload requirements for your image in special if you are on-the-go (as before you had to upload one image to 10 agencies, now upload one single image and dropstock.io will distribute this to those 10 agencies)
- Fair prices which never expires. You buy your GB’ites and not a monthly payment, which seems to be fairer than anything else around.
- Easy to configure with step-by-step tutorials
- This can get pricey if you are a stock videographer and you have to upload dozen of high dimension 4K videos to stock agencies.
- Shutterstock always had some issues where this block the uploads from dropstock.io from time to time (not always).
I would consider as one of the biggest disadvantages where Shutterstock is blocking the uploads from time to time but not always. Although this has nothing to do with Dropstock but with Shutterstock, most of the time you will not get head-on with this issue, but when you do there is a very simple solution: wait!. dropstock.io will further attempt to re-upload those images until it will succeed.
The ease of using Dropstock.io system
The system if right configured will allow you to do more than anything else. Although there could be alternatives to dropstock.io where you use your own FTP services to upload to stock agencies, this service is doing everything to you.
In the end, with the right approach, you can get to have a shortcut on your computer desktop with the dropbox partition where your images go. All you will have to do is drag and drop (copy method) your images in the dropbox, these images will be uploaded by dropbox and furthermore, dropstock.io will do its job from thereon.
With the right level of access and basic configurations, after the images will be uploaded to all microstock servers you authenticate, these will be deleted from the dropbox automatically, freeing your dropbox space used when you initially uploaded the images. With this method, your dropbox will always be empty and you do not have to get head-on managing any other services and subscriptions at all.
The simplicity of configuring to the easiest of use will come in the following sections. But until then, why not watch two short video to understand better the process rather than reading it?
The first step would be drag and drop (copy method) your images to your upload shortcut folder. More information will follow.
And the second step would be checking on dropstock.io on the uploads section if all the photos have been uploaded successfully. If your images are deleting automatically from dropbox (if you tick that option on the website) that means your photo or photos have uploaded to all microstock agencies you have chosen.
How to configure for first-time users
There are two parts of your configuration. The first part has to do with installing dropbox, giving it full access to modify fields and creating the required shortcut to your desktop in order to simplify things, where the second part is connecting your microstock accounts through dropstock.io. For each of these configurations, there are step-by-step guides on their website.
But now let’s talk a bit about the first part of the configuration shall we?
You definitely heard and you know about the services of Dropbox, but if by any chance you didn’t, I will advise you to get to their official website Dropbox.com and create an account. You can download the dropbox on your computer, which is going to be the next step and installing it.
On Mac users, dropbox will require to allow you for the app to give its full access, which you do by pressing turn on accessibility after this is installed, click the lock to allow changes to be made and tick dropbox from the utility window as in the image above.
The first part is done and now its time for you to go to dropstock.io by following this link. This is NOT an affiliate link or advertising. Now it’s time to create an account for free and you will have 1GB free to try their services.
I will not cover here how to connect to each microstock agency through dropstock.io website because it is a very long process but they will offer you a step-by-step guide on how to connect their service to your dropbox account, how to connect to each microstock website and which method they use. I warn you that this will take you a while, but it is a one-time-only process.
After you have done everything, on your computer go to your dropbox folder > apps > dropstock.io and make a shortcut to the desktop of the folder uploads (or depending on your folder you have created by the earlier process).
You can also configure separate agencies in separate folders if you have different types of images to upload, and for video uploads, you can create a video folder but beware that some of the microstock agencies will have a different FTP address to configure for the videos.
Now it is time for you to drag and drop (copy method) your photographs to your upload shortcut folder from the desktop and that’s it. Now the images will be uploaded to dropbox and distributed between the agencies you logged and configured per that folder.
Beware that this method is uploading your images to those specific microstock agencies you chose but is NOT PUBLISHING, therefore, you will still have to get to each stock website and add keywords, name, description and set up your categories.
Where before you had to upload each image to each agency, now all you have to do is to drag and drop your photographs to that folder. Beware to use the copy method drag and drop and not the move method, because, you can also set on the dropstock.io website > setup to delete the images once they are uploaded to all agencies in order to free up your Dropbox space.
I mentioned earlier that Shutterstock may have some issues where it can block an upload, if this happens, do nothing, do not remove the photo from the dropbox as this will attempt again and again to re-upload the image to Shutterstock until succeeded.
Additional tips to help you improve your stock photography uploadings with dropstock
- If you are working with Lightroom, and as a photographer, you should (unsure about Photoshop though), you have the option to add keywords to each of the photos before exporting, description and title. Once you upload an exported photo with all those fields completed, the fields required on the microstock websites will auto-populate, reducing drastically the time spent to populate each field on each site.
- As a serious stock photographer, if you have large quantities of images or high dimension videos, a higher-paid option would drastically reduce the price per gigabyte, from $0.20 to $0.05, basically to 1/4th of the actual price. Of course, this is not for everyone and may hurt your pocket a bit, but insignificative if you already have an income from stock photography.
Dropstock.io Review. Does it really worth it?
Absolutely YES! With a good technique of combining the possibility to populate the keywords, description, and titles through Lightroom and the dropstock method to upload your images to a bunch of stock agencies at once, you can reduce with over 90% of the time spent with dealing with stock agencies and to focus more on photography.
Before, uploading about 15 images to 10 stock agencies, one by one and populating the fields in a classic way, usually, this takes over an hour if not more. Following the above-mentioned method, will barely take you 5-7 minutes, with minimum additional effort in Lightroom.
A complete FAQ can be also found on their website answering most of the questions but this is not on a top-menu easy to reach section, therefore, many people may not know about it.
Although I did not have any issues overall, I also did not observe any direct contact option or chat, other than to submit feedback or send a message, which appears to be hidden under about page.
This dropstock.io review and how-to guide was created as requested by multiple people reflecting one of the other posts “Can you earn money with stock photography?” with a mention of this service.
Thank you for remaining until the end of this post and I hope you find it useful. Take care for now and I hope to see you around.