At the end of August, I decided to be an exclusive contributer to Dreamstime. It took me a long time to make this decision. I'm still relatively new to stock photography. I've been here for almost 1 year. At the beginning, I thought the best way to fund my hobby was to submit my photos that I taken anyway to multiple sites thus increasing my sales. I figured since I took the photo, edited the photo, and keyworded them, why not upload to other sites since the work is already done anyway. It turns out it's much more complicated and more work than I thought to contribute to multiple sites. As I looked through the other microstock sites and their forums, I find out that their requirements with respect to keywords and acceptance of photos are very different from site to site. Also how the photo is edited is different also. Some want the photos to be more bright where others may feel is over exposed. Others want less contrast and others want more contrast. etc. etc.
So I decided just to stick with Dreamstime and become exclusive. I think it has gone in my favour thus far. First of all the retro billing for all my current uploads is a nice start. But also the extra 10% per sale is good also. I've also heard that there is some preferential treatment of exclusive members photos in the search engine.
I find being exclusive gives me the best return on the work I put in. As you can see from the numbers in my portfolio, I'm doing this as part of my hobby right now. So being exclusive makes sense. September was my best month for the total number of sales and revenue.
So for those who are still deciding whether or not to become exclusive, I hope this article helps.