Saturday, December 11, 2010

Shutterstock's Strategy: Boosting Sales For New Stocks

Have you ever wonder why your newly uploaded stocks at Shutterstock gets more downloads compared to other agencies? That is because Shutterstock has a strategy that keeps new stocks get better visibility.

Let's compare the search filtering choices we have.

1. Most Popular
2. Newest
3. Oldest
4. Random

1. Best Match
2. Age
4. Contributor
5. Rating
6. Size
7. Title

1. Best Match
2. Date
3. Price
5. Popularity

1. Relevency - Descending
2. Relevency - Ascending
3. Download - Descending
4. Download - Ascending
5. Upload- Descending
6. Upload- Ascending
7. Resolution- Descending
8. Resolution- Ascending

Shutterstock only has 4 choices (Most Popular, Newest, Oldest, and Random) on the search filter. Let's understanding them better. Oldest filter is pretty much useless because I don't think buyers want to look for old stuff. Random is also useless because it don't return you with good results at all. So, Shutterstock literary forces its buyer to search for Newest and Most Popular. I don't know the actual algorithm behind the Most Popular filter, but from my experience, it is able to give chances for new stocks to appear on it pretty quickly. If your stocks has a few downloads each day after the first few days of upload, it can then be quickly shoot to the top of Most Popular. I believe Most Popular has something to do with number of views, downloads, and age.

Because Shutterstock's search don't have other choices like Number of Downloads and Rating, older stocks don't have the advantage of being grandfathered, thus new stocks have chance.

I believe Number of Downloads or Rating basically kill off new stocks. Simply take a look at other agencies, 3 years old stock will always be on the top of Downloads due to obvious reason. Rating is prone to abuse and I believe that it favors older stocks in some ways as well.

The more search choices an agency has (that does favors new stocks), the less visibility we have for new stocks.

So, if you are a grandfather in stock agency, then you will feel that IStockPhoto, Fotolia, and Dreamstime love you in a constant way. And you may not feel the same for Shutterstock because it doesn't favor your 10000 stocks which is 3 years old now.

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