Running Adwords on Photoconnect
So it seems to be quite public now that the lay offs at Acclaim Images were not that amicable - unfortunate since it appears 'family' were involved.
One of the issues raised was that Fred Voetsch's decision to run Google Adwords on his site exploited the photographers - by effectively making money by advertising competitors.
Since it is easy for many to see some truth in this, I have to consider the situation here at Photoconnect where I do the same.
Photographers originally paid to be on photoconnect - but that was in different market conditions to those that exist now. Each photographer has paid for a year's exposure for their images, an alternative to their own website costing rather more. After the year matured I have not asked for more money, or for photographers to leave but recently I have started running Adwords on the pages on this site.
I am in a slightly different position to Acclaim. My only marketing is the search engines. Acclaim uses them but has also been raising its profile by other means, although that may change now.
Now say a photographer puts on this site images of the New York Financial District. That page will get found in a great number of Google searches. Some people will want to buy a photo of the New York Financial District. Others are looking for something else to do with New York or to consider their Financial affairs.
Those looking for a photo will either see what they want on the page in front of them or not. If yes, they will look to buy. If not then one in a hundred will click on a advert earning a few pennies to help keep Photoconnect running, subscription free. The ads MAY be for other stock agencies but are as likely to be selling Mutual Funds or travel to New York. So those looking for something else will find what they are looking for.
One thing I do is try and keep control of 'free photo' adverts or adverts for microstock sites. I can do this through a filter Google provide but inevitably some sites get through until they are spotted and I employ the filter.
So all in all I don't think the adverts affect sales. What they do is keep the site running with no subscription. The modern internet runs on the basis of advertising keeping many sites alive, and photoconnect is not an exception.