What are the most popular images and videos on microstock? You can find them in the lists on nearly each microstock agency (on some agencies you have to register to display the list). Sometimes they offer also overview of most searched keywords, which is very useful for the contributors.
Why you should look at those lists?
Because you can find there a lot of inspiration – you can find out what is most popular at this moment, what photo / illustration style is requested, when is time to start selling your Christmas / spring / Easter themes…
Even more interesting and useful are the list of top searches (most popular keywords). Once you don’t know what to photograph or draw, just look at those list and you will find out themes, that buyers are looking for.
Please do not copy
Please be careful when you inspire yourself with images from most popular lists. There is quite thin boundary between inspiration and plagiarism. If you will just copy the most popular images, they can freeze your account and you will lose your money (this depends on each microstock agency – you should read the agreements on each site), and probably your copies will never be so popular like the original.
iStockphoto has on the site several lists – Most popular downloads (photo, illustration, audio, video, flash) for last week, month, last three months. There are also other interesting lists.
Shutterstock offers 4 simple lists – Top 50 images ever, Top 50 images this week (both you can filter – iphotos / illustrations), Top 100 image searches (ever, past month, past week) and Top 25 video searches (again – ever, past month, past week).
On Dreamstime, there are no standard lists of mos popular items. But there is a page called Popular Images, where you can find every day the most popular photos and illustrations, photographers and searches. Plus, there is a link to all photos on this site, sorted by downloads.
There are also nice overviews on Fotolia – Hall of Fame (most popular ever), From this Month, Week and Today. There is also list of top 150 keywords Fotolia artists have used to describe their images (this is not much interesting) and list of top 150 keywords buyers have used when searching images on Fotolia.
You can find some interesting charts also on BigStockPhoto site. They offer overview of Hot Images, Popular Contributors and list of Most Downloaded images. And also unordered list of Most Popular Photo Searches.