Press "Enter" to skip to content

Photo services market levelling out

Jeremy Wills, senior analyst with European-based market researcher FutureSource Consulting, delivered an overview earlier this year on the current and projected market for photographic services in Australia, Canada, Europe and the US, with a prediction that while the mix will change, overall demand will remain stable.

‘Photo Printing – A New Chapter’ showed  the projected installed base of smartphones, digital cameras and tablets in Australia, Canada, Europe and the USA will grow and then plateau by 2019.

(Copyright: FutureSource)

More devices has led to a meteoric rise in the number of images being captured and uploaded, driven largely by smartphones. This year, the combined daily upload of the four top platforms (Facebook, Snapchat, WhatsApp and Instagram) is expected to reach 2200 billion!

(Copyright: FutureSource)

Taking more, giving less
He looked at what people do with their digital images, based on a November 2015 consumer survey in the UK, France and Germany, along with a comparison to the study results from the same study in 2014. The percentage of respondents viewing their images on their mobile/smartphone screens declined in 2015 from 2014, as did the sharing of photos by email, websites and prints (viewing).

(Copyright: FutureSource)

Ordering photo products for delivery is gaining popularity as apps continue to develop and consumers are encountering competitive offerings. In response to the question ‘Do you use an app to order printed photo products for delivery’, photo prints remain the leading product category, at 21 percent of the survey respondents, followed by photo books at 15 percent, calendars (14 percent) and greeting cards (13 percent). Thirty-five percent of the respondents indicated that they do not use an app for ordering.

Copyright: FutureSource

The content of these photo product orders is shown below. For the leading content categories – ‘Family & Friends’ and ‘Holiday’ – most respondents prefer to order their photos through an app and have printed products delivered to home rather than printing at home or ordering via an app for collection in store. Although the value of print orders continues to decline, production of other products is rising. As a result, the combined value of these products, while dipping slightly, is expected to hold relatively steady.
pics-of-whatJeremy Wills concluded that the industry needs to: continue to offer new and exciting products; be flexible; adapt to mobility; offer quick and simple solutions; and continue to market to consumers – remind them that printed images are permanent. Proximity and mobility are key for the photo industry for ensuring future sales.

– We hope to report on FutureSource market research more regularly in future. As we have stated  often through the years, the Australian photo industry, especially following the demise of PMA and the reduced role of IDEA, suffers from a paucity of publicly-available marrket data. We hope FutureSource can to a certain extend fill the vacuum.

Thanks to Jeremy Wills, FutureSource Consulting, and Don Franz, Photo Imaging News


  1. Jorge Pedreira Jorge Pedreira November 13, 2016

    Interesting article; very informative and easy to understand.
    By knowing the tendencies one knows where to go.
    Thank you.

  2. PG PG November 14, 2016

    Thanks Keith great, it all looks very positive with lots of opportunities to get users to print just got to keep adding ideas to our online offerings. Getting the word out is the key and the hardest part!!

    You are filling the void left by demise of PMA two years ago and providing info on the stuff that IPI can’t or wont do.

    I hope other readers have renewed their “membership” with Photocounter as we did!!

    • Keith Shipton Keith Shipton Post author | November 14, 2016

      Thanks Phil – great to have some encouraging feedback! Thanks should go to Jeremy Wills at FutureSource who I hope will be an ongoing future source (see what I did there?) of market insights. On the Friends front, the PhotoCounter Forum – – has been built and is live and ready to launch. I wanted to invite the Friends first as it’s your subscriptions which have paid for it. It’s been one of those important but not urgent jobs which I haven’t got to yet. But maybe I just have?

  3. Larry Steiner Larry Steiner November 15, 2016

    Very well presented and on point information. I do see no allowance is made for sales of ancillary services like scanning and transfers. I know these are important sources of revenue in many retail photo stores. I suppose the data mostly is gathered from bigger operations. I guess it is OK if these profit centers that most specialty stores count on “fly under the radar” of other operations.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Our Business Partners