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The State of the Professional Photographic Services Australia Part 3

The State of the Professional Photographic Services Australia Part 3


The 2018 Ibis World report for Professional Photographic Services Australia has just been released (Report M6991). This report is very comprehensive and provides a snapshot of the industry as it currently is and its outlook for the future. It provides a snapshot of the state of Professional Photographic Services Australia.

Information such as this is essential for any business owner in being able to remain a viable business in today’s economy. Much of what is reported is generally sensed within the photographic community. The report provides concrete economic data and medium-term forecasts for the industry which photographic professionals could take into consideration in the development of their business.


This is the third part of a multi-part series where I will break down the information contained in this report. I consider this information essential to those of us already in the photographic services  industry or for those considering entering in the near future. This information can help to form key strategies for growth and viability as a business.

Economic Conditions

Economic conditions will fluctuate demand for photographic services. Slower economic growth sees less discretionary income to spend on photographic services. Consumers will tend to opt for lower cost packages for weddings school, and portrait photography. The entry of more amateur and slow economic growth has forecast for the industry to grow at only 1.2% over the next five years. This includes an anticipated decline of 0.4% on 2018-2018 in discretionary income available to consumers.

The industry is now extremely price-competitive with a professional photographer averaging between $1500 to $2000 per day plus expenses for photographic work. The lower end of the service sees photographers earning $800 to $1000 per day. Increased price competition has contributed to falling profit for professional photographers. Therefore, it will be difficult to maintain price increased over the next five years in view of trying to remain competitive.

Although advertising revenue has risen, many advertising agencies have reduced their budget for commercial photographic services. For example, increased availability from sources such as online stock agencies has contributed to a reduction in the demand for professional photographic services by advertising agencies. In contrast, wedding photography and school photography are two areas that continue to see consistent demand.


Photographer’s Tools

The range of tools available to photographers from software through to digital storage and hardware, and improvement in internet capabilities, has been of benefit to photographers. Cheap, portable storage, online access to view and share photos via websites and social media, has meant photographers rely heavily on internet technology for their services. In fact, photographers would find it difficult to be found without a website.


Industry Outlook

The industry outlook for the next five years is towards a downturn in demand for professional photographic work. Photographers will be required to keep prices subdued despite increase operating costs due to more competition in the industry.

Photographic businesses operating on slim margins will be forced out of the industry. Even strong photographic businesses will ind it difficult to maintain a strong position or experience growth. Therefore, establishment of new businesses in the industry is expected to slow over the net five years.


Wedding Photography

In contrast, consumer demand for wedding photography is expected to grow over the next five years. Two-thirds of the industry’s revenue is derived from portraiture, school and wedding services. This is expected to remain a strong part of the industry.

Marriage rates generally correlate with demand for formal wedding services, including photography. Expected population increases generally lead to more marriages. The forecast is for increased demand for wedding photography services over the next five years.


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