Photography Studios

Industry Profile Report

Dive Deep into the industry with a 25+ page industry report (pdf format) including the following chapters

Industry Overview Current Conditions, Industry Structure, How Firms Operate, Industry Trends, Credit Underwriting & Risks, and Industry Forecast.

Call Preparation Call Prep Questions, Industry Terms, and Weblinks.

Financial Insights Working Capital, Capital Financing, Business Valuation, and Financial Benchmarks.

Industry Profile Excerpts

Industry Overview

The 8,800 photography studios in the US sell professional still, video, or digital portrait photography products and services. Major revenue categories include general individual and group portraits, school portraits, wedding photography, and special event services. Firms may offer related products and services, such as yearbook, directory, or memory book publication or commercial photography and print production services.

Competition from Amateurs

Falling prices for photographic equipment allowed many amateur photographers to produce high quality work, effectively reducing the need for professional services.

Seasonal Peaks in Demand

Demand for photographic services is highly seasonal, with peak periods varying depending on specialty.

Industry size & Structure

The average photography studio operates out of a single location, employs 4-5 workers, and generates about $438,000 annually.

    • The photography studio industry consists of about 8,800 firms that employ about 45,000 workers and generate $3.9 billion annually.
    • The photography studio industry is concentrated at the top and fragmented at the bottom; the top four companies account for about 38% of industry revenue. The top 50 companies account for about 54% of industry revenue. Some freelance photographers work out of home studios.
    • Large companies include Lifetouch (Olan Mills), Picture People, and North American Theatrical Photographers.
                                  Industry Forecast
                                  Photography Studios Industry Growth
                                  Source: Vertical IQ and Inforum

                                  Recent Developments

                                  Jan 9, 2024 - Inflation Remains Issue for Small Businesses
                                  • Inflation was the most important problem facing small business owners, according to 23% of owners in a survey by the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB). The NFIB’s Small Business Optimism Index fell 0.1 points in November 2023 to 90.6, marking the 23rd consecutive month below the 49-year average of 98. Small business owners are still encountering historically high job opening levels, with a seasonally adjusted 54% of owners reporting hiring or trying to hire in November. According to NFIB Chief Economist Bill Dunkelberg, “Job openings on Main Street remain elevated as the economy saw a strong third quarter. However, even with the growing economy, small business owners have not seen a strong wave of workers to fill their open positions.” Over 60% of owners reported making capital outlays in the past six months, with 41% spending on new equipment, 23% acquiring vehicles, and 17% improving or expanding facilities.
                                  • Photography studios will have to monitor minimum wage changes, as 22 states increased their minimum wages in January 2024, according to USA Today. About half of the increases are automatic adjustments linked to inflation. States that raised their minimum wages in January 2024 include Hawaii ($14), Maryland ($15), Nebraska ($12), and Washington ($16.28). Several states are set to boost their minimum wage levels later this year, including Florida (up to $13 in September) and Nevada (up to $12 in July). According to the Economic Policy Institute, nearly 40 US cities and counties will increase their minimum wage rates above state levels at the start of the new year. The federal minimum wage is $7.25 an hour, and more than 20 states, primarily located in the South and the Midwest, use the federal minimum as their wage floor.
                                  • Lower consumer spending and continued high price levels are expected to limit growth in the US photography studios industry, which is projected to grow at a less than 2% CAGR from 2022 to 2027, according to a recent Inforum forecast. This rate is slower than the projected growth of the overall economy. The slowdown follows several years of volatility during the pandemic in 2020 (-21.1%), 2021 (22%), and 2022 (7.9%).
                                  • Consumer confidence levels rose in December 2023 for the second month in a row, following three consecutive months of declines, according to data from The Conference Board. The Conference Board’s consumer confidence index increased to 110.7 in December 2023 from 101 in November 2023. According to Dana Peterson, Chief Economist at The Conference Board, “December’s write-in responses revealed the top issue affecting consumers remains rising prices in general, while politics, interest rates, and global conflicts all saw downticks as top concerns.” Peterson added that the gains in consumer confidence were largest in householders aged 35-54 and households with income levels of $125,000 and above. Plans to purchase homes, autos, and large appliances rose moderately on a month-to-month basis as interest rates moderated.
                                  Get A Demo

                                  Vertical IQ’s Industry Intelligence Platform

                                  See for yourself why over 60,000 users trust Vertical IQ for their industry research and call preparation needs. Our easy-to-digest industry insights save call preparation time and help differentiate you from the competition.

                                  Build valuable, lasting relationships by having smarter conversations -
                                  check out Vertical IQ today.

                                  Request A Demo