Cheap and free models are killing cgtrader.
First...sorry, English is not my native language.
I think Cgtrader is a good site, but lately there are too many cheap and free models, models that could sell for $ 100 can be purchased here for 10 dollars.
This is a bad thing for us, artists, and is also a bad thing for cgtrader.
I sell my models in cgtrader because I disagree on how it works turbosquid ... I could earn 60 percent of sales there, but I leave the guild and now I earn only 40 percent. Still worth it, because I earn money here on cgtrader, and other sites ... BUT ... if my sales drops here, I will return to squidguild.
My sales are not bad now, but soon will be very bad if this continues ... thousands of free models, thousands of quality models undervalued ...what is happening? ... This is suicide! .... Marius do something ... you must fix this problem!
Cgtrader need a minimum price, as is practiced in the3dstudio.com (15 dollars)
Cgtrader must advise inexperienced artists on their prices ... is important!..AND... cgtrader should change the price of the undervalued models if the seller does not want to do it.
Cgtrader should respect the artists who have spent years selling our models online, and should not allow anyone to publish models below its real price.
Marius, I really like cgtrader, but I think you should fix some problems quickly.
The eternal battle with undercutters.... I agree with you!
i think a minimum price is a good thing
I second the minimum price proposal for priced products.
I agree with you!
minimum price? I agree, it's a good idea.
i agree....cheap and free models ruin the market but also if a client wants quality will spend more to get it. many clients when they see 10$ usualy thinks that model value is 10$ and even if the renders are looking good will think whats the problem with that model.
in these case i think that 3d ocean works best because prices are set by them so that the model is not undervalued and nor overvalued.
cg traders should also look at pricing
i have seen many models in cg trader which is of 100$ but real price of that model is somewhere around 50$
also there are some models which are good to sell of 100$ but its provided for free.
every seller should provide only one model for free just to show what quality of models can be given by that seller...
Minimum price of $15 will not save from the cheap models. As you said yourself "models that could sell for $ 100 can be purchased here for 10 dollars". With the minimal price set to $15 you will say "models that could sell for $ 100 can be purchased here for 15 dollars". To be honest, I don't see the difference.
I think that CGTrader should just get rid of the lower teer of fee "$3-9 $2.00" and stay with the minimum of $5 as it used to be. That way the site would get rid of 90% royalties on average.
The principle of GCTRADER is based on a very low comission rating, that encourages sellers to decrease their prices.
If now, we ask CGTRADER to impose a minimum price, buyers will return to the others 3D Marketplace... it makes sense.
concerning free models, nobody can forbid an artist to offer free products. And if CGTrader prohibits free products,
it will be oppose to the same problem as the minimum price: buyers will go elsewhere ...
PS:Sorry for my poor english and thank to Google translator :)
Hi, I think that a lot of models it is not good way increase your sales, especially if they have different quality. How you think why turbosquid provide a checkmate? Maybe because customers want be sure that they will buy good model? Or maybe because it is hard search through a lot of bad models and they (customers) don't have time for it? Also customer not interested who is author and why his price is $100, he buys from CgTrader (it is who really sell model for him) and he need just a good model.
So big choise in price and in quality of models - it is bad for everyone in this market.
People from all over the world sell their 3D on the web.
Often from countries where 5$ is a lot to life and their only income is to get a 3dsmax version "somewhere" do models and sell them on the web. I can totally understand this but in my economical environment I have to charge more.
As long as people buy the cheap models and the quality is what they are looking for they will buy.
I don't care a lot about the prizes too because I sell only as a little side-project between my regular visualizations I do. But when I sell I always keep in mind the worth of my work and what my customers could do with the models.
For CGTrader it is a two-sided sword. On one hand they want people buy on their portal so they get their piece of the pie. On the other hand they don't want to repell people to other portals if they introduce minimum-amounts.
yes people just download free models thatsy why ı didnt sell any of my models yest except free ones. ı think as vk model. if ı cant sell any of my models in cgtrader ı think about cancel my membership. ı m still member turbosquid and ı keep selling there. 2 days ago ı sold one of my 45 dollar price model in turbosquid. ı think they fix this problem
Turbosquid is also more known If you search for a model everytime I get turbosquid links and pictures.
So it is naturally more people go there. And of course Turbosquid is a old site.
From terms of the seller interface I think CGTrader here is the best. I like it a lot!
I have a free model because i use a student version of maya and think free 3d model we can share more easely our work.
I think that free and less expensive models will pull more people to the site. I know that it did for me. A month ago I didn't know CGTrader even existed. I needed a certain model and found it for free on CGTrader and now I check in daily. I'm not really a model maker myself, but I am using 3D models more and more. I think that if I find that an artist has a certain style that really integrates well with my projects then I would be more likely to contact that artist and make requests, which would mean more $$ for that artist. So in that respect CGTrader is like a gateway drug that pulls graphic designers like myself into reliance on 3D models. The free models get us hooked but in time we will start paying more for the good stuff. Cheers!
ı have lots of cheap quality modelsbut no one buy one of them and that makes me confused
Hi Burak. Arch viz is an overcrowded field. No matter how good and cheap your models are, they are competing with at least with at least another half billion arch viz models out there, so sale chances are low. Apart from this, I gave a look at some of your products and quality seems very good to me. Are you already a pro in 3d?
Maybe there should be some option like 3d stock trading where a 3d stock broker puts money on best of the best 3d models and the artist of that 3d model gets a percentage...How about best selling model getting listed on NASDAQ !!! ???
maybe i should get a degree in finance :)
I completely disagree with the minimum pricing rules for a few reasons:
1) Sometimes it may be wrong to sell a copyrighted item. For example, I make digital models of Star Wars vehicles, Buck Rogers spaceships, and LEGO models. I know there's not much difference between selling a model based on a Star Wars vehicle or a real car (such as a Ford Mustang), but I feel better giving away my Star Wars models for free. :)
(Plus there are entire websites dedicated to sharing free Star Wars models, so I probably wouldn't make any sales if I tried to sell mine.)
I also know from experience that no one will buy digital LEGO models. These were fun for me to make, so why shouldn't I offer them to the community for free if I know I won't make any money selling them?
2) Releasing free models is a good way for people to see the quality of your work. How many times have you purchased a model for $50, unzipped it, and found it had non-planar polygons or some other rendering issue? Okay, maybe never, but if you download a free model, you'll be able to gauge the modeller's skill before spending your money.
However, the bigger issue is that merchants need to act like adults and not undercut each other. If merchants really think their products are worth $5, then the site should allow it, but merchants shouldn't be selling fully textured, photo-realistic models for this price.
Isn't there a guideline for pricing somewhere?
Maybe with some samples. Like untextured mesh of a human, non rigged: 10-90$
It could be shown during registration for each new seller. I think it will be pretty useless but maybe some new 3D people didn't have an idea whats their work is worth or how to do prizes on products.
There should definitely be a minimum price for each group of models. E.g Electronics -> Computers, the minimum price = $20.
Maybe you could deal with the $100 dollar model selling for $20, depending on the features that the model has (materials , textures , animation etc.).
I think prices should be set by moderators who know what they worth.
I could spend a month building a box while professional spends 3 seconds, yet PRO will price it at $1 and one who took month would price it at $20 because he spent so much time and effort.
I say: Turbosquid and anybody else who sells models should evaluate our models them selves and sell them for what they think they worth.
People who would price the product would need to be both professional modelers as well as not so much, so their judgment is balanced out
I have been told I could sell my models more expensive but how much I do not know? It would be helpful for some guidelines to be published or some sort of optional vetting process where staff can suggest prices for you when you upload.
Hi Moonscapegraphics. You can start by making a quick research here on CGTrader about products which are similar to yours. Just compare model end (game, visualization, movie), number of maps etc. You'll need some time to be able to properly assess the value of your work, products, how much you can actually charge and get a sale and then your selling strategy and so on. Don't worry, we all started somewhere and made mistakes in the process. cheers.
Minimum pricing would restrict the quality of the models. It would help if the issues were lots of low quality models. In terms of pricing a central market control would help, so CGTrader would change the prices of the models if the market gets out of balance.
With free models I think there should be set a reasonable amount of free models allowed per category. This would help too I think. As for copyrighted materials like LEGO and Star Wars, there really is no reason to force pricing.
As far as free models go, I don't think they are all that bad if everyone sees them for what they are. An artist would like to gain as many clients as possible while still providing quality work, but the only way to actually provide proof for that quality is by sharing free models. The clients, however, should not rely on these free models as an endless resource because they are just like "business cards" to show how good an artist is.
I second this, but here we're talking about sellers who actually have HUNDREDS of free products. Don't get me wrong, I share your opinion about the "business card" being useful.
I agree with minnimum prices
I think it comes from the mistaken notion that lower prices mean more sales in this environment. It's actually the opposite, in a lot of cases.
Most of the clients to websites like the Squid and the like are professional art or ad firms who are interested in purchasing 3D assets because of a deadline or because to hire an artist to build a custom model would be too time-consuming and expensive. But it's usually time that's the most important consideration. That being said, a company would rather spend $200 on a pre-made model that'll take about a day to get into their project than, say, $2000 on a custom model that will take 4 weeks to be ready.
Expensive models sell. It's proven. Having a low priced item means you're making yourself look cheap and really hurting yourself and everyone else.
But, alas, all of this has been said so many times before I've lost count. =)
I think you are right. I never think about that because i don' t sell yet.
Personaly if I offer(ed) a model it was because i was a beginner (total) and I wanted to share back what community gave me (tutorials, etc...), etc...
I did not consider negatives consequences.
I agree with everyone saying that cheap, low quality, or undervalued models are bad for the market, vendors and customers.
How about this. It would take time and effort to implement, but I believe it would work.
A rating system. Sounds familiar? No not the same one.
Here you would rate for separate aspects of the model:
- PRICE (suggest the price)
all the data would be seen for the Vendor, but only the average of all would be seen for the customer.
And most importantly there would be an option on the site to sort by rating.
Also, when the vendor would update the low rated part of his model, this would reset, so that would encourage everyone to fix the issues and gradually quality of the whole market would go up.
Sure there have to be protectors against misuse of the system (under, over - rating). That can be solved by introducing a multiplier to every person that has the right to vote (not everyone should get it to begin with) so if your vote is way off the average, your multiplier goes down . Customers who bought, downloaded the model would have the highest multiplier.
If the price set is close to crowd suggested price, it is shown - Price Matches The Quality .
If all/most of the prices have this badge, the vendor gets something like Fair Trader Status.
There might be more issues to be solved, but nothing is impossible.
What that would do is educate the sellers who are new to the market (how to present, price your models etc.); increase the quality over all; and average out the prices.
I am in favor of open source free designs.
I will continue to offer works for free at this and other websites.
I have no need for a fair trade education.
Keep this a free market portal; not a place for price fixing or cartels.
Vendor competition is good for this website and for the customers that visit.
Content of all types including free and every price and quality range...
That's how this portal will survive.
Customers will go to other websites if the content they are looking for is limited
Deploy or die.
What I suggested is far from price fixing. I am not offering to get rid of free or under-, or over-priced models. What I am offering is to crate a tool that, with the help of open, crowd sourced data, will give a customer a different way to sort out the search results - and this one could be called - sort out by quality. And quality needs standards. How a customer is supposed to know how good or how bad the product is if the description is bad or missing, there is one render/screenshot, the tags are irrelevant and the price is random. It's like buying a cat in a bag.
And with many products like this floating about in search results it is becoming a "cat in the bag" market.
Nothing will improve in overall quality and pricing of 3D models over here as long as CGT keeps focusing on print-ready models instead of traditional ones. The only thing keeping the bottom-of-the-barrel models and undercutters at bay is the minimum sale fee of 5USD.
As CGT is basically an ebay of 3D models (high royalties, but no control of the market) it's unreasonable to expect adequate quality control from CGT staff.
I agree that print-ready should be separated.
Also I do not expect CGT staff have anywhere near enough resources to do the quality control, that is why I suggest there should be a tool that lets the crowd asses the quality, and by doing so create a standard. No one would be forced to follow the standards, it would just happen naturally. Well presented product of good quality would obviously have high rating, therefore would sell better. A customer just needs help in finding the good stuff fast.
Minimum price is a good idea.
I agree with under-priced products.
Also comunity rating system may very well be used to improve and for selling quality products that other people judged, if cgtrader invest more time in that area..
i think this business is generally a tough business, i have been selling on turbosquid as well but they take so much royalty that i decided to go also here and other sites.
i think it helps creating models that aren´t yet out there so that you stand out a bit. i feel there are many things to be modelled that will sell and haven´t been modelled yet. i guess our imagination is the limit really. My own rule of dumb is that when i am modelling something and i think it is really awesome model, then other think the same and might buy it.
It seems like everytime a marketplace opens this same problem springs up.
Limit free models per user, except free samples of priced 3d models.
Rating system, that puts lower score models to the end of the list.
Minimum rating policy to prevent "garbage" flood.
Minimum price tag.
In fact yes, you are right about pricing system and free models. In fact, when I check some of the models which are free of charge, I cannot decide on what price I must sell and started to share my designs for free. I think, free models for each member should be limited and also we can push each other by reviews and critics on designs. I have put two designs by giving a price and then after a while (when I check other similar designs which are offered for free or at 7 USD) I decided to share them for free. After all, under these conditions it is hard to decide on price of a model.
I do not believe anymore that free or cheap models kill cgtrader. Always, the ones who has professional models can sell without any problem. The most important thing is that if there is worthy model with good presentation and description, any buyer will prefer those ones instead of free ones.
I agree that prices are too low, but it seems it is the only way they sell here.
I'm really surprised that no one has mentioned a factor that is a semi-constant and would help balance the prices... Proof of a software license. Okay so blender is free but how many use that to produce their models?
What if on upload of a model you had to also provide evidence of the right to use the tools in a commercial way. Wouldn't that get rid of people who use pirated software and therefore have unrealistically low overheads and support those who pay monthly or annually for their licences?
Just a thought.
Price tinkering is always a road to failure for any marketplace environment, simple economics. Let the supply and demand laws take care of it. Maybe you guys are charging too much in the first place or thinking too highly of your work. You can't expect people to pay premium price for content made by unknown artists like yourselves.
If you were popular, in a bunch of magazines or having worked on a bunch of high profile projects, then that's another story, but nobody in this thread is in that position. Time to wake up and stop blaming others.
Quick question regarding this topic:
Do you think this model is underpriced? I had it on Turbosquid for 29$ I believe. I could up the price here to 29 as wel (19$ currently). It is a low poly model and the textures came out pretty good I think. Thx for the help!
Well, the "top 1 designer" of the week has literally THOUSANDS of quality models (interior and exterior architectural) for just US$ 9. This is not only killing CGTrader, but our activity itself! I don't know how many designers put their effort on modelling more than 3 thousands of high quality models and how much they earned from their work. But if this practice continue, CGTrader will turn itself into another Fiverr. Or in other words, an exploitation of cheap workforce.
CGTrader should not limit the minimum price, but warn some designers about unfair competition. And block them in the future, if needed.
I don't believe in price fixing either. The ONLY way to level the playing field is to check software licenses. CGTrader and the like effectively support software piracy by not checking. They should be asking Autodesk or whom ever for a tool that approves users to sell goods. That's not price fixing. That would bring a degree of balance, although for one month it's 4900 INR which is about £50, but in the UK one month of 3dsmax is £174 so still not entirely fair.
Basically these sites are not for anyone in Europe or the US where every single cost is higher.
License checking would reduce seller amount, but this is less sales and income for Cgtrader. I don't think they would do that. Even TurboSquid doesn't ask for license.
So we're back to supporting software piracy :(
Checking software licenses across the internet would be against all privacy laws we have in the EU.
Licenses across different companies in the EU I was about to write....we need edit feature here ;)
one way is to check people selling models very cheap, which otherwise would have been priced high or normal band typical of the details selling here.
I agree, there are to many high quality but very low priced models. CG trader was first vendor i started to sell my models. When i looked at the prices here, i set prices for my models accordingly. Later i started to sell on Turbosquid also. There people told me my prices are to low. I listened to them, and raised my prices by 120%. My models continued to sell on turbosquid and here like nothing changed! If only someone told me sooner... Only difference here is that people try to propose their price, since they have the ability to do so. Sometimes i lower it, but not that often and not to much, cause my models are selling on other websites at higher price. If people need the model, and if it's good they will pay... Someone should go and tell artists to raise the prices. It helped me a lot. Most artists are like me, not sellers, not bussiness people, don't have a clue about economy. We should get some help with pricing, especially beginners. Selling at higher price is win win for artists, for CG trader and for the industry.
Happy selling all
I AGREE and this is my main reason why i did not upload a model for sales.
My 4 day work is worth more than 10 bucks. But i cannot ask more because there are to many low price and free models in direct competition.
Imho its a desaster because i did not work for keep my brand new car models on my hard discs where nobody can see them.
i also agree minimum price will be fair for all
Or why doesn't cgtrader price the items for us?
good idea - lets contact them for this option
Its free trade so everyone can price what is good for them, but CGTrader should look into people who are obviously undercutting, by say 50% from similar /same models available.
how to be fair with ourselves ? any designer must before put the prize must see similar model price then set your price no more or no less similar than at least 20 USD - also if you decide to make discount on system like i do DONT MAKE BIG DISCOUNT keep range from 10 - 30 % discount range - thats fair for all as i see - or what guys ?
Well you put it perfectly .
I understand problem, but everyone has a choice to sell for free or price, and I don't even care if it impacts on other sellers because its their problem for complaining.
I think, for the first time the limit of free models of 4-6 items would be more than enough.
A tremendous amount of free models are really killing cgtrader.
You can forbid free models on cgteader altogether, but i'm pretty sure this won't increase sales even by a fraction. In fact that could have even negative impact, as cgtrader would loose much of its traffic and that's never a good thing.
some limit on free to normal models ratio for artist, so that the site does not become go to place only for free models which will devalue the site and cutomers looking for good quality models with support and will go to other sites
CG Trader needs a team of experts that would evaluate the model and estimate its price based on that.
Turbosquid needs to do same thing. They both need to evaluate models and come up with some sort of price range chart.
For example a point based system:
Textures 5 pts
none overlapping 10pts
submaterials (bump maps, reflection refraction etc) 10pts
Multiple resolutions 40pts
animated (duration based point system per animated object [not part of the same object such as a leg] or a gear of a gearbox)
Exported file format 5pts
Project file 10pts
Multiple file formats 10pts
multiple project formats 15pts [offering multiple application scene files such as 3ds max/maya/blender project file]
Lightning and rendering setup [for project files only] that would produce same image as presented in the preview.
Deny any professionally made models for FREE. Instead, set a minimum price [for the time being] and post it for review of the price review team to evaluate its value.
I would love to be advised on how much my works are worth. I simply don't know!
why 10? seo will be better?
On my end, I really appreciate CGTrader for giving all artist total freedom to set their own price for their products. I believe the artists should be responsible for their own products.
However, I also believe that it is foolish to post a work which you have put a lot of efforts into for free or cheap unless you are comfortable for people to simply download your masterpieces, no string attached.
I still love the balance of freedom and regulations here. And remember that there is a saying that goes, "It's your funeral". Peace.
I guess everything like minimum price limit and pricing set by cgtrader would feel quite limiting to me.
I would be helpful though to get some guidelines on how to set a price and basic pricing strategies. It would definitely help to get some average pricing per category or average sales per category, data that should not be too hard to collect by cgtrader if I'm not wrong?
I think many people that undercut would not do so, if they had some numbers they can relate to, that give them a little security that it is ok to ask for a certain price.
I think a single free sample is interesting to show the quality of the work. It should nt be a valuable asset.
can somebody tell me if my prices are good for my work?
Post a link to your model here for a price review;)
I think CGTrader in seller sell models a little high price than turbosquid. I think, we should have base price or someone evaluate model before publish.
I have no idea what's a good price. Is there some kind of guide I can read to help price my models? I don't want people angry at me for selling too low, but I also want to actually sell.
What to charge is certainly an issue for me. I'm self-taught so don't have any idea what the value of a model is. On top of that I don't need the money as I'm fully employed in another job. I would like to make a retirement income but I can afford to give things away. I don't want to undercut people or destroy an industry, I simply don't know enough about professional modelling. Some guidance would be very welcome.
I agree with you!
the price imo should depend on the quality of the model, low price and free models are either junk, low quality or models that have been stolen somewhere else, because when someone makes a great effort to make something nice he will not be selling it for cheap, forgive me for the word but I call this "CG prostitution" .
maybe an option is to report stolen, or strangely cheap models could help true artist to get more decent incomes.
fixing a minimum price will be a little abusive because some models don't require much efforts;
and even with a fixed price some "Im smater" people will either upload junk or fix their prices to the limit and the result will be the same
we can talk about forever :D, unless there is firm rules about "Ethical 3d Art Selling" there will always be someone somewhere thinking he is smarter then the others by selling a high quality model with cheap price
You need to increase your value - offer a UnityPackage and UnrealPackage as an additional, separate downloadable.
Reality is that 3D objects only need to be modelled once (in PBR where justified) then they are valid for potentially decades.
I agree with a minimum price though. As a buyer I don't want to have to trawl through low-quality assets to find good work.
I just went to cgtrader.com but found that selling the model did not feed you all my life was just a little extra money. Because many artists are free to compete without innovation, 2 weeks and 2 days I feel bored
Its just capitalism at work.
I agree with the main post too.
Im a Dev of some Projects and i use some of the free models only for testings and later i order custom work of artists to get a better artwork in my projects.
Some free models with high quality are ok but i think the free models needs a other licence type like no commercial use so any Commercial use needs paid models.
PS: Sorry for my bad english atm ^^
the percentage charged is not good, in my opinion. for you to get a good return on your job, you need to sell for a high price, because 60% ... it's too bad ... otherwise you start to make stuffs that are not so well worked, since you need to sell for one high price to withdraw the commission from the site and get your share in a way that you think fair, it becomes more difficult to sell it..... So why waste hours and weeks producing something of good quality to earn little, often is not worth the waste of time?
Maybe I did not make myself very clear ... what I meant is that in my case, I would not make extremely difficult and complicated models to gain a low value! And selling at a fair value obviously adding up the site rate, most people do not buy it because they find it expensive ... So why waste my time doing complex and difficult things, wasting hours and weeks of work to earn a shit value? ... so, I do things that are simple for me, and it does not take me that long
I think besides the low pricetag in comparisson to ther places, there's the issue of content being sold both here and at turboquid which shouldn't be sold to begin with because it's ripped. There are lots of DAZ3D rips both here and in turbosquid... There's also models ripped from popular games being sold. This is pretty bad for these sites imo
what I'm talking about is the percentage that the creator earns selling is very bad (remembering that in addition to losing almost half of the value here, you still pay paypal fees).
if someone is ripping games is another matter ... I do not see large price differences between sites, but I will add more models to other platforms whose withdrawal percentage is lower. even because, this is the second platform that I sell less (but the withdrawal percentage is the highest!) ... coincidentally, where I make much more sales (keeping the same values here), the percentage I lose is much lower . I think it's an obvious line of thought why they're saying the site is dying.
I do not understand what you complain about the price that is killing the site, because the site besides offering many types of discounts and promotions to potential buyers, doing everything to lower the price even more, they still put the buyer's option to ask that I offer even lower, I am not auctioning anything here, just as a guy appeared asking for a discount of $ 2 ... when the site had already put my product on offer, it can only be a joke.
and speaking at prices, a good part of the prices of the products you sell are similar to mine. So if you get these 70-80s because you are an old or exclusive seller and you think you earn well, great for you.
products for sale by 50 to 100? joke ... if people are already asking for a discount of something of 10, they will surely appear thousands of buyers of a product of 100. many of their models that I have seen are priced similar to mine if you earn those supposed 70-80 of something low, great! if it is sold here, it can only be because it is an old seller and the site does this promotion of the products!
New sellers have no disclosure here, I have done several searches with keywords that I use and my products do not appear in the recommendations and referrals because I am new seller. but I see countless products with much lower quality appearing just because they are from old sellers. What is the motivation for this?
hi guys please a item like this is it a game or fake item https://www.cgtrader.com/3d-models/electronics/other/sam4s-samsung-sps-530-cash-register-with-barcode-reader?
What exactly 3d model do what do we have to use for something made on shape of cash register?
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I am new , and i am just reading through the forum.
I am not an artist , nor a retailer , i have downloaded some free files and purchased some , i dont print anything either, but in my opinion of some of the above posts , would it not make sence to sell 4 models at $30 as overprice yourself with 1 model at £100 . And whilst i understand , the artist spends a lot of time creating these models , some of the artists should wear a mask and stop being so greedy.
I put a request in to have a model created , $450 - $600 was the quotes on CG , i had the file made and item printed way below these quotes , and i am very very happy with the finished item.
I dont intend any offence to any Talented Artists , its my opinion
I agree with you to say that free models are bad to develop our business. But I think that free can be good for us (only if we can control what is free and what is not). Few years ago, I have a friend (digital marketing expert) who told me that free models can be like demos and are here to show to the prospects (visitors) how is your work's quality, these free models are "call products" and can promote all others no-free models. In strategic marketing, we can use free models to get more contact and invite them to follow us to create a community. CGTrader have created many services to do that and free models are one of many way to transform a simple visitor to a customer (and why not a recurring customer).
For example, I have recently created many rigged and animated flags and I have uploaded one for free. Next, I have just added it in some collections to get a link more to go to my no-free models on the free one's page. And CGTrader suggest others no-free models in the same theme on top of the free one's page too.
Hope I could help some of you and remember that anyone can be free to choose the price of his own work...
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