When it comes to creating content and you need to use photos, you may be tempted to use stock images. With there being various sites that offer stock images, whether they’re free or offer subscription services, it’s better to use real photos to get better results for your website or blog.
For high-quality images that feature your brand or business, it would be more appropriate to hire a photographer for professional content. If it’s a budget that you’re worried about, why not try taking the photos yourself. Smartphone cameras are much more advanced now and can produce very high-quality images, without the need to pay a photographer or buy a subscription to a stock image site.
With that being said here are some of the best free, and paid stock image sites available.
Table of Contents
Free stock image sites
Unsplash is a great site for finding high-quality images. All of their photos are free to use, but there’s one catch: you’ll need an account with them before downloading or printing any pictures from this source.
Burst is a fantastic way to find the perfect stock photo for your business. You can search by category or browse through their extensive image library at no cost!
Canva is an excellent graphic design tool that also offers free stock photos. You can quickly turn an image into custom graphics for social media or your blog to use.
The license for Pexels images is clear and concise, making it easy to know what you can do with the photos. You’re free to use them in any way possible without crediting or linking back!
Pixabay is a great resource for finding high-quality images that are available under Creative Commons Zero (CC0). The site offers free photos and videos, but it also reminds users to check whether the content depicted in them might infringe any rights.
Free Images provides over 300,000 free stock images under its own license. While the site lists several restricted use cases (which are quite common for most sites), it does allow you to download an image with a very broad range of uses.
Kaboompics is a great site to search for fun and unique photos. It allows you the ability to search not only by colour but also provides a complementary palette of colours in each photo that matches what’s being searched!
Stocksnap.io is committed to providing you with high-quality images for both commercial and non-profit uses. The Creative Common’s CC0 license ensures that their photos are free of charge.
Life of Pix is a photographer’s dream come true. The site offers free, high-resolution photographs that are perfect for any occasion and they also partner with Adobe Stock to provide you with even more options when purchasing images.
Gratisography offers a free photo license that lets you do “almost anything”. They currently have limited images but many are high-quality and could be used in blogs or newsletters.
Have you ever wanted to use an image for commercial purposes but were unsure of the license? Flickr is a good place to look. Images can be selected that allows both personal and general usage, with some limitations on what kind of ways they could be used to find just the right fit.
Jopwell is a social community that offers unique experiences to its members. The Jopwell Collection contains several albums with hundreds of images featuring people of different ethnicities and races, who are all free for download and use as long you visibly attribute Jopwell.
The founders of #WOCinTech Chat are sharing a collection of photos showcasing women who work in tech. The images can be used as long you attribute #WOCinTech Chat or wocintechchat.com.
The curated stock images by CreateHER Stock’s team showcase women of colour in a variety of poses that might be used for personal use only.
Death to Stock is different from most websites in this post because it doesn’t have a gallery of images. But don’t worry, they send you 20 new photos each month when you sign-up for their newsletter.
The best way to use images from Getty Images on your non-commercial websites is by embedding them. Downloading an image and uploading it yourself will get you into trouble—you have to be careful about where exactly this goes.
PicJumbo offers a variety of free images for any kind of use—including commercial projects. You can also get new pics by subscribing to their newsletter and they offer discounts on certain packages if you sign up.
Crello is a free graphic design tool by Deposit photos, which allows you to easily create professional-looking designs with many of their affordable stock photos.
Deposit photos provide a range of free assets, including photos and videos that are updated weekly. You can also sign up for an account to gain access every week!
iStock is an incredible resource for free stock files. Each week they release a new batch of high-quality images and every month you can sign up to be notified on their site when these become available.
With New Old Stock, you get to enjoy a treasure trove of vintage photos from public archives without worrying that they are copyright restricted.
Google has created a new way to find free images that can be used on your website or blog. This method of searching through Google’s tools is called “Google Advanced Image Search.”
Paid Stock sites
Canva pro offers you a wider range of incredible stock images and also gives you access to more design elements. This is ideal for any graphic designer or if you want to elevate your social media posts.
Cost: £10.99 a month
The Envato Elements subscription service offers unlimited access to all of the content on its site. You can download items without worrying about credit packs or download limits, simply by subscribing and finding what you need!
By using iStock images, you can create a wide variety of commercial or editorial purposes including advertising; publishing websites like WordPress, or presenting information through PowerPoint presentations.
Cost: £45/m (10 free downloads/m)
If editorial is what you’re after, Getty images will have the most resources for you. To use images for personal projects, you will have to purchase a license.
Cost: $175/ m (basic pricing)
Deposit Photos is a great place to find royalty-free images for your next project. With the simple user interface and easy filtering options, you’ll be able to upload or download what’s needed in no time at all. With a range of pricing plans, you can start with a basic plan and upgrade whenever you like.
Cost: $9.99/m for 10 images/m
Search for stock photography on 123RF to find great deals and high-quality images. You can search by category or subcategories, and sort them using filters like trending photos & new uploads so that you stay updated with any photo additions they make available in the site’s database.
Cost: $649/y (can only download 150 photos/y with a daily limit of 5 photos)
StockPhotosecret has a relatively small collection of images and video clips as compared to the others. They are mainly aimed at providing stock photos for smaller businesses that cannot afford or do not want their own photographer so that people can still create beautiful products without breaking budgets!
Cost: $99/y for 200 downloads a year
If you need high-quality photos, videos, or graphics for your project then Stock Unlimited is an excellent option that will let you search and download them with ease.
Cost: $19/m or $79/y
Adobe Stock is a collection of high-quality photos, videos, and other assets that can be used in any project. The site offers everything from stock footage to templates so you have all the tools at your fingertips.
Cost: $29.99/m for 10 standard images
With Storyblocks, you can download unlimited photos and videos from a global professional photographer team. You’ll also be able to create folders for organizing your downloads as well as sign up with clients or colleagues so they too could enjoy all of these benefits.
Cost: $29/m for unlimited downloads or $349/y
Photocase’s photo collection is a perfect mix of creativity and originality. The curated images are artistic, shooting in classic styles that you won’t find anywhere else.
Cost: $14 for 5 credits (basic pricing)
The Alamy photos are free to use and come in many different sizes. You can find a photo for any occasion, from animals and landscapes to people or abstract concepts like infinity symbolizing our endless possibilities around every corner.
Cost: £11.99 for personal use of images and illustrations
see website for the full list of prices
Shutterstock offers a large collection of royalty-free photos, illustrations, and videos for your projects. The company is also one of the first to offer public domain image subscriptions so you can get access without paying monthly fees!
Cost: $49/m for 10 images/m
Stock image subscriptions can be very pricy. However, you are paying for a larger library of higher-quality images. That is not to say that the cheaper options are insufficient though. You can still create incredible graphics and content with the incredible list of free resources that are readily available.