A Guide to the Best Free Stock Image Sites

Girl Holding Polaroid picture in her hand

Written by Mari-Anna Gibson

Mari-Anna Gibson is a passionate entrepreneur with over 14 years of experience in the Advertising industry. From online advertising, print media & tv, she understands what it takes. With her passion for Social Media Marketing, she helps business of all sizes leverage the power of Social Media.

April 2, 2020

Photography is a big part of design & digital marketing but finding the right image is not always easy.

Thankfully, there’s been a growing number of websites with beautiful stock photography that you can use. Best of all, they’re free!

In this post, we’ll share our favourite sites that we have used and find to be an amazing resource for free stock photos.

Quick Note About Licenses

Many of these photographs are free from copyright restrictions or licensed under creative commons public domain dedication. This means you can copy, modify, distribute and perform the work, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission.

However, some photos may require attribution. We’ve done our best to identify which license they fall under but we still advise you to do your own research and determine how these images can be used.

Now that we got the legal stuff out of the way, let’s get started!

Unsplash

Unsplash serves up 10 new “do whatever you want” photos every 10 days.

What we love most about this resource is the uniqueness of the photos. With pages upon pages to choose from, you won’t run into any cheesy, “Smiling Boss Shaking Hands With Male Employee” shots.

Not to mention, every photo published on Unsplash is licensed under Creative Commons Zero, which provides users with the freedom to copy, modify, distribute, and use all of the photos without permissions or attribution.

Click here to view the full license details.

Pexels

Pexels has a wealth of high-quality stock images available which cover a wide spectrum of topics. The search function is what really makes Pexels stand out from the crowd– it’s simple to use and has multiple useful parameters which make it one of the easiest free stock image sites to use. Their library of images contains plenty of aesthetically pleasing images, most of which are stunning landscape photos, so they could be ideal for the backdrop of your ecommerce store.

Click here to view the full license details.

StockSnap.io

Girl hiking on a trail in front of a snowy mountain

If you’re an ecommerce entrepreneur with a strong eye for design then you’ll find that StockSnap.io is one of the best free stock image sites on our list. StockSnap.io’s content library includes an extensive bank of photos which cover most aspects of design. We recommend this free stock image website specifically for ecommerce entrepreneurs who are selling clothes, as it features lots of aspirational images which will attest to your target audience. You’ll also find free stock images for commercial use on this website.

Click here to view the full license details.

Burst by Shopify

Tatoo'd woman walking on the beach
Photo by Brodie Vissers from Burst

Burst is a resource from Shopify that provides free stock photos for entrepreneurs. Some photos are licensed under Creative Commons CC0 while others fall under Shopify’s own photo license.

Burst was launched to help entrepreneurs make better products, websites, and marketing campaigns. Most of the pictures are original photos that were taken in-house and are themed around trending business niches — everything from DIY beard oil to Aliexpress LED sneakers. You can also find more general photographs as well.

Click here to view the full license details.

Picjumbo

Need free images for your next website design or blog post? Look no further than picjumbo.

With new photos added daily, there is a wide selection of high-quality images to fit a variety of different topics.

The photographer, Vicktor, also offers unique paid packages for bloggers, designers, and agencies (starting at $10/month), as well as a handy plugin for Photoshop and Sketch for just $7.99.

Click here to view the full license details.

Pixabay

Pixabay serves as a repository for a ton of quality photos that released under Creative Commons CC0 into the public domain. The site is clean and intuitive, making it easy to navigate your way through the 780K+ free photos, vectors, and illustrations.

The main search bar even allows you to filter your query down by factors like media type, orientation, color, and minimum dimensions.

Click here to view the full license details.

Well that’s a wrap. Like I mentioned these are the sites that we love and use often for our Social Media Designs.

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