Digital Marketing

10 Good Alternatives To iStock For Marketers

Good content is key to ranking in Google, however Great Content is essential to keep readers happy.

Happy readers are more likely to convert due to the simple fact that they stay on your website longer.

How do you keep it there? By keeping them stimulated with a mixture of text and images!

There are many benefits to adding images to your content.

With visuals, you can capture and engage your readers with more than just text.

Moreover, people have different ways of retaining information.

A reader probably won’t remember every paragraph they read in an article, but they might remember a striking image that added context to the article.

The power of images is often overlooked. Not only does a good image attract the reader and set the tone for the article, but it can also make a webpage look more professional.

Because content (such as blog posts, articles, and other text-based content) brings new visitors to a website through search engines, many readers don’t see your well-designed homepage first.

Every web page you publish can be a main entry point for a visitor. So all content should be created with that in mind.

First impressions matter – it’s essential to make an impact on your readers quickly if you want them to keep going.

The importance of using pictures

Using images goes beyond just their appearance on your site.

Many online stories, articles, and blogs are shared via social media, and often the image used in an article is used as a thumbnail for the link to your website.

Having a memorable image here can make your site stand out from the crowd.

With a good image, you can attract more visitors from social media even if you are not at the top of the list of topics being discussed.

Where can you get good images for your site?

Unless you’re a skilled photographer, you’ll probably be looking for stock photo websites where you can buy royalty-free images.

Among the best known premium stock stock sites is iStock, a long-time favorite by site owners all over the world.

Founded in 2000 and acquired by Getty Images in 2006, iStock has changed the way people buy and sell stock photography and illustrations online.

They have millions of photos, vectors, illustrations, and videos contributed by over 200,000 artists all over the world. Depending on your needs, you can either buy credits or purchase a subscription.

While iStock is an excellent resource, it is not your only option for finding premium stock photos.

Here are 10 alternatives to iStock.

1. Adobe Stock

Screenshot from, September 2021

Adobe Stock offers more than 90 million photos, graphics, videos, and templates along with 3D, editorial, and Premium assets contributed by a community of creators around the world.

Originally founded in 2004 as Fotolia (a microstock agency), the platform was acquired by Adobe in 2015 and later renamed.

Adobe Stock is now fully integrated into the Creative Cloud platform, making it an especially attractive option for designers and developers.

For images from Adobe Stockm, you can purchase credits and plans separately, or combine them.

Subscribing to a monthly or yearly plan allows for standard downloads in images, templates, and 3D assets. Premium assets and videos can be purchased using credits.

Adobe Stock offers a selection of free stock images, though the majority of their catalog consists of premium content.

2. stock struggle

10 Good iStock Alternatives for MarketersScreenshot from, September 2021

With over 200 million royalty-free stock photos in its library, Shutterstock has the largest stock photo library worldwide.

Shutterstock also has a wide range of video, music, and editing assets, as well as custom content.

As one of the world’s most recognized stock photography agencies with nearly 20 years in business, Shutterstock has pioneered the subscription model for stock photos.

Shutterstock’s success prompted competitors to offer subscriptions as well, which ended up being a great thing for marketers.

Images can be purchased individually or by subscription. Subscribers can use the Shutterstock editor tool that allows for quick image customizations such as cropping images and adding filters.

3. Getty Images

10 Good iStock Alternatives for MarketersScreenshot from, August 2021

Founded more than 20 years ago, Getty Images is perhaps the best-known and most respected stock photography website.

It has a massive collection of 50 million photos and videos, many of which are exclusive. This makes Getty Images a first-rate choice for anyone looking to add premium images to their content.

These premium images command a high price tag, with royalty-free images costing anywhere from $125 to $500 each. You can lower the price of the image by purchasing an Ultrapack.

It’s worth noting that Getty Images owns iStock, so if you need a step up from iStock, this option will probably satisfy.

4. Pixels

10 Good iStock Alternatives for MarketersScreenshot from, August 2021

Pexels is a completely free stock photo website that is growing in popularity among content publishers.

While the other sites on this list offer a library of exclusive content, Pexels aggregates free-to-use images from around the web. Think of it as your free image search engine.

Since stock photos by Pexels are free, their selection is limited compared to what you’ll find on premium sites.

5. Unsplash

10 Good iStock Alternatives for MarketersScreenshot from, August 2021

Unsplash offers an exclusive collection of 2 million free stock photos provided directly by photographers and designers.

What sets Unsplash apart from other free stock photo sites is that each photo is selected manually. With a community of over 200,000 contributors, Unsplash editors can be picky.

All images can be downloaded and used at no cost, whether for commercial or non-commercial purposes. Unsplash does not require users to register to use its content or add attribution, though giving credit is always appreciated.


10 Good iStock Alternatives for screenshot, August 2021.

Stocksnap offers an ever-expanding collection of high-resolution images and is completely free to use for any purpose.

Hundreds of new images are added each week, making this resource worth coming back to if you can’t find what you want the first time.

Like Unsplash, the images are provided by a community of creators and go through a similar vetting process to ensure only high-quality content is added to the library.

Images can be downloaded with or without an account to edit and use however you like.

7. Explosion (Shopify)

10 Good iStock Alternatives for MarketersScreenshot from, August 2021

Burst is a free stock photo site powered by Shopify. Downloading and using the images does not require any license fees or attribution or editing restrictions.

Images from Burst can be used by anyone, however, and it’s a particularly attractive option for Shopify store owners due to how well it integrates with the platform.

When creating a page for a Shopify store, users can easily search for and insert images from Burst without ever leaving the screen they’re on. It is an effective tool to streamline the workflow of store owners.

8. Gratisography

10 Good iStock Alternatives for MarketersScreenshot from, August 2021

Gratisography calls itself the “world’s most unusual” collection of free images, and it’s hard to argue with that claim after browsing its library.

Given its niche, Gratisography isn’t for everyone, but if you’re in need of eye-catching images you won’t find anywhere else, this is the resource for you.

Although Gratisography does not have the largest amount of images, it offers the most interesting library. The unique quality of the images can help add personality to your content that sets you apart from the competition.

9. Pixabay

10 Good iStock Alternatives for MarketersScreenshot from, August 2021

Pixabay offers a collection of 2.4 million photos, videos, and music contributed by creators to the community.

You may copy, modify, distribute, and use Pixabay images without asking permission or giving credits to the artist.

Content from Pixabay can be modified and used for commercial purposes, although there are some minor limitations. The Company requests that its images not be used to portray identifiable people and brands in a negative light.

10. 123RF

10 Good iStock Alternatives for MarketersScreenshot from, September 2021

123RF is a royalty-free microstock content resource that brings a refreshing change and has a great image search engine.

You can choose from over 103 million royalty-free images, vectors, clips, and audio.

123RF offers a wider range of categories than some other sites. It has a solid reputation as one of the best stock photography agencies in the industry.

To download an image, you need to buy credits, get a download package, or subscribe to a plan.

Images are available upon request with Image Packs, priced at $2.99 ​​- $9 each. Lowest prices with subscription plans that have a monthly cap and get you photos for $0.36 per file.

More resources:

  • The 41 best stock photography sites to find free, high-quality stock photos
  • 11 excellent content marketing examples to inspire your digital marketing strategy
  • Content Marketing: The Ultimate Guide for Beginners

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