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16 Best Free Stock Images Websites for Commercial Use

Rebecca Janacek
Choosing the perfect images for your website or blog can be frustrating. But the more options you have, the more likely you are to find an image that meets your needs, and there’s no shortage of free media websites to choose from.

However, even free images might not be available for commercial use, and figuring out which are can be confusing. Using images that are free for commercial use keeps you from worrying about licensing or copyright issues. It lets you test the impact of multiple images on your website traffic with no upfront cost.

To help make your search for the right images as pain-free and efficient as possible, I’ve compiled 16 of the best websites with free images for commercial use. From community-led sites with hundreds of thousands of contributing photographers to sites that also work in copyright-free audio and video, read on to find the right source to meet your business needs.

Note: Our lists of the image types and formats used by each site may not be definitive, and additional resources may be available.

Completely Free Websites

1. Pexels

Free images for commercial use
Pexels’ homepage
Pexels’ Discover page makes searching through its hundreds of thousands of free photos easy, as they’re tagged by theme and often divided into collections. Its free stock photos are sourced from quality free image sites or hand-picked from the thousands of images that users upload to the website. The Pexels team adds new, high-resolution images to its selection every day.

Image types: Stock photos, illustrations

Image file formats: JPEG

Requirement for free download: None

2. Pixabay

Pixabay's homepage

Co-founded by Hans Braxmeier and Simon Steinberger, Pixabay does more than just share free images with internet users. It also provides copyright-free videos and music, making it a great one-stop shop for creators and entrepreneurs who are looking to use various forms of media in their works and designs.

Image types: Stock photos, illustrations, vectors

Image file formats: JPEG, PNG, SVG, AI, GIF

Requirement for free download: None

3. StockSnap

StockSnap.io's homepage

Whether you need a picture of nature, computers, people, coffee, or almost anything else, you can easily find it on StockSnap. Its tag-based category system sorts thousands of photos in order of relevance to help your search. Completely free from copyright restrictions, its images can be used for both commercial and personal reasons under the creative commons (CC0) license.

Image types: Stock photos

Image file formats: JPEG

Requirement for free download: None

4. Burst

Burst stock photo website's homepage

Powered by Shopify, Burst provides an expansive platform for photographers around the globe to share their images with entrepreneurs, developers, bloggers, and creatives. By subscribing to its free weekly newsletter, you’ll gain insight into the most popular photos on the website. Burst also has a list of resources to help you get the most out of its free pictures.

Image types: Stock photos

Image file formats: JPEG

Requirement for free download: None

5. Kaboompics

kaboompics.com's homepage

Kaboompics was founded by Karolina Grabowska, a digital-image creator who has designed, produced, and uploaded more than 26,000 free images for the stock photo platform. Every photo you download can be customized by size, and also comes with a color palette with free downloadable graphics to help make your website look more polished and cohesive.

Image types: Stock photos

Image file formats: JPEG

Requirement for free download: None

6. Freerange Stock

Freerange Stock's homepage

Since 2007, Freerange Stock has provided over 250,000 high-quality images to its almost 1 million registered users. The site also offers free Vintage Stock Photos (VSPs) – photos that have been sourced from old 35mm transparencies that the company has acquired the rights to. Freerange Stock lightly restores the images and converts them into jpg files for you to download and use in your creative projects.

Image types: Stock photos, illustrations

Image file formats: JPEG

Requirement for free download: Create a Freerange Stock account

7. Life Of Pix

lifeofpix.com's homepage

With new high-resolution photographs added weekly to its website, Life Of Pix donates all its images to the public domain. Although it’s free for both commercial and personal use, the site doesn’t allow mass distribution. As such, you can only repost a lifetime maximum of ten images before you require Life of Pix’s express written consent.

Image types: Stock photos

Image file formats: JPEG

Requirement for free download: None

Websites With Free and Paid Plans

8. Unsplash

Unsplash's homepage

A community of almost 300,000 photographers is behind Unsplash. Its mission is to inspire creativity among the world’s creators, and it has shared over 3 million photos for free that have been carefully curated under the Unsplash license.

With the paid plan, Unsplash+, subscribers also receive members-only content, unlimited royalty-free downloads, and a comprehensive Unsplash+ Warranty and legal guarantee to provide extra cover against copyright claims.

Image types: Stock photos, illustrations

Image file formats: JPEG

Requirement for free download: None

Payment model for paid content: Subscription

9. Picjumbo

Picjumbo's homepage

Picjumbo focuses on business photos and has hundreds of unwatermarked, high-resolution images available for free download. You can use Picjumbo’s search function to find the images you need, or navigate its library based on image categories like business, fashion, and nature. Once you find an image you like, downloading it is as easy as clicking the Free Download button.

The site was started in 2013 by the Czech photographer and entrepreneur Viktor Hanacek, and has since grown to serve millions of online marketers, designers, and bloggers worldwide. By upgrading to its paid plan, you get access to over 10,000 never-before-published photos along with 50 new stock images sent to your inbox each month.

Image types: Stock photos, illustrations

Image file formats: JPEG

Requirement for free download: None

Payment model for paid content: Subscription

10. Shutterstock

Shutterstock's homepage

With over 300 million images from more than 1 million contributors, Shutterstock has it all: photos, vectors, videos, and even music for your website. Its free trial lets you download 10 free images per month, as well as two weekly free photos from the site’s homepage.

For editorial, video, and merchandising uses, Shutterstock requires attribution to the artist, to Shutterstock.com, or both. Editorial uses include publications that are of public interest such as books, news articles, and documentaries. For merchandising, the attribution can be placed on clothing tags or on the bottom of the product. And in video, attribution should be included in the credits at the end of the film.

Shutterstock also has two paid plans that give access to unwatermarked photos for use in merchandise and templates, third-party transferability, and increased legal protections.

Image types: Stock photos, illustrations, vectors, icons

Image file formats: JPEG, EPS, TIFF

Requirement for free download: Register for Shutterstock’s free trial

Payment model for paid content: Subscription

11. Canva

Canva's homepage

Canva is much more than just a stock photo site; it’s an online design and publishing tool that helps entrepreneurs and designers worldwide create novel content. It provides over 1 million free photos and graphics, 250,000+ free templates, more than 100 design types, and 5GB of cloud storage for your creations.

You can browse Canva’s stock images via its Photos page. Once you find an image you like, you can move it to Canva’s design tool by clicking the “Use in a design” button. You can also access the site’s tools from its home menu. Canva lets you create everything from posters to infographics, social media posts, logos, and more for free.

You should be aware that Canva doesn’t let you download stock images directly from its library to your computer. You’ll have to create a design with Canva to make use of the site’s free image library.

In its paid plan, you’ll gain access to 100+ million premium stock photos, graphics, videos, and audio, 610,000+ premium templates, and 1TB of cloud storage. You’ll also be able to use its background remover tool, social media content scheduler, and 24/7 customer support.

Image types: Stock photos, illustrations, vectors, icons & more

Requirement for free download: Use the image in a Canva design

Payment model for paid content: Both subscription and single-use payments are available

12. Rawpixel

Rawpixel's homepage

With one of the most diverse collections of stock imagery and design resources in the industry, Rawpixel’s mission is to create authentic images for designers that reflect society today. Its free plan gives you access to unlimited downloads from its Public Domain collection, along with five daily images from its Free collection.

Rawpixel requires you to attribute “rawpixel.com” every time you use or display one of its free images. This reference can be placed visibly next to the free image on the page, advertisement, or other medium you plan to publish.

For $8.99/month, your access expands to all of Rawpixel’s Premium collection, including vectors, mockups, templates, and more. Attribution isn’t required for Rawpixel’s premium content. Plus, 10% of the site’s revenue goes to supporting the charity Hope for Children.

Image types: Stock photos, illustrations, vectors, icons, logos & more

Image file formats: JPEG, PSD, PNG, SVG, TIFF

Requirement for free download: Create a Rawpixel account

Payment model for paid content: Subscription

13. Media Bakery

mediabakery.com's homepage

Operating since 2001, Media Bakery has supplied creative teams around the world with over 10 million image assets. Its highly curated content is sourced from professional photographers and is constantly evolving to satisfy real-world needs. While the site focuses on business photography, you can access tons of other images from its home menu on topics like nature, sports, music, and more.

The site lets you download 10 free photos every month when you subscribe to its Moments feature. You must pay for Media Bakery’s premium content on a per-image basis, with pricing affected by the image and license you choose. A standard license allows 10 employees (“seats”) to access the material. Unlimited seat licenses are also available.

Image types: Stock photos, illustrations, vectors, icons

Image file formats: JPEG, EPS, SVG

Requirement for free download: Subscribe to Media Bakery Moments

Payment model for paid content: Pay-per-image

14. Bigstock

bigstockphoto.com's homepage

Originally known as BigStockPhoto, Bigstock has more than 120 million royalty-free photographs, illustrations, and videos available for download. Bigstock’s content covers a wide range of topics, including Covid-19, technology, lifestyle, food, and more.

From Bigstock’s home menu, you can sign up for a 7-day free trial that allows you to download up to 35 free images from any one of its collections or resource categories. If you want to upgrade your membership, premium plans start at $79 per month for a maximum of 5 image downloads every day.

Image types: Stock photos, illustrations, vectors, icons

Image file formats: JPEG, AI, EPS

Requirement for free download: Register for Bigstock’s free trial

Payment model for paid content: Subscription

15. 123RF

123rf.com's homepage

123RF contains over 200 million resources site-wide, including stock photos, illustrations, and vectors, not to mention loads of video and audio content. The site’s Free Images section gives you unpaid access to a healthy library of 2+ million stock images, vectors, and 3D illustrations.

You can’t use 123RF’s free images on products (unless the image is heavily modified) or as part of any trademark, though the images are suitable for many other commercial uses. And you’ll need to provide attribution when using 123RF’s free content. To do so, simply copy the link provided when downloading an image and place it near where the content is used. For example, you could reference 123RF in your page’s footer or credits section.

Attribution isn’t required for members of 123RF’s PLUS and Premium subscription plans, each of which unlocks additional access to the site’s resources. Alternatively, you can choose to purchase resources from the site on demand.

Image types and formats: Stock photos, illustrations, vectors, icons & more

Image file formats: JPEG, PNG, WEBP

Requirement for free download: None

Payment model for paid content: Subscription and download-pack options are available

16. StockUnlimited

StockUnlimited's homepage

StockUnlimited is a stock image platform with over 1 million visuals fit for personal, business, and commercial uses. The site features a variety of content, from stock photos to vectors, icons, and other design resources across several different topics.

You can use the site’s content for advertising, marketing, social media, software applications, print, graphic design, and various other uses. However, the site’s license doesn’t permit its use in logos.

You can download any image from StockUnlimited’s free collection. However, StockUnlimited’s standard license for free and premium content doesn’t cover you for every commercial use – such as on merchandise, DVD and CD covers, and as design elements on electronic media. For these uses, you’ll have to purchase an extended license at $20 per file.

To access StockUnlimited’s premium content, either purchase a subscription or buy one of the site’s download packs. You’ll find options to purchase paid content once you create and sign in to your StockUnlimited account.

Image types and formats: Stock photos, illustrations, vectors, icons & more

Image file formats: JPEG, GIF, EPS, PNG, SVG

Requirement for free download: Create a StockUnlimited account

Payment model for paid content: Subscription and download packs are available

Conclusion

The best way to make your blog or website stand out is to include eye-catching photos that leave a lasting impression on your readers. But if your resources are limited – perhaps because your business is just starting out or you’re looking for ways to save money during uncertain economic times – you may want to avoid committing to expensive photographers or graphic designers.

Professional-quality stock photos and illustrations are an efficient way to create engaging content on a budget. There are plenty of options available. You just need to know where to find them and to be sure they’re available for commercial use. I hope this article has helped you do both.

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Tunex
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Quite helpful and very relevant. Thanks for sharing! There is so much information to pick from the article. Great work!
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Hi Tunex, thank you for the comment. Glad you like it!
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