Top Repositories For FREE And Premium Royalty Free Stock Images

Kumar Gauraw

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Interestingly, when it comes to content creation, a picture makes it even more appealing. Why do you think magazines look so awesome when compared with any other book which has less images?

Royalty Free Stock Images - Find On Top Image Repositories

If you watch your Facebook news feed, don’t you pay much attention to the quotes which are on images as opposed to those which are just in text format? That means, if you want the attention of your readers, your followers and fans, you need images to accompany the content you are creating.

Not just that, even Google ranks your pages higher when you have images when compared to the pages which have no images. That means, whenever you are creating a content online (a blog post or a page), including an image or two is almost a need.

Having established the need for images, you also want to make sure that the images you are using on your website are not violating any copyright laws. For that, you need to make sure that you identify royalty free images and use them.

The good news is, there are many websites on the internet that have huge repositories of royalty free images. Many of them charge a small amount for each image and many provide you those images for absolutely free.

My goal with this post is to share information about a few popular websites where you can find royalty free images. I am going to classify them in two categories:

  1. Websites With Free Stock Images
  2. Websites With Stock Images For A Price

Let’s dive in to each category one by one and explore what your options. By the way, clearly the websites that charge for images will have a bit better quality of images than those who provide free images. But then, you will have to trade one for another, like anything else in life.

Websites With FREE Stock Images

When you are looking for stock images for your blog posts, naturally you don't want to spend money as much as possible for it. And that is when these websites come into picture. You can grab your stock image from any of these websites at no cost and publish on your website.

1. Flickr

Flickr is one of the most popular places to find a lot of royalty free images for free. People from all over the world take pictures and load them on Flickr. In fact, I have loaded a bunch of them as well and keep adding some every time I get some good quality pictures.

Flickr Stock Images - free

Flickr gives you options to search on different types of licenses because some people do put full copyright on their images and you do want to avoid using such images. But if you search for images which are royalty free or with a creative commons license, you can find thousands of great quality images on Flickr.

2. EveryStockPhoto

This is a great place to find free royalty free images as it is essentially a search engine for free images. You can create an account on EveryStockPhoto for free and then you can upload, tag, comment and collect images.

EveryStock Free Stock Images

It is definitely one of the go to places for free images. You should bookmark them and also contribute to the community.


As they say on their ‘about us’ page:

Sunipix is a picture library for students, teachers, architects, website designers, advertising and marketing executives, civil engineers, business executives, travel agents, government agencies, and media/Information Technology professionals. Sunipix provides royalty free photographs (100 DPI) free of charge for personal and business needs.

Sunipix Stock Images for free

You can find some great quality pictures here for use on your blog in posts and pages. Check them out!

4. Unrestricted Stock

Unrestricted Stock provides many vector graphic images as well as icons and hand drawn images that you can use for just about anything free of charge.

Download Unrestricted Stock Images for free

They do not have hundreds of thousands of pictures but they have some great pictures, vectors and even hand drawn images categorized and organized properly which makes searching very easy. You may find a few great pictures there.

5. Stock.XCHNG

They define themselves as,

SXC is a friendly community of photography addicts who generously offer their works to those who need them free of charge. If you have some nice photos that you'd like to share with others, join us! Not only it feels great to share, you will also get a huge exposure for your work!

Download Stock Xchng Royalty free Images

When I checked last, this website has over 401,496 free images in total and growing. They have a large collection of royalty free images available for FREE for use by you and me.

Since the website is owned by Getty Images, they will definitely see a lot more momentum in weeks and months to come. Keep them in your list of favorite places and you won’t be disappointed.

6. FreePhotosBank

Free Photos Bank is yet another great place to procure some free stock images. The website doesn’t need you to register in other to download an image.

FreePhotos Bank Stock Images for bloggers

The pictures are yours to keep and decide to use in any manner that pleases you. You can use those images in your blog posts, on your eBook covers or even for commercial purposes.

7. Foter

Foter is essentially a search engine for bloggers which allows you to search and get relevant photos for your blog posts.

Royalty free stock images from Foter image repository

They search for commercial or non-commercial creative commons license type images for various categories. That means, images you get through Foter are free for sure. But do not forget to give attribution to the owner as a requirement. That isn’t so bad. If I am using somebody’s image, I don’t mind adding a little credit to them for their work.

8. MorgueFile

Looking for high resolution stock photos for your illustration, comp or design needs? Search morgueFile for free reference images. Yes, they're all completely free.

MorgueFile Free Stock Images For bloggers

The beauty of MorgueFile is, not only does it give you free stock images, it also gives you a feature where you can search for premium images (that means for a price) through premium stock image repositories such as iStock, DepositPhotos or Dreamstime etc. Check them out and  you will be pleased.

9. StockVault

StockVault is another great place to find free stock images for non-commercial use. It’s a community of graphics designers and photographers who share their creativity with images for you and me at no cost.

High Quality Stock Images from StockVault - Royalty Free

The only thing you need to remember is, images from this website can’t be used for commercial purposes. The pictures from StockVault are supposed to be used for personal and educational purposes.

10. Pixabay

Let’s face it. Finding free images of high quality is a tedious task. Copyright issues, attribution requirements, or simply the lack of quality can sometimes be frustrating. This is the reason why Pixabay was created.

Royalty Free Pixabay Stock Images For Bloggers

You can freely use any image from this website in digital and printed format, for personal and commercial use, without attribution requirement to the original author. This is a great place with some great free stock images. This is my last item in the list but this is definitely one of the best!


Websites With Stock Images For A Price

These websites allow you to use their images for a price depending on which license you purchase. For example, Royalty Free license usually means only the account holder can use the images and cannot be transmitted to another party. If you need the image to be used by more than one person, you may need to buy an Unlimited or Extended license for your images which will cost a bit more than just a Royalty Free license.

Okay, with that, here is the list of some of the popular websites with premium quality high resolution stock images for sale:

1. Dreamstime

To download high-resolution non-watermarked images from Dreamstime, you can either choose one of their credit packages (pay per download) or subscription plans (monthly-based).

Premium Quality Royalty Free Stock Images from Dreamstime

They will provide invoices for all your purchases. Usually, their images will cost you as little as 20 cents per image and beyond depending on the image, size and quality.

2. iStockPhoto

iStock is one of the most popular stock images website by Getty Images. A lot of popular bloggers use their stock images and they really do have a huge collection of images with reasonable prices. 

High Resolution Royalty Free Images from StockPhoto Stock Images

They  allow you three types of purchase options:

  • You can buy as you go
  • You can buy credits so you can use credits for purchasing stock images
  • You can buy subscriptions for certain daily credits and pay quarterly, half-yearly or yearly.

When you download a file on iStock, you're purchasing a license that lets you use it in advertising, websites, blogs, presentations, video productions, podcasts and more. If you are looking for high quality stock images, check them out and explore.

3. DepositPhotos

I use a lot of stock images by Depositphotos on my own blog and on my client websites as the situation demands. I find them very reasonable and therefore I have decided to use their images. Their pay-as-you-go option costs you as low as 72 cents and if you go subscription based plans, you will pay as low as 15 cents per image.

High Quality Premium Pictures from DepositPhotos Stock Images

Depositphotos is the one of the top source for premium royalty-free stock photos, illustrations and vector art. If you are a designer, advertiser, photo editor, content manager or blogger, they have millions of high-quality photographs and vector images available at affordable prices to fill all your image needs.

4. StockFresh

Stockfresh is another awesome stock image repository with great prices and options. They have high quality images with subscription options as well as pay as you go option. They have millions of pictures, vectors, drawings and much more.

High Quality Pictures At Premium Prices from StockFresh Stock Images

The best thing about StockFresh is that, their credits are always safe. They won’t expire and therefore, you can buy their credits with peace of mind knowing that you can use them as you please.

5. Fotolia

With about 2+ million images, vectors and videos loaded, Fotolia is another awesome premium stock image repository.

Premium Quality Stock Images From Fotolia Image Repository

Their pricing options are very impressive as well. Think about getting an image in 74 cents with no contract and if you go for their subscription plan, you pay as low as 19 cents. A good website to check out if you are shopping for your best option.

6. 123RF

Last but not the least, 123RF is a digital media repository that offers a wide variety of budget-friendly commercial and editorial images, video footage, audio clips, logo designs and illustrations. The company began in 2005 and now with the kind of growth they have had so far, 123RF ranks as one of the leading global provider of digital content.

123rf Stock Images For Bloggers - Premium Quality High resolution Stock Images

They give 100% satisfaction guarantee on their products and provide an option for subscriptions based on your image requirements along with an on-demand type payment option where you can buy credits and then use credits to download stock images. They are awesome!

What Do You Think?

I think with all these resources for free stock images and then another set of premium content providers, you can’t possibly find a situation where you don’t have an image related to your need.  Don't you think?

However, are there any other terrific websites that should be included in this list? Did I miss any important detail in this post?

You can scroll down or click here to visit the comment section and add value through your awesome comments! Thank you kindly!

Kumar Gauraw

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Kumar Gauraw is a Personal Branding & Social Media strategist helping entrepreneurs and skilled professionals achieve personal and professional success by developing leadership and leveraging the power of the Internet, Blogging and Social Media.

22 Awesome Thoughts So Far, Add Yours Now...

  1. Sneha Sharma

    Hi Kumar sir,I don’t have a blog but your post helped me with my power point presentation preparation. I was able to collect really high quality pictures from Flickr and SuniPix. Thank you for this post which was very timely.

    • I am so glad to know you were helped through this post. Thank you for taking time to appreciate Sneha. Good luck with your presentation!

  2. Thank, Kumar! Great info. I always think about the image when I take it from internet, so now I will be glad to search them in such websites ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Absolutely Aistis. I am glad to see you around, presistent and consistent! Good luck brother!

  3. A great treasure of Images Mr.Kumar, i do not need to look further or Google for finding royalty free is even better:)…
    Thanks for sharing this article.

    • You are very welcome Atit. I am exciting about you coming up strong and becomig consistent with your blog ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Hi Kumar, and nice meeting you ๐Ÿ™‚

    Wow, I am keeping this post in a safe place to get back to it, because there’s a wealth of places to find pictures for sure. I knew about 3 of them, but I think that’s about it.

    Thank you for putting all that together!

    • Hi Sylviane, Thank you for dropping by. It’s amazing how much free stuff is available on the web and this is just an example. I remember struggling to find images for my blog posts for several months (simply because I didn’t know where to look). I wrote this blog post to keep my own list and that means, this post is my reference point as well ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Hi Kumar!

    Images are so important on our blog. Thanks for this great list! I usually pay for mine. But….Google got a little crazy a few months back. And some of the photos I was paying for changed their license.

    I started taking my own pictures. I try to make them as relevant as possible to my blog post. Guess I’m a bit paranoid or maybe a little careful than most.

    These are great paid ones …that’s the kind I like.



    • Wow! I didn’t know that you could have issues even after you paid for those pictures. That’s really an interesting thing…

      However, what I don’t fully understand is, why would Google have problem if the company you bought your images from, changed their licensing terms? What does Google have to do with it? Can you elaborate on this a little bit more please?

      Taking your own pictures is a great idea too. A friend of mine does the same thing for every blog post he writes and obviously he can never have licensing problems. If you can do that consistently, it feeds your passion for photography and also feeds your blog. Two birds in one arrow I guess ๐Ÿ™‚



  6. I wrote a post about this a few weeks ago, but you mentioned a few I never heard of. With Getty Images trying to lock people up (not literally) – sue them actually for every image on earth, I am stuck on paying for it with IStock, which I happens to be owned by guess who: Getty Images.

    Scary thought, but I would rather pay for it than hear about it later. I think Flickr has some great photos, but you have to really check the license to be on the safe side regardless. I will be sure to check out the other sites I never heard of before. Thanks for the newbies!

    • Hi Sonia, You are right about paying for images rather than getting into issues later. I usually buy my images from who seem to have much better pricings than Yet, these free image sites are awesome. Sometimes, you know that the post you are writing is just not that great and yet it needs an image. For such cases, I would rather have a free image then pay 5 dollars for it. ๐Ÿ™‚ Free stock image websites are a great place for that purpose and I have started to use them since last a few months.

      I didn’t know that you wrote a post about it as well. I will check out your post as well. Thank you for the notification.

  7. Kumar, this is a great resource to keep. It is so important to get royalty free images for your website or blog so you don’t end up getting sued using someone elses. Lessons learned…I like how you offer many different places for us to do just that. Thank you.

    • Thank you Lisa for the appreciation. Images are becoming more and more an important aspect of doing content marketing. So, instead of keeping these in a seperate bookmark, I decided to publish here so everybody can benefit from these. I am glad you found it resourceful.

  8. Hi Kumar,

    I finally made it here, dang…

    I love images on our blogs but they are hard to find at times. I’ve run into so many different sites so I appreciate you sharing some with us that I’ve never run across before. Out of the free sites you listed I’m familiar with 1, 5, 8 and 9. I don’t see on this list and this one is a good one. You just have to give credit on your post and link the image to their site and to me that’s all good.

    I’m familiar with all the paid ones you mentioned but I prefer CanStock Photos myself. Out of all these other ones they seem to have more available images that I have searched for at a more reasonable price. Okay, that I’ve found so far so they’ve been my site of choice for paid ones.

    Sometimes looking for images can be so time consuming but I think they really say a lot about the post itself.

    I appreciate you sharing this list with us, thank you so much.

    Have a great day.


    • Yes Andrienne, I think it so happened that you along with others (who had 404 on my site yesterday), somehow clicked on the page URL at a time my server was returning 404. And since then, whenever you tried, you saw the cached 404 page until you refreshed your cache.

      I am glad it all worked out and you still took time to share your thoughts on this post. So, thank you!

      I did not mention about because of their confusing design. They also have Free images, sure. But they promptly highlight the images that are for sale at regular prices. So, in my mind, they didn’ fit in either of my two categories ๐Ÿ™‚ Well, now that you mentioned, let me enable a hyperlink here so some people, who do go through these comments, can benefit from it. Thank you for the recommendation on this.

  9. Hello Mr. Kumar

    What an impressive list of valuable resources to help us with out content. I have learned that images speak volumes, they do to me.

    I have search some of them, but I will check out the ones I am not familiar with. I appreciate the research and time you took to put this together.

    Thank you Mr. Kumar

    Gladys recently posted…The Art of Forgiveness

    • Thank you Gladys for dropping by and sharing your thoughts. As you righly said, images do speak volumes and they make readers think. Adding pictures to the posts makes so much sense of the post itself.

      I am glad you found these resources valuable.



  10. Hi Kumar, your article about images very useful for bloggers who are using many images that really important for their blogs, just like me. It help me so much, thanks for sharing. From now i would follow your blog

  11. Thanks for the list Kumar. I have used Dreamstime in the past and
    However, many of the others on your list I haven’t looked at, so your writeup provides some good information on other possibilities for me, thanks.

  12. Hi,
    thanks for creative commons tip .

  13. This is a pretty nice collection of popular photo sites. I like Pixabay, but I also use smaller Tumblr blogs with free images quite often. they are often more personal and don’t have this “stock photo look” that much.

    Anyway, thanks for sharing!

Please Note: My goal is to host interesting conversations with caring, honest, and respectful people. Therefore, I reserve the right to delete comments that are snarky, offensive, or off-topic.