Knowing where to find free images for advertising is highly important for every marketer in today’s world.
It is a well-known fact that a picture is worth a thousand words. So, it’s quite obvious why you should be using pictures in your online marketing campaigns. A featured image in your blog post can help it stand out amongst the hundreds of thousand blogs published each day.
Plus, according to research, customers are 65% more likely to retain any given information if it is accompanied by relevant images.
Visual content is easier to recall. Therefore, using images in your blogs and social media posts is one of the best ways to ensure that your marketing efforts yield fruitful results.
But before we highlight the best websites offering free images for advertising, it’s important to familiarize yourself with different concepts about what ‘free’ here really means.
Defining the Different Terms Used for Accessing ‘Free’ Images
The following are definitions of the terms used throughout this article. Refer back to this section when needed, or read the terms and conditions on any particular website to get a better idea of when and where attribution might be required. You may notice that some websites place certain limitations on how the images can be used.
Images that are said to be in the public domain mean that they are not protected by intellectual property laws (trademark, copyright, and patent laws). In other words, the public owns the material rather than an artist, photographer, or any other entity. You can use public domain work in whichever way you want, as long as you don’t claim to own it.
Creative Commons is an American non-profit organization devoted to expanding the range of creative works available for use by the general public. It has released several licenses that allow the free distribution of works that are otherwise copyrighted.
Royalty-free images aren’t really ‘free’ per se. You normally have to make monthly or a one-time payment to websites that offer royalty-free images. However, they are still considered free in a sense because you don’t need to pay royalties or license fees to the owner every time you use it.
The great part is that most of the websites discussed here have their own licenses. They basically let you use the images free of cost, whenever you want and in whichever way like. No questions asked.
Top Websites Offering Free Images
Pexels is one of the best websites for freely available images. Powered by talented photographers all over the world, Pexels lets you edit the images without having to give any attribution. However, you must not sell the image as a poster or a physical product without adding any value to it first.
Pixabay offers images that are licensed under Creative Commons Zero (CC0). Featuring over 1 million high-quality stock images, this is a great site for anyone looking for photographs as well as graphics and illustrations.
Unsplash contains thousands of great images on a variety of subjects. You can use them for whatever purpose you like (except creating a competing stock images website, of course). Download the image in order to use it as copying and pasting it directly to the required site or document does not usually work.
Burst contains royalty-free, as well as completely free images for advertising. Shopify specially created this site to provide entrepreneurs with thousands of high-quality pictures that they can use to kickstart their marketing campaigns.
5. Free Digital Photos
The name says it all. Free Digital Photos provides premium stock photos and illustrations that can be used for websites, newspapers, eBooks, magazines, software applications, advertisements, and a lot more.
6. Free Images
Free Images is where you can find more than 300,000 images on a wide variety of topics. It has its own license, so read it carefully before using any image from this site.
Kaboompics makes searching for the perfect picture easier than you might have imagined. It allows you to search by orientation (landscape or portrait), categories, and even color. Other search filters like most and least downloaded give you a fair idea of what’s trending and what’s not.
Stocksnap.io provides images under the Creative Commons license, so they are free from copyright restrictions. You can edit them if you like. Check the site frequently as new content is added every week.
Canva is basically a graphic-design tool website that uses drag-and-drop format to let users create their own exclusive designs for virtually anything. Their free image gallery includes photographs, vector illustrations, as well as other stunning graphics that can be used for both web and print media.
10. Life of Pix
Life of Pix has a relatively limited selection of pictures, but you can subscribe to the paid packages to gain access to the special library it has created in partnership with Adobe Stock.
Gratisography is the ideal site for finding funny and amusing pictures. The site’s self-created license allows you to do ‘almost anything you can think of. Add text, your brand name, or logo to the images. You can even use the images for book covers and magazines.
Flickr has been around for a long time now and provides access to all kinds of free images. Simply type the relevant keyword into the search bar and press enter. On the results page, click on ‘Any License’ and from the dropdown menu, select the appropriate option (Creative Commons licensed, Commercial Use Allowed and Modifications Allowed).
13. The Jopwell Collection
Jopwell is a career advancement platform for underrepresented ethnic minorities. It helps companies connect with and recruit people from the Black and Latin communities. The Jopwell Collection is where they share pictures of the members at their workplaces or attending various office and sports events. You can use these images for free. The only requirement is that you must give proper attribution to Jopwell.
If you are looking for images related to women empowerment or just workplace environment in general, consider WOCinTech. It is a photo album shared by the founders of Women of Color in Tech – a startup that promotes the contributions of Black women to the field of technology. The album is not updated on a regular basis but contains well over 500 great images that you can choose from.
These stock images are licensed under Creative Commons Attribution. You can use, copy, distribute, and display the images, given that they are clearly attributed to WOCinTech.
15. Death to Stock
Death to Stock is completely different from all the websites on this list. As the name suggests, this ‘stock’ images website doesn’t follow the norm, so rather than finding free images on the website, users have to sign up for it instead. The company will then email you about 20 new images on a monthly basis. It may not be super convenient, but it is a good choice for anyone looking for exclusive images that aren’t available a dime a dozen on every other website on the internet.
Find professional photos of people, offices, and food, as well as stunning sceneries and fascinating images of animals all on PicJumbo. The site also features iPhone wallpapers so make sure to check it out.
Crello is an online image editing tool that offers design templates in addition to images that you can use for free.
Photos, vectors, and videos – Depositphotos provides it all at no cost. The collection is updated every week so, if you don’t want to miss out on the latest files, subscribe to their digital newsletter.
Superfamous contains rather peculiar but impressive images of landscapes and other elements in nature such as trees, flowers, and stones. They are licensed under Creative Common Attribution so remember to credit the photographer when sourcing images from this site.
Dreamstime requires you to create an account but don’t worry, it’s still free. With a database of over 60 million images, you will have no trouble finding an image that perfectly fits your needs and preferences.
21. Barn Images
Run by Latvian photographers, Barn Images mostly contains free for use nature-inspired photographs that will go well with a wide range of topics.
22. Visual Hunt
Visual Hunt is where you can find free stock images hosted across different platforms in one place. Enter the relevant search query, and the software will hunt for the best free images and pull them together for you to view conveniently. Remember to select the appropriate license type in the search filter.
23. Negative Space
With 20 new photos added every week, Negative Space consists of a wide selection of free-to-use images for advertising.
Now that you know so many places to find free images for advertising, you can make your blogs and social media posts a lot more interesting. Although these images can be used by anyone without paying a single cent, we recommend that you still go through the terms and conditions of the relevant site before sourcing images from there.