Stock photos are often associated with staged, cringe-worthy and, sometimes, baffling images.
Don't be caught using the same low-quality content as your competitors. It's time to stand out from the crowd.
Many of the options below source their images from creative photographers and artists, giving you a large database of eye-catching visuals that capture the message of your content.
Related Article: 20 Social & Digital Trends That Will Impact Marketing in 2016
You won't believe some of them are stock images.
These nine entrepreneurs from YEC trust the stock providers to not only add to their design but to provide crystal-clear licencing agreements.
Browse the websites below for a selection that matches your brand.
StockSnap has been a great addition to our website and design, especially since we are a company that is very focused on great content for our readers. The photos through StockSnap are free and generated through a huge database of artists and photographers, and using these photos allows us to be more creative with our content. We want to keep readers aesthetically pleased as well! – Miles Jennings, Recruiter.com
2. Getty Images
Although Getty Images is expensive, it has the best inventory of high-quality images. Cheaper sites like Shutterstock often have a limited supply of good-quality photos in any given niche. Other startups, such as your competitors, who have the same goals of inexpensive creative, will also be sourcing from those sites. Images are a key part of building your company's brand and worth the investment. – Ajay Yadav, Roomi
Placeit.net puts the "custom" into stock photos. It offers gorgeous stock photos and leave room for you to insert your own custom screenshot or logo to jazz things up. It's perfect for website or blog content, stock video content, even visualizing your next company t-shirt. I highly recommend it for its ease of use and focus on modern, gorgeous, hip culture. – Ben Jabbawy, Privy
Unsplash is great because it's free and has the best stock photography out there. The content is submitted by creatives and not by people who are just interested in taking photos in order to make money off of stock sites, which makes all the difference. – Stanley Meytin, True Film Production
5. The Stocks
6. Death to the Stock Photo
There is a reason this relatively new company (started in 2014) is used by the likes of Buffer, Pinterest, Uber, Slack and more. If you've ever struggled to find stock images that fit what you were trying to say, or, when they did, they came off too "stock-y," then this service is for you. Death to the Stock Photo is a must-have subscription for creatives. – Adam Steele, The Magistrate
Using professional photos is a must in today's Internet era. It doesn't necessarily matter where you get these photos, but make sure that you have the rights to use them professionally and commercially. For this purpose, we use Depositphotos. They have a great selection and fair pricing. We use about 10 images per day as part of our content publication strategy. – Joshua Dorkin, BiggerPockets
Canva is a free resource that we love using at EVENTup. You can create authentic graphics for your brand without spending a fortune and without getting cheesy. You also have the ability to buy a photo license for $1 if you need a stock image. – Jayna Cooke, EVENTup
Related Article: Worth a Thousand Words: 15 Free Tools for Viral Image Creation