Almost every designer needs stock photos and videos to complete projects. The tough part can be finding the right service with great visuals that don’t look like typical stock photography.
Shutterstock is the answer for many design professionals. The service has a ton of video and image assets that are top quality and will help your project shine.
If you haven’t looked at Shutterstock before or maybe want to try again, here are six reasons to give it a try (with examples of things you’ll find on the site).
1. Great Images and Videos in One Place
The top reason to try Shutterstock is the sheer volume of amazing images, vectors, and video assets in one location. You’ll find anything you might need and everything is top quality so you can use it practically anywhere at any size.
The best part is that because Shutterstock has been around for a while and has a great reputation, they have some of the best, most authentic assets you will find. What’s especially nice about photos and videos is that they don’t look like stock photos. Many of the images you will find have that custom photoshoot look and feel to them.
The authentic style of visual is in-demand for all types of design projects and will set you apart from everyone else.
Shutterstock is also looking out for you when it comes to image usage. Each asset comes with popularity and usage scores, so you can see how often images are used. This can be especially helpful if you are looking for something that isn’t being used anywhere else.
- You can get started fast with a free trial, that includes ten free images.
2. High-Quality Images
Shutterstock has a library of more than 405 million high-quality images.
That quality level is two-fold:
- High-level visual and creative content
- High-resolution assets that can be used web or print projects
Each image has a top resolution size that you can see before downloading. Plus, videos are downloadable in 4K.
3. Worry-Free Licensing
When you purchase visual assets from Shutterstock, you can rest assured that all the legal terms and licensing is already covered. All assets come with a licensing agreement that’s easy to read and understand and ensures that you can reproduce images for your projects.
The great thing about licensing from a reputable vendor such as this is that you don’t have to work with various creators for payment or license terms. It’s all taken care of.
Each different license or asset type is the same with Shutterstock as well so there’s no guessing about usage for items that you download.
4. Quick and Easy Search to Find What You Need
Advanced search features make it easier and faster to find what you are looking for. (And who doesn’t want to find an image quickly?)
Shutterstock has layers of search options in different categories to help you find assets with precision. Add on filters as well to sort by popularity or newest content.
Every month, the Shutterstock team also pulls together curated collections of image and video in trending categories or themes.
“Curated Collections let you spend more time discovering some of the best Shutterstock has to offer (and less time clicking that “Next” button). … As experts in photography and visual design, they’ll hand-select the best of the best based on a number of criteria, including impact, composition, artistry, and technical excellence.”
There’s also an artificial intelligence search feature to boost your searches even more. AI powered search is included in every Shutterstock subscription, so you can predict which creative will perform best for your goals.
Additionally, Shutterstock has an image search tool. Just upload an image that you like or want something similar and the tools will do the rest. It’s an easy and visual way to narrow search criteria if you already have an idea of what you need to complete your project.
5. Variety of Authentic Images
The images you find at Shutterstock look real and authentic. Unlike some other places to find stock images, where people are in rather unnatural poses, clothing, or settings, these images are truly authentic.
They have the look and feel of snapshots from your phone – maybe just with better composition and framing.
You’ll find all different types of places, people, and settings to create just the right vibe for your projects. When choosing stock images, it is often best to select images with together crops or less identifiable backgrounds so that the photo feel like it is set in any specific place.
Only use cityscapes or identifiable locations when they are relevant to your project. Otherwise, look for together crops that help tell your story without creating questions about location.
6. Flexible Pricing and Package Options
Shutterstock has some of the most flexible packages and pricing options you’ll find when it comes to stock video and photo.
There are individual plans for different types of assets – images, video, music, or editorial – and options for low or sporadic usage to needing a lot of files. There are also plans for mixed-asset downloads (FLEX plans) if you want to use various asset types. Pricing is transparent so you can see exactly what the price per asset download is.
You can get started with a free trial and download 10 images. Search around, peruse all the assets available, and give Shutterstock a try today.