6 Brilliant Adobe Stock Alternatives for Creative Professionals

Adobe Stock has been around for 5 years, and in that time it has become a very popular choice in stock photography and stock media. Creatives all over the world go for Adobe Stock when they need professional-grade pictures for their designs. 

But is it really a great choice for everyone? And if it isn’t, what other options do you have to get high-quality images to use in your designs? 

We found 6 stock photo agencies that make for great Adobe Stock alternatives, depending on what exactly it is that you love about Adobe Stock. 

Discover them!

Stock Photo AgencyMin. DownloadMax. DownloadPrice per Image (USD)Download LimitSubscription Duration
stockphotos logo wide > 6 Brilliant Adobe Stock Alternatives for Creative Professionals
Get it!
Yearly1 year
photocase logo w > 6 Brilliant Adobe Stock Alternatives for Creative ProfessionalsPhotocase1/dayUnlimited$3.30
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UnlimitedNo subscription
wwww.shutterstock.com homepageShutterstock1/day750/day$0.26
Get it!
Monthly1 year
istock logo square e1585945491345 > 6 Brilliant Adobe Stock Alternatives for Creative ProfessionalsiStock1/day750/day$0.22
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Monthly1 year
123rf logo 590x235 1 e1585923956735 > 6 Brilliant Adobe Stock Alternatives for Creative Professionals123RF1/day750/day$0.19
Get it!
Monthly1 year
dreamstime logo e1567194341285 > 6 Brilliant Adobe Stock Alternatives for Creative ProfessionalsDreamstime1/day750/day$0.20
Get it!
Monthly1 year

Adobe Stock: The Ideal Resource for Adobe-Loving Creatives

adobe stock logo 1 > 6 Brilliant Adobe Stock Alternatives for Creative Professionals

By now, most, if not all, business owners, advertisers, and designers know the value of good stock photography. But for those who have Adobe as their go-to creative toolkit –fans of the flagship Photoshop, the popular Illustrator, or even the rising Adobe Creative Cloud Express (Adobe Spark), which you can learn all about in our Adobe Creative Cloud Express (Adobe Spark) review–, there is no provider more valuable than Adobe Stock, the design software giant’s own stock photo service. 

Why? Because Adobe Stock isn’t just a stock photo library where you can download royalty-free photos, oh no.

Moreover, this catalog is built on top of that of the old Fotolia microstock agency (which Adobe previously acquired) and maintains a very high standard in terms of image quality and licensing terms. And it doesn’t offer just images, but all kinds of media and design elements such as stock videos, vector images, 3d assets, and more. 

wwww.adobe.com adobe stock
Adobe Stock operates like a stand-alone, stock photography agency and is open to everyone, but the real core value in their offer is for those who work with Adobe Creative Cloud.

For more details on the service: Adobe Stock Review

Info on cost of Adobe Stock: How Much Are Adobe Stock Images

Adobe discounts: Adobe Discount Codes

Photoshop for free: Photoshop Free Trial

Awesome! Adobe Stock Free Trial: 10 Free Images for 30 Days

Alternatives to Adobe Stock: Great Stock Photos for Non-Adobe Users

So what if you don’t really use Photoshop or any other Adobe app to get your designs done? Business owners, bloggers, and social media influencers are just some of many non-designers that handle the creation of visuals for their projects themselves and might not be fans of Adobe, or simply their needs don’t justify forking out money on a Creative Cloud subscription

If this is you, don’t worry! For one, you are not required to have a (hopefully discounted) Creative Cloud membership in order to use Adobe Stock, you can still visit their website and buy a stock image.

But there are many more places where to get high-resolution royalty-free images at affordable prices that are worth discovering, some that may be more convenient for your personal needs, and here you are about to learn about them!

Adobe Stock Alternatives: 6 Stock Photo Sites for Every Creative Need

Next, we bring you the best 6 alternatives to Adobe Stock in stock photo agencies that have great deals for all kinds of buyer needs.

#1. Stockphotos.com – For Those with Limited Budgets

  • Stock Images: Yes
  • Stock Video: Soon
  • License Type: Royalty Free
  • Best match: Small and Medium-Sized Businesses
Stockphotos Logo Tight

Stockphotos.com is ideal for small and medium-sized businesses and everyone getting started in a new creative endeavor and not having a lot of money to spend on a photo. 

It has over 8 million high-quality, royalty-free stock images –including photos, illustrations, and fonts– awaiting to be part of your next design. Just like Adobe Stock, it will soon have stock footage available (right now video downloads are only offered as a bonus). And the plans and prices are thought to give you the best value for your bucks. 

Back when Adobe bought Fotolia, they got rid of their budget deal “Dollar Photo Club”, but Stockphotos.com's star plan is much better than this! The Club Easy plan gives you 200 images for one year for just $99 – that’s twice as many downloads as the old Fotolia offered! 

And there are a lot of added benefits:

  • BONUS 100 downloads in your first year – a total of 300 images for $99!
  • BONUS video downloads and image upscales – at no added cost
  • EXCLUSIVE member's discount of 50% off in Extended Licenses and Premium imagery
  • SPECIAL Stockphotos.com Coupon Code with 10 free image downloads added to your plan!

You can explore more options for annual subscriptions, as well as on-demand image packs and single image purchases in the plans and prices page. You are sure to find something that fits your pocket!

More info: Stockphotos.com Review

Great Deal! Club Easy: 200 Images for One Year for $99

#2. Photocase – For Out-Of-The-Box Creatives

  • Stock Images: Yes
  • Stock Video: No
  • License Type: Royalty Free
  • Best match: Artistic Projects
photocase logo w > 6 Brilliant Adobe Stock Alternatives for Creative Professionals

Photocase is a German company with a distinctive brand: they are the cool, artsy, funny, little bit crazy guys in stock photography. 

Their library is purposely smaller than others in this list (still racks up to hundreds of thousands of images), but it’s full of unique, artistic, and modern photos and illustrations that you won’t find anywhere else. All are high-resolution and royalty-free. 

Here you buy photos by the unit, paying as you go. They cost from $15 to $25 depending on size, and you can also buy credit packs upfront to reduce the per-download cost. 

If you were drawn to Adobe Stock because of its premium artsy collections, then Photocase is your perfect alternative!

More info: Photocase Review

Great Deal! Photocase Coupon: 5 FREE Credits + 10% Off

#3. Shutterstock – For Commercial-Minded Designers

  • Stock Images: Yes
  • Stock Video: Yes
  • License Type: Royalty Free
  • Best match: Commercial Projects
wwww.shutterstock.com homepage

Shutterstock is one of the heavyweights in the stock photo industry. The precursor of the stock photo subscription and host of the largest royalty-free image catalog on the web, with over 330 million files and adding over 100,000 new images every day. Stock footage and audio collections are also available, all for commercial use.

What defines Shutterstock is the uber-commercial feel of their library, which paired with a seemingly endless stream of pictures on every topic and every variation imaginable, makes it a valuable resource for marketers, advertisers, and business owners. 

Shutterstock subscriptions offer a great low price, the best rate being that of the 750 downloads a month plan, which comes at $249 per month – or $0.33 per image. There are options for fewer images, as well as on-demand packs, but this is certainly a better fit for big buyers. 

As a bonus, Shutterstock has its own web-based image editor that is free to use and fully integrated into its library. It’s elementary compared to Photoshop, but it gets the job done when it comes to simple visuals for social media and similar.

If you design for commercial purposes and have a clear commercial style for your visuals, then Shutterstock is the right fit for you.

More info: Shutterstock Review

Awesome! Shutterstock Free Trial: 10 Free Images for One Month

Great Deal! Shutterstock Coupon Code: Up to 15% Off

#4. iStock – For Those Who Want Exclusive Photography

  • Stock Images: Yes
  • Stock Video: Yes
  • License Type: Royalty Free
  • Best match: Projects that benefit from exclusive content
istock logo square e1585945491345 > 6 Brilliant Adobe Stock Alternatives for Creative Professionals

iStock pioneered the microstock photography business –initially named iStockphoto– and today is a household name in royalty-free stock photos that are backed by the prestigious Getty Images

This agency stands out for dividing its library into two main collections. One is Essentials, where you find everyday budget images. The other is Signature, which offers high-quality stock photos that are exclusive to the agency –meaning you won’t find them elsewhere– which adds a lot of value, stock photograph-wise. The site also offers video footage. 

iStock offers subscriptions to the entire catalog as well as to only Essentials (the latter have lower price points), you can get your pick of exclusive or non-exclusive images for as little as $29 per month for 10 photos. Plus, here you can buy images by the unit. They’re priced based on the collection at $8 and $33 respectively, but you can get a better deal with prepaid credit packs. 

iStock also counts with a built-in photo editor that performs simple edits and is free to use with any iStock photo.

Creatives that value Adobe Stock’s exclusive collections and high-end stock imagery are certain to find a great alternative in iStock.

More info: iStock Review

Great Deal! iStock Promo Code: Up to 15% Off

#5. 123RF – For Those Who Value Reliable Service

  • Stock Images: Yes
  • Stock Video: Yes
  • License Type: Royalty Free
  • Best match: Professionals looking for a trustworthy image supplier
123rf logo 590x235 1 > 6 Brilliant Adobe Stock Alternatives for Creative Professionals

123RF is also one of the main brands in microstock photography, going back many years and having earned its slot and reputation through impeccable service. 

This stock photo site offers millions of images –photography and vector graphics– plus video and even audio collections. Their rich pool of content paired with their flexible royalty-free license and convenient prices make a lot of creatives choose them. 

At 123RF you can opt to buy images with a subscription or with credits. And you get several volume options in each case. The best value is with a subscription, which starts at $29 for 10 images a month. The price per image goes down with bigger plans. 

This is a valuable alternative to Adobe Stock if you like using renowned, trustworthy services without breaking the bank. 

More info: 123RF Review

Great Deal! 123RF Coupon Codes: Up to 20% Off

#6. Dreamstime – For Low-Volume Buyers

  • Stock Images: Yes
  • Stock Video: Yes
  • License Type: Royalty Free
  • Best match: People needing just a handful of images
dreamstime logo e1567194341285 > 6 Brilliant Adobe Stock Alternatives for Creative Professionals

Dreamstime is amongst the top stock photography companies and has a reputable history of selling high-resolution photos that are suitable for commercial purposes.

With a library that racks up 140 million photos and illustrations, and adds a collection of stock footage as well, Dreamstime has enough variety to cover most creative needs and the professional quality you require. 

One key feature of Dreamstime’s offer is they have subscriptions for 5, 10, 15, and 25 downloads a month as well as the more common, high-volume plans. Starting at just $23 monthly for 5 downloads, these low-tier plans are perfect for those who need only a handful of images and want to get them at the best possible price. There are also credit packs to buy à la carte, and video subscriptions even. 

If Adobe Stock’s 10-images-a-month membership appealed to you, then definitely consider Dreamstime a good alternative.

More info: Dreamstime Review

Find the Perfect Adobe Stock Alternative to Fuel Your Creative Work

And there you have it, six different alternatives to get high-resolution images, with a royalty-free license, with a subscription plan, or on-demand, just like at Adobe Stock. 

Each of these sites has its own strengths, but we are sure at least one of them will match your requirements. Once you find it, nothing stops you from creating awesome visuals all the time!

Which one will be the chosen one? Let us know!

Ivanna Attié
Ivanna Attié

I am Content Manager, Researcher, and Author in StockPhotoSecrets.com and Stock Photo Press and its many stock media-oriented publications. I am a passionate communicator with a love for visual imagery and an inexhaustible thirst for knowledge. Lucky enough to enter the wonderful world of stock photography working side-by-side with experienced experts, I am happy to share my research, insights, and advice about image licensing, stock photography offers, and the stock media industry with everyone in the creative community. My background is in Communication and Journalism, and I also love literature and performing arts.

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