What are the Best Stock Video Sites in 2022?

Creators
April 28, 2022

What are the Best Stock Video Sites in 2022?


Finding high-quality stock video online can be an essential component of transforming a good project into a great one. But with so many choices out there, it can be hard to pick the best site for your needs. Read on for our guide to the best stock video sites in 2022, which includes both free and paid options.

What are the criteria we used to determine best stock video sites?

Content creators today have more options than ever when it comes to telling richer, more engaging stories through the use of stock video footage. But so much choice can sometimes be overwhelming. Ahead, we’ll attempt to identify what makes a stock video site rise above its peers.

Stock video websites break down along two distinct lines: free and paid. Paid sites typically offer a handful of options, from subscription-based models where users can download as many videos as they want for a monthly or annual fee, to pay-per-video plans where users select and pay for clips a la carte. Paid sites often have more extensive content libraries, but that doesn’t necessarily make them the best option for all creators. A lot of paid sites offer some free selections as well, but their business models are usually ultimately geared towards subscriptions or fees.

Many sites provide vast galleries of free, high-quality video clips that are license-cleared to use both commercially or personally, without paying royalties. Photographers and videographers often upload their work to these sites, offering license-free use of their creations in exchange for the exposure boost. Many free sites release footage under Creative Commons Zero, which means users don’t have to seek permission to alter the original, or even credit the creator (though it’s always appreciated). These clips can be found in almost any category you can think of, from travel and lifestyle, to business, sports, and even animation and aerial drone footage. Sites offering a wider variety of stock video categories tended to rank higher on our list.

When determining which stock video sites made the cut for our list, we looked at a combination of factors. For instance, the size of their content libraries. Some sites have millions of stock video clips available, while others’ take a narrower, more focused approach. We also looked at how much variety sites have in their clip selection, both in subject matter and quality. Flexibility in use and licensing was another important factor that weighed on our decision making.

The rise of stock video sites means it’s never been easier or more affordable for creators to find just the footage they need to make their project shine. Read on for some of the very best.

Advantages of Stock Video Sites

When it comes to creating engaging, attention-grabbing content, video is king. But shooting original footage is costly and time consuming, and requires a skilled practitioner to do well, so it’s not always in the budget. Stock video sites provide access to high-quality clips, often created by professionals, which can be seamlessly incorporated into any type of project for a fraction of the cost of camera equipment and a crew to operate it.

Stock footage can also be a timesaver, allowing users to get a shot of something that would have been impossible to create on their own. Let’s say you need footage of a shooting star. One option is to wait outside every night with your camera pointed towards the sky and hope for the best. Or, you can scroll countless pages of pre-made, royalty-free video clips of exactly what you’re looking for, uploaded by professional creators. 

Much of the content found on stock video sites is up to professional standards, including HD, 4K, and even 8K, which means no matter what sort of look you’re attempting to achieve, there should be ample options at your disposal.

Top 10 paid stock video site list

The following 10 paid stock video websites are the ones we felt had the most to offer when it comes to selection and quality. Some offer one-off pricing as well as subscriptions, and many also offer large royalty-free content libraries of their own.

1. Storyblocks

With over a million royalty-free stock videos including a wide selection of video collections and categories, Storyblocks is one of the best one-stop-shops for your stock footage needs. The site offers plans based on Individual or Business licensing needs, with a number of subscription plans, available to suit any budget. Plans include access to Storyblocks’ own video editing tool, Maker. Through its Re:Stock initiative, Storyblocks endeavors to create video footage that’s reflective of our diverse world, representing as many communities as possible.  

2. Shutterstock

Shutterstock is one of the oldest and most popular stock video platforms, boasting one of the largest libraries of professionally-created videos on our list. It offers one-time purchases and monthly subscription plans for 5, 10, or 25 video downloads per month. With each subscription, users can choose between SD, HD, and 4K clips in a dizzying array of footage categories, including aerial, time-lapse, and animation.

3. Pond5

Pond5 offers more than 30 million stock video clips for personal and professional use, with simple licensing and worldwide distribution. Pond5 offers a number of payment options, including per-download, monthly or annual subscription plans, and pre-paid “credit packs” that can be spent like cash and include bonus discounts on future purchases. Worth noting is an interesting feature which lets you upload a video file and view search results of available similar footage.

4. Adobe Stock

Adobe Stock’s massive library includes 25 million high-quality video clips from HD to 4K, spanning just about any category of footage you could name. It provides curated asset collections around various themes to spark inspiration and showcase its offerings in a unique way. Clips can be purchased individually, and paid plans are available for individuals, teams, or enterprise users on an annual or month-by-month basis. Users can also purchase prepaid credit packs for additional savings.

5. iStock

Founded in 2000 and called iStockphoto until its 2013 acquisition by Getty Images, iStock has a large and growing library of royalty-free stock video footage. It has a global network of content contributors including over 300,000 curators and creators. Its premium “Signature” collection includes trending visuals that are only available on iStock. Pricing is available annually or monthly plans ranging from 10 to 50 downloads per month. It offers a simple in-browser video editing tool for creating dynamic content for social media, promos, and more.

6. Artgrid

Containing around 160,000 videos, Artgrid’s royalty-free stock footage library is far from the largest on our list, but what it lacks in quantity it makes up with quality, featuring footage and clips made by cinematographers and professional filmmakers. Its search function is highly granular, allowing users to dial in their results with dozens of keyword filters. Its three-tiered monthly subscription plan includes unlimited downloads, with the “Pro” tier offering downloads in a variety of cinema-quality formats, including RAW/LOG clips, 4K-8K, and ProRes/DNxHR.

7. Videvo

Videvo offers a considerable variety of high-quality stock video at no cost, with over 18,000 free clips, motion graphics, and animated backgrounds available. Even its subscription plans focus on affordability: Its lowest-tier membership ($24.99/month, billed monthly) includes 50 premium downloads per month, or unlimited downloads for a $240/year annual plan. Premium members gain access to over 500,000 royalty-free stock videos from HD to 4K quality.

8. Dissolve

Geared more towards the upmarket or professional creator segment, Dissolve focuses on providing nothing but the highest-quality cinematic stock video content. It offers exclusive collections produced by renowned filmmakers with an emphasis on storytelling. Its website curates gallery collections of footage with themes like Nature’s Tones, Sweater Weather, and Mood Lights. Dissolve offers flexible licensing, and prices its 2 million clips individually ranging from $29 on the low end up to $549 for premium 4K video.

9. BigStock

For creators on a budget, BigStock offers a number of flexible payment options for access to its library of over 100,000 high-quality stock videos, at a cost as low as $0.53 per video for its cheapest plan. Explore hundreds of pages of beautiful, professionally-shot video clips with categories spanning everything from nature and science to animation and aerial shots.

10. Videohive

With nearly 3 million stock videos and counting, Envato-owned Videohive is a strong contender among the best stock video sites. Selections are for sale individually, ranging from $4 to $200, depending on factors like quality and length. Licenses for purchases are royalty-free, however the default licensing option is only single-use, with multiple uses costing extra.

video creator working on computer

Top 10 free stock video site list

When people hear the word “free” they tend to expect a catch, but there’s no catch to be found with these sites offering royalty-free stock videos at no cost. In some cases their libraries are merely smaller versions of a site’s premium offering, but many contain millions of clips and don’t even offer a premium tier.

1. PixaBay

PixaBay’s use of the Creative Commons Zero License gives downloaders total freedom to use or manipulate footage in any way they see fit. With a library of over 27,000 royalty- and attribution-free HD and 4K videos generously provided by its large creator community, PixaBay is a great hassle-free place to meet your stock footage needs. 

2. Dareful

If totally free 4K stock video clips are what you seek, Dareful invites you to comb through its library of content, all of which was shot by Joel Holland, founder of popular stock video platform Storyblocks. Dareful offers unlimited downloads of its royalty-free footage, which it encourages creators to use any way they want, anywhere they want, for any type of project they can think of.

3. Pexels

Initially launched as strictly a stock photos site, Pexels has expanded to include an impressive library of stock video clips. All content on the site is under Creative Commons Zero, giving users free rein to edit or alter the videos, and use them for commercial purposes for free without even crediting the creator (though throwing a credit their way is always encouraged.)

4. Coverr

Created by filmmakers, for filmmakers, Coverr actually pays creators to produce content for its site, which it then gives away for free under an irrevocable, non-exclusive copyright license. The website includes a range of curated galleries, and has categories including fitness, nature, and Zoom virtual backgrounds. 

5. Splitshire

All of the royalty-free video on Splitshire was filmed by web designer Daniel Nanescu, who wanted to create a repository of free stock videos available to anybody. His work is beautiful, mostly including high-definition nature and outdoor footage captured by drone-mounted camera. Splitshire is another quality-over-quantity choice, with comparatively few options compared to others on this list. However with over 2 million downloads on the site to date, it’s clear Nanescu’s work has struck a chord.

6. Life of Vids

Life of Vids has an impressive gallery of free stock video clips broken down in a variety of categories, like Clouds, Drone, and Food. The high-quality videos on the site are available to freely use for personal or commercial purposes, with new content added weekly. All stock videos on the site are royalty free, however redistribution of clips on other platforms is capped at 10.

7. Freestock

Freestock offers a selection of stock video assets carefully curated by creative industry experts. Its library includes a number of collections around themes such as nature, industrial, green screen, and corporate video. Freestock prides itself on keeping creators in mind as it continually grows its collection.

8. Mazwai

With all stock footage on the site hand-picked by a team of video experts, Mazwai offers a wide selection of free cinematic video clips, most ranging between 2-3 minutes in length. A relative newcomer in the free stock video space, Mazwai’s mission is to help every artist, designer, and other creative person access the video content they need for personal and professional use, and always for free.

9. Mixkit

Mixkit’s website contains thousands of free High Definition stock videos spanning a diverse range of categories and themes, from travel and fashion to technology and performing arts. Its website is well organized, each category tab at the top opening into numerous subcategories. Videos downloaded from Mixkit can be used for commercial purposes under its Video Free License.

10. Vidsplay

Vidsplay has a large collection of stock footage available for free download, including a selection of hand-curated galleries sorted into a variety of themes from animals to religious to time-lapse. Quality can sometimes vary, but with new clips added every week, creators will have no shortage of options when browsing their extensive library looking for footage to give their next project some extra pizzazz. 

How Storyblocks helps people tell better stories

Storyblocks is a rapid video creation platform that allows individuals and businesses to create better videos, fast enough to meet strategic objectives. We believe in providing creatives with the tools they need to tell rich and engaging stories while also accurately reflecting the diversity of our world. To that end, we provide stunning, royalty-free stock video footage with an emphasis on inclusivity, ensuring all communities are represented in our content library.

To learn more about how Storyblocks can help you transform your next project with top-quality stock video, visit our website.

Chris Nesi

Chris Nesi is a writer and editor whose work has spanned all corners of the finance, startup, and technology spaces, from blockchain, crypto, and alternative investments to hardware, software, and venture capital. He loves sushi and traveling, and lives just outside Denver with a very nice cat. Some of his previous work can be found in TechCrunch, Huffington Post, and Forbes.


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