Image Stock Libraries

As the internet grows, so does the number of Image Stock libraries. These libraries are useful tools that allow web developers and designers (web / print / other media) to find photos or pictures online without having to whip out the camera and worry about lighting and costs involved.

Images assist in making a website look alive and not so plain. Images not only add colour and variety, but they are able to bring out the feel of the website.

Often when designing websites, clients don’t have the images they need to compliment or display their business. In some cases, clients simply don’t have suitable images available that reflect what they do e.g. a plumber may want a website, but doesn’t have any websites applicable to plumbing. In these cases, we would assist the client in finding images that would suit their website e.g. in the plumbers case, photos with plumbing tools or happy clients with a plumber may be useful for their website.

What is an Image Stock Library?

Image Stock Libraries offer a range of photos that anyone can purchase online. Typically, the image stock libraries provide the user or visitor with different resolution options, photo sizes and in some instances, different licences.

The most frequently used licenses include:

  • Royalty Free describes a license whereby a user can purchase the image once and re-use the image as many times as they like.
  • Rights Managed or Licensed Images describes a licence whereby a user purchases the image(s) on a use-by-use basis.

Other licenses include:

  • Rights Ready
  • Creative Subscription


When purchasing images from an image stock library, it’s crucial you understand the licensing and the costing relating to that image.

How much do the images cost and how does one pay for the images?

Every image stock library website has different costing structures for different licences. You will need to understand the licences and check the costing on each individual image you like.

We have found over time that offers affordable stock imagery for our clients, specifically in South Africa. A number of the image libraries are overseas, therefore one needs to take into the exchange rate if buying on a UK or US website.

When purchasing the images, you would use your credit card. You are able to buy credits – this is particularly useful if you are a web agency that uses an image library website regularly for different websites. You can spend a set amount which buys you credits. You can then use your credits at any time to purchase as images you would like. Credits can be topped up at any point time.

What Image Stock Libraries can I use?

You can do a search on your favourite search engine and you will more than likely receive loads of results of different image stock libraries.

Stock libraries we make use of include:

  • Getty Images