8 Sites to Browse for Free, Engaging Online Survey Images

Engaging survey images can transform a respondent's experience. Here are 8 free sites to browse when you're on the hunt for beautiful survey imagery.


Chris Boeckelman

December 30, 2015

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If you’ve ever put together an online survey, you’ve probably encountered a moment when you realized you needed some engaging stock images. Without them, your survey would look dull and lifeless.

The trouble is, looking for the right survey images online can be a rabbit hole–and you can spend hours looking for what you need (but end up just feeling overwhelmed by all of the options.)

Add to that the stress of making the images work with your company branding or budget constraints, and the simple task of finding survey images gets a lot more complicated.

That’s why we’ve pulled together this list of eight awesome sites with free, engaging images you can use in your surveys. Give up your endless Google searches and start here instead.

8 Sites for Free Survey Images

Negative Space

If your survey needs high-quality images but you’re working with a tight budget, Negative Space has a great collection of colorful and professional images based in nature, technology, food, business, and more. You can browse by topic or have photos sent directly to your inbox.

Licensing: CC0, no attribution or permission to use/modify necessary


Surveys around the topic of food become much more visually appealing with strong images that align with your branding. So while you may not have the time to get a photographer in-house to snap the photos you want, FoodiesFeed has some incredible stock images that might fit your needs.

Licensing: No attribution or permission to use/modify necessary; social share required for full size download


From transport to lifestyle (and everything in between) Refe has a collection of artful, high-resolution images that work well for surveys. Even though images here are free, you are required to complete a “checkout” process in which user info is gathered and you must agree to the terms of use. But don’t worry, you won’t be charged–it’s just how they’ve decided gather download data.

Licensing: Royalty-free and available for commercial projects and publications but cannot be resold


The Creative Commons archives at Magdeleine are full of breathtakingly beautiful (and free!) images that perfectly complement any survey. Search features here allow you to browse by dominant color (in case you’re wanting to stick with a color theme for your survey) as well as by topical region, such as city, food, objects, etc. However, there are also images with attribution required that add to the variety (but come with a few more strings.)

Licensing: CC0, no attribution or permission to use/modify necessary

Jay Mantri

The images from Jay Mantri provide some visually stimulating options that are completely free. Subject matter of these photos ranges from beach scenes to cityscapes–and while the Tumblr format doesn’t allow for simple searching, there are many options to consider as you scroll through the pages. These photos also work well if you need images to simply act as a background and to add some textural variety to your survey.

Licensing: CC0, no attribution or permission to use/modify necessary

Public Domain Archive

Created by a Georgia-based photographer, Public Domain Archive is a repository takes the legwork out of searching for public domain images from a variety of sources. The minimalist design of this site means one less distraction for you as you hunt down your survey’s ideal images—and every image here is 100% free to use without attribution.

Licensing: CC0, no attribution or permission to use/modify necessary

IM Free by IM Creator

The photos at IM Free do require attribution to the photographer, but are easily searchable by subject matter or within categories. Used by the likes of the New York Times and CBS, the multitude of engaging images here work for almost any industry—so no matter how specific your survey, it’s likely you’ll find a few options here.

Licensing: Free for commercial use; attribution to the creator is required


Photographer Daniel Manescu took his 10+ years of work and opened his archives to the internet when he created SplitShire. Thanks to this copyright-free gift, your survey can benefit from the free images he’s shot over the years. Browse by category or download an extended 500-piece photo pack for $9.60.

Licensing: CC0, no attribution or permission to use/modify necessary

Creative Vix

The tile-based archive at Creative Vix makes it easy to scan through its archive of free images quickly and easily. Or, if you’re looking for something specific, you can sort photos by five different subjects: City, people, landscape, flowers, or animals. Images here are often pre-filtered and have a distinct real-life quality.

Licensing: CC0, no attribution or permission to use/modify necessary

Paid Options

If you can’t find what you need on these sites that have free options, consider turning to paid sources like iStockphoto, Shutterstock, or ThinkStock. Paid collections like these often have a wide selection with various options for your budget, from single downloads to a daily allotment of downloads.

Note: Be sure to double check the licensing agreements on photos from these sources, as restrictions may vary. Most of the time, there are several licensing agreements available that offer different usage rights based on the price point you pay. Never use a stock photo without the proper licensing, as it could result in a costly lawsuit.


With the right survey images, you can completely transform the experience of sharing feedback. Engaging survey images deliver a professional, polished appearance that wows your participants.

Hopefully this post has made it just a little bit easier for you to find the perfect images for that online survey you’re working on. There are many other paid and unpaid options with engaging images out there, but we hope this post has been a good starting place for your photo-browsing journey.

Your turn: What other free image sites do you use when creating online surveys? Let us know in the comments section.

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