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3 Reasons You Should Not Use Stock Photography For Your Website
By Jeet Banerjee | October 10, 2012

While stock photography does a great job to provide website owners a wide range of media at an affordable price, it really has a negative impact on your marketing campaign.

A survey was recently taken asking over 5,000 web surfers what they thought about stock photography and many of them had similar answers. We have taken their responses and found out why your customers do not want you to use stock photography.

Here is why you should use real photography, not stock photography for your website:

1. It Says You’re Cheap

When customers see a very artificial or photogenic character represented on your website, they immediately sense something fishy. Many surveyors showed a lot of hesitation when asked to make a purchase from a website using stock photography.

Often times they explained their hesitation by claiming the website was either new or too cheap to afford real photographs. Even though it may be easier and a lot more affordable, your customers know why you’re using stock photography instead of real photographs.

2. People Would Rather See The Real Thing

If I’m about to make a purchase on a website, I do not want to see a picture that’s somewhat close to the product I’m about to buy. I want to see the real thing in as many angles as possible.

Often times, a purchaser will be hesitant in making a purchase just because he/she cannot see the real thing. People want to make a connection with a product or even service before pulling out their credit card. Show people the real thing to the best of your ability to increase online sales.

3. Disappointment

Many users in the surveys actually complained about being disappointed because they didn’t get what was advertised. Since stock photography does a great job of brilliantly displaying a product or service, people do feel disappointed when they see the real thing.

You always want to give your customers more than what they are expecting, not less. By showcasing a product or visual better than the real thing, your customers are expecting great things from you. When they receive the real thing, they are disappointed and you are losing out on future business.


While stock photography is a great solution for many small businesses, I would highly recommend avoiding it. In the beginning of the stock photo era, it was a great tool that customers loved.

However, since many websites use stock photography, it has really lost its value on the web. Customers are appreciating real photography much more now a days. If your website is using stock photography, it may be a great time to consider moving towards a more legitimate approach.

About the Author

Jeet Banerjee is a 19 year old serial entrepreneur, tech expert, author, blogger, consultant, and college student. He has created numerous startup companies and spends his time profiting from purpose. He is an expert in the internet marketing field and has helped many businesses find success online.

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