Storyblocks review (2023): You can probably do better

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Is it worth it?

Storyblocks is a good way to get stock footage, but it’s not the best. Based on our experience, we recommend Artgrid for better quality footage (8K, RAW, LOG, ProRes, DNxHR), Envato Elements for unlimited downloads, or Videvo for much cheaper and even free videos. Storyblocks lies between them and doesn’t excel at either.


  • Diverse licensing
  • Save 30% with image packs


  • Expensive and low-quality Ultimate Collection
  • No indemnity
  • Complicate licensing
Storyblocks logo
Photutorial Score
Photutorial Score = 4.1/5

Photutorial scores are objectively determined by our editorial team. Our scoring formula weighs several factors consumers should consider when choosing creative products and services.
Videos1.5 million
Pricing$30 or $35/mo; $3/download
Free trialNo

Storyblocks used to be a great place to get stock videos, audio, and SFX back when it was one of the few unlimited stock footage subscriptions. But now, you have plenty of more affordable choices, ranging from fan-favorite Envato Elements to more professional Artgrid. So, how does Storyblocks stack nowadays? Is it still worth your money? Let’s take a look.

In my experience, Storyblocks is still a good stock footage site, but it doesn’t excel at anything. Among the best Storyblocks alternatives, you can find an option that outperforms it in every aspect. On the one hand, Envato Elements is cheaper at $16.50/mo ($11.50/mo for students) while also offering three times as many videos. Envato Elements also offers all the asset types Storyblocks does, plus more, such as fonts, templates, and many more stock images. A slightly more expensive than Envato but highly specialized for video editors is Artlist. On the other hand, professionals and those invested in Adobe’s ecosystem will pick Adobe Stock, which has a whopping 26 million videos and professional video editing software. Everything is also available with Creative Cloud’s free trial.

What’s better than Storyblocks?

Envato ElementsArtlistAdobe Stock
Envato elements logoArtlist logoAdobe Stock logo
Cost: $11.50–$39.00/month$19.99–$68.00/month$29.99–$249.99/mo
Videos: 4.2 millionVideos: 180,000Videos: 26 million
Video templates: 461,000Video templates: 20,000Video templates: 99,000
Audio: 774,000Audio: 60,000Audio: 72,000
SFX: 629,000SFX: 50,000SFX: 1000+
57% off (Limited Time)Try itFree trial

» Dive deeper: Discover even more Storyblocks alternatives

What is Storyblocks?

Storyblocks is a website offering royalty-free footage, audio, templates, and special effects. It’s an excellent source for beginners starting their YouTube or video editing careers. Best of all—you can start with a minimal budget.

To me, Storyblocks is the best way to start because you get everything you need for video editing. Stock footage fills gaps of what’s missing, music sets the mood, and special effects connect the video. Finally, if you don’t have a video editor, you get free with the Unlimited All Access plan.

In short, Storyblocks has everything a content creator needs. And the flexible licensing ensures you never get a copyright strike on YouTube.

How much does Storyblocks cost?

Storyblocks offers three subscription options that cater to different needs: The Starter plan for $15 per month, the Unlimited All Access for $30 per month, and the Pro plan for $35 per month, all billed annually. Monthly plans are also available for each tier at a much higher price.

PlanStarterUnlimited All AccessPro
Billed monthly$30/mo$65/mo$70/mo
Billed annually$15/mo$30/mo$35/mo
Monthly downloads5UnlimitedUnlimited
HD footage
4K footage
After Effects templates
Sound Effects
Photos, Vectors, & Illustrations
Maker video editor

Based on what it offers, Storyblocks has gotten very expensive in the last two years. The annual plans give you about a 50% discount on the monthly plans, but they’re still overpriced. For example, Photutorial’s winner Envato Elements, asks for just $16.50 per month, making it one of the cheapest stock footage sites available.

Storyblocks license explained

Individuals vs. Business license

Storyblocks license is a royalty-free license. It means you keep downloading videos forever without any further payments. Even if you start a new project, you’re allowed to reuse them. The license doesn’t pose location or time restrictions, either.

There are two licensing options at Storyblocks:

FeatureIndividual LicenseBusiness License
Licensed toIndividualOrganization
Production budgetUnlimitedUnlimited
Legal indemnificationUp to $20,000Up to $1,000,000
DistributionUnlimited distribution for print, digital, and productionUnlimited distribution for print, digital, and production

To sum up, the Individual license only grants usage rights to the license holder (the person who licensed/downloaded the content). In contrast, the Business license may be used and shared across a team or an entire company.

Learn even more about the Storyblocks license:

Does Storyblocks have a free trial?

In April 2020, Storyblocks removed their free trial when they changed pricing. But you don’t need a free trial anymore because you get unlimited downloads for only $30.

The now-gone Storyblocks free trial allowed you to download watermarked content for free. You can get unwatermarked videos, audio, and images for a low price. And you can download as many as you can.

Storyblocks discount

First of all, Storyblocks doesn’t offer a discount code. Anyone saying otherwise is trying to scam you.

Yet, you still get a Storyblocks discount by picking the annual plans instead of monthly. Monthly Unlimited All Access plan costs $66/month, while the yearly costs $30/month or $360/year. And this is how you get a 53% discount at Storyblocks.

Storyblocks review of Discount code
Storyblocks discount

Storyblocks Maker review

Maker is a video editing tool developed by Storyblocks. It lets you create pro videos within minutes, even without video-making experience.

It works in 5 easy steps:

1. Pick the aspect ratio

Pick between 16:9 (wide), 1:1 (square), and 9:16 (vertical) aspect ratios.

Storyblocks Maker review Select format
Pick between 3 preset aspect ratios.

Keep in mind that every social media platform supports different aspect ratios. And Storyblocks Maker lets you know about it.

Storyblocks Maker review Format is best for
Storyblocks helps you with aspect ratio compatibility

2. Choose a template

You can choose from hundreds of beautiful templates from several categories.

Storyblocks Maker review Template options
Choose a template from various categories.

3. Upload your logo, videos, photos, and more.

A logo is essential for branding, so everyone immediately knows whose video it is.

Storyblocks Maker review Upload logo
Add logo and other media.

4. Add stock videos, images, audio, and effects from the Storyblock library.

The best part about the Maker is the option to upload content from the Storyblocks library. It works like Adobe Stock and Creative Cloud.

5. Customise with animations, intro and outros, and unique overlays.

Maker already has dozens of animations, overlays, text styles, intros, and outros.

Storyblocks Maker review Intros and Outros
Improve your videos with animations

But always use them sparingly, as you don’t want to create a flashy and cluttered video.

6. Download your video in various preset sizes, ideal for social media.

You decide between 480p, 720p, and 1080p resolution options on the export. Also, to remove the watermark, you need a paid plan.

Storyblocks Maker review Export preferences
Export options of Storyblocks Maker

You get full access to Maker for $20/month. It allows you unlimited video project exports.

The best Storyblocks alternatives

  • Artgrid
  • Envato Elements
  • Shutterstock
  • Adobe Stock
  • Artlist
  • Epidemic Sound
  • Motion Array
  • Pond5
  • Pexels

These stock footage sites offer similar services to Storyblocks but with different plans and licenses.

Storyblocks vs. Envato Elements

Storyblocks and Envato Elements offer unlimited download plans, but Envato Elements ($16.50/month) is cheaper than Storyblocks ($30.00/month). Envato Elements has a more extensive library of files (3.2+ mil videos) than Storyblocks (1+ mil videos). Also, it offers courses, tutorials, and other digital assets with the subscription plan.

On the other hand, Storyblocks’ license is much easier to use. Once you get it, you may use it forever, while the Envato Elements license only lets you use it for one project. You must get a new license if you want to reuse it for a different project.

» More: Envato Elements vs. Storyblocks comparison

Storyblocks vs. Shutterstock

Unlike Storyblocks, Shutterstock does not offer unlimited download plans. You get a fixed number of monthly downloads by subscribing or buying an on-demand pack. Shutterstock offers 5 videos for $99/month, 10 for $159/month, or 20 for $199/month. Or, you can choose packs of 5, 10, or 25 SD, HD, or 4K videos, starting at $52/video.

Shutterstock’s library contains images, while Storyblocks’ library consists of videos. But, because Shutterstock is the biggest stock agency, its library houses 22 million videos, too. Shutterstock’s Standard license is similar to Storyblocks’ license.

Read my Shutterstock review.

Storyblocks vs. Adobe Stock

Both Storyblocks and Adobe Stock support and promote creativity. Each in its way. Storyblocks offers stock media at low prices with unlimited download plans. But, costly Adobe Stock simplifies your creative process with the integration.

It’s integrated into Creative Cloud apps, such as Photoshop or Illustrator. When you work on a project, you don’t have to license images first. The integration allows you to try images or videos for free and only buy them when your project is ready.

Videos at Adobe Stock are only available with credits. Videos cost between 8 and 20 credits based on their quality. And credits cost $8.00.

If price is the most critical factor for you, I recommend Storyblocks. Conversely, Adobe Stock is ideal for a smooth workflow regardless of the pricing. But don’t forget that Storyblocks has a video editor called Maker that works similarly to Adobe’s Creative Cloud.

Storyblocks vs. Artgrid

Artgrid pricing is like Storyblocks pricing, but it’s more costly. There are three subscription plans: Junior HD ($24.92/month), Creator 4K+ ($39.92/month), and Pro RAW/LOG ($49.92/month). They differ in video quality (HD vs. 4K-8K vs. RAW files), but they all give you unlimited downloads.

Yet, Artgrid only offers footage while also being more expensive than Storyblocks. So, if you want videos, images, audio, and various templates and effects at lower prices, Storyblocks is the way to go.

» More: Storyblocks vs. Artgrid

Storyblocks vs Artlist

Artlist is the same company as Artgrid but offers Music and SFX instead of videos. Unlimited downloads are available with three plans: SFX ($12.41/month) for SFX, Music ($16.60/month) for music, or Music + SFX ($25/month) for music and SFX.

The combination of Artgrid and Artlist gives you Storyblocks. But subscribing to Artlist and Artgrid would cost you $75/month, while at Storyblocks, you get everything for $30/month.

Storyblocks vs. Epidemic Sound

Epidemic Sound offers 35,000 tracks and 90,000 sound effects but no images or videos. You can get unlimited downloads with a Personal subscription plan ($15/month or $144/year) or a Commercial plan ($49/month or $299/month). However, a Personal subscription is only appropriate for your use.

Although renowned creators trust epidemic Sound, I choose Storyblocks. Their pricing and content favor productivity, while Epidemic Sound’s does not.

Storyblocks vs Motion Array

Motion Array licenses Adobe After Effects, Adobe Templates, images, stock audio, and stock video. The pricing is the same as Storyblocks’. You can get a free plan, which allows you to use free files, a monthly plan ($29.99/month), or an annual plan ($249.99/year).

In all aspects, Storyblocks and Motion Array are pretty similar. To make the best possible decision, I recommend you check the variety of content they offer in your niche. Then, pick the one that is best suitable for your needs.

Storyblocks vs Pond5

Pond5 offers high-quality footage, music, aftereffects, sound effects, images, and 3D models. But you cannot get unlimited downloads at Pond5. Furthermore, Pond5 is costly. To get content from Pond5, you need to buy credits that you can then use to license stock content.

In conclusion, if you want high-quality stock footage, music, or after/sound effects, Pond5 should be your go-to choice. But it won’t be cheap. But, if you want unlimited downloads for a low price, Storyblocks is for you.

Read my Pond5 review.

Storyblocks vs Pexels

Pexels is a great free Storyblocks alternative. Many people don’t realise that Pexels is a website for free stock photos and a source of free and high-quality stock videos.


How to get Storyblocks for free?

At the moment, there’s no way to get Storyblocks for free. Back when Storyblocks was Videoblocks, you could get a free trial. But since Storyblocks updated its pricing, the free trial was removed.

How to use Storyblocks?

First, subscribe to one of the plans. Then, download videos, images, or audio from Storyblocks and use them to create videos.

How to download from Storyblocks for free?

After picking a plan, download as much content as you want for free from Storyblocks. But, you need to pay for the unlimited plan first.

How to download Storyblocks video free?

First, buy an Unlimited All Access plan ($30/month) or Unlimited Video plan ($20/month). When you’re subscribed to one of these plans, you can download Storyblocks videos for free. And considering that you pay $20 for unlimited videos, it’s almost free.

How much does Storyblocks cost?

Storyblocks Unlimited All Access plan costs $30/month or $360/year, videos $10—$20/month, and audio $10—$15/month. Unlimited access to Maker costs $20/month.

How to use Storyblocks after-effects?

To use Storyblocks after effects, follow these four steps:
1. Open a new project and import your files.
2. Choose your compositions.
3. Replace the placeholder element with yours.
4. Repeat for as many elements as you want.

How to cancel Storyblocks subscription?

To cancel your Storyblocks subscription, click on your profile icon in the top right and choose Billing & Subscriptions. From there, you cancel or change the subscription.

How does Storyblocks work?

You buy a subscription plan for either all content, video only, or audio. If you select a Basic plan, you can only download a certain amount of videos or audio each month. Unlimited plans let you download unlimited content without extra payment.

How to remove the Storyblocks watermark?

Storyblocks watermark is removed when you buy a subscription plan. You may also remove it without paying for it, but it’s illegal and might get you in legal trouble. I discourage you from doing so.

Is Storyblocks worth it?

Storyblocks is an excellent platform for unlimited downloads of stock video, audio, images. Users love Storyblocks and recommend it to anyone looking for inexpensive stock footage.

Is Storyblocks free?

Content on Storyblocks is royalty-free, allowing indefinite use of the content. You may use it for commercial and non-commercial projects, including YouTube videos.

Is Storyblocks safe?

Storyblocks allows payment with all major credit cards and PayPal via a secured and encrypted connection, making it safe for use.

Is Storyblocks copyright free?

Storyblocks is not copyright free; the creators own the content uploaded to Storyblocks. You can license the content to get a right to use the content from Storyblocks.

What is Storyblocks in LumaFusion?

Storyblocks for LumaFusion is a custom media library of royalty-free videos, animated backgrounds, loops, sound-fx, and audio. It’s an integration that let you use the content from Storyblocks within LumaFusion.

How much does Storyblocks pay?

Your earnings at Storyblocks depend on how many times your content is downloaded.

Can I use Storyblocks on YouTube?

Yes, you may use Storyblocks clips even for YouTube videos. Storyblocks’ license allows unlimited reproduction of the footage, which includes YouTube.

How to protect yourself from copyright infringement on YouTube?

You risk a copyright strike on YouTube when you share content you’re not allowed to share. To ensure this never happens to you, make sure you always use licensed content for YouTube videos. One of the best ways to get licensed content for YouTube is Storyblocks.


In conclusion, I recommend Storyblocks to editors looking for cheap but quality videos. You will also find great audio, images, and after-effects.

The best feature is unlimited plans, which unlock your creative potential. Because you don’t have to worry about running out of videos, you can focus on quality.

Thanks to inexpensive subscription plans ($30/month), Storyblocks is one of the cheapest and best stock videos sites.