Using Free Stock Video Clips
Let’s get on with the bad news first. Free stock videos are most likely not going to provide the instructional content you need. And if you are looking for footage of people, many of the free stock video collections do not provide sufficient diversity. Also, you may not find the video resolution you need.
The good news is that free stock video clips can fill a lot of gaps. There are many creative uses for stock footage. You can insert the clip in a video you are constructing or in eLearning or a website to gain attention, add interest and to make your product more appealing to users. You can use stock footage as B-roll (alternate footage) while a talking head drones on. You might want it as a background for a quote or opening text. Perhaps you can use a clip as an intro or interlude to stories, as a metaphors with a voice over, for social media or in a video loop for whatever purpose.
Types of Free Stock Video Sites
Many sites listed here use free videos to attract potential buyers to their premium footage or for clicks to websites that sell stock imagery. Others are a vehicle for videographers who want to showcase their work or for community-minded people to share. Whatever their purpose, if your budget is limited, you may benefit from access to free stock video sites. Please check license agreements as you may need to provide a credit to the person who shot the clip. Here are 15 sites with free stock videos. I’ve checked them all out and left a brief review below each one.
The system at BottledVideo is straightforward. Every video is rendered in a lower and higher resolution. The low resolution clips are free and the higher ones are paid, but they are inexpensive. The site itself needs a redesign. Just sayin’.
Clipstill is a source for cinemagraphs. These are still photos that have one area set as a repeated motion loop, making them a video clip. See below. The monthly selection of free cinemagraphs is small and you can sign up to get notified when new ones are available. If you don’t find what you need, Clipstill’s premium cinemagraphs are inexpensive.
Advertised as free videos for website home pages, you should be able to use Coverr’s MP4 downloads anywhere. There is a decent collection of footage, though small. This is one of many sites that displays search results from Shutterstock too, where the videos can be expensive.
Ignite Motion exclusively offers clips for use in background videos. You’ll find abstract shapes moving, explosions, fire, gears, volcanoes, etc.
5. Life of Vids
Life of Vids (sister site to Life of Pics) offers free stock videos to download in six different resolutions, including mobile, which is the size of the video below. You can search for items, browse the videos by scrolling or view the offerings by collection. This site has one of the largest free video collections on the list.
This site has a good selection of impressive video clips. You can specify the start and stop time of the clip you want prior to downloading. How cool is that? There is no search function so you will need to scroll through a grid of video clips to find what you want.
Mixkit has a good selection of free HD videos organized into categories like abstract, business and tech, coffee and cafes, travel and even several animations. See the example below. You can sign up for their newsletter to be alerted of 10 new videos each week.
Motion Places has one of the better collections of free footage, particularly if you need clips of specific city or country locations. The stock is categorized by place, theme and color. HD videos are free, 4K videos have a premium price.
You may have used Pexels for free stock photos. This site also has free stock videos and a search tool. The selection isn’t large but it’s worth exploring. Search results include videos from Shutterstock beneath their results.
Pikwizard has a good and varied selection of videos, from people performing work tasks to shopping scenes. You’ll find some unusual clips too, like a slow motion video of peppers sprayed with water. That should really come in handy! The search results start with clips from Adobe stock, so scroll down past that if you are looking for free.
This is a great site for finding free stock video clips. Pixabay has a few unique features. You have a choice of resolution (1080p or 4K) and the selections include slow motion, animations and time lapse. If you search rather than browse, the results in the first row of the grid lead to a premium site.
This site is a good resource for stock footage because the collection includes quite a few categories as well as slow motion and time lapse.
This site has one of the larger collections of free footage. The search results display a mix of free and premium video stock. The pricing for the monthly premium plans seem reasonable.
Videezy has a large mixed selection of free and premium videos. They sell their premium videos by credit and many are inexpensive.
Organized by category, you’ll find a few videos within each subject. If you use the search function, you’ll see that the first results displayed are from Shutterstock.
I hope you find what you need at these sites! Feel free to list other ones in the Comments.