Vecteezy offers a way for creatives to make money with their vectors, stock photos, and stock videos while gaining exposure to millions of website visitors each month. If you’d like to make some extra money from your own content, we’d love to have you as a Vecteezy contributor.

When you create your contributor account and are approved as a Vecteezy contributor, you’ll need to decide what type of content to submit. In addition to choosing what type of content – vectors, stock photos, or stock videos (or all three!) – you’ll need to choose between the Free and Pro license model for each resource. Contributors can make this selection at the time of submission, but keep in mind it’s still ultimately up to Vecteezy and our team of Reviewers to decide if your content is acceptable for the Free or Pro license model.

This article will explain the differences between the Free and Pro license model so you can make an informed decision about which one is best for you.

Free License vs. Pro License

Vecteezy users are able to download some resources for free, and other resources require a Pro subscription. Resources that can be downloaded for free are available under our Free license, which requires the user to provide attribution.

Resources offered under the Pro license require an active Pro subscription (or purchased credits) in order to be downloaded. Pro customers can download and use both Free and Pro resources without attribution.

If you submit your content as Free, your resources will be available to Vecteezy users under the Free license, and if you submit your content as Pro, your resources will be available to Vecteezy users under the Pro license.

Woman in field

Photographers like Tymonko Galyna are earning money from Free downloads.

Similarities with Free and Pro 

Before we get into the differences between the two license models, let’s first take a look at the similarities.

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  • Creating a contributor account – Regardless of whether you want to make your resources available under the Free or Pro license, you’ll need to create a contributor account. Don’t worry, the signup process is simple.
  • Submitted resources will be reviewed – Vecteezy team members review each resource that is submitted as Free or Pro. This allows us to ensure that our quality standards remain consistent and that we provide the best experience to our customers. Also, Vecteezy makes the final decision on which resources belong in each licensing model. Finally, the review process helps to ensure that your high-quality resources don’t get surrounded by a lot of lower-quality resources.
  • Exposure to millions of monthly visitors – Your resources will be visible to our audience and you’ll benefit from exposure regardless of which license model your resources are under.
  • Non-exclusive agreement – Contributors are able to earn money on other platforms that offer stock photos, videos, and illustrations with the same resources that they upload to Vecteezy.
  • Contributor dashboard – All contributors will have access to the Content Manager tool that makes it easy to upload new resources, as well as gain access to stats and earnings details that can be viewed in their dashboard.

Overview of the Free License

Who It’s For

The Free license is ideal for contributors who want to maximize their visibility and make their content available to the highest number of users. Both Free and Pro resources receive similar amounts of exposure on Vecteezy (for example, in the search results), but Free content is more likely to be downloaded since it is available to anyone.

Contributors who are looking to inspire others and are more interested in the community aspect than maximizing earnings tend to appreciate the Free license.

The Free license is also a good choice for designers, photographers, and videographers who want to achieve as much consistency as possible in their earnings.

How It Works

Vecteezy’s Free license offers contributor’s a flat rate of $5 per 1,000 downloads for vectors and photos, and a flat rate of $10 per 1,000 downloads for videos. This royalty model is also known as Pay-Per-Download (PPD). With millions of visitors arriving at our site each month, the number of downloads can really add up quickly, giving Free content the potential to earn real money.

Related: How to Make Real Money by Giving Away Free Photos

Since the compensation for Free content is a fixed amount per download, you’ll know exactly what to expect. Although there will always be some variance in the number of downloads from one month to the next, the Free license offers the best predictability and consistency since the compensation is very cut and dry.

The primary benefits of the Free license include:

  • Simplicity – Flat-rate compensation that is simple and easy to understand.
  • Availability – Your content is likely to be downloaded and used by more people since it is available to everyone.  That means more visibility for you and your work, and more users are able to benefit from it as well.
  • Real Earnings – While there are a number of websites that allow you to upload resources that can be downloaded for free, most of them will not provide you with any form of monetary compensation for your work. Vecteezy offers a rare opportunity to get paid for resources under a Free license model.

Overview of the Pro License

Pro Photos

Photo by michaeljung

Who It’s For

Professional designers, photographers, and videographers tend to prefer our Pro license because it allows them to earn the maximum amount with their content. Contributors who are making money at other stock photo websites or marketplaces may prefer our Pro contributor program for that reason.

If you want to ensure that only paying customers (Vecteezy Pro subscribers) are able to use your resources and maximize the amount you earn, this program is the better choice for you.

How It Works

Content under a Pro license is also paid on a per-download basis (PPD), but the amount earned per download will vary. Earnings are calculated using the Subscriber Share model. We believe this is the most fair and accurate way to compensate Pro contributors because an even split of subscription revenue goes directly to the contributors whose content is used by our customers.

First, fees (such as credit card processing fees) are deducted from the revenue generated by a user’s subscription. Next, the remaining amount is split 50/50 between Vecteezy and contributors. Then, the amount is multiplied by the percent the contributor earned from the customer’s subscriber share.

This calculation is run each billing cycle for each subscription customer to determine which contributors should be paid from the revenue generated by that customer, and how much they should be paid.

The best way to understand this is to look at an example. For this example, we’ll say that during a given month a particular customer downloads 10 resources and 3 are from your contributor profile (3 resources / 10 total downloads = 30%).

If this customer was paying $14 per month for a monthly images subscription, here are the details of the calculation:

  • Step 1: fees are deducted – $14 revenue – $0.85 for credit card fees and refunds = $13.15
  • Step 2: the remainder is split 50/50 – $13.15 split 50/50 = $6.575 for contributors and $6.575 for Vecteezy
  • Step 3: subscriber share calculation – $6.575 x 30% = $1.97 for you

In this scenario, you would be entitled to 30% of the $6.575 Subscriber Share because your resources accounted for 30% of the customer’s downloads during that month (10 total downloads, 3 of the downloads were your files).

This example shows the calculation based on one customer. The same calculation will be run each month for each customer. You’ll be earning a percentage of the subscriber share for every customer that downloads your resources during the month.

The primary benefits of the Pro license include:

  • Max earning potential – While with Free content, contributors are able to earn real money for each download, currently our highest-earning contributors offer their content under the  Pro license model.
  • Limited availability – Pro resources are more exclusive because they can only be downloaded by paying customers, rather than being available to everyone.

Final Thoughts

We’re proud to offer contributors two different options for monetizing their resources. We know that as a contributor you’ll have your own preferences and goals. Hopefully, this article helped you to decide which option is right for you by taking a look at the ways in which the Free and Pro license models work. If you have questions that weren’t answered in this article, please contact us. And if you’re ready to get started, you can create your contributor account here.