Short answer: No, you cannot give your VAs and/or writers or anyone your Shutterstock login details to download images. I wish we could but we can’t. If you do, it’s against Shutterstock’s TOS. If you persist, Shutterstock might lock your account due to multiple IP addresses accessing the account.
Shutterstock isn’t cheap. I’ve had a subscription for years. I still do. On the face of it, given how much Shutterstock costs, it’s not unreasonable to assume that we should be able to let anyone download the images as long as they’re going on websites we own. After all, how does it matter who does the downloading? That was my view of it. It’s still kinda my view but it’s not my call.
If you can’t give your team login access to your Shutterstock account, how can team members download images?
You have to pay more money by adding team member seats to your account. It’s not cheap either. The best thing to do is contact your Shutterstock rep and ask how much your plan will be for the number of seats you need.
I currently have a 13 seat plan which means 13 people can legitimately log in and download images from my Shutterstock subscription.
Alternatively, you can download all the images. If possible, opt for the former to stay sane (assuming you’re publishing quite a few articles. If it’s one or two articles per day, that’s easy to deal with. I download images daily for the articles I work on. I don’t mind at all but I sure wouldn’t want to have to download 50 to 70 images daily for all the articles).
Why do I have so many Shutterstock team member seats?
I like my writers and VAs to have access to images. The more that other people are able to find, download, optimize and upload images for content, the less I have to do and the faster I’m able to get new content published.
I used to just have my VAs have access. But this was cumbersome. Writers would write and insert URLs to Shutterstock images and then VAs would get the images. It added another step to the workflow. Now that all writers can put in the images, writers can publish articles as soon as their done. It’s faster and it’s less to keep track of.
Is it easy to give access to team members once seats are purchased?
Yes it is easy. Fortunately, there’s a one click invite button. You just insert the team members email and click send. It looks like this:
How much does it cost to add team members to Shutterstock?
Here are the different pricing plans for 750 images per month plan:
Is it easy to change plans with Shutterstock?
No, it’s not. It’s the most ridiculously complicated process in the world. I’ve gone through it recently upgrading from 10 users to 13 users. During the multi-day process there was one night where my account was locked down which meant no content could be published for one day. That was a costly and infuriating day. The reason it was so complicated is I needed to sign a new contract, a pro-rated refund had to be issued and then a reset to the account. It was nuts and took nearly a week. The amount of my time and my reps time needed for a simple upgrade was ludicrous.
TIP: If you foresee that you’ll need additional users in the near future, start the upgrading process immediately. The last thing you want is a delay to get new people onboarded. I had hired two new VAs who couldn’t do their jobs because we all waited days and days just to get them access to Shutterstock.
Jon runs the place around here. He pontificates about launching and growing online publishing businesses, aka blogs that make a few bucks. His pride and joy is the email newsletter he publishes.
In all seriousness, Jon is the founder and owner of a digital media company that publishes a variety of web properties visited and beloved by millions of readers monthly. Fatstacks is where he shares a glimpse into his digital publishing business.