How do I upload content via FTP?

File Transfer Protocol (FTP) allows Shutterstock contributors to transfer files from their computer to our servers. While we do offer other methods of uploading images, FTP is the only method used to upload video.

1. Download an FTP client. We recommend FileZilla or Cyberduck, they are both free.

2. Connect to Shutterstock’s FTP Server. Once you have downloaded and opened an FTP client, connect to Shutterstock’s FTP server ( To do this, fill in the appropriate values in the following fields:

Host (or Server):

Username: Your Shutterstock account e-mail address or username

Password: Your Shutterstock account password

You can leave the Port: section blank.

User-added image

3. Click the Quickconnect / Connect button. You should now be connected to Shutterstock’s FTP server.

4. Upload your files. You have two options:

  • You can open up Finder or Windows Explorer (or however you feel comfortable browsing files on your computer), and drag and drop them into the lower right hand window within your FTP window, as shown below: 

User-added image

  • You can also use the left-hand side window from within your FTP window to browse files on your computer, as in the section shown below:
User-added image

Both of these methods achieve the same result choose whichever one you prefer.

That’s it! Now comes the hard part: waiting. Depending on your file sizes and your Internet upload speed, it will take some time to actually send the files to our server. FileZilla and Cyberduck provide an estimated waiting time as a reference, though this can vary.

Once you have uploaded all of your files, you can proceed to the Content Editor in your account to submit your work for review!


In case the above steps don't work, here are some ways to solve common problems.

Can't log in? Make sure you've entered as the host, your e-mail address as the login, and your Shutterstock submit password as your password.

Did the server respond with an error when you tried to upload a file? Sometimes this is caused by file names. Your file names should include only letters, numbers, periods and underscores. Spaces and special characters like these - ;:$#()$@ - don't work. Keep your file naming conventions simple.

Did you encounter a time-out error during upload? Try setting the FTP client to Passive Mode. Then go to the general settings and set the timeout in seconds value to 0, this will allow it to maintain a passive connection indefinitely. Then, go to the Site Manager, enter in as the Host, Select FTP as the protocol and select Only Use Plain FTP as the encryption setting. 


  • Was this article helpful?