One of the biggest aspects of good website design is the obvious: pictures! Countless studies have been conducted on imagery for websites and they all have a similar conclusion: visuals matter a great deal when it comes to your online marketing campaign. While having text and information about who you are and what you do is just as vital, if your images aren’t that clear to see at first glance, or if you don’t have images on your website period, you can kiss those potential customers goodbye.
But where do you find good website images, you ask? What if I can’t afford to pay for those pictures? Well, ask no more. Here are some tips on finding good royalty-free images to use for your website.
Take Your Own Photos
Now, this would be your best bet as far as pictures are concerned. Taking photos yourself for about page profiles for you and for your staff is the best way to really get connected with your target audience – users are clever enough to spot a profile that’s fake, and they are less likely to trust a profile without a picture. Pictures of your office’s exterior is also a good idea if you want to brush up your contact page and details, both on your website and on your social media profiles.
But, if you’re not a good photographer or paying for one is not in your budget, you can always try good ol’ Google for help.
Google’s User Search
Now believe it or not, there is a strategy to finding and using Google images properly – just because you can find images online though, that does not mean you are free to pick and choose the ones you want on a whim. Copyright law and infringement protection is still very much in place, and violating those rights by using photos without giving the artist or photographer their credit where credit is due means a whole lot of trouble in the future. You need to be careful when finding images for your website using Google, but it can be done.
There is an option in Google when doing Image Search. Select the “Search Tools” tab above the images Google has pulled up in its results, then click the “Usage Rights” tab option and select the “Labeled for Reuse” option that appears in its drop-down menu. This is how you can find images that are royalty-free and will not require you to add an attribution to the photos you want to use.
Stock Photo Websites
One of the most common resources for anyone managing a website or blog are stock photos. If you host a ton of content on your site, 99% of the time an image will be the first thing your customer sees, and if it’s a good image then more often than not they will be prompted to click on the link the image is associated with.
Some of the most professional websites to choose royalty-free photos from include the following:
- Flickr Creative Commons
These are just a few examples of stock photo resources that permit developers and designers to add and install media on to your website, usually without the need for adding an attribution (with the exception of Flickr in some cases – more on that below).
Flickr hosts a great deal of photographs in their Creative Commons selection. This is a great photo resource if you need to find images that are more locally driven and are looking to add a more real touch to your blog and social media.
However, bear in mind that many Flickr users will require you to add an attribution to the post you’re adding their photo to, as it pertains to appropriate use of copyright law. I wouldn’t recommend this for web page imagery, but if you’re stumped on blog post images, the Creative Commons section on Flickr may be what you need.
Hire a Professional
Lastly, if none of these tactics helped you find any decent images to use for your website, or if your photography skills are severely lacking, or if you do have enough of a budget to spend, you’re way better off hiring a professional web designer. That’s where we come in! Our team at V3 Media knows all the finer details about what makes a high-quality image, using custom design techniques and solutions for both online and printed materials. If stock photos won’t do the trick, we certainly can.