In our modern world of LED, 4K and a lot of colour, we have evolved to love all things shiny and colourful. So, the question right out of the gate is, are you using images on your blog?
It is no wonder social media giants like Instagram and Pinterest are doing so well. If you think about it, it is just pictures of things and sometimes pictures of pictures, and we simply can’t get enough.
Weird, isn’t it?
Have you really wondered why that is? It is because our brains process photos 1000s of times faster than text. It is easy to understand and seeing that we have become lazier than ever, it is no wonder that we would rather prefer something that results in less of a brain workout.
It’s fun to add images on your blog and when you are a bit on the creative side of life, you will almost never add an image without tweaking it a bit to suit your personal style. By using images on your blog is not only helping to create a better user experience but it also helps with giving your reader’s eyes a bit of rest.
With all the high-quality free images floating around on the web, your blog can’t be seen without them, I mean they are free. Why not use them? Even if you are a word master writing stories for kings, you still need to add images on your blog.
A blog post can seem so boring without them so don’t be so professor-like and add a bunch of colour to your posts.
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Where do you find images for your blog?
There are a ton of places where you can get some free images. If you have the means and don’t want the same old boring image of a laptop next to a scratch pad with a pen like everyone else, you can opt to for paying for images on your blog.
But, for the rest of us mere mortals who like free stuff, there is no better place to find images than –
- Flickr – a great place to find photos, but not for commercial use
- Dreamstime – Paid and Free
Although all images may be free, please check if you are allowed to use it commercially or alter the image in any way. Most of the time you have to give some kind of attribution to the creator.
That is fair, right?
I used and still do use a lot of photos from Unsplash and Pexels. The creativity and quality of the photos are insane, but photos of that nature come with a “price”.
Some photos are tapping out at 6 MB! That is huge, so before uploading a photo to your blog make sure to resize it to something more suitable for web use.
If you have some cash to burn and want images not seen on every blog you can try the following websites –
Note – Be sure to have your wallet ready. Their quality of images are out of this world but don’t come cheap.
A word of fair warning.
Please, if you search for the “cutest kitten” in Google and use the first picture that pops up in the images search tab! You will get sued so hard you will develop
Images found in the “Google Images” tab are not free or even for own use. People lose their marbles these days over copyrighted content, so please stay away.
You can, however, go to TOOLS > USAGE RIGHTS > Labelled FOR REUSE
The images that pop up may be used for personal or commercial usage but I still won’t use them at all. Stay away and rather create your own or go without it.
Upload and Alt Text
Like I mentioned before, if you opt for high-quality photos you have to be sure to resize them before you add images on your blog.
If you upload a 6 MB image to your blog, it will kill your blog’s load speed and ultimately create a bad user experience.
I use a simple tool to resize all my images and that is Paint. YES! Microsoft Paint as in the Paint program you used to fool around with before Internet times.
Take the image below, When I downloaded the image it was 4 MB and the dimensions at 5092 X 3359 pixels.
That is just way too big and unnecessary. So, I use Windows Paint and resized it to a blog banner size I normally would use in all my posts and that is 560 x 315 pixels.
Now the image is resized for my blog post at a comfortable size of 44.6 KB!
Massive difference in size.
You see, although we love the great quality, you don’t lose much by resizing and Google will love you more if you do so.
Google hates slow websites and will actually penalize you for a slow website. For the sake of good SEO practice, you really want to stay on the good side of the Google gods.
While we are on the topic of Google and good SEO practises. When you upload images on your blog you have to add Alt-Text to your images.
Alt-Text? Yes, Google is an intelligent and super sophisticated search engine but it needs some help from us.
Google can’t tell what an image is about, so we need to tell Google by adding Alt-text to the images we upload. Luckily for us, WordPress made it easy when you upload images on your blog. You have the option to add Alt-Text to that specific image.
Just have a look at the image below.
I know for a fact I am guilty of not crediting images I have used in the past and it is a bad habit. So please be kind and add a credit below the images for the creators.
All they need is a little recognition to grow their presence.
Create Your Own Images
When you don’t find what you are looking for or don’t want to pay for what you found, then –
Create your own images for your blog.
That cell phone in your pocket can take some great photos, put something together and take a photo. Use software like Canva to spice it up where needed and viola.
Self-created photos will also give you some authority in your niche as an awesome content creator.
Don’t overlook the power of a self-made image.
Wrapping It Up
You might argue that you are a writer and not a designer, but adding images to your blog is very important for user experience and when your reader like hanging around and enjoying your content they will stay longer. This is a metric Google uses to rank your site.
Use images and remember about all the facets we mentioned above and your blog will be colourful and ready to be shared.
Remember, a photo tells a 1000 words. It supports your posts just as much as words do.
If you have any questions regarding this article please leave a comment below. We would love to hear from you.