It’s always a good idea to include some form of media on your social media posts. They catch the attention of people scrolling through their feeds a lot more than a post without a picture. According to Twitter, Tweets with photos receive an average 35% boost in Retweets. Social media strategist Jeff Bullas reports that Facebook posts with photos receive an average 37% increase in engagement. This being said you might be asking yourself, where can I get free stock photos?
Where To Get Free Stock Photos
Having a visual on your social post is important but where can you get stock photos without paying for iStock. You have a few options.
The first is Pexels. They have a vast amount of pictures that resemble images found on iStock. They also have free stock videos. Pexels is the go-to image source for many bloggers.
Unsplash, is another great free option. Photos on this site are very artistic, abstract, creative and professionally produced.
Gratisography has a quirky selection of photos, in fact its something they pride themselves on. They can’t compare with Unsplash in terms of quantity, but that’s not their aim. They excel at offering free photos that are unique and less “stocky” than what you see elsewhere.
Rawpixel has a diverse collection of pictures. They also have vectors, PSD mockups, and public domain content like famous Japanese wood panel prints.
Finally, there is Pixabay. This site is somewhat more oriented towards business and marketing than Unsplash, which is often helpful for content marketers and bloggers. They also offer free vectors and illustrations.
Is It Stealing If I Use An Image From Google?
One thing you cannot do when looking for photos is go to your search engine, type a keyword and choose whichever picture comes up. This is called copyright infringement. If you didn’t already know, “copyright” means “the right to copy.” Only the owner of the picture has the right to copy it. By copying and pasting the image you found on Google into your blog, website etc you are breaking the law.
So what do you do? There are 3 options. The first option is to buy the rights to copy the image on websites such as iStock or Adobe Stock Images or to whoever the owner of the picture is. The second option is to use websites that offer free stock images (like the ones listed above). You can use these images as many times as you want with no consequences. The third option is to filter out the images that are copyrighted on Google, although the likelihood of getting high quality images is slim. It might be better to use the free stock image websites.
To filter out copyright pictures on google follow this steps
- Search for the pictures you want and then select the “images tab”
- Select “Tools” that is off to the right hand side of “more”. A menu bar should appear below where you selected “images”
- Click “usage right” and then click “creative commons licenses”
By doing this you are telling Google to only show you pictures in which you can reuse.
Branded Imagery Instead of Stock Photos
Additionally, it may be fitting for you to begin developing some consistent branded imagery. This is particularly useful if you plan to post blogs on your website on an ongoing basis. Below are the steps to creating useful and reusable media.
- Decide on the platform that you will be using this branding reusable media. This will determine the size of your picture.
- Decide if you want to build your reusable branded image from scratch or use a template. If you decide to go with a template, Canva has hundreds of examples that you can utilize and change to fit your brand. You can also use Canva to build pictures from scratch but other options include Illustrator and Photoshop.
- Gather your brand colours and start designing! You want to make it so that it’s easy for you to change it each time.