Do you really need photos for your blog and social media posts? No.
Do photos make your blog and social media posts more effective and engaging? Absolutely.
So, you need photos. But where do you find photos you can use?
The answer is not “from anywhere on the internet I can right click and save.” Don’t do that!
Ok, let’s be more specific.
You need photos, but where can you find photos you can legally use?
This list only includes places that offer:
*100% free photos - you don’t pay when you download them and you don’t pay when you use them.
*They are attribution free - you don’t have to give credit to the photographer or website.
1. Death to the Stock Photo - This is a neat service that delivers a pack of 10 free images, all focused on a central theme, to your inbox each month.
I look forward to each 10 pack as if it is opening a present. They also get extra points for offering diverse photos (and it can be frustratingly difficult to find stock photos featuring humans that aren’t both white and male).
2. Unsplash - Unsplash will also send 10 photos to your inbox every 10 days.
3. Picjumbo - I purchased a premium pack of 600 photos for $14.99 a few months ago because I really like their photos and downloading them one by one takes a long time!
4. Pexels - When you sign up for their newsletter, you receive 40 free photos, but you don’t have to sign up to download single photos from the website.
5. Pixabay - Pixabay also has illustrations, vectors, and videos in addition to photos.
6. Stocksnap.io - This site is part of Snappa, Canva’s latest rival.
7. Splitshire - This is an ad-heavy site, which is understandable since they are giving away free photos. Just be aware of when you are clicking on a photo to download vs. an ad.
8. Life of Pix
So what do you do once you’ve gone on a photo downloading spree?
Organize them! Trust me! Having 300 stock photos to choose from is wonderful, but not if you can’t find the one you want because it is buried somewhere on your computer.
This is how I do it:
I have a folder on my desktop called “Stock photos” – the name isn’t creative, but that is on purpose. I used to call the folder “to use later.” Which was accurate, but I could never remember what I’d called the folder.
Within that folder, I have sub-folders such as:
Bodies of water
Sitting at a desk
Of course, my mental filing system might not match yours. But however you organize your photos, make it memorable to you.
Almost all of the sites mentioned have newsletters you can join to receive updates and get free images delivered to your inbox. This might be the fastest, easiest way to not only grow your collection, but also to remember to go back to the different sites!
Musings about marketing, social media, and small business.