November 13th, 2012
by Leah Beatty
Visual content is as crucial to a successful blog post as the actual words you write. Using a photo (or two or three) in your blog post will increase the likelihood of it being shared. Why? Most people skim blog articles, and the first thing they look for are photos. Text-only is boring, no matter how awesome the content actually is. Don’t worry if you aren’t a photographer – there are many free resources available for bloggers to help add some visual oomph to blog posts. Below you will find four of my favorite photo sharing sites to use.
First and foremost: take and use your own photos. They don’t have to be professional, and will add a personal touch to posts. Any decent snap from a camera phone or digital camera will suffice. You can then use one of these free tools to make them stellar photos.
Photoshop Express Editor – Free, easy to use tool from Adobe. You can crop, edit and add effects to your photos. Saving to your machine is easy, too. The photo editor only supports .JPEG files at this time.
Pixlr Photo Editor– Free, easy tool that allows you to quickly edit and add effects to your photos. You can create new images, upload photos from your machine or use a web URL. You can also import photos from your Facebook account.
For those of you not interested in using your own photos, here are a few photo sharing sites to browse and the picture perfect snap. These sites use Creative Commons Licensed photos or photos that have sharing permissions from the owners. Remember to always give photo credit!
Photopin.com – Free, simple website that searches Flickr’s Creative Commons for photos so you don’t have to! You can easily sort photos for commercial or non-commercial use and also sort by three different signifiers: recent, relevance and interestingness.
FreeDigitalPhotos.net – A free photo community that encourages members to contribute to their growing database. This is also a great site for stock images.Search by category (like holiday, nature or sports), or try a keyword search. Contributors add new photos daily. Lower quality versions of photos are free for commercial, personal and educational use. You can pay for high-quality versions as well.
Now you have no excuse not to juice up your post with photos! Please note: these are just a few examples of the hundreds of free photo sharing sites available online. Share your go-to photo sharing sites in the comments below.
Manager of Search Media Networking at Slingshot SEO Leah Beatty is a Manager of Search Media Networking at Slingshot SEO. She has been featured in the PR News newsletter and published on Search Engine Journal, and is a foremost expert on Internet memes.