5 Tips to Choose Great Stock Photos for Your Website

stock images

Designing a website from scratch is hard work. You must decide its layout, purpose, and format before you show it to the world. After that, you’ll need to add images to your website, giving it personality and making it look attractive.

Hence, you need to include pictures if you want users to visit and browse your website. Images convey more than words. It’s best to add numerous photos to your website to make it look charming, exciting, and complete, but it can be challenging to determine which ones to add. So, how do you find these pictures and know they’re suitable for your website? Well, this article provides 5 tips for choosing great stock photos for your website.

1. Pick High-Quality Pictures

Always stick with high-quality images when shuffling through stock images to find the most suitable option for your brand. Stock images are for public and commercial usage. So, a stock low-resolution image on your website will look terrible. Low-resolution photos have a lot of pixelation, which removes details from the image and looks unprofessional. So, only select high-resolution images to improve the aesthetics of your site and eliminate any factors that may lead to a negative image of your brand.

2. Be Specific About Keyword Searches

The keywords you search for will affect what stock images show on the search results page. Images have an alt tag—an associated text that explains what’s in the picture. So be highly specific when using keywords to find relevant stock images and save yourself the hassle of scouting for one through endless browsing. For example, If you are looking for a black leather jacket, you must type these three words instead of the jacket alone. If you generalize the word, you’ll get numerous search results, some unrelated to what you need.

Specific stock images offer you an advanced search option; in such cases, take advantage of this feature to further narrow down the kind of images you want to find. Advanced search allows you to list the type of image you want, i.e., the color, dimension, and format, correctly matching the picture you want.

3. Stick with the Right File Type

Ensure an image is in the correct format when uploading it to your website. If you try posting a photo that cannot fit on your website, you’ll end up with blank spaces where the image is supposed to be. However, if you’re new to working with stock images, this can be slightly confusing since you can download pictures in JPGs and PNGs. While they may look similar, both formats serve different purposes.

JPG images are most commonly used for photographs. If you want to add a picture of yourself or your family, you will use the JPG format. These images can display color without exceeding the file limit. So once you post the picture, it will adjust to your website. If you’re working with graphics, you’ll need to use the PNG format. Generally, you need the PNG format if you have any 2D images, logos, or text-heavy designs. This way, the text can stay in place without the text box becoming a mess so that it displays across the screen correctly.

4. Make Sure It Matches Your Brand

The purpose of a stock image is to add more depth and meaning to your website. So, the pictures you choose must align with the message you want to share. If your text and image don’t go together, you may lose users and readers on your website and compromise your marketing campaign if you’re using images for brand promotion. If you’re picking photos with text within them, stay clear of those that may be controversial, look offensive, is a meme, or is too specific. You want your words and the text to blend, not stand against each other.

So, ensure continuity between what you’re saying and what the image represents. For example, if you’re talking about helping the homeless, use images that showcase human rights activists looking after the homeless community. Such pictures convey the message you want to share through your words. However, readers may find it offensive if you post a picture of a solitary house or images of homes in this context, even if you’re writing about the topic empathetically.

5. Mind The Dimensions

While selecting an image, you have to know what size you want. Start by determining what orientation is ideal for specific sections on your website. Are you looking for an image in portrait or landscape orientations, or do you need a square one? Generally, if you’re posting on social media, pick photos based on the platform.

For instance, if you upload an image on Facebook and Instagram, you must post square photos. But if you’re posting on Pinterest or Google+, you need images in portrait orientation, while Twitter requires landscape-orientation images. However, sometimes the stock images you pick need to get modified slightly. If you find an image you like, but its dimensions will fit on your website or your page, you should crop it and post it—provided you have the copyright to modify the image. Make sure your website has a mixture of photos in different orientations. If you have a lot of descriptions, a landscape image can fit well with the text, but if you’re giving short descriptions, then opt for portrait-style photos.

Final Thoughts

A lot goes into building a website, and images are a necessary part of the process. Stock images are an asset for every digital content creator, but you need to know how to select these pictures to use them effectively. Following the tips mentioned above, such as picking high-resolution images, using keywords appropriately, finding relevant images, and selecting the best orientation, will help elevate the overall presentation of your website. A good-looking and functional website can help attract and retain readers and users and help you grow your brand more effectively in the long term.

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About the Author: John Watson

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