4 Best Practices for Finding Facebook and Blog Images

Best Practices for Picking Facebook and Blog Photos

Recently we’ve received a ton of questions about best practices for finding photos for Facebook posts and blog articles. One of the reasons is that there has been a lot of coverage about the fact that photos in the News Feed receive better engagement than a general status update. Facebook’s redesigned News Feed which emphasizes larger photos proves the point!

But how do you avoid violating copyright when using images? The general preference is to use a photo that you’ve taken yourself, but sometimes that’s not an option. With easy access to millions of photos it can be tempting to pull a photo from Google Images and use it to assist your blog or Facebook post. However, this is not a suggested or best practice. We recommend using images with defined licensing to save yourself a copyright-violations headache.

Use these tips for finding beautiful images for Facebook and blog posts:

1. Search under Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License are licenses that allow photographers to choose which rights they reserve and which rights they waive for their work.  Some websites offer photos that fall under the Creative Commons License which have been approved by the original creator to be used by a third-party.  The owners of the photos have chosen whether they want attribution or not when their photos are used, and these photos are available for use as long as you abide by the Creative Commons License. Flickr includes more than 17 million photos licensed under Creative Commons License.  There are several other Creative Commons Licensed images than can be found from a simple Google search.

Flickr Commons License

2. Search Google’s Publicly Reusable Images

In Google’s Advanced Image Search you can filter your image search by licensed for public reuse. When you open the Advanced Image Search an option appears at the bottom to choose Usage Rights. You can use the drop down menu to choose how you’d like to filter your Images. You can choose from “free” to use or “share,” “free to use or share, even commercially,”  “free to use or share or modify,”and “free to use, share, or modify, even commercially.” You know exactly what you’re getting when you use Google’s Advanced Image Search and there are several million photos to choose from.

Google Advanced Image Search

3. Search Free Stock Photo Sites

There are a variety of affordable sites where you can find quality (and legal) stock photography. One of our personal favorites is ShutterStock where we have a monthly subscription and are allotted a certain amount of photos to use each day. A recent blog post from TheMarketingAgents.com provides a detailed list of 13 free and cheap stock photos. You can read the article here. We’ve listed out the thirteen sites below, but for details on photo prices and types of photos offered reference the original article.

Pond5 – The World’s Stock Media Marketplace

Yay Images – Great Images at Budget Prices

iStockphoto – Royalty Free Stock Photography

Dreamstime – Download Stock Photography and Royalty Free Images

123RF – Royalty Free Stock Photos

Bigstock – Images for Everyone

Fotalia – Royalty Free Images, Photos, Vectors and Videos

Media Bakery – Millions of Curated Stock Photos

ShutterStock – Over 20 Million Stock Photos, Illustrations, Vectors and Videos

Depositphotos – Royalty-Free Stock Photos, Illustrations and Vector Art

Stock.xchng – The Leading FREE Stock Photo Site

Flickr / Creative Commons Attribution Licence

4. Create your own images

As mentioned earlier, our number one recommendation for photos is to create your own. Obviously this isn’t always an option, but self-created images hold several benefits. You don’t have to worry about copyright laws, they’re more personal to your business, and you won’t get stuck using the typical stock images that we see far too often across the web.

Where do you get photos for your blog and Facebook Page? Are there some other resources we should know about? Please let us know @shortstacklab.

Subscribe to Socially Stacked



11 Responses to 4 Best Practices for Finding Facebook and Blog Images
  1. Larry Sawyer Reply

    One stock photo site you forgot is Envato’s http://photodune.net/. I started out on istockphoto years ago, when getty was charging crazy money for photos. Lately have have gotten pricey. I like fotolia as well, which is cheaper. Photodune has many of the same authors and photographers, but the prices are the best of the top stock photo sites.

  2. shortstackdana Reply

    Thanks Larry! We’ll check it out and add it to our list. — Dana

  3. Taa Dixon Reply

    Great tips! We love Short Stack at 720MEDIA. Happy to be a customer :) http://www.720MEDIA.com

    • Chelsea Hejny Reply

      Thanks for comment, @taa:disqus! We love hearing this kind of feedback :)

  4. Suzi Wilson Reply

    Great post. I got some great information for it. I would like to see something on where to get music too. I can see that the creative commons has some music, but I know people are searching for music for background on their video’s, etc.
    Thank again for the great information.

  5. shortstackdana Reply

    Thanks for commenting Suzi. Great suggestion for a future post for us ;). We’ll definitely look into this so keep an eye out.

  6. Ingrid Stone Reply

    Useful information. I tried to use the google advanced search of usage but could not find it. Does this still exist?

  7. CDRD Reply

    A good alternative to sxc is http://www.rgbstock.com/

  8. Bolormaa Tsetseg Reply

    I like also this http://freepix.eu/

  9. subrotog51 Reply

    Thank’s Larry

    Useful information. I tried to use the google advanced search.


  10. Simon Reply

    You should include Pixabay.com – 200.000 quality public domain images suitable for Facebook and Co.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Please enter your name, email and a comment.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>