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One of the common questions we get from bloggers is about using images. There was a time when I did not add images to my blog posts. I simply didn’t see the purpose for doing so. It felt like wasted time.
Over the years, I have changed my mindset. Today I can see how images can enhance the user experience of your blog. Images are also great for improving your search engine rankings.
Can’t I Just Use Google Search to Find My Images?
A question we often get is whether or not to use Google search to get your images. Google has a setting called “creative commons” images. In theory these are images that are free to use.
However, more and more I am seeing copyright images appearing in these results. I even have a blogger friend who received a legal action email about copyright images appearing on his blog. I am not saying that will happen to you, but I am more cautious today then I have been in the past.
Another reason to consider purchasing images from a stock photography site is the amount of time it can save you as well. If you have an account with a solid stock photography site, you can find the right image in mere seconds.
My Workflow for Adding Images to My Blog
Step #1: Write Your Article First
I always like to look for images after I have written my blog post. Often, my blog posts go in a slightly different direction while I’m in the middle of my creative process. I welcome this. Once I am done I ask myself, “What type of image would best describe my main idea?”
Step #2: Use Fotolia to Find a Quality Image
There are many great stock photography sites online. I am currently using Fotolia.com. It is free to open an account. You can get royalty free images for as little as .75 cents. You can choose to buy a few credits at a time or buy a monthly subscription. One of the main reasons I use Fotolia is covered in the next step.
Step #3: Download Your Image Straight to Dropbox
Once you buy the rights to an image it is yours to use. You will want to check the terms and conditions, but for most online uses you can use them in creating ebooks, blog posts, podcasts, reports, and courses.
Most people will download their images straight to their personal computer. This can take up much needed space on your hard drive and you leave the possibility of losing your images in a computer crash. Fotolia is integrated with Dropbox.com. Watch the video below to see how use Dropbox with Fotoloia.
Bottom line: all my images are safe and accessible to me no matter what computer I am on.
Step #4: Add Your Image Along With ALT Text
The last step I take is adding my images to my blog post inside my WordPress dashboard. I search for the file by going to the Dropbox folder stored on my computer desktop. Once I add the image, I choose a keyword-focused phrase to add to the ALT text area. This is good to do for SEO purposes. After that, I am all done! To give it a try for yourself, go to Fotolia.com.
What tips or advice do you have when working with images for your blog?