How To Use Creative Commons Photos- For FREE!

How to Use Creative Commons Photos- The Why

We all understand the importance of adding photos and labeling them properly into our blog posts.  Adding just 2 images can increase the time someone stays at your blog by up to 300%!  That means if the average time is around 30 seconds, we can get someone to stay up to 3 minutes by adding them.  This is an important thing to note because not many people can read 500 word blog posts in under 30 seconds.

The reason this works is because consumers scan posts for the important points.  If a photo is there, that consumer’s eyes are drawn to the photo and they will study it.  If the photo is good enough to get their attention, they will read the content.

How to Use Creative Commons Photos- The What

There are several ways to get photos for your blog.  Some are legal, and others are not.  Let’s first address the not so legal ways.  Many times when I ask a client where they found the photo for their blog, they say that they simply did a Google search and the photo appeared.  They liked it, so they copied & pasted it into their post.  Whatever you do, don’t copy & paste a photo from the a website without permission! When you copy & paste an image that you do not have permission to use, you are begging for a lawsuit to come your way.  I have seen and heard countless horror stories of people who have been sued for several thousands of dollars for doing this.

The second is to take the photos yourself.  We all now own some sort of digital camera or smartphone that has a camera built in.  Use those to snap photos yourself and load them into your blog.  You don’t have to be a professional photographer to get good pictures for your blog.  But what do you do in instances when you don’t have a photo of your own? You can turn to photo sites where you can purchase the photos for a few dollars each, or if you are on a tight budget, you can use a creative commons licensed photo.

What are Creative Commons photos?  To understand completely, visit their site here & read what is CC?  Basically, they are pieces of content that someone else has agreed to allow others to use under a common agreement that you will give the credit for the piece to the originator through proper recognition as required.  Giving proper credit normally means placing a link back to the photographer giving them credit for the original work.

Creative Commons Photos- The How To

So how exactly do you go about finding the photos and using them properly?  Well instead of writing it out, I decided to do a short video which I have placed below.  Simply follow the steps and you will be well on your way to finding great photographs to use in your blog posts.

I hope this helps you to find great photos for your upcoming works that are both functional & free.  If you have any questions, feel free to contact me for more help.

Photo Credit by Trekkyandy

Jeremy Blanton

Jeremy Blanton is the Co-Founder of 210 Consulting- Social Media Advisors. He is a social media speaker who shares with thousands of people each year on things like how to use Facebook for Business, Blogging, and How to use Twitter.

When he is not coaching or speaking, he spends most of his time working on Custom WordPress Sites for his clients.

More Posts - Website - Twitter - Facebook - LinkedIn - Pinterest - Google Plus - Flickr - YouTube

  • Informative post. You can search Flickr for photos tagged Creative Commons or copyleft.

  • I really enjoy using the advanced search for finding photos. It works so easy!

  • Thanks Jeremy. I just followed your video step by step to upload a picture to my blog.

  • Just curious: Why did you choose to embed the photo as a link rather than saving it down to your computer? I would worry that the picture might be removed or edited after I link to it, so I usually save it to my computer, embed it, link the image back to the image page and include a credit line. Thanks for the info!

  • Good Question Sage- I did it basically for time in the video to make it go quicker. You make a great point that people need to be aware of when posting from a URL. I have a friend who can be evil, and he will change the pictures connected to baited URLs just to mess with people who might steal his pics LOL.

  • Great tutorial – thank you!