Are you looking for tips for free images to use on your website? There are many sources of royalty-free images online that you can use without infringing on any copyright laws. Here are five of our favorite sources for free images – some have paid subscriptions for more features and selections:
Unsplash offers a wide selection of high-quality photos that you can use for free on your website. You can browse through the different categories or search for specific keywords to find the right image for your needs.
This website has a user-friendly interface that is perfect for designing blog headers, social media posts, and other marketing materials. Canva offers free and paid images, with the latter being of higher quality and quantity. The paid option allows downloading images with a transparent background. Paid images, icons, or options are visualized with a crone symbol in Canva.
Pexels is another great source for free images. All of the photos on Pexels are licensed under the Creative Commons Zero (CC0) license, which means you can use them for any purpose, even commercial use.
Pixabay is a popular site for free stock photos and videos. It has a large selection of images in different categories, and you can also search by keyword to find what you’re looking for.
As the name suggests, FreeImages is a site dedicated to free images. It has a large selection of photos, icons, vectors, cliparts, and even PhotoShop files that you can use for your website.
6. Creative Commons (Openverse)
If you’re not sure where to start your search for free images, Creative Commons is a great place to begin. As the name suggests, Creative Commons is a site that offers a variety of content that is licensed under different Creative Commons licenses. This means that you can use the content for free as long as you follow the terms of the license.
For example, some licenses require that you give credit to the creator of the work, while others allow you to use the work for commercial purposes. You can filter the results by license type to make sure you’re only seeing results that you’re able to use.
Gratisography is a site with a collection of free high-resolution pictures that you can use on your website. The photos are submitted by Ryan McGuire, and you can browse through the different categories to find the perfect image for your needs.
Flickr is one of the most popular image hosting platforms for free stock photos. Although many professional photographers use Flickr to showcase their work, there are also numerous amateur photographers who upload their photos under Creative Commons licenses, which means you can use them for free.
To find free images on Flickr, simply do a search for “Creative Commons” in the search bar. You’ll be presented with a list of results that you can filter by license type. For example, you can choose to only see results that are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution license, which means you can use the photo as long as you give credit to the photographer.
NegativeSpace is a site with a curated collection of free stock photos. All the photos on NegativeSpace are released under the Creative Commons CC0 license, so you can use them for any purpose.
10. Death to the Stock Photo
Death to the Stock Photo is a site that sends you free high-quality photos each month that you can use for your website. You can sign up for their email list to get the free photos, or you can pay a monthly subscription to get access to their entire library of photos.
11. Snapwire Snaps
Snapwire Snaps is a site that offers free stock photos that are submitted by photographers from all over the world. You can use the search function to find images that match your keywords, or you can browse through the different categories.
If you’re looking for a more specific type of image, Dreamstime is a stock photo site that offers a wide selection of royalty-free images. You can browse through the different categories or use the search function to find the perfect image for your needs.
Dreamstime also offers a subscription service that gives you access to additional photos, as well as other features like unlimited downloads and customer support. However, you can still find many free images on the site without signing up for a subscription.
13. Ask the photographer if you can use their photos
If you find an image on Google image search or on social media while browsing funny hashtags, you can always ask the photographer to use their image. Most photographs are happy to share their work if you give them credit or a small license fee.
How to find free images?
The best way to find free images is with any of the above solutions and browse the images and their applicable license. It’s also best to now rely on one free image website alone. Since the pool of royalty-free images is often limited, you may find exactly what you are looking for on the next site.
How to NOT find free images is by conducting a Google image search. The images are often under copyright protection.
How to avoid copyright infringing with free images?
When looking for free images online, it’s important to make sure that you don’t accidentally infringe on any copyright laws. The best way to do this is to check the license of each image before you use it. Most free image sites will list the license next to each photo, so you can easily see what restrictions, if any, are placed on its use.
In general, you should avoid using images that are copyrighted or have a watermark. If an image is labeled as “royalty-free,” this means that you can use it without having to pay royalties. However, some royalty-free images may still have certain restrictions, so be sure to check the license before using them.
Why should I use royalty-free images for my website?
There are several reasons why you might want to use royalty-free images for your website. Maybe you don’t have the budget to hire a professional photographer, or you want to avoid the hassle of dealing with image rights. Whatever the reason, using royalty-free images can save you time and money.
Another advantage of using royalty-free images is that they are often of high quality. Since these images are not restricted by copyright, anyone can use them, which means that there is a larger pool of talented photographers to choose from. This means that you’re more likely to find an image that fits your needs and looks great on your website.
One main reason is also the speed of publishing. You can just search any of the above free image websites to find the best stock photo or video for your immediate marketing needs.
What do I need to know about free licensed website images?
When using free licensed website images, it’s important to check the license before using them. Most free image sites will list the license next to each photo, so you can easily see what restrictions, if any, are placed on its use. In general, you should avoid using images that are copyrighted or have a watermark.
Otherwise, you could inadvertently infringe on someone’s copyright and end up with a cease and desist letter or even a lawsuit.
Do I need to give credit when using free website images?
Depending on the license of the image, you may or may not need to give credit to the photographer when using free website images. For example, Creative Commons licenses often require that you give credit to the creator of the work.
However, there are some licenses that do not require you to give credit. So, be sure to check the license before using an image to avoid any legal issues down the road.
Best practice for using website image (SEO tips)
Images are a big part of your website performance, including search engine optimization. In order to avoid image SEO mistakes and even leverage pictures for better rankings, follow these tips:
- Use a common format like jpg or png that most browsers can load.
- Reduce the file size to a minimum by still securing enough quality for faster page load times
- Give your image a meaningful title, including the main keyword you want your article to rank for. Don’t just name it img123456.png.
- Add a descriptive alt attribute to each image.
- Make your images unique – even tilting or adding a text-over makes it more unique.
Sascha is a Lifecycle Marketing Consultant with over 8 years of digital marketing experiences in Silicon Valley, the UK, and Germany.
After leading the demand generation for a 100+ million company, he decided to venture out on himself. He’s now helping clients to attract and convert more leads and customers.
His main focus are SEO, paid media & marketing automation – all with the focus to tie marketing campaigns to revenue.
Sascha has been featured in industry publications.