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Using stock photos on your website

Using stock photos on your w...

When it comes to your website, it is really important that not only is it informational, but that it is visually appealing enough to hold your user’s attention.

A quick way to have a user lose trust not only in your website, but potentially your business, would be to load a bunch of poor quality, outdated, and unprofessional-looking imagery throughout your website. Remember, your website is an extension of your brand.

For users that don’t have the library of photos or budget to hire a photographer, stock photographs are an option.

What are stock photos?

Simply put, stock photos are professionally shot photos that are licensed for use.

Tips for using stock photos

1. Make sure you have read the usage license before using an image
Stock photos have specific licenses in terms of how you can use them. This could include how it is used (web or print), how many times you are allowed to use it, or whether the image requires attribution (essentially a written acknowledgment of where you got the photo form).

Important: NEVER should you simply search Google images and use those on your website. You open yourself up to legal liability if you are using images that you do not own the license for.

2. There is such thing as too many stock photos
Yes, stock photos certainly look slick and can provide a professional look to your website. However, be careful - adding too many stock photos will have your site losing that “personal touch.” Something that many small businesses actively pursue to stand out from the competition.

Remember, you want photos on your website that help represent what your business is all about. When you use stock photos you run the risk of seeing that same photo on somebody else’s website.

3. Sources for stock photos (paid and free)
There are a TON of stock photo websites out there - both free and paid. With paid stock photos you often buy credits and can spend them on photos. Again, always read the usage license before you purchase a photo. Some sites will limit how you use the images you purchase the license for. The benefit of a paid stock photo is you are going to have more variety and you are far less likely to see the same photo creep up on the competition’s website.

On the flip side, free stock photo websites have their own usage license requirements that it is important to pay attention to. Some require attribution on your source material when using images, others do not.

Below are a few stock photo sites both paid and free for your reference.

Pacific Software Publishing, Inc.

1404 140th Place N.E., Bellevue, WA 98007

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Pacific Software Publishing, Inc. is headquartered in Bellevue, Washington and provides domain, web, and email hosting to more than 40,000 companies of all sizes around the world. We design and develop our own software and are committed to helping businesses of all sizes grow and thrive online. For more information you can contact us at 800-232-3989, by email at or visit us online at