Large corporations with huge budgets have the exact same problem as you do – a lack of original photos for their websites.  

Luckily there’s are effortless ways to find photos for your website if you know a few tricks.

If you’re writing needs a photo for embellishment or to make what you’re writing stronger, simply ask your SEO agency to use stock photos for you.  

Most agencies have a subscription to Canva or Shutterstock. Shutterstock offers weirdly specific images and you can often find a photo that looks like you have a professional photographer on staff.

And if you do your writing without an SEO agency’s help, you can get free stock photos via the free version of the app Canva. Booyah!

How precise will the photo be if it’s a stock photo?  

Let’s do a search on Canva.com and see what comes up:

Infographic showing the search page of Canva with the search of "baby in a monkey hat" and two babies that meet that search criteria.
Infographic showing the seach of "woman painting yellow wall" and 4 photos that meet that search criteria.

You’re able to search Shutterstock without a membership. Once you find an image you like, note the photo’s number.

Shutterstock photo of paint can spilling paint into a paint tray with a watermark of "Shutterstock" over the photo

“Good enough” photos are just fine!

Most of us have a professional camera built into our smartphones.

And since most readers want authentic photos from a small or local business, readers are very forgiving if the pictures you have are less than perfect. 

If you need a photo of a person, consider using “Portrait Mode” to blur the background. 

Portrait Mode is so exceptional that some runway models are now taking their own headshots using this setting and skipping professional photographers altogether.

If your business is part of a franchise or other business co-op:

My painting company is part of the CertaPro Franchise, so I simply screenshot their website images and upload them to my own site. You cannot do this if you don’t ask permission, but it doesn’t hurt to ask.

People read photo captions:

Make sure you’re adding captions to your photos because often, people won’t read any of the words, except for the captions. 

Don’t forget to add “Alt Text:”

This sounds like you’d need to know coding to add this, but Alt-Text is simply a description of the photo for someone who has trouble seeing.

Graphic image showing a screenshot of an Alt Text page with a rollercoaster image.

It’s “not that bad” to publish a post without a photo!

If you can’t find a photo you like, simply publish the article without a photo. You’ll still get Google credit, and you can always go back in and add an image later on.

Most importantly: Understand that posting without a photo is infinitely better than not posting on your website at all!

If photos are holding you back from publishing to your small business website, don’t let this stop you. Publish posts with less-than-ideal photos or with none at all.

This is the fourth post in my series “Simplifying SEO for Small Businesses.”

Previous posts in this series are here.

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