5 Things to Avoid When Using Stock Photography

It has become a staple in the business-blogger’s world to use stock photography. Coming up with content is already hard, but trying to find photos that match your content without violating copyright laws can sometimes be impossible. Therefore, most bloggers use stock photography. Stock photography is the supply of photographs licensed for specific uses. It is used to fulfill the needs of creative assignments. You may want to get your blog noticed, but you certainly don’t want bad publicity. So while there is nothing wrong with using stock photography, sometimes a website seems unprofessional because the blogger made mistakes when using stock photography. Read on to learn the top five mistakes to avoid when using stock photography!

1. Using Unrelated but Beautiful Stock Photos

There may be a stock photo from a gallery that you just absolutely love. It may be breathtaking, or funny, or colorful. You may think it’s the best photo you’ve ever seen. But it doesn’t match your content at all. One of the major mistakes that bloggers do is that they don’t use relevant images. Make sure you’re not one of these bloggers. You will get a greater response from readers if they feel like your photo matches your content well. This visual connection to the message they’re reading will insure that the messages stays with them. You want your stock photo and your blog to complement each other.

2. Using the Same Images as Your Competitors

Remember that your competitors are likely to have blogs related to similar topics as you. You need to do some due diligence before you place an image on your website so that you can guarantee it’s not on a competitors website. Unfortunately, sharing photos is pretty common for some competitors. Make sure that you don’t have the same images by checking their pages as well.

3. Buying The Cheaper Version of the Photo You Need

You should always pick the right resolution for your needs. If you can’t find a photo with good enough resolution, you shouldn’t use it. Buying a cheaper version of your photo will sacrifice the quality of the image and the integrity of your website. Therefore, it is important that you know what image size you need so that you can make sure you purchase the right size image from the very start.

4. Poor Editing

First, make sure you’re allowed to edit the photo! Many stock sites won’t let you edit their photos. However, if you have a stock photo that you can edit and want to edit, make sure you don’t overdo your editing. If you incorporate poor, or unnatural, cropping, clipping, and cloning, you’re going to make your image look really bad. Don’t paste your products into the photo. Make sure you’re editing professionally if at all. Always double check your work!

5. Using Non-professional or Old Shots

Do not use images that are out of focus, or shot by an amateur. It may be cheaper to buy these images, but  you can’t make a professional photo out of an unprofessional one. You need to avoid using older images as well because it will give your site an outdated look, which can be the kiss of death for some companies. So try to stick with professional, current shots that reflect your subject matter!

If you’re not using images with your blog postings, you might want to update your digital marketing strategy!


She is the founder & CEO of Zen Media. She has been named the “Zen Master of Marketing” by Entrepreneur Magazine and the “Millennial Master of the Universe” by FastCompany.com. Forbes, Businessweek, and Inc have all recognized her as one of the Top 30 under 30 entrepreneurs in the field of marketing. Shama has built a global audience and is known for helping brands succeed in the digital age. She is a bestselling author, an international keynote speaker, and has been named one of LinkedIn’s Top 10 Voices in Marketing for four years in a row.



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