One of the most overlooked aspects of building a business in the digital space, and then marketing that business, is imagery. Perhaps most people these days recognize that images are important, but the part that often is ignored is how to obtain high-quality, visually-stunning pictures that engage a website visitor.
Did you know that when people hear information, they are likely to retain 10% of it, but if that same information is paired with a visual aid, they will remember 65%? [Source: Brain Rules]
Translation = your website better look good.
Pay a professional photographer? Most business owners would rather not be bothered with either the time or the money it takes to go that route. Many content marketers rely on a handy Google search and grab whatever they find. Sure, it might look nice, but that method can also lead to a lot of trouble when using copyrighted work, even a $150,000 lawsuit for using a single photo without permission.
The good news is that there is a solution for the people that are not going to work with a professional or do it themselves (and don't want to get handed legal papers either). Today there are many free-for-commercial-use stock imagery websites that provide high-resolution, beautiful stock photos that you are free to use in your marketing.
Here are some of the best you will find:
Free high-quality images you can use everywhere. Pexels features a discovery section where you can browse by category and also has lists of popular photos, popular searches and a download leaderboard. In downloading files, a user can dictate a custom size.
Among it's many features, Shopify launched it's own stock photo service called Burst, which features 1,000+ beautiful stock photos. A unique feature here is a sorting of images by business idea, which is integrated with help guides provided by Shopify about starting a business.
In addition to a vast library of over 200,000 images from over 41,000 photographers, Unsplash will deliver a curated list of high quality pictures to your email inbox.
Gratisography features rich, high-contrast images with a touch of humor.
Unique views and clear lines of focus define the pristine nature of the content Negative Space hosts.