Tips for Using Photos in Blog Posts

There are hundreds of articles, blog posts, and YouTube tutorials out there than can teach you how to take great photos. It’s even a topic that is often covered at blogging conferences. But what should you do with your photos once you have them? What are the best practices for using photos on your blog?

In our latest O2O Chat we covered some practical tips for getting the most of using photos in your blog posts. We were joined by four O2O bloggers who have a wide range of photography experience.

Highlights from our discussion

  • Reason not to use- watermarks can be removed
  • Reasons to use- don’t know whose hands your pictures will end up, get credit for your photo, to get your name out there

Photo Editing Tips

  • boost color but not on food photos and be careful boosting colors on people
  • sharpness but don’t go too far (can make subject look fake)
  • rule of thirds- if you didn’t shoot your photo using rule of thirds, you can crop to get that effect
  • cropping – crop out distracting things in the background
  • exposure – lighten or darken
  • adjust white balance
  • filters – hide all manner of photography sins

Photo Editing Services/Software Suggestions

  • Lightroom
  • Picmonkey – free & royal (paid)
  • Photoshop Elements
  • iPhone or Smartphone Editing Apps – Camera+/Camera Awesome
  • Totally Rad Actions for Lightroom, Photoshop & iPhone
  • Big Huge Labs (makes mosaics/collages)
  • Not mentioned in this hangout but also a free and easy to use site is Canva (Added 2/9/15)

Photo SEO

  • file size- Google ranks pages by how quickly a page loads and large images take longer to load, resize your images
  • file format- don’t always need high-res in a blog post, jpg and png are compressed and good for blog posts
  • file name- rename the file name to match keywords in the post, separate words with a hyphen

Best File Size for Uploading Photos

  • width of your page- upload to the exact width of your posting area
  • dpi (dots per inch)- 72dpi is a good standard for web photos

Can You Have Too Many Photos in a Blog Post?

  • could depend on what the blog post is about- recipes, DIY posts are going to have a lot of photos
  • use collages to post more images but not overwhelm your readers
  • rule of thumb- 300 words per image used because Google will ping you as spam if you have too images and not enough words


  • WordPress: Copyright Pro– disables right-click for your entire blog (images and text)
  • Blogger – there is html code to disable right-click

Where to find images?

  • shutterstock, stock vault, morgue file, istock, getty images
  • compfight (searches shareable Flickr images, gives html code for attribution)
  • your own archives- plan a photo project and take a lot of stock type photos
  • ALWAYS use photos with permission- ask to use a photo, don’t assume that using something with a watermark or giving credit is enough
Photo Credit: lithian on 123RF

1 Comment

  1. is my favorite photo editing site! It is a lot like “Picnik” used to be before Google took it over. Has lots of options. Lunapic is another good one… a little harder to use, but more options such as adding animations or cutting and pasting.

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