How to Select, Format & Label Photos for Your Design Blog

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If a picture is worth a thousand words, what are yours saying about you?

Photos play an important role in a blog post — big blocks of text are scary; stunning photos boost your content’s entertainment and value.

Today, I’m showing you how to do photos right…

What Photos Should You Use in Your Design Blog?

1. Avoid Off-Brand Photos

First, you always want your photos to be on-brand. If your brand is all about bringing color into your clients’ home, make sure your photos are similarly colorful. If your brand is all about chic, mostly black-and-white spaces, keep that same aesthetic running through all of your posts.

A blog post with off-brand photos, even if they’re great, will visually confuse your readers.

2. Select Photos Your Clients Will Like

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The concept behind blog photos is the same one behind the text of your post — don’t just share what you personally like…

Share what YOUR CLIENTS like.

After all, your blog shouldn’t be about you. It should be about providing the greatest possible value to your clients.

3. Use Your High-Quality Project Photos in Blog Posts

Using your high-quality project photos within blog posts offers 3 big wins for your business:

  • shows potential clients real examples of your talented work

  • gives you a chance to explain the genius behind the design (e.g. if you’re discussing window treatment options, share some photos of window treatments you’ve personally installed and explain why you chose them)

  • you can easily link from the photos to your Portfolio page, driving potential clients deeper into your site.

If you’re thinking, but Jaquilyn, professional photographers are expensive, I hear ya. But I also have to say they really are a worthy investment — professional photos sell your services better than anything else on your website.

4. Supplement Your Design Blog with Free, High-Quality Stock Photos

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Yep, stock photos. I’ve mentioned them many times before, and that’s because they’re just so darn useful and there are plenty of high-quality options out there. Some of our personal favorites include:

Unsplash

Pexels

Pixabay

If you do download stock photos, be sure to rename the image file and resize them. More on that below.

What Size Should Your Blog Post Photos Be?

First, there’s a reason we care about image size, and that’s because large images will slow your site down and potentially lose new clients. (Humans are impatient these days!) Here’s what you need to do…

1. What Dimensions to Choose for Blog Post Photos

This is a little specific, but we’ve got this down to a well-rehearsed science:

  • For most photos within a blog post, make the longest side no more than 600-650px

  • For your PROJECT photos, make the longest side no more than 700-800px

  • For BANNER photos (the big one up top), make the longest side no more than 1000-1200px

If you use O&B Studio’s blog post templates, all of our curated stock photos have already been resized for you.

2. How to Resize Your Blog Post Photos

For the photos that exceed the above parameters, we use this online image resizer. Simply drag and drop your photos, change the dimensions for height or width, adjust the quality to 100%, and download the new, smaller photo. Voilà!

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How Many Photos Should You Use in Each Post?

Another great question. 4-6 photos is a good range for most blog posts. Spread them out in a way that you see one image on the page at any given time…

…unless your photos are very large (project photos). In this case just spread them out so that you have no more than a couple short paragraphs between each one.

How Should You Label Blog Post Photos for SEO?

This is the third and final aspect of properly formatting photos for blog posts. Since search engines don’t have real eyes, they can’t “see” photos like we can (at least not yet). This means that we need to label the images in the most accurate way possible.

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Example of SEO Labeling

If you just wrote a blog post about modern kitchen pendants, a good label for an image of pendants over an island might look like:

BUSINESS-LOCATION-two-modern-kitchen-pendants-over-blue-kitchen-island.jpg

Yes, it can really be that obvious, so don’t overthink it!

Photos Already Labeled for You

If you’re an O&B Studio member, we’ve already done this for you in our blog post templates. Just add your business name and location to the filename and you’re good to go.


Alrighty, that’s it for today, but if I missed any of your burning questions, feel free to ask them below!

Next week, I’ll be sharing more about how to blog about your finished projects. It’s gonna be a good one!

See you then,
Jaquilyn