Create Website Images For Free, In Under 1-Minute
I don't know about you, but when I can get awesome things for FREE I want to celebrate my findings by sharing them with others.
When I found a way I can create stunning website images in under 1 minute for free, I was all over it.
Don't Have Time To Read This Blog?
Then Go Directly To the application I use.
It's so Easy To Use, you can Figure It Out within 23 seconds!
Having amazing images on your website is an integral part of having a successful online business.
Some bloggers or website developers will just go to Google and choose images that are labeled for reuse like the example below.
Please Do Not Use This Image
I can't keep track of how often I have seen the following image on sooo many blogger websites.
It's either used on their pages, posts, social media shares, or as main screen backgrounds.
When I see the same image like this one and on other sites it just makes me want to hit the back button.
Seeing so many websites with the same images being used over and over again is the reason that I've created this article.
I want to help fellow bloggers keep the internet original and exciting!
Why Use Images On Websites
When I started blogging I wondered why I would even need to worry about having images on my websites.
Until I started looking at example sites that had no images and the reasons to have images on a website became quite apparent.
Here are 4 Reasons why I use images on my websites
- Visual Impact - There is just something in our human brains that makes us want to look at colorful or just an interesting image. It's a natural phenomenon where we are attracted to having images placed in the field of view. It triggers a need to see more. I remember reading a whole article where about the effect of images presented in our field of view triggers all kinds of emotions and reactions. There is a reason magazines are so popular and still in business even with the internet.
- Highlight Content - Sometimes an image can be used to highlight your content like the old saying an image is worth a thousand words. It is easier to just show an image of an idea instead of trying to explain it. Images also work well in tutorials like you will see further down in this blog.
- Giving A Break For Long Content - Internet surfers get bored very quickly so having an image or two sprinkled here and there throughout a blog can help to draw people's interest to continue reading so they can down to the image and the next.
- Can Help With Search Engine Optimization (SEO) - Although the SEO rules are continuously changing having images that have associated "alt text" and descriptive titles may provide SEO opportunities. Whether it helps or not is constantly debated amongst the affiliate marketing community. All I know is that it sure can't do any harm. 'Alt Text" is really there to help those that use viewing to speech software so that it can explain what is on the image. With the increased use of voice searches, I believe it is important as ever.
Why You Want to Edit Images
Now there is nothing wrong about using free images from Google, Pixabay, or Flickr.
In the contrary, remember, I love using anything that is free when I can.
That is why I recommend creating your own unique images with editing.
Now you don't want to spend hours or days editing your images. Creating your content is so much more important.
You can still use those free images that you find but make them unique by using an image editor.
Edit Your Images For These 3 Reasons
1- Customized: Editing your free images will allow you to keep your website development free and you get to keep your site looking like One of A Kind! It will also avoid having people like me hit the back button, keep your bounce rates down.
2-Branding: While you are editing your own images you can maintain a brandable look to your website. You can create and add your logo, consistent colors, and your website 'URL" to the images. Maintaining consistency is the key to successful brand acceptance.
3-Professional: Your site will look like it was done by a professional graphic designer. Having customized and branded images on your site will automatically convey a feeling that your site was created by a professional. It will build trust with your audience.
Create Images In Under 1-Minute With Canva
What Is Canva?
I promised that you can create a website image is less than 1-minute.
Canva is an easy to use image editor where you can create amazing unique images in under 1-minute.
Naturally, it can take you longer for complex images that are similar to works from Picasso or Van Gogh but for the everyday type of images you use in blog posts, one minute should suffice.
quick description of Canva
- An Easy to use image editor, or what they like to call "Designer".
- Quick drag-and-drop features.
- Create Images for specific uses such as social banners, widgets, logos etc.
- Design stunning images along with infographics, e-book covers, graphs, etc...
- Access to images, icons, and other elements from within the platform.
- Two Membership Plans
- FREE (The one that I use 🙂
- Canva For Work Bundle, $12.95/month or Yearly $119.40 = $9.95/month
- There is a Canva Enterprise, no price listed (for teams of 30+)
- Canva claims it only takes 23 seconds to learn how to use. Ha! I think it took me 22 seconds!
Simple Drag and Drop Editor
Canva for work
Collaborate, design, and edit with your team
Everything in Canva, plus:
How To Use Canva
All you need to do is go to www.canva.com
It will ask you why you are using canva so they can customize the site to your needs.
Depending what reason you choose you will be able to sign up with your email address or through your social media accounts like Facebook or Google.
User Interface On The Home Screen
Once you've created your FREE account and logged in you will be sent to Canva's home page. The paid account will have a number of added features but for this article, we are only focusing on the Free version.
The left column will show your profile.
There is a 'Create a design" button but you will need to choose which design you want to create from the main body of the page first before that button will work.
There is a big search field in the main body of the page to start typing what you want to create, or you can just click in it to get an instant drop down list of all the options.
The left column will give you some options to view your past designs. Which is very helpful if you want to keep consistency in your web design you can take an old image and tweak it to look brand new.
There is a choice to use the older Canva 1.0 version but if you are new to canva just stick to the 2.0 version. (maybe new sign ups won't even see that option)
There is an option to share your designs, create a team, set your brand preferences, find already made templates, and you can view videos and blogs in regards to Canva use and design in their design school.
Last but not least you can create folders or send them to the trash.
Now let's choose a design and see what it looks like inside.
I'd like to create a Pinterest image for this example so I searched for Pinterest and it brought me to a list of Pinterest templates with in the Create a design page. The Pinterest template size is already optimized for the Pinterest platform at 735px x 1102px. No guessing or researching required.
User Interface Within The Create A Design Page
The templates have categories such as Food, Wedding, and Birthday etc. You can also do a search by keyword.
The list of templates are mixed with free versions along with pay versions.
If you chose a paid membership some of those pay versions would also be available. If you don't have a membership and really want to use one of those pay versions you can buy them individually.
Depending on how many images are in the pay versions but generally, you have to pay $1 per image on the template.
I say you don't need to buy anything as you can really create anything or make your own that resembles the paid versions with a couple of minutes for free.
OMG! Look at this template below called "Spring Style Inspiration". Does that image look familiar? It is actually one of the FREE Pinterest template choices as seen in the left column. I couldn't have planned any better.
The left column is where you will find all the tools you need to create your image. It is very easy and intuitive.
Once you click on any of the elements, text options, backgrounds, or your uploaded photos it will automatically pop over onto your main work space. In this case, it would pop up on top of the template.
Using that free Pinterest template, with a few clicks I change the color, the text, the main image, and voila!
A brand new Pinterest image that coincides with my website theme, ready to be published to the world wide web.
Notice I added that same girl running in a grass field image. That there is an example where you can use FREE images but incorporate with others to make it UNIQUE
Menu Within The Create A Design Page
Now that you've created your image it is time to access the top menu to share, download, post on your choice of social media, order prints, and a dozen other options.
You can download to your computer in either png, jpeg, or pdf.
Here's a quick how to video that explains how to publish.
You guessed it...you can view in under 1-minute!
Canva also provides printing services at a reasonable price. Check out how we created our business cards in minutes in this video.
Why You Only Need The Free Version
Canva is an amazing tool.
If you are a blogger /affiliate marketer just starting out then the free version will have no issues in meeting your needs.
Should your online business grow and now you have partners or a team of employees then upgrading to a paid service would definitely be worthwhile.
At $12.95 / month to have a tool with all those features is still truly incredible.
After writing this article I am really tempted to drop my other resources and just use Canva.
Before Canva was so good, now with version 2.0, I ended up buying a subscription to a stock image platform.
It too is a reasonably priced platform called Storyblocks that have thousands of images to choose from.
They also have a video and Audio platforms that are extraordinary. If you are a graphic or video designer then they will meet your needs hands down. They only charge ~$99 to $149 / year for unlimited downloads and once you've downloaded them you can use them however long you want.
I recently extended my membership but if I had noticed that Canva has upgraded I would switch over.
It would increase the convenience of having everything all in one tool as now I have to download the images from StoryBlocks then upload them to Canva which is an extra step that can be avoided.
Other Image Editor Options
Adobe Photoshop: I do use Adobe products as well for some other graphic and video editing. They have amazing tools that allow you to customize anything really right down to the individual pixel if your wanted. They too have monthly plans that start at $9.99 /month which is reasonable for someone starting their business.
You can read my Adobe Cloud Review on one of my other sites ==> Click Here
Gimp: This is a FREE product that mimics Adobe Photoshop. I have tried it in the past but it was another learning curve. Seeing that I already have Photoshop where I am very familiar with using that I did not see an advantage digging deeper into all of its features. It is open source so you can download it here and go wild.
Pixlr: Here is another freebie and again mimics the usability of Adobe Photoshop. It is cloud based and does have a sidebar of advertising that can be a little distracting. They do have a Pro / paid version which is currently only $5/month. With Pro you get access to 10,000+ templates, 200 premium fonts, 1,000,000 premium royalty free stock images. I imagine there wouldn't be any advertising in a sidebar with the Pro version which is no in an early release version.
Inkscape: Here is another Free open source photo editor you will need to download. You can manipulate objects, create objects, fill and stroke tools among other features.
It has closer similarities to Adobe Illustrator, Corel Draw, Freehand, or Xara X than Photoshop.
You can download it free here==> Click Here
Although you can find a long list of other image editors Canva still stands out as being the easiest, fastest, and used by more bloggers /affiliate marketers than any other image editor out there.
If you are a blogger /affiliate marketer you know that content is the key to getting your website ranked.
So you don't want to spend hours creating an image for your site or social pages. You want to spend most of your time creating awesome content that will help your readers.
Canva allows you to create images fast, easy that has a professional look and you know it will be sized for your need.
Here is a "Getting Started" on Canva tutorial video. Sorry, this one is actually over 1-minute.
Bonus Website Image Tips
Optimize Your Images For WordPress To Improve Site Speed and Search Engine Ranking
It's one thing to have nice images on your website but if they are too big in size, even though the WordPress software shrinks the images to fit the screen or block it still eats up a lot of download bandwidth.
Then when you have big image downloads it can slow down your site and ultimately decrease your ranking or have more people bounce out of your site because it takes too long to load.
So here are 2 quick tips to keep your image downloads to a minimum.
1. Make sure you set your Image Sizes in your Media Settings, all to Zero.
That way only your original size image is uploaded. If you leave these setting to the default it will upload three different variations that need to be uploaded each time your page or post with that image loads. This is a huge website loading speed saver.
2. Decrease the original image size. Now that you are only uploading one size of an image that will help but what if that one image is huge?
That is where you can decrease the image size right in WordPress.
Unless you need a full screen or full width image, usually an image size of 640x481px will be sufficient to give a good visual impact on your site without the images looking pixelated.
All you have to do is once you upload an image to WordPress, you click on "Edit image" in the right column beside the image thumbnail.
Once the edit image page opens you change the first number to 640 and the other number will scale automatically.
Click save and your site load speed will get a boost like a rocket!
If you have any comments or questions please be sure to leave them below. I would love to hear from you.
Oh Yeah! I almost forgot.
Here is that Pinterest Image I created in my example.
Go ahead and click on the image to share it on Pinterest now!