6 Reasons Why Your Blog and Business Needs Quality Photos

6 reasons why your blog and business needs quality photos + 12 free stock photos. Click through to read.

Quality photos are a must for your blog and brand.

How many times have you landed on a website, blog or business, and clicked away a few seconds after the page loaded? What made you click away?

For me, it's usually visuals; pictures, colors, and design.

Unless I already know and respect the blogger or brand, I will rarely waste my valuable time if the content isn't well presented. If you don't have time to invest in me, then I don't have time to invest in you.

I will usually click away if:

  • photos are under or over exposed.

  • photos are tiny (or random sizes) and not justified with your text.

  • photos don't speak to me, as in; "eat me" or "buy me" or "make me".

  • photos don't follow a consistent theme or design.

  • photos are blurry.

These are a few examples, but you get the idea

Hello, World!

Photos convert a passerby into a reader and a potential customer into a buyer. It's your best chance to stand out in an overly saturated online world.

Here are a few examples of gorgeous photography:

Tell me you're not converted.

Have you ever made an impulsive online purchase because the item looked so damn good in the pictures?

Or maybe you cancelled an order because the quality of the images on the site were so bad it made you feel like it was a scam.

Let me make this clear:

You never get a second chance to make a first impression.

It sucks, but it's true.

In every aspect of our life and even more so online.

6 reasons why your blog and business needs quality photos.

If I haven't convinced you already, here are 6 reasons why your blog and creative business needs attractive photos.

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words.

Look at the first few pictures on your website right now. What feeling or words come to mind? Is that what you want your reader or customer to feel or think?

Let's be clear here, content is obviously very important; no words = no bueno. People don't come to your website for pretty pictures. They obviously come for content, or a product description.... but they'll never get to your amazing work until they go through that initial picture or graphic. 


You Only Have 7 Seconds to Make a First Impression.

Did you know that? Crazy right? So if content is the only important thing, how do you expect to make that 7 seconds cut? You better have some crazy first sentence!

Having quality pictures helps; A LOT. Sure, if you have no content, you won't retain readers or buyers after the 7 second mark, but if you can't keep them there long enough to read your content, then what's the point?


Pictures Make your Content and Product Shareable.

Um, hello. If you have no pictures (or none of quality) then how do you expect raving fans to share your awesome content?

Sure, there's twitter, but aren't we all more likely to click if it comes with a super enticing picture ? ... and think of the power of Pinterest! You're totally missing out.


Quality Pictures make you Stand Out.

If you're using stock photos that everyone else is using, then you're just another blogger.

Buuuuut, if you take the time to gather props that match your brand, and to style unique photos with items you love and use, then it becomes unique! It becomes YOUR brand.

People will start to recognize it through the way you style, shoot and edit your images. When they see your work on other platforms, they're more likely to click and return to your site because you've built trust...which brings me to #5.   


It Builds Trust with your Readers.

Let's be honest here, a brand looks way more legit when the photos look professional.

If you take the time and plan each one of your photos (or get them professionally made), new readers (and returning fans) are more likely to trust that you are an expert in what you do.

If your work looks like you just grabbed your camera and snapped some blurry photos without even trying, it's kind of a turnoff and makes your brand look very amateur.

Don't get me wrong, everyone loves seeing behind the scenes shots, and real videos of you, especially when trust is concerned, but when it comes to your regular content, you need to put in some effort because first impressions matter (see #2!).


Quality Pictures will Increase Engagement on your Blog and with our Brand.

This one point alone pretty much sums up all the rest. People are much more likely to engage when beautiful, high quality visuals like pictures are involved.

Readers or customers will stick around and browse for your site for longer, they're more likely to buy, more likely to share, more likely to ask questions, more likely to believe you're an expert, and more likely to return!

If you need some help getting started with photography, you can check out my must-have photography kit for bloggers and you can download my 12 free stock photos below. Stay tuned for more!

What's your opinion on pictures on a blog or website? Does it affect how you interact with the brand? I'd love to know! Comment below to share your thoughts with me.

Must-Have Photography Kit for Bloggers

Must have photography kit for bloggers and free stock photos. Click to read!

Photography is a deal breaker.

It either wows your visitors and turns them into raving and adoring fans, or, it scares them away, never to return.

Think about it, how often have you stumbled across a random blog with tiny pictures with bad lighting and immediately clicked away?

It's happened to me more than once!

On the other hand, there are many times when I've stumbled across blogs with a very simple design and little content but ended up bookmarking and returning simply because their photos were just so amazing.

Taking the time to create beautiful photos
for your blog or business
makes you stand out from the crowd.

It takes you from amateur to expert in the eyes of your readers.

I've come a long way in terms of photography since I first started my blog, and I really want to share my experience and secrets with all of you.

So today, I'm going to show you how to build your very own photography kit with some peaks at my creative process! Don't worry, there's more to come and I'll get into a lot more detail later on.

I've even been working behind the scenes on something very special which I know for a fact, will be a game changer for a lot of you; my very first e-course, Picture Perfect, a photography course for bloggers!

I'm seriously excited about it. It's going to be jam packed with super actionable content. In the mean time, I made some free stock photos for you guys. Enjoy!

Now that we've gotten that out in the open, let's make you a photography kit!

Free blogging photography kit. All the equipment you need.

My must-have photography kit for bloggers:

  • Camera. This can be anything from your phone's built-in camera, to a point-and-shoot or a DSLR. My suggestion is to start with what you already have and experiment with lighting and composition before making a big investment. I personally started with a cheap point and shoot and now, I use the Canon Rebel t5i most of the time. When I need something more practical, I'll whip out my iPhone.

  • Desk or table. You have to place your subject somewhere! :) The floor is cool too if that's how you roll.

  • Backdrops. A backdrop is something you put behind (or sometimes under) your subject in order to add interest to the picture (or in my case, to hide that mess in the background). You can use pretty much anything: a bed sheet, curtains, a magazine, a colorful board, faux fur... the list goes on. My all time favorites are DIY which I will be sharing with you soon!

  • Props. This is by far my favorite part about blog photography. Props are anything you can use to make your picture prettier. You can buy things if you like, but I usually just search my home for little items I can use. Things like my favorite notebook, a cute pencils, my go-to nail polish, or even the jewelry I'm wearing that day often make it on the list. It's a good idea to be consistent and stay true to your brand in terms of colors and related items. If you're a mechanics blogger, you wouldn't put nail polish in your photos now would you? Have fun with it and experiment!

  • External Hard Drive. This is practically a go-to for your life. If you told me you didn't have one, I probably wouldn't believe you. I use this hard drive and love it. I keep a backup of everything from blog pictures to important personal documents on 2 different drives! I strongly suggest you do the same. You can never have too many backups.

Photography kit for bloggers, 18-55mm lens, canon rebel t3i, notebook and remote. Click through to read!

My nice-to-have photography kit for bloggers:

  • Artificial lighting.Natural light is the bomb. The end. But, if you're like me, and you don't have access to day light, like, ever, then artificial lighting is your new best friend. There are a lot of options, even some DIYs, but my current favorite are my umbrella lights. They're surprisingly super affordable so you have no excuse to have poorly lit photos! You could also invest in a ring light (especially if you're filming videos - there's even a ring light for iPhones - that's a mini photography kit in your pocket, wooo!) or a soft box. All are awesome options.

  • Lenses. Although there are lenses available for smart phones, and they do help take better pictures, like this XXXX for example, I don't own one and take pretty enough pictures without. Where I did decide to invest though, was in a prime lens for my DSLR. I use the 50mm f1.4 (there's the 50mm f1.8 which is also very good and a lot cheaper).

  • Tripod. I don't use my tripod a lot, but they're handy to have if you want to take a picture of yourself or if you're in a very low light situation with no artificial lighting and you want to set the shutter speed on slow mode. They're also fun to have for photo booth sessions at parties! Woot!

  • Remote. A remote is good to have if you're taking styled shots and you don't want to walk back and forth to your camera after moving a prop half an inch in your frame. You'll save a lot of time and frustration. Plus, you can use it for taking selfies and group pictures that include you. ;)

  • Reflectors. I don't have any yet, but this will be my next purchase. They're used to reflect light on the shaded side of your subject to balance the lighting. These reflectors are perfect because they're collapsible!

  • Photo editing software. Technically, if your photos come out perfect from your shoot, you don't need to edit them, but it's always nice to have the option, especially when you can use free ones like My go-to software is Photoshop which I bought a while back. Nowadays you can get if for a $10/month subscription.

Must have photography kit for bloggers and creative entrepreneurs.

When I first started connecting with other, more experienced bloggers, I always wondered why their pictures looked so nice. What I didn't know was that it's all an illusion, a setup if you will.

Professional bloggers actually plan and style their photos.  

It doesn't happen by accident, and it's not because their project and office are super cute and organized (although it could be). Even those pictures of yummy food with a mess of chocolate chips and flour... it's an illusion, the mess was totally planned.

Are you interested in more photography related articles?
What would you like to know?

I've been working on a photography e-course and I'm curious to know what you guys are having trouble with when it comes to taking pictures for your website or your family. Is there anything you'd like me to address?

6 Simple Ways to Get Serious About Blogging

6 simple ways to get serious about blogging. Click to find out more.

Recently, I've been rethinking my whole approach to blogging and I really want to get serious. Things tend to be a bit unpredictable in my part of the woods, but if there's something I know, it's that this little blog of mine is definitely here to stay and I want to start making it meaningful and profitable.

I've come up with 6 simple ways to get serious about blogging and I'd love to share them with you. Let me know if you use any other ways!


1. Make a business plan

Making a business plan is probably the first thing you should do when you're ready to get serious about blogging. It'll help you gain focus and clarity on your goal, purpose, ideal reader and brand. Once I complete mine, I'll share it with you guys so you can see the different aspects it contains.

For now though, if I can suggest one thing, figure out why you blog and who you're doing it for, then create a few associated categories for your articles. That should be plenty to start getting serious about your blog instead of just writing random, unrelated articles.

I have been working on mine for ever and I'm starting to feel like it will never be done. I keep trying to niche myself, but doing it that way just doesn't work for me because my ideal audience and purpose cover a variety of topics.

I want to write about motherhood. Not the usual kind of parenting blog you see around, I want this place to be a hip happening hub for young busy moms, you know, the place where it's cool to hang out and you don't feel like your life is on hold. A place where you go to find quick makeup tutorials, practical style tips, cute DIY decor ideas, easy and delicious recipes, parenting stories and tricks, fun activities you should try, and info on starting your own small blog/business on the side. Anyway, the more I think about it, the clearer it gets, but for now, I'm still experimenting.


2. Brand yourself

A brand is not a blog and it's not a business. It's what makes people think: "Hey, that's -your name here-!"

It's a mix of the fonts you use, the colors you chose, your profile picture, your logo, your tone of voice and many other things.

Are you funny or serious? Do you use vivid or neutral colors? Do you use serif or hand lettered fonts? Are your pictures dark or bright? Are you a story teller or are you more of a "get to the point" editor? All of these things will help you stand out from the crowd and is how your audience will identify you.

I encourage you to explore and experiment, but when you've figured out what works for you, don't forget to adjust your social media platforms accordingly so that they reflect your brand. Don't forget that your brand evolves over time and it's totally OK to re-brand, just make sure you let your readers know.

At first, considering the name I chose for my blog, I wanted a banner that was a bit cartoon-ish with stars and a moon. Now I want something a bit more bright and happy in color, something that conveys trust, womanhood and happiness (I'm still planning on adding stars though, lol). I'm slowly transitioning to a blue, mint and bright pink brand with hand lettering and sans-serif fonts. I want my profile photo to look inviting, trust worthy and fun. Just like my business plan, I'm still figuring everything out, but I like the direction it's taking.

I also suggest getting your own domain, it makes your brand look a lot more professional and official. I personally use Namecheap* and I'm quite happy with their service.


Yes, I would totally love for you to pin this.

Get serious about blogging in 6 simple ways.


3. Schedule and batch your tasks

Oh my god you guys. I just can't believe I haven't done this from the start. The best investment I have ever made for my blog was pay $10 for Buffer. It allows you to schedule social media posts. The free one only allows for 10 scheduled posts per social account but for $10/month you get 100, plus, you can schedule Pinterest pins too!

There are plenty of other ways you can schedule social media posts around so do some research and find the one that is best for you. I've been hearing good things about Boardbooster* and I'm excited to start using it because it can loop already pinned pins and automatically delete duplicates.

Have you tried it Boardbooster*? Do you like it?

As for writing posts, taking pictures, doing administrative tasks and investing in my ongoing education, I try to batch those as well. I've been trying to post once a week, on Mondays at 10AM. I suggest starting small, 1 a week or every 2 weeks, and working your way up, otherwise you risk getting burned out. When I sit down to write, on that day, I'll write and write and write until I no longer can. That way, I get a rhythm going and I am a lot more efficient.

On another night, I'll schedule as many social media posts as I can; articles from fellow bloggers, my articles, my products, affiliate links, and all that jazz. I used to post 1-10 times a week very sporadically, and now I post every single day about 10 times. Big difference in engagement.

 For taking pictures, it's the same thing. The night I choose to turn my house into a disaster zone and take out all my props and lighting equipment is the night I do it all. Fantastic and again, super efficient.

I try not to be too strict about it though because I like to have a life outside of my 9-5, mommy-hood and blog.  


4. Extend your reach and build community

This is just as important as any of the above mentioned tips. How do you expect people to know you exist if you don't put yourself out there and talk with people. I mean, it's pretty much the same in real life right? If you never leave your house and meet people, no one will know you're there. On the other hand, if you go out, even if it's just to the store, and you greet strangers warmly, eventually someone will remember you and you might even make a friend. It's the same for blogging.

Get out there and comment on other blogs. Share other people's articles and mention them (@name) on social media. Sent them a short email telling them how much you love their work. If you don't already have an email list (Mailchimp* is a great choice), you should make one. It can be a fun way to connect with your readers by asking them question and even sending them free exclusive gifts!

I'm still working on this one but I'm getting a whole lot better. The reason I find it a bit more difficult than the rest is because it's the only thing I can't batch. I kind of have to be present everywhere at all times.

Do you have any tricks you could share about building community?

5. Explore ways to monetize your blog

Isn't this the big million dollar question everyone wants to know the answer to? How can I make money with my blog?

Seriously though, there are so many ways, it's crazy. There's even ways no one has thought about yet. There's the obvious affiliate links, sponsored posts and banner ads but every since I opened up my Etsy shop, I've been wondering if there's more. Sure, I like to promote other people's products and services, and I still plan on doing so, but wouldn't it be more fun to sell and advertise your own?

I've been exploring the idea of creating eCourses and offering consultation services. I just don't know exactly about what yet. My egg free vanilla cupcake recipe is super popular so I was thinking I could start by doing an eCourse about egg allergies as a trial. Let me know what you think or if there's other courses you'd like to see me teach!

How are you monetizing your blog?


6. Invest in your education

I think this is super important. Very few people ever got anywhere without proper education. Think about your current job. You went to highschool right? Maybe you got a certification or went to college? University? That's cool. Well, it's the same for blogging. If you plan on making some money, be it a full time salary or passive income, you'll need to invest in your education.

It could be by reading articles from other well respected bloggers or eCourses. Maybe you need to book some consultations with a professional blogger or small biz owner. Regardless of how you do this, remember that there is always more to learn and the more you learn, the more you grow.

Personally, I invested $50 in the A Beautiful Mess "Blog Life" eCourse and I love it. There are a few other ones I'd love to take, mainly "Pinfinite Growth" by Melyssa Griffin of The Nectar Collective.

So! How about you? What are you going to do to get serious about blogging?

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