Online quiz images – choosing the right picture

4 min read

Online quiz images are the rocket fuel behind making an effective quiz. Along with the right quiz title, the perfect image can catch your readers’ attention, keep them interested – then drive clicks as your quiz gets shared with their friends. But how do you choose the right source for online quiz images?

We can definitely sympathize. After launching Riddle’s quiz maker in 2014, we’re now up to 10 options for online quiz images… and counting!

online quiz images

Note: This blog post is not Riddle-specific. Our tips will apply to any online quiz maker – and are suitable for polls, listicles, surveys and other interactive content.

Online quiz images: static pictures

Pictures are the bread and butter of most quizzes. Like the hoary* old cliché, a picture is worth a thousand words – it can instantly communicate meaning without slowing down the quiz experience with too much text.

(*I’m a vocabulary geek with a ‘word of the day’ app. I couldn’t help working my newest word in.)

Some tips:

  1. Mood matters – try to stick with images that share the mood you’d like to convey in your quiz. It could be serious or funny, classy or silly – but keeping all your images consistent will give your quiz a high quality feel.
  2. Keep it simple (stupid) – in this short-attention span world, choose images that instantly grab the reader. Pictures that are overly complicated or where the main subject isn’t ‘filling the frame’ lack impact – and could drive down engagement rates.

online quiz imagesGoogle:  The Amazon of Riddle’s image options, Google will show you a never-ending stream of pictures around any subject. You can also just paste in the URL of any Google Image into the search box.

  • Pros: Unlimited selection – if  you can’t find it, it probably doesn’t exist.
  • Cons: Almost too many pictures – and will pull up images that vary wildly in quality. From a legal perspective, it also doesn’t filter for copyright – so you’ll need to be sure you’re not using images that are copyright protected.

online quiz imagesPexels: We love these guys – they provide thousands of top quality, copyright and royalty-free images that are completely free to be use.

  • Pros: Total freedom from copyright concerns. Pexel images are “pictures are completely free to be used for any legal purpose.” Equally important, Pexel’s images tend to be more artistic and ‘non-cheesy’ – so won’t appear like bland stock photography to your audience.
  • Cons: Pexel’s image catalogue is good – but not great. You’ll find dozens of options for most common topics – but you might need to try another source for anything off the beaten path.

online quiz imagesFacebook: The 800lb gorilla among social networks, Facebook makes it easy to connect and use images from any account or page you manage.

  • Pros: Saves time – just reuse images you or your company has already approved and uploaded.
  • Cons: Alas, selection is limited to pictures from your own accounts.

Instagram: The fastest-growing social network, Instagram is the default location for celebrities and fans alike. The best part? You can search and embed any public Instagram image through Riddle’s quiz maker. Instagram uses a square image format – so you can choose Riddle’s square quiz option for maximum visual impact.

  • Pros: Unbeatable source of up to the minute images. Grab the latest snaps from Lady Gaga to Ronaldo – or search among 700 million users’ pictures.
  • Cons: Instagram’s API is a little clunky – so you’ll need to search on, then paste the username or specific photo ID into Riddle.

Upload: You can always kick it old school – and go for the classic option of uploading your own images. This is a good choice if you have your own subscription to a stock photo library like Shutterstock or iStockphoto.

  • Pros: Simple, easy – and you’ll be confident that you know the copyright status of each image you’re using.
  • Cons: Slow – you have to search for an image, download it, then reupload to your quiz.

Online quiz images: videos and GIFs

Looking for a way to add a richer, more engaging feel to your quiz? Consider adding moving picture options like YouTube videos and Giphy animated GIFs – used strategically, they can keep your audience fully engaged in your quiz experience.

Animated GIFs are especially popular (and powerful). They auto-play – so there’s no need to click ‘play’ – and their short timeframe (often less than 5 seconds) keep your quiz experience moving along.

Some tips:

  1. Less is more – it’s tempting to go big with videos and GIFs, and use them for every questions. We suggest the 80/20 rule – a minimum of 80% pictures and no more than 20% GIFs or videos.
  2. Shorter is better – GIFs tend to be short, but for YouTube clips, take advantage of Riddle’s edit tools. Select the precise start point for the video for max impact.

online quiz imagesYouTube: You can’t go wrong searching on YouTube. With something like 82 million videos, it’s a near-certainty that YouTube has a clip that’s perfect for your needs. (Heck, even if 40 million are of the internet-devouring cat variety, that’s still one heck of a lot of options!)

  • Pros: Easy to search and edit the start point for any clip. From Star Wars to sharks, you can quickly find any related content.
  • Cons:
    • YouTube makes your users press ‘play’ which requires an extra click.
    • The other challenge is length. Videos can be up to two hours in length. Even though you can pick the exact start point for your clip, there’s a risk your audience will stay fixated watching your video, then not complete the quiz.

Giphy: Ah, Giphy – home of most of the millions of animated clips we all see online these days. They tend to be more humorous than serious – and used wisely, can provide a jolt of energy to your quiz experience.

  • Pros: Giphy is awesome. They make it simple to search and use any GIF on their site – and you’ll be hard-pressed to not find something that will make your audience grin.
  • Cons: Facebook won’t display animated GIFs. So just a heads up – if you use animated GIFs as a final result image, the main static image of the quiz will display instead.

Articles: Riddle lets you directly embed any online article into your quiz, lists, or polls. We include them in this list – because the article’s main image will be scraped and added to your quiz, along with a link out to that article.

Whew – that’s the list so far – hope you found that helpful!

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