Ever wonder where or how people get those sleek icons for Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin or YouTube?
See the icons in the right-hand side of this site? There you can see my Twitter, RSS, and Facebook icons. Do you think most folks spend hours laboring in Photoshop or Macromedia Fireworks to make these spectacular specimens of site splendor??
I know in my case I did what any red-blooded, busy, U.S. resident with little spare time would do: found and used freebies.
So, Jon, where can I find a mystical land of free-roaming, beautiful icons just waiting to be copied and pasted (not quite) to my website?
Iconfinder is a great start!
Great Icons for Your Website At ICONFINDER
At Iconfinder you can select from all types of icons; arrows, “virtual” people, envelopes, food, stars or whatever else your little heart desires. It’s a simple search-engine interface where you type in exactly what you seek. This is one business tool you should definitely keep in your toolkit.
Just enter the name of the image/icon you need in the box and click “Search.”
Can you use any image you want? Well hold your horses. People work hard to develop their artistic craft so be sure you’re using the properly licensed images for your website.
See the image below. I searched for an arbitrary icon: “arrow” on the home page. After clicking search, it brought me to the page in the picture and I have a selection from a drop-down menu on the top right.
You make your selection according to the options presented:
- No License Filtering (shows you icons regardless of license).
- Allowed For Commercial Use (if your site earns you greenbacks then pick this one).
- Allowed For Commercial Use-No Link Required (if your site earns money and you don’t feel like worrying about attribution links).
As a general rule it’s a good idea to look at the license given on any particular icon you want to use. In the image below I performed the following search:
- “arrow” on the home search page; Page 1 (not shown below)
- “allowed for commercial use” Page 2 (left side)
- “blue redo arrow” Page 2 (left side again)
- “Read more” in license section Page 3 (right side)
After you click through the, “Read More,” you’ll see the stipulations of using the image. Your favorite will likely be, “WTFPL,” which is do “whatever-the-f-public-license” meaning do what you want with the icon. You then simply click on “Download PNG” or “Download ICO” depending on your needs (PNG is fine for the social widget icons) and save to your desktop.
You can keep it simple using filtered searches by “Allowed For Commercial Use (No link required).” Although an attribution link to the creator is appreciated it isn’t required.
If you think I missed anything please speak up. Also, this is only one source of many so if you have a different source for your Photoshop images, icons, or just great free blog photos then share your information in the comments.
P.S. Yes, it’s weird that I used an icon from Flickr for the main image on this article about IconFinder.