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The complete beginner’s guide to image URLs

by Casey Schmidt  |  November 4, 2019

3 min. read
An URL globe.

An image URL defines the location of a picture like a thumbtack on a map. There’s a lot of different factors that go into creating and finding the URL. If you’re relatively new to all things image URLs, check out this comprehensive guide to get started.

What is an image URL?

A URL is a web address that specifies location. Therefore, an image URL is a web address that specifies the location of an image. Having an image URL makes it easy to share. In particular, it simplifies the process because recipients don’t have to download it.

Where do I find an image’s URL?

Finding an image’s URL address depends on the image – here’s a breakdown of the different scenarios. Note that an image saved onto your computer doesn’t have an inherent URL. You’ll need to upload it to a website to obtain a URL for it (explained further down in this post). Back to finding an image URL, the first thing you’ll want to do is locate the image in your web browser. Every browser type is different but all are capable of displaying the URL.

Logos of world wide web globes.
There are different places to find an image URL.

When you find the image you want, right-click it and select ‘copy image location’. Its URL is now copied and awaits your paste. Simply paste the location into your browser, email or anywhere else you wish to share the URL. You now have the URL pinpointed for that specific image and can share it or save it for future reference. Note that different image file types don’t affect the process of finding the URL.

How do I get a URL for an image?

In order to share a picture in links, email and other methods, you need its URL. In order to make a URL for a picture on your computer, first find a site that provides image hosting. This is rather easy. In fact, the only decision you’ll need to make is deciding which site you wish to upload to. Though this is an easy process, there are a few important things to consider.

A tablet with http animated above it.
Make sure you know how to create a URL for an image.

First, remember that the hosting site providing the URL is known to whomever you share the link with. Therefore, make sure it fits what you’re trying to portray. For example, if you’re sharing it with a potential employer, you probably don’t want the image hosting source to be lighthearted or goofy. With that in mind, find a site you trust. Click the hosting link above to see some examples of good sites. Now, find the image on your desktop and upload it to the site. It will give you a URL for your image which you can now share.

Sharing the URL from a mobile device

The best way to obtain an image URL from a mobile device is through Google Chrome. Fortunately, Chrome is accessible for both iPhone and Android users. For the easiest access, download and install the Google Chrome extension from whichever app store comes standard on your phone.

A mobile device taking a photo of a tomato.
Your mobile device is capable of finding and sharing image URLs.

From Chrome, navigate to your search engine of choice and do an image search. Once you’ve located the picture you wish to share, tap it to open it fully. Locate the ‘share’ icon and select it. Choose ‘copy link address’ from the popup menu. Your image URL is now temporarily saved as your paste function. Simply navigate to the place in which you wish to share it and paste it into a text field.

You now have a good understanding of image URLs and how to find or create them. Start sharing your important images with other users without overwhelming them with download times – they’ll be rather grateful!