How To Participate In The Wordless Wednesday Photography Challenge And Gain New Followers

What is Wordless Wednesday?

It’s a photography challenge I became aware of when I started blogging in 2014.

The purpose of the challenge is to allow photos or pictures to tell a story without using any words.

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Have you participated in Wordless Wednesday?

I’ve no idea who began the Wordless Wednesday photography challenge, but my hat goes off to them. It’s an easy and simple challenge to get involved with that’ll bring new followers to your blog.

The more you participate, the more new visitors your blog will get. However, it does help if you do the challenge correctly and ensure you promote your Wordless Wednesday blog posts on social media.

You will also gain new visitors and followers if you visit and leave comments on other Wordless Wednesday blog posts.

Fact: Participating in the Wordless Wednesday photography challenge ignited my long-lost passion for photography. I have also discovered some wonderful new blogs by participating.

Are there any rules for participating in Wordless Wednesday? 

None that I can find. So I’m sharing some of the rules I believe the originator of Wordless Wednesday would have set when creating the challenge. 

Those interested in participating can take or leave these rules, but remember that the key feature of the challenge is for your blog post to be wordless. 

  • Published entries only on a Wednesday. 
  • Other than the title of your post and any captions and copyright information, don’t use any words in the main body of the post. Remember, the theme is ‘Wordless.’
  • Your photo should not contain words or letters (other than copyright information).
  • Use the hashtag #WordlessWednesday when sharing your post on social media. That way, other participants can find them.
  • Tag your Wordless Wednesday posts ‘WordlessWednesday’ on your blog so that other participants can find them. 

Can I use ‘Wordless Wednesday’ in the title of my blog posts?

Yes, and it’s something I recommend you do.

Warning: Do not use just ‘Wordless Wednesday’ as the title. Why? Because as you publish more and more Wordless Wednesday posts, you’ll build up many blog posts with the same identical title. SEOs such as Google and Bing dislike duplicated blog post titles. As a result, your blog will be ranked lower for using duplicated blog post titles.

Using the same blog post title also renders the search facility on your blog useless. For example, let’s say somebody wants to find a photo of a boat I published on a Wordless Wednesday post five years ago. If I’ve titled all my blog posts ‘Wordless Wednesday’ they’ll have to search through all those posts to find the one they’re looking for.

However, if I titled the post ‘Red boat’ #WordlessWednesday‘, a search result for ‘Boat’ will feature that particular post.

  • So, always give the title of your Wordless Wednesday blog posts a different title. Here are some examples.

Clouds #WordlessWednesday

A Day at the beach #WordlessWednesday

In the park #WordlessWednesday

Solitude #WordlessWednesday

Hills and Mountains #WordlessWednesday

Go with a title that fits the photo(s) theme you’re sharing, and add the Wordless Wednesday hashtag to it.

Using images and photos that are not your own

If you’re using an image from the internet for your post, remember to credit the originator or the site where you got the photo/image. You can do this by adding a caption which you can turn into a pingback. 

Not sure what a pingback is or how to create one? Check out my blog post How To Create A Pingback On A WordPress Blog.

If the photo/image is completely free to use at all times, you don’t need to credit it. However, check the small print before using any photos or images from the internet as they may only be free to use for a limited time.

Warning: Bloggers get fined for illegally using copyrighted photos and images on their blogs. Check out Deborah Jay’s guest post, ‘Why I Was Threatened With Legal Action After Reblogging On WordPress‘ about being threatened with legal action and a fine for using a copyrighted photo on her blog.

Using your own images and photos is a much safer option.

What you shouldn’t do with the Wordless Wednesday photography challenge

  • Use images and photos that are copyrighted and illegal to use and share.
  • Add lots of text to your post. I’ve seen many bloggers use Wordless Wednesday in the title of a blog post and add loads of text to the body of the post.
  • Likewise, I have seen some bloggers use the Wordless Wednesday hashtag on social media for a post containing lots of text. Those searching for Wordless Wednesday posts and taken to a blog post that contains lots of text won’t return to your blog.

The whole idea of Wordless Wednesday is for the blog post not to contain any text about the photos or images. Allow the photos or images to tell the story.

The comments section of the post can be used to give out more information about the photos or images you are using.

Here are some examples of some of my Wordless Wednesday blog posts. They’ll give you an idea of how to participate. Click on the links to see the posts.

Have You Ever Seen A Hippopotamus In Your Coffee? #Wordless Wednesday #Photography

Fresh And Fruity #WordlessWednesday #Photography

Sunrise Over Swansea Bay #WordlessWednesday #Photography

Feel free to leave me a link to your Wordless Wednesday post in the comments section. I’d love to see them.

Do you participate in Wordless Wednesday? Do you have any questions about the Wordless Wednesday Photography Challenge? Leave them in the comments section, and I’ll get back to you.

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57 thoughts on “How To Participate In The Wordless Wednesday Photography Challenge And Gain New Followers

    1. You’re welcome, Alison. Naming your Wordless Wednesday posts differently helps your blog rankings and makes it easier for you and visitors to find certain Wordless Wednesday posts. And don’t forget to link your Wordless Wednesday post to mine or leave a link to it in the comment section of my latest Wordless Wednesday post.

  1. Thanks, this is something new to me, and I would love to get involved here. Hugh do they have a specific topic each week or do you decide yourself what you wish to share each week?
    @esmesalon #SeniorSalonPitStop

    1. Hi Esme,

      The only theme to Wordless Wednesday is that your photo and post have to be wordless. Other than that, you’re free to publish any photo you think tells a story. It’s a fun challenge that makes you think hard about what photo(s) you’re using.

      1. Thanks Hugh. Sorry for being so daft, but do you only post on your own blog and/or do you link to another. Please will you be able to let me know, as I think this can be huge fun and another way to explore and meet others.

        1. Just on your own blog, Esmé, although I don’t mind participants linking back to my Wordless Wednesday post (when I participate). You can also find other entries by looking for the Wordless Wednesday hashtag on social media (#WordlessWednesday) and the Wordless Wednesday tag on blogs. So always tag your post ‘WordlessWednesday.’

        2. Thanks Hugh. This is an interesting one, and I am wondering if we do this collectively and link to others if we will get traction and participation from other bloggers. Maybe I should pose this question in an upcoming newsletter and find out if this is of interest to others. I will keep you updated

        3. Thanks, Esmé. Wordless Wednesday has been around for a long time. I think it was initially thought up for photographers to showcase their work online, but the blogging community also got involved. There has never been a central hub for it, but it’ll be interesting to hear what you find out from asking the question in the newsletter.

        4. I will put my thinking cap on and add something in the upcoming Thursday Newsletter and keep you posted.

  2. Being wordless and rubbish at photography might be a stumbling block for me but I dolike to go and visit others who participate. So thank you for reminding me to check out #wordless Wednesday more often.

    1. I always thought I was rubbish at photography. However, after trying Wordless Wednesday a few times, it wasn’t long before I was hooked. Not all my photos are great, but I’ve enjoyed the learning curve.

      1. You are just good at all that you do, I have sometimes clicked and got it right but no words! > gasp < that would be a great act of self control. 😆

        1. Believe me, it’s doable. After all, it’s not always about words. Leave it to the imaginations of your readers. And, of course, you can add words in the comments section.

  3. Thank you,Hugh for sharing these tips. I’ve done a few ‘Wordless Wednesdays’ buy ended up being wordy about the photographs. Thanks to your post I know better now.

  4. I’ve heard of Wordless Wednesday for several years but haven’t participated. I do enjoy photography, although I don’t take as many photos as I once did. I might consider participating in the future.

  5. Hi Hugh, I have never participated in Wordless Wednesday, but now that you have explained it I will. I haven’t had much time for a full post lately, so putting a few beautiful photographs out there once in a while is a great idea. Thanks!

    1. It’s such an easy and quick blogging challenge to participate in, Suzanne. And it’s great for filling in gaps when you’ve not been able to write new posts. The main thing is to have fun with it.

  6. As a reader of many (too many, probably) blogs, I always appreciate Wordless Wednesday posts. I get to see a (hopefully) interesting/pretty picture but don’t have to read a lot of text. I don’t like it when a Wordless Wednesday post contains a bunch of text. I don’t feel that it is in the spirit of the challenge and, yes, I feel tricked. Great post, Hugh!

    1. Same here, Janis, and thank you.

      I always appreciate Wordless Wednesday blog posts. They are quick to scan, and the only text needed is anything you want to add in the comments section.

      I would have thought the whole idea of the word ‘Wordless’ was something we all knew. But when I see Wordless Wednesday blog posts with lots of text, I won’t even stay to read the text. That’s not what the challenge is about. Can you imagine if I wrote a 199-word flash fiction story for a challenge that only allowed 99 words? I don’t think it would go down very well.

  7. Great explanation about this challenge, Hugh. I do think people should post their own photos for this theme, though, not ones they find online (that are okay to use). But that’s my opinion.

    I’ve joined in the Wordless Wednesday photo challenge in the (far) past and find it an easy and fun way to post, especially when I don’t have time for a “full” post about my travels and still want to post something weekly.

    1. Thanks, Liesbet.

      I think Wordless Wednesday is one of the easiest photography challenges to participate in, but only when those who participate do not add blocks and blocks of text to their post.

      And I completely agree about using your own images and photos when blogging. It’s far safer to use your own.

  8. Ever so helpful as always Hugh. I’m going to do this as I have so many lovely photos on my camera and laptop! Thanks for the tips and advice.

    1. I’m so pleased this post is helpful, Gloria.

      I’d love to see more bloggers participating in Wordless Wednesday. It’s such an easy challenge to join and brings a lot of rewards if used correctly. Have fun with it.

  9. Thank you for this inspiration and reminder of “May the 4th,” Hugh, and what a great reminder using Wordless Wednesday. I threw a post together for the occasion, I’m a bit of a Star Wars fan and overall sci-fi fan. I did break the word rule somewhat, but oh well, It publishes soon!

    1. Hi Terri, are you referring to the date at the top of the post? If so, that seems to be something associated with the theme I am using.

      I’ve seen many bloggers break the rule of adding text to the body of their Wordless Wednesday posts by explaining what their photos are, where they were taken and when, but it’s your blog, so you can break whatever rules you like.

      I hunted high and low to find out more about the origins of Wordless Wednesday but couldn’t find much. Given I also did not discover any blog posts about it and how to participate in it, something told me that a post was needed.

      ‘May the 4th be with you.’

  10. I am a relatively new participant in the Wordless Wednesday challenge, so I found this post extremely useful as it clarified several points for me. Thank you so much! I will approach the next Wordless Wednesday with a much better understanding of what I should be doing.

    1. You’re welcome, June.

      I think the name of the challenge speaks for itself in that posts should be wordless and only contain images or photos. Of course, everyone is welcome to step outside of the rules, but I’ve always been advised that readers don’t like being tricked into being taken to a post that isn’t what it’s supposed to be. Feel free to leave a link to your Wordles Wednesday here.

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