- Be Relevant
- Choose High-Quality Pictures
- Add CTA
- Showcase Human Faces
- Use Multiple Images and Views
- Think About the Colors
- Always Optimize for SEO
Imagine landing on a website with blocks of black-and-white text. No images, videos, graphs, or colors. Certainly, a bland layout like such would be unimpressive and stir zero emotions. Consequently, you won’t feel the urge to interact with the page and leave without taking action.
Therefore, it is critical that you choose the right images for your website too. Humans are visual creatures and process images 60,000 times faster than text. Plus, attractive images make a positive first impression and increase the visitor’s overall satisfaction.
However, finding the right photo to illustrate your brand and website can take time and effort. To help you get started, we have compiled a list of best practices for choosing images. With these strategies, you can create an aesthetic appeal, encourage conversions, and make the proper visual impact in no time.
1. Be Relevant
The design of your website represents your overall marketing strategy. Hence, you should never select images just to fill up the space on your page. Every picture you choose should have a purpose and relevance to your brand.
For example, the goal of an eCommerce page will be to sell products. To entice the prospective audience, you will need to use images that showcase your products in the most attractive way possible.
Similarly, they should resonate with your target audience and the message you are trying to convey. Take the example of Millaw Kids. They specialize in kids' apparel that is soft and comfortable. The pictures of happy and relaxed toddlers display the same essence and make purchasing decisions easy for parents.
2. Choose High-Quality Pictures
Generally, there are two options for acquiring photos to use in websites and other marketing materials: Custom Photography or Stock Photos.
Hiring a professional photographer is ideal for custom imagery as they will provide you with a bank of pictures for the complete marketing campaign. However, in some situations, you may not have the choice to splurge on professional photographs. In that case, we suggest you consider purchasing stock pictures from reliable sources. The images are readily available in various categories to align with your branding.
Regardless of the source you choose, make sure the pictures are high-quality. Poor-quality pictures with blur or pixelation will leave a bad impression on the visitors and easily be ignored. It is possible to improve quality with photo editing tools, but it's best to start with high-quality pictures and minimize the need.
3. Add CTA
The images play a key role in establishing the marketing activities of a website. They should provide directional clues to the visitors and point them toward the desired action (buy now, subscribe, signup, etc.)
Take the example of Starbucks. They have maximized their holiday promotion by integrating a call-to-action within the image.
I am sure your mouth is watering at these options and compelling you to order. I know mine is!
4. Showcase Human Faces
Consumers want to see images they can relate to. They want pictures that showcase lives and problems similar to theirs. Or they want to see someone they would want to be like. So when selecting pictures, try to find ones that can stir emotions in your target audience. You want something that would make them think, ‘If I use this product, I will be as happy as the person in the picture!’
Take the example of Cluse. The famous watch brand uses pictures of different customers wearing their collections. Additionally, prospects can see how the watch pairs with different outfits, making it easy for them to shop for the look.
When using human faces, avoid candid, and cliche poses. The models shouldn’t feel alienating to the audience. Instead, they need to have welcoming and warm faces, someone everyone would want to meet.
For instance, suppose you are displaying the customer service department of your brand. Using an authentic picture of your team is the best option. But if that is not possible, look for stock photos that are not intimidating like this one:
Instead, find pictures that your audience can instantly connect with, such as the one below:
5. Use Multiple Images and Views
Images play a pivotal role in eCommerce pages. Since the target customers cannot physically see the product, they rely on product photographs to visualize it. Therefore, add multiple high-resolution pictures of your products. The more angles you show, the better your audience will grasp the product.
See the product page of Muroexe, for example. Along with the textual description of the shoes, the brand showcases its collection from different angles. They also display the colors available in the specific model, allowing consumers to make a quick buying decision.
6. Think About the Colors
The colors you use in your branding emotionally affect the audience. They help you convey messages without actually spelling the word. Studies also show 90% of purchase decisions are based solely on the impact of colors. Plus, colors can improve brand recognition by 80%.
And we have examples of famous brands like Mcdonald's, Coca-Cola, and Facebook to prove this theory. These brands have their bespoke color scheme, and consumers instantly recognize their marketing materials based on their specific palette.
Now, let’s take a look at some basics of color psychology:
- Red: The color is associated with excitement and energy. It draws attention to new product announcements, fashion stores, sports news, healthcare, and emergency services.
- Yellow: The color yellow attracts youth, warm feelings, and positive vibes. It is ideal for brands that wish to integrate the term ‘cheerfulness’ with their products. Just see the branding of Cheerios, Chupa Chups, and NesQuick, for example.
- Green: The color green is the most soothing on the eyes and is often integrated with nature, health, and luck. It has a relaxing, calming effect and promotes new beginnings. However, avoid the hue when marketing luxury and tech products.
- Blue: Blue is the color of big brands and banks. Just think of Facebook, Twitter, Dell, and Intel. The color encourages productivity, strength, and loyalty. It is ideal for dental care, high-tech, science, and legal products.
- Purple: The color of royalty communicates power, wealth, luxury, and sophistication. Use this color in images marketing products related to beauty and skincare, yoga, and spirituality.
- Black: Black is an elegant color that symbolizes modernism and intelligence. It is good for luxury products, makeup brands, and fashion products targeting the male audience. But avoid too much black on your website, as it can overwhelm the eyes.
These were just a few colors to consider when designing your visual strategy. Use colors according to the emotions evoked so they work for you - and not against you!
7. Always Optimize for SEO
Similar to textual content, it's well worth optimizing your images for SEO to enhance their visibility. Start optimizing your images by making sure they look good. They must be scaled to fit all screen sizes.
Next, name the file name correctly so search engine algorithms can easily index them. For example, images are usually saved by a default file name like ‘IMG.07490.jpg.’ However, this title doesn’t give much information to search engine crawlers. Instead, give them appropriate names to make them understandable.
Also, make sure your images have an Alt Text. Similar to file names, they give search engine crawlers a clue about the context. They are also helpful for accessibility and describe the content to the readers using screen readers. Make the alt text descriptive and clear, but keep it within 100 characters.
Save the images in the correct format. The basic file formats for images are:
- JPG: The JPG pictures are perfect for photographs with no text. They have ‘lossy’ compression, meaning the picture quality will decrease when the file size decreases. But generally, the file sizes of JPG are small, and you will not have to worry about loading speed when using them.
- PNG: PNG files are typically used for graphics, logos, and text-heavy pictures. They also support transparent colors and give excellent quality.
- GIF: This file format best suits animations and graphics with few colors.
Find the Perfect Pictures
Your website is a marketing tool, and every element you integrate within the design should serve as an opportunity to engage the target audience. A study by Skyword concludes that content with compelling images gets 94% more views than those without.
But, if you use images on your website, you must ensure they are top-notch.
The right pictures will certify that your website is inviting for the audience and makes them return for more. Contact Hydensiq for more assistance in designing the perfect webpage.