Use Creative Images to Help Your Site’s Content Outshine the Competition
Today’s online consumers, especially those in the younger, tech-savvy generation, flock to visually appealing web page content. Successful social media and online retail sites use these principles each day to attract users with stunning, clear and engaging visual content.
These images, infographics, animations and more encourage users to investigate your site further and can also contribute to greater engagement with the written content featured on webpages. Below, we’ll take a look at some of the best imagery use practices as well as some pitfalls to avoid when boosting the visual appeal of your content.
Break up Large Blocks of Text with Photos
Even if you have engaging, well-developed and compellingly written content on your site, chances are you will lose a reader’s attention if blocks of text are not broken up with images. Consider adding relevant, high-quality images throughout your written content such as:
- Blog posts
- How-to guides
- Home pages
- White papers
- Frequently asked questions pages
This strategy not only allows a reader to pause and digest information, but also keeps them engaged and cuts down on fatigue.
Keep Images Relevant to Your Content
When it comes to hosting images to enhance the content on your site, the golden rule is to keep it relevant. No one would expect to see a photo of a snow-filled landscape when reading your blog on beach vacations, for example. In the same vein, a visitor to your site hoping to learn more about your energy-efficient heating and air conditioning services would likely be confused by photos of a lawn maintenance crew. Keeping images relevant to the high-quality, written content on your site’s pages not only attracts attention, but also helps establish your brand.
Incorporate Diverse Formats
In addition to keeping images on your site relevant to the content on each page, it helps to employ a variety of image types such as:
- Stock photographs
- Graphs and charts
- Animated graphics
- Hand-drawn images
- Screenshots describing a product or service
- Infographics and more
Avoid Generic Stock Photos
Today’s consumers do not want to see stock photos of smiling office workers standing around a desk, absentmindedly staring at a chart on the wall. These images of people interacting in unnatural ways with each other, or with your company’s products, could quickly shut down a users’ interest. Today’s consumers demand authenticity and will likely move on if your startup is seen as too “salesy” or out of touch with reality.
Locate Images Legally
Armed with the tips above, SMB owners and site developers can host engaging images that complement the written content on a page. However, unless your startup has a dedicated graphics designer on staff, chances are you’ll need to scour the internet for photos that fit your needs.
A word of caution, though. Do not run right out and start saving creative photos you come across online in image searches, social media pages or competitors' webpages. This practice is ethically questionable and can often lead to stiff copyright fines and other penalties. Instead, find free public domain images from sites such as UnSplash, Flickr Commons and others.