A picture is worth a thousand words.” No matter how cliché the phrase may sound, its truth is beyond any doubt. In today’s age of digital marketing in particular, pictures play a pivotal role in influencing the decision of users. Empirical evidence suggests that no images, or bad quality images, have a direct effect on the bounce rate of websites. An article on Kissmetrics reveals that a piece of content with a suitable image receives 94 percent more views compared to those that does not have one. In addition to this, a post with a compatible image is shared 40 times more than the one without it.
As figures make a strong case for the need to choose images wisely, this blog will give you a quick run-down on what to look for while selecting visuals for your website:
1. Be Rare
It is very natural to fall for royalty-free images for your website. However, so what if they are free? The cost of choosing a royalty-free (RF) image can still be high for your business, as it may put you in the league of the ordinary, because the same image has already been used by others many times. Images are your first set of ammunition to leave an indelible mark on your customers. On the other hand, if visitors see the same old images on your website, this may prove to be detrimental for your brand. It is always good to look out for rights managed (RM) images, which might be costly, but they may also help you stand out among your competitors.
2. Be Mindful of People’s Sensitivities
It is extremely important to be mindful of people’s emotions and sensibilities. An image showing people cheering with beer cans in their hands may reflect positivity in the West; however, the same picture can prove to be upsetting for the people in the Arab world. Similarly, art work involving nudity may be acceptable in Europe, but may create repulsion in a country like India. It is paramount to know your audience before choosing your pictures. In the case of a global businesses, this issue should be taken care of by performing a thorough website localization.
3. Be Mindful of Image Quality and Relevance
Nothing looks more disappointing than an image with poor resolution. Equally distasteful is an irrelevant photograph. It is never a good idea to insert a low-resolution or an irrelevant image just because you could not find a good one. Such a picture can be more disastrous than no picture at all. Always be keen to shell out a few bucks, but never compromise on image quality. If you don’t want to spend money on a good image, it will be more appropriate to rather not have one.
4. Be Consistent
Your website is your identity. Make sure it does not reflect multiple personalities to customers. Besides being consistent in design, size, orientation, style etc., ensure that together these things give a meaning and identity to your brand. There should not be a mishmash of illustrations, candid images, caricatures, memes, colored or black and white text and background etc. Brainstorm what you would like to be identified with by your customers and stick to it. Frequent switchovers will leave your targeted users confused.
Wisely choosing an image is imperative for the growth of your business. This is not something that can be ignored. Being mindful of the above-mentioned points while choosing images may help you big time.