Website images make the page pop. Text alone is just drab. So, how do you find the right image? And do these have any effect on SEO?
Website Images Galore!
You may still only be using self-generated images. That’s fine, if it is by choice. But did you know that people are constantly creating and contributing website images to numerous sharing sites that you could also be using…for FREE?!
It’s true. Our favorite site to check out is Flickr.com. It’s not necessary to have an account for browsing or downloading. It is, however, good manners to leave a comment for the photographer/artist. Even better, include a link to your post in which their photo will be used. Our experience has been that this does actually generate traffic.
Go with Your Gut
That answers the where, but you still might not know how. First of all, consider your text content with an eye towards enhancement. When writing or reading the material, did any visual themes come to mind? Making an emotional impact would be outstanding.
Narrow your ideas into keywords and enter these into Flickr’s “Advanced Search”. Here you can limit results to include only images licensed under Creative Commons. In other words, you are expressly permitted to use these images in your own work. By selecting additional options, it is also possible to modify, adapt, or build upon the images, or use them commercially. Again, don’t forget to thank the original artist!
Optimize for Speed
Always with web design, we are faced with choosing between best possible image quality and shortest possible load time. In the end, it’s a balance. And the file format you select does make a difference.
Begin by identifying the type of image. If it is a graphic or logo with a transparent background, then gif and png might be your best bet. If a photograph, then jpg is the right choice. The reason lies in how the color is stored and rendered.
Side-by-side comparisons are ideal, and can be accomplished using editing software programs like Adobe’s Photoshop and Illustrator. The idea is that you bring the quality of the image down to the lowest tolerable point.
This is a very important step. Searchbots will strongly consider load time. If your website images are beautiful, but take more than 1 minute to load, chances are your pages won’t get served up in the Search Engine Results Pages.
How can we help?
Launching a website and need help with images or design? Or, want to tweak landing pages so they are more visually interesting and increase conversion?
We are the spectrum group, and we offer strategic and tactical consulting so you can monetize your online presence. Call us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation to discuss your website’s user experience and translate that into sales.