Our world is becoming increasingly visually focused as technology evolves and develops into sophisticated interfaces, which are accessible from virtually any electronic device. The online world, which has pervaded virtually every aspect of our lives, depends upon visual stimulation in order to thrive. Creative agencies know that how images are presented and how they function in an online environment is foundational to how a company achieves success, making it an absolute must when considering a new or refurbished website.
The most important aspect of a website isn’t just the substance of its content, but the style. Graphics and typography are the primary means for capturing the attention of the viewer, drawing them inwards and provoking an interest. This interest is sustained by placing images throughout the webpage, to enhance the story and break up mounds of text, which otherwise seem too gruelling to read through all in one chunk. Since online readership consists of scansion, drawing the eye towards various sections of the webpage is more likely to keep people reading and attention retained.
Images provide presence of validation. Since a large number of people use websites to determine a company’s credibility, images play a strong part in not only demonstrating the technical and stylistic prowess (an attractive, user-friendly website subconsciously equates to a quality product) but also gives viewer’s another insight into the substance of the site.
A vacation property rental site, for example, would be ludicrous without images. Potential guests want to see what kind of product they are buying into and whether the locations suit their style and meet their standards. Pictures serve as major selling points because nothing entices prospective travellers more than breath-taking photos of luxury beach homes with charming coastal designs.
Every available picture will be scrutinized intensely by potential visitors, so it is paramount that the images are high quality. Sites that neglect to upload professional images forego a chance of a possible sale and do not make a good first impression. After all, the last thing consumers should think to themselves when browsing a company’s site is, “Where else do they cut corners?”
In addition to credibility, images can be used as an effective tactic to manipulate the viewer’s attention and drive them towards the goal of the website. An image that emphasises a particular feature is more likely to draw the viewer than if this was left to chance. A top-tier design agency understands the importance of using different color combinations and the psychology behind them.
Colors and images can be coordinated to navigate the eye in a particular flow, and a good design will inspire emotions in the viewer such as awe, curiosity, and happiness. In fact, studies have demonstrated that replacing text with images arranged in a particular manner can increase a website’s user engagement.
Even on social networks that are heavily text-based like Twitter, having image capability is a must – sharing, showing, and advertising rely on the power of the graphic to really draw attention and make a point. An image truly can convey a thousand words in ways that text simply can’t, and is generally much more interesting. And yes, size matters – finding the right resolution and dimension most flattering to the eye is a must. In a globalized universe where there are more watchers than readers, images are not only necessary for accessibility, but also for engagement.
This guest post article was written by Andy Brattle, director at a leading creative design agency in London, specializing in user-centered branding and creative digital design services. He specializes in UX led responsive design and is passionate about the power of digital to influence user behavior.