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Best Practice

Using photography effectively on websites in 2023

Using photography effectively on websites is crucial for creating an engaging and visually appealing user experience. Here are some best practices to keep in mind:

High-Quality Images: Use high-resolution images that are clear and sharp. Blurry or pixelated images can give a poor impression of your website’s quality.

Relevance: Choose images that are directly related to the content, message, or theme of the webpage. Irrelevant images can confuse visitors and detract from the overall user experience.

Consistency: Maintain a consistent style and tone for your images across your website as well as your marketing collateral. This could include using a specific color palette, filter, or visual treatment that aligns with your brand identity.

Optimisation: Optimise images for the web to ensure fast loading times. Compress images without sacrificing too much quality to improve the website’s performance.

Responsive Design: Ensure that your images are responsive and adapt well to different screen sizes and devices. This will provide a seamless experience across desktop, tablet, and mobile devices.

Minimalism: Don’t overcrowd your website with too many images. Use a balanced combination of images and text to create a clean and organised layout.

Clear Focus: Make sure that the subject of the image is clear and easily distinguishable. Avoid clutter and distractions in the background that might divert attention from the main focus.

Human Element: Including images with people can create a sense of relatability and connection. However, ensure that the expressions and poses of the people in the images align with your website’s message.

Authenticity: Use real, authentic images whenever possible. Stock photos can sometimes come across as generic and impersonal. If you must use stock photos, choose ones that feel genuine and relatable.

Storytelling: Use images to tell a story or convey a message. Visual storytelling can engage visitors and make your content more memorable.

Whitespace: Allow for enough white space around images to help them stand out and breathe. Cluttered images can overwhelm visitors and make the website look chaotic.

Loading Progress: If your images take a while to load, consider using placeholders or loading animations to indicate that content is loading. This can improve user experience by reducing frustration.

Captions and Alt Text: Include descriptive captions and alt text for images. Captions can provide context, and alt text is crucial for accessibility, as it helps screen readers describe the image to visually impaired users. You can read our Best Practice for Alt tags here. 

A/B Testing: Test different images to see which ones resonate better with your audience. A/B testing can help you refine your choices based on actual user preferences.

Legal Considerations: Ensure that you have the right to use the images you choose. Respect copyright and licensing agreements.

Call to Action: If the image is part of a call-to-action (CTA), ensure that it guides users towards the intended action. The image should complement the CTA text and support the user’s decision.

Remember, the goal is to enhance the user experience and communicate your brand’s message effectively through your website’s images. Following these best practices will help you achieve that goal while maintaining a visually appealing and user-friendly website.