The importance of visuals in graphic content

Occasionally in the dark recesses of the internet, one can still find web pages of pure text. Built in an ancient era when every kilobyte mattered, these pure text websites were important for people with slow internet connections like dial-up. However, although the technology has changed, some websites have not and still linger on as a relic from a bygone internet era. We have all heard the old adage to not judge a book by its cover, but that is exactly what most of us do. Human nature being what it is, we do judge things by their appearance. Things that look beautiful, interesting, or exceptional are things which will keep our interest far longer than the boring or mundane. This is where knowledge of how to use proper visualization in website building can be very important to a growing business.

What not to do

Before we begin talking about what you should do to improve the visual graphics part of your website, it is important to take a few moments to discuss what not to do. Everybody remembers, and almost everybody hated, the olden days when pop-up ads would ruin your browsing experience by inflicting you with advertisements you were not interested in, while simultaneously blocking you from the information you were looking for. Pop-up ads in some markets are making a comeback. However, you should do your absolute best to mitigate unwanted and unnecessary ads from your own website.

This does not just mean third-party pop-up ads, but also things like YouTube videos that you’ve embedded on your website that play automatically. Many people are either listening to music or enjoying a peaceful morning on the internet while they look up something. They might need the services you offer but one thing that can get rid of good will faster than almost anything is a video that auto-plays. If an individual is interested enough in your business, they will click the play button on the video themselves but mandating that customers must listen to the video you selected is a good way to lose them forever. The same is true for audio files, but any picture, graphic, or animation that cannot be muted or opted out of is the equivalent today of a pop-up ad. Your customers don’t want auto-play advertisements and so you don’t need them.

What should you do?

High quality graphics
Visual advertising is a primary medium by which you can demonstrate your goods or services. The better your visuals are, the greater people will trust you, want to buy what you are selling, and stay on your website. Websites without images are not browsed as often as those with many.  Of course not too many, you do not need a slideshow which blocks all the relevant text either.

What you do need to ensure 100% of the time, though, is that every image you use is high quality. There are too many websites today using poor quality visuals. Perhaps the picture was taken by the business owner, or his child with an obsolete phone, or it is a stock photo from the internet – no matter where they came from, bad photos are the arch enemies of a good business. As mentioned earlier, people do judge your website based on the quality of it, especially the quality of your pictures. Having blurry or poor quality photos can indicate to a potential customer that this is a poor or low-quality business. A business which does not take itself seriously enough to ensure it uses high-quality website visuals is not likely to be a business people will trust to deliver high-quality work on their services. Good visuals are the key to good customer-business relationships.

Visuals that relax
Part of building good will with your potential clients is ensuring that the visuals you use help to relax them and put their mind at ease about your capabilities in offering the service. For instance, if you have a business that specializes in plumbing, although it is likely you could find a high-quality image of an exploding toilet, your goal is to not show how bad things can be. If somebody is already calling a plumber, he or she is likely well aware how bad it can be. Instead, what you should be offering are visuals that project quality assurance of what it looks like when a job is well done. Showing a plumber finishing up a job or shaking the hands of a happy customer as they depart is far better symbolic imagery than destruction.

When you are using visuals for a website or any advertising services, you have to remember that there is a psychological element that can help build confidence and make them feel positive about your services or business. Likewise, using destructive or upsetting imagery, even if it is relevant, is going to instill negative emotions. Always try to use positive imagery and visuals in your design.

Keep your visuals updated
As the header would suggest, it is essential that you keep your visuals updated. Depending on your business or service, you may not need to update them very regularly; perhaps once every six months or so. Some businesses may need more, others may need less, but what is essential is that all of them do it. Visuals, like everything else, age and if you do not keep your visuals updated either with a modern look or modern-looking services, people will begin to notice.

For instance, if you are selling cell phones, and the picture you chose is a woman from the eighties buying a brick phone, then although people may find the pictures amusing or nostalgic, what’s going to come across is that you are selling outdated technology. Visuals must be updated as your industry changes, and even if you have an unchanging industry it is still good to regularly update your imagery because a website which is updated gives off the appearance of high-quality maintenance.  As mentioned before, people do judge your website by how it looks. If it looks like nobody has touched it in years, that is not going to instill confidence in a potential client as much as a website which is updated regularly will.

If you use high-quality visuals, don’t inflict advertisement on your users, and keep your visuals positive, you will have the basis for website visuals which can bring in the customers for a long time to come.

Congratulations… you have reached the bottom! Do you understand the importance of graphics in your content now?

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