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Why The Images On Your Homepage Matter

Written by Taylor Hawes

Thursday, March 6th, 2014

Web design concept

Your business makes a number of decisions every day. From management to product design, everything about your enterprise is organized with the intention of building a brand and selling a product. In the fray, however, certain aspects can become lost, including the images on your homepage. To the surprise of many business-owners, these seemingly simple assets can shape your brand perception, influence customer decisions, and improve conversion in profound ways.

 

They Heavily Influence Your First Impression

The old adage that “you only get one chance to make a first impression” is hard to shake in a rapidly moving society. For perspective’s sake, consider any time you’ve made a purchase online. You likely visited the homepage of the product in question and made a rather snappy judgment regarding characteristics that may even be impossible to perceive from the comfort of your desk chair: dependability, trustworthiness, quality, worth, value, etc. In that brief few seconds of analysis, you’ve already made a decision, completely independent of the carefully crafted text and list of product features.

Photographs help ensure that your product or products make a positive first impression quickly. Tired, hurried minds are far more likely to consider a visual before text, since text requires additional effort to process. Furthermore, the setting, subject, color, and quality of photos all convey the kinds of characteristics mentioned earlier. By presenting attractive images of your product or individuals using your product, you’re more likely to capture visitor attention and make an impression that spurs further research; no small feat on the constantly shifting web.

 

They Affect User Experience

As mentioned, Internet users are tired creatures, bombarded constantly by attention grabbing ploys and solicitations. In this scenario, visuals command immediate attention due to their ability to convey a great deal of information more efficiently and effectively than text.

In this way, visuals are more user-friendly, acknowledging the plight of the modern individual and offering a compromise that’s beneficial to both parties. Through presentation of a visual, users are treated to something pleasing, easy to digest, and easy to understand. By presenting a visual, businesses offer a more friendly web experience, additionally controlling the perception created by the presentation. This combination of effective communication and usability leads to a more positive brand perception that will influence future sales and open further engagement opportunities.

 

They Speak to Design

Apple’s market-changing products have shared one characteristic in common: design. The intelligent combination of visual appeal, functionality, and intuitiveness has propelled many of their devices to the forefront of the market, effectively demonstrating that the modern consumer has design in mind. Whether through conscious acknowledgement or subconscious enjoyment, this expectation is carried through all brand interactions.

With this conscious attention to trends, maintaining an up-to-date web design is paramount to brand image, and large-format photographs are a part of that package. If the images on your page are pixelated or of poor quality, users will take note and assume that your brand lacks the attentiveness needed to also produce a quality product. High-quality photos, on the other hand, inspire confidence, providing a positive experience and satisfying discerning tastes.

 

They Set Expectations

Unless your marketing campaign has significant clout, it’s generally safe to assume that a new visitor to your site knows next to nothing about your product. With this uncertainty comes a great deal of fear, generally dissuading purchases if an understanding of product functionality, performance, price, and value isn’t conveyed quickly.

Images help bridge this gap between uncertainty and comfort by quickly establishing viewer expectations. A photograph of a business setting suggests that your product helps productivity and communication in a professional context. An illustration of a house builds the understanding that your product is meant for consumers and used in their home. While it may be challenging to pick the perfect image to convey the nuances of your product, doing so immediately alleviates the mental burden of uncertainty that customers experience, guiding them further along the path to conversion.

 

They Affect Conversion

While each of these factors can be listed as important in their own rite, the net result is conversion. A strong first impression keeps viewers around while an easy-to-use website provides a more pleasant browsing experience. Strong web design inspires confidence in your company while accurate product expectations help convey brand message and improve conversion rates. Ultimately, the images you use on your homepage are more than just decoration; they are tools to bring potential customers into the fold, generating revenue and enhancing brand perception in complex and far-reaching ways.

 

From your products to your pitch, everything about your business is engineered for success. Your website should benefit from the same treatment with attractive and communicative images that turn one-time visitors into repeat customers. Don’t underestimate the value of a good visual and use the inherent benefits of these aesthetic assets to turn your homepage into a conversion tool.

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