Images on your website are as important as the text you write. Quality images will enhance and draw a visitor’s eye to important parts of the message that you want to convey. Following are a few tips to make sure your images have the impact you need.
Make sure your images are relative to your page and site content
The old adage that ‘One picture is worth a 1000 words’ rings true not only in print but also on the web. Use images that will enhance the message that you are trying to convey to your reader.
Make sure your images are clear and large enough to invoke emotion from the viewer.
Your images should be clear and easy for the viewer to process. A great image will entice the viewer to read the text on your webpage.
Use keywords in your image file names.
Give your images a filename that relates to your topic. Using your targeted keywords in an images file name helps search engines and visitors identify what the image is about.
Be descriptive in naming your files also. Instead of using ‘horse.jpg’ use ‘quarter-horse.jpg’. Notice that dashes were used in the file name instead of underscores. Search engines see dashes as spaces whereas underscores are seen as an alpha character.
Use Descriptive Alt Text
Search engines also learn about the content of your image by descriptive ALT and TITLE attributes. Use an actual description and not just keywords, search engines are likely to see the description as ‘keyword stuffing’ when only keywords are used.
Use Descriptive Anchor Text
If you are linking to or from your image using a text link, make the text descriptive. Don’t just use ‘click here’. Give the user a reason to click the link.
Optimize Your Images for the Web
Let’s face it file size counts. Large file size can dramatically affect the loading speed of a webpage. Use an imaging program like Photoshop to set the image resolution to 72dpi and also adjust the image quality as low as possible without affecting the clarity of the image.
Give the User the Ability to Open a Larger Version of the Image in a Lightbox
If you want the user to be able to click on the image to see a larger version of it, make sure it opens in a lightbox or thickbox. Images that open in another webpage are distracting to the user and draws attention away from the text message on your webpage.