A good professional photo on the home page of a website can do miracles in many ways. First, it acts as an eye-catcher, which transforms the visitor into a viewer and thus keeps him or her on the site. The image itself also offers the first bit of information of the website – it figuratively “tells” us what this web presence is all about. Last but not least: A photo is far more effective when it comes to selling a product or a service – compared to a text! Here, you’ll find some suggestions and tips for successful website photos.
Basic rules for website images
If you decide to take a closer look into this topic and embark on an internet search, you will find a sheer endless variety of tips, tricks and information! How to take the perfect photo? Which exposure is the best choice – when, how and where? What perspective? What motive? There is hardly a question that doesn’t find an answer on the net. However, in terms of effectiveness, there are merely a few basic rules. These are:
The most important feature of a photo is its relevance. People are not interested in generic images that match the topic, the product or the company only partway. It is therefore necessary to choose an authentic image that creates a connection with the thematic content of the website and thus motivates the viewer to take a closer look.
Images must be unique in order to engage the viewer. Two negative examples are the almost ubiquitous smiling lady with a head-set, who “is always there for you”, and the two men in a suit and tie who shake hands. These images are simply boring. In contrast, individual, authentic photos are inviting, personal and interesting.
Images must arouse emotions, in order to sell a product or service. A prime example is the website of one of the most successful escort agencies in Europe that since decades arranges exclusive escort dates for VIPs. The highly professional photos of the models arouse desire, but at the same time also promise discretion, self-confidence and eloquence of the ladies.
The above-mentioned website also perfectly describes the concept of consistency. All portrait photos of the models are set in a similar ambiance; each model is presented in her portfolio in similar poses and with a similar selection of outfits. Yet, the photographer manages to highlight every lady individually. The “history” of the entire website is told consistently thanks to the undeviating style of the images and thus engages the user.
How to choose a perfect website image
Describing all aspects, rules and composition of professional advertising photography would certainly go far beyond the scope of this short article. As said before, on the WWW you may find really great and very informative guidelines on the subject. All in all, we can say that a picture can unfold its full effect only when it is perceived the right way. In practice, success ultimately depends on the following characteristics: On the one hand, a high contrast of the photos is important. The colours must be coordinated and harmonious. The image must be large enough to be effective – if necessary, it is better to crop the image instead of zooming it. It must be easy to understand and honest. And: Never use unprofessional photos for your website!