How to Use Images Effectively

Images of people, specifically, draw more attention than anything.

I already knew it. In social media, web pages, ads, articles with image gets more attraction or attention or hits compared without image. If that image contains real people, draw more attention than anything else. But wanted to burn it with another test.

Here is a statistics from Buffer about Twitter. Tweets with or without image comparison showing below graph:

Source of the above graph.

Now, here is my experiment and result of same Facebook post which shows the impact between image and without image post.

Recently I’ve published a post about How to Conduct User Research. I post it in Facebook as soon as I published in my blog. That wast 48 hours ago. Here is the screenshot of that post and it’s “like” count.

While I am writing this article, 21 August, 2016, more than 48 hours have been passed after the post. But only 4 people liked it. Like rate per hour is 0.083. Notice that, I used image already in the post. The image doesn’t contain any people and doesn’t convey the story of whole article.

Here is another screenshot of the same post with an image.

Within one hour the post got 32 like. In the first hour “like” rate is 32 per hour. In the fifth hour, the like count was seventy plus. Average like per hour is around 15. I just used an image of two people talking, like an interview, which summaries the article contents and heading. Not just any image. It have people, related to the content. The image also tells the story of the context of the user research.

Only difference between these two post was image. Nothing else. I didn’t tested it without image though. But I think, that would also provide the same result with wrong image.

There is one other factor to consider about the situation. The first post was at Friday, all the office are closed and most people doesn’t see these type of serious post, may be. And the second post was today, Sunday, all the people are in office and can see these type of post. Certainly I am not saying that, people are not working and passing time in FB. But reading is always good.

Now some serious business…

Not any image you can use

Like any other contents in the web, images also have copyright. And you can’t use any image you want to use. If the image is taken by you, can use it anywhere you wish to. Other than your own image, you have to buy it or take permission from the image owner.

This is very serious. You could be sued if you get caught.

My rule above all else? Ask permission to use all images. If in doubt, don’t use the image!

Things to remember while user image

  • People prefer images over text
  • User image of real people
  • Images draw attention & trigger emotion
  • Combine photos and text to increase viewer retention and engagement.
  • Logos help users to orientate
  • Optimize your images so they load quickly.
  • Present information in visual formats, like infographics.
  • User meaningful images
  • Use high quality images to establish credibility.
  • Background images create atmosphere
  • Use images to support persuasive copy and in calls-to-action.
  • Don’t let graphics look like banner ads
  • Position your lead image to the right or left of the first paragraph in your post.
  • You can use one image per 350 words. Just saying.
  • Use ALT tag and add caption to your photos. It’s good for accessibility, SEO and your health.
  • Use Local images if applicable.
  • Use Images to Illustrate Concepts.

Optimize the File Size of Your Images

The average web page is 2099 KB. Images comprise 62% of a page’s total weight.

If you aren’t careful, your site’s dependence on images can actually make the user’s experience worse because it slows down their ability to engage with the site.

There are various free apps that can help you optimize the file size of your images. Here are some of them:

References:

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