Buyers are always on the lookout to save time. Which is why the easiest way to catch their attention is through images, bold bright attention-grabbing images. These photos don’t only show them what a product looks like, but it also gives them an idea of how you run your e-commerce store.
The pictures consumers see are what shapes the first impression they have of your shop and also influences whether they will decide to continue browsing or not. However, the key to really impressing customers is by presenting them with professional and polished images. Clear images catch the eye.
In this article, we’ll talk about several tips on how you can improve the pictures that you’re using for your online store while optimizing them for the Web.
Why Quality Images Are Important for an Online Store
Did you know that the majority of consumers today believe images are a critical element in their purchasing decisions?
This is because the photos that you’re using for your shop is what represents the perceived quality and value that you have to offer. They are able to speak directly upon contact with the target audience, transforming your content and product page into something that’s more relatable.
For companies, your branding should be an important part in every decision that you make. This should reflect in your website updates, social media posts and all marketing campaigns. Images are what should be at the forefront in every turn. They will be the first ones to grab buyer attention, develop trust and tell them to come have a look.
The goal that you have here is to form good relationships with customers, and photos help you achieve this.
Regarding Image Optimisation for the Web
Search engine optimisation or SEO is a crucial part for every online retailer who wants to become successful. One aspect that’s truly important is how fast images can load on your website. The art of decreasing file size and retaining image quality is a fine line that the SEO process helps to keep page load speeds down and image quality optimal.
Bigger product images can slow down the loading time when someone is browsing whereas a small image can be a turn off to look at. Online merchants know that there is a delicate balance between optimising images and giving it good quality. Optimise too much and it can ruin its appearance.
As a rule of thumb, smart online sellers keep their images no bigger than 200kb in size while ensuring they look as good as possible.
Resizing an Image for Its Container
One way you can start optimising a photo for the Web is by resizing its height and width. Upon looking at a website image, you’re really looking at an HTML container that has a picture scaled dynamically inside to fit.
Let’s say a container on a website has a 648-pixel square while the image that is to be inserted is a 1500 pixel square, it will still be displayed in 648px. The bad thing about this is that it will still load all 1500px which adds extra loading time, especially if many pictures are set this way.
What you want is to resize all images to fit their containers before being uploaded to the website. A good way to do this is by resizing the images 1.5x bigger than their container so that it will still look good. As an example, going for a 972px square is ideal for this.
To know what the image size of a container is, you have to access the Developer Tools of your web browser. Hover over an image and right click on it. Select the ‘Inspect Element’ command and, on the sidebar, the dimensions of its container will show in pixels.
What About Image Compression?
When saving an image at 100% of its quality, you might notice that the size it actually has is quite big. That is why image compression is a thing.
As a picture is being compressed, what it does is that it gets rid of all the extra data in it that’s not needed. You will still need to balance this part however as compressing too much can lead to the image falling apart, making it look blotchy.
What you want is to perform the image compression in a smart way. Before, people used to recommend the Save For Web function in Adobe Photoshop. However, there are other software programs out there that do this much better. To learn more, check out our article about Image Resolution and Compression.
As you can see, the images that you use for your online store is very important if you want to attract a lot of customers to your shop. Equipping yourself with the knowledge of photography can also help you bring about having better photos moving forward but you can always hire an expert to do this for you. Having good-quality, high-resolution photos might be helpful later on when you decide to print attention-grabbing promotional materials.
Make sure that you perform all of the necessary optimisations for the images you’ll be using to enhance the look and feel of your e-commerce store.
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