How Important Are Graphics On A Website?

We always hear that the content of a website is the key to its success. Without good articles, news, blogs and similar items, a website is doomed to fail.

But what about the graphics? How important are they to the overall success of a website?

Let’s look at an example. When you are surfing the internet and you come across a website, what makes you decide whether to stay or carry on surfing? If a website uses neon colors and flashing banners to try and catch your attention, the chances are you will click away quickly. But if that site is well presented, with a good mix of graphics and text, you may well stay for a closer look.

Content is important, but the graphics help to balance out the text, breaking it up and making it more readable. They also support the text – so they shouldn’t just be there for the sake of it. All good graphics have a purpose, which is to draw the casual surfer in and get them involved in the site – and preferably encourage them to order something.

Graphics can create a compelling image and persuade a surfer to buy your product. Think of ‘Buy it Now’ buttons, for example. These sometimes appear with the graphic of a mouse arrow over the top of the button, prompting the surfer to click onto the next page to make their payment.

Graphics can also make all the difference between a sale and a near miss, especially when it comes to products like e-books. Because e-books are downloaded straight to the buyer’s computer, there is no eye catching cover or real solid product to show the purchaser. This problem is solved by creating a graphic of a book which has a stunning cover to promote the product itself. The color of this graphic often matches the overall color tones of the whole website – especially if used on a so called ‘mini site’, which promotes a single product only.

Competent graphics can also help surfers navigate a website, as they can indicate pages of interest, drop down menus, new products and much more.

In short, even though text is important, a website with huge chunks of text and little or no graphics will not attract many visitors – at least not those who stay for any length of time. Conversely, an attractive looking website which has a nice balance of text broken up by graphics will keep people browsing for far longer – and the longer they stay on the site, the more likely it is that they’ll come back again.

George Cleanthous

George Cleanthous

SEO Strategist at Web Profits

Formerly of EY and Alcatel, George has extensive experience in many facets of online marketing and has developed an expert analytics skill set. Specialising in Search, George helps drive innovation and the application of our search engine optimisation strategy.