In a world of Facebook and Instagram, pure text is not enough to illustrate concepts. No matter what type of blog post you’re creating, images add more depth and meaning to your ideas. Some would say images are just as important as written content. If you’re looking to make the most out of your blog images, here are eight blog image best practices:
1. Use images to break up text
Images are best used to add value to your text, make your points clearer, and make your text more readable. Just like we use paragraphs to break up text, we also should use images to make our text clearer. The larger the amount of text is, the more you should focus on breaking it up with images. You don’t want a wall of text to scare your visitors away.
2. Use high-quality images
Using poor-quality images is the same as no images at all. When you see a website with blurry images, do you stay or would you rather look for a website that displays clear images? Besides, if the creator of that webpage didn’t bother using high-quality images, the text may be poor quality, as well.
3. Optimize images for performance
While your images should be high quality, using large images will slow your website down. When it comes to blog image best practices, keep in mind that website speed is an important SEO factor. Plus, visitors are more likely to leave your website if it loads slowly. Optimizilla is a nice free tool to condense your image file size while keeping the required level of quality.
4. Use images legally
Using any image you want from the Internet could end badly for you. Copyright infringement occurs frequently because some people don’t respect the rights of intellectual material. Most images fall into these categories:
- Rights managed – purchased for a single use.
- Royalty free – free to use, but you can’t resell or edit it.
- Creative Commons – free to use, but attribution to the creator is required.
- Public Domain – free to use and attribution is not required (you can find these on Wikipedia).
5. Take advantage of screenshots
Screenshots are essential in articles explaining how things work, such as how-to guides. They allow you to make your point across more clearly. Both OS X and Windows provide simple tools for taking screenshots of parts of your screen. If you want to annotate screenshots, Skitch is a great option.
6. Add explainer images
Sometimes, text alone doesn’t do a good job of explaining complex ideas. When you need to clarify concepts, use diagrams, pie charts, and/or infographics. You can find several free tools on the web for creating visual aids, such as OmniGiraffe for diagrams.
7. Make your own images
Can’t find images that suit your blog post? If Photoshop isn’t your thing, try creating images with free tools. Canva is a widely used image-creation tool that provides a huge repertoire of design templates. Making your own images also gives you the opportunity to add unique and branded content to your blog.
8. Include alt text
One of the most important blog image best practices: don’t forget that images also play an important role in SEO. Alt text stands for ‘alternative text’ and search engines use it to learn what your image is about. Add your SEO keywords in alt tags. Your images will be more likely to be found.
In any case, you can always hire a design agency to make branded images for you. They can create visuals and graphics tailored to your business and in line with your unique brand image.