Four tips to help SME owners and entrepreneurs bring their website visuals to life

In 2018, 88 per cent of Australians used the internet on a daily basis. However, according to GoDaddy research, 59 per cent of Aussie small businesses don’t have a website. If your small business is one of them, you may be thinking of the advantages to be gained by having a website. And further, if you’re one of the 41 per cent of Aussie small businesses who already have a website, you might now be thinking about how you can make it stand out. As the adage goes, a picture is worth a thousand words.

Whatever your small business, from app development to construction, complementing concise, catchy text with sleek, beautiful visuals can help your website rise above the competition.  But what makes a good visual? Where can you find them? And how can you strike a balance between quantity and quality?

Here are four tips to help your website come to life with catchy visuals:

  1. Photos or illustrations?

One of the first questions to ask yourself is whether your business lends itself to photos or illustrations and infographics. If you’re a florist, for example, one of the best ways to emphasise your business is with beautiful photos of your floral arrangements. Whether you hire a professional photographer, or do it yourself, taking high-resolution photos can really make your product or service stand out. To keep your website feeling fresh, it’s worth taking photographs and updating your visuals on a regular basis.

For consultancy and service-based businesses without a visible product, websites can be brought to life using illustrations and infographics. Make sure that they relate to, and enhance, your business’s messaging – try to find a visual way of showing customers what you can bring to their business.

  1. Beautiful stock imagery

Sometimes it’s not possible to decorate your website with unique-to-your-business imagery, so stock images can add great value. If you plan to use stock imagery, comprehensive website builders like GoDaddy Website Builder have extensive libraries available. Be mindful that you’re not the only person using stock sites, so search beyond the first few pages to find the images that others may miss. Don’t dismiss paid stock imagery, as the quantity and quality can be higher and you are likely able to source more specific imagery for your business, too.

  1. Quality over quantity

Websites can be successful for a variety of reasons, and some of them because they are simple and easy to navigate. There’s a lot to be said for simplicity, as cluttered websites can feel frantic. Have a look at some of your favourite websites for inspiration, and see how many visuals they have on each page. When it comes to putting this into practice on your own website, ask yourself whether an image serves a purpose or adds value. If the answer is no, consider removing it.

  1. Personalise your images

Now that you’ve sourced your visuals, there are a number of ways to bring them to life and make them “yours”. For example, try creating a small version of your logo which can be added to the bottom or corner of an image. If you’re looking for something more subtle, try adding your logo in black and white. If you want your stock imagery to stand out, there are other simple ways to optimise them to help differentiate yourself from your competitors. For example, try zooming in on certain parts on an image that you want to draw attention to, experiment with backgrounds or borders or add text over the top of an image. You’re limited only by your imagination.

For all the benefits visuals can add to your website, they can detract from it too it if not used correctly. So, with every new visual aspect you incorporate in your website ask yourself what it adds, and if you use some of your favourite websites as inspiration, you could have your website jumping off the screen in no time.

Tara Commerford, Vice President and Managing Director Australia & New Zealand, GoDaddy

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