San Jose: I’m going to begin this post by making a few suppositions:
- You want more people to find you in search engines such as Google
- You’re concerned in more search traffic so more people will find and use your business
- You wish for those people who find you to share information about your business with their friends, family, fans, and followers
Assuming all 3 assumptions apply to you, you must – not “should” or “might want to” or “ought to think about”, but must – improve the quality, quantity, and size of your brand’s images right away.
While it’s long been true that a picture is worth a thousand words, increasingly, pictures are worth thousands of clicks for your business.
I’ve been considering the visual web as the major digital marketing trend no one’s talking about for a while now. But recently it’s too hard to overlook. Reflect on the following recent news items:
- Twitter acquired Vine, a social site for posting 6 second videos
- Instagram launched new tools for uploading 15-second videos to the popular image-sharing site
- Facebook just launched the ability to include images in comments—and of course, don’t forget that Facebook already receives over 300 million image uploads every single day.
Now, those items might not seem like much of a trend to you. But, then consider two latest announcements from Google:
- The search giant just initiated Local Carousel, including a stream of images to the top of local search results — above the first paid listing and the first organic result, pushing extra organic outcome swell below the fold.
- AdWords has initiated an AdWords Images Extension beta, including images as part of advertisers’ paid listings.
When Google begins to put its money – and its search engine result pages (SERPs) – behind something, you recognize it’s a style worth watching. What Google seems to have learned is that customers click on items with images more often than those without.
And when you reflect on the sustained growth of sites like Snapchat, Pinterest, and YouTube, fulfilling your customers’ visual requirements must become vital to your digital marketing plan. A latest review of global Internet trends further underscores the importance of visual content.
And lastly, take note of the growing size of mobile phone screens. Your patrons evidently anticipate a rich visual experience. Isn’t it time you offered that?
Here are a few tips to assist you get started improving the visuals across your web presence:
Place high-quality images for your products and services across your web presence. Plenty of data reinforces the notion that images make posts more sharable. What’s really interesting here is that Google is deciding which images to display in its Local Carousel almost surely based on which images produce the most clicks. Make sure Google chosen images you want displayed by filling your website, Facebook brand pages, LinkedIn business pages, and other elements of your web presence with the highest-quality images you can afford to generate.
Where possible, leverage existing assets. Of course, the need to put top quality images online doesn’t mean you have to create them from scratch. Most businesses have lots of brand imagery around already from print campaigns, commercials, etc. Whether photos or videos, share the content on YouTube, Pinterest, or Tumblr (with links back to your site) as well as on your website.
Encourage your customers to create visual content. Do you recognize anyone who has a phone without a camera any longer? There’s a reason Facebook, Twitpic, Vine, Instagram and others get so much content uploaded every day. Advocate your patrons to share their experiences with your products and services by means of photos across your web presence.
Size matters. I noted a moment ago the growing dimensions of your patrons’ mobile phones. In addition, the number of pixels per inch in mobile phone, tablet, and laptop screens has increased consumers’ appreciation of large, rich images. Don’t be scared to make full-screen or near-full screen images obtainable to your clients.
Develop quick, clear titles and useful alt text. Certainly, it’s still useful to include a title and caption for your images and videos. And building suitable alt text for your visual content aids both search engines and visually impaired users comprehend your message, too.
When using video, keep things simple. Clearly, a picture is worth a thousand words, so your images already symbolize a simpler offering than a long article or post. But if you’re bearing in mind video along with your images, Rob Petersen noted that videos of “…15 seconds or shorter are shared 37 percent more often than those that last between 30 seconds and 1 minute. If you make your video longer, that stat goes down.”
It’s pretty clear that consumers value enhanced visuals online, that they’re keener to share those images and videos with their friends, and that the search engines are increasing the screen real estate obtainable to visual content. Assuming your aim is to get more consideration from both search engines and real, honest-to-goodness customers, it’s equally clear that a picture is worth more than just a thousand words to your business. They’re also worth thousands of clicks.
Of course, images only symbolize part of the total story. If you want to learn more about how to boost sales, enhance conversions, and reduce the costs from your search marketing, check out our Biznology Jumpstart Workshop, On-site Search Marketing Training. Taught by three Biznology search marketing professionals, you’ll learn how to make your search marketing work for your business.