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Issue #33: Tips for Superb Website Photography

The old adage “don’t judge a book by its cover” is a lovely sentiment, but your potential customers are judging your business by the appearance of your website. How long has it been since you updated the images on your website? Perhaps your homepage has a decent headshot, or maybe a few photos of the waiting room or exterior of your business. Did you take most of the shots yourself with a camera or iPhone? We believe without professional photography you are missing out on properly promoting your business and it could be costing you. Read on to learn why we believe professional website photography is an investment worth making. 

Take Control of First Impressions Through Professional Website Photography

In our experience, when someone visits your website for the first time they will unconsciously decide within 10 seconds if they will stay to learn more or click the back button on the browser merely by scanning the top of the homepage, which we refer to as “above the fold” similar to a printed newspaper folded in half. Just as sales is a transference of feeling, photography should evoke emotion. Your photos should send a subconscious signal that you are up to date on innovations within your industry. Despite having a newly designed website, old photos will immediately give the impression your business is dated. 

Another common misdemeanor we see with website photography is the overuse of stock images on the homepage. They don’t feel authentic and as a result you immediately lose the ability to evoke the feeling that you and your staff are experts in your field. 

Take a look at the before and after below, taken from a client’s website. The before image of stock photography on the homepage is ok, but doesn’t promote doctor himself like the after image. The imagery is designed to elicit a sense that he is an approachable expert and it is least worth clicking around to learn a bit more.

BEFORE: using stock photography on the homepage

AFTER: using an image of the client professionally photographed for the website

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words and Thousands of Dollars

We feel it is important to consistently use an iPhone to take photos that can be added to your website and social media. That said, the photos on your homepage are an exception to that rule. Unless you have a background in photography specifically shot for websites, you simply don’t have the knowledge to craft an image that attracts customers. This is one of the times when outsourcing to an expert will make you money vs. trying to save the initial cost and potentially losing customers down the line with subpar images. 

This website showcases a younger doctor relatively early in his career. Does he seem inexperienced? Or does the image provide the sense he is a confident expert in his field?

Sometimes a second opinion is just what the doctor ordered.  A professional photographer will come into your space with fresh eyes and should add the necessary, objective, perspective to highlight you and your business in the best possible light (literally and figuratively). 

A photo should be a composition. The photographer should properly light the scene, help you select the appropriate attire, and suggest poses that properly showcase you and your team. The area surrounding the subject, or negative space, should be considered in the overall design. In addition, they should consider the design theme and colors of your website to create complimentary images. 

The imagery for this homepage was shot to compliment the somewhat muted theme to promote a forensic specialist. Notice the negative space within the image utilized to make room on the website for additional credentialing of the doctor.

Many of our preferred vendors include flying in a professional team to shoot new images as part of the cost to build the site. Expect to pay thousands for a proper team of professionals to create images that will convert prospects into leads. The money spent is considered a profit center (read about cost centers vs. profit centers here), and we believe will be well worth the investment. Further, you will own all of the images and will be able to use them on other marketing channels such as social media and printed collateral. 

You may think this is obvious (we certainly do) but too often we have found that some view a professional photographer as a luxury and not a necessity. For more information on about professional photoshoots and website redesign, contact us here or call 305-455-0720.


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