Visual content is becoming one of the most valuable tools in creating great quality content. Creating great content remains one of the most critical factors of a digital marketing strategy. However, it’s a mistake to think that content should always be written. While there will always be a place for text-based articles in websites, of increasing importance is visual content.
Here are some telling stats on just how big visual content has become and how it’s changing the way we all approach marketing.
Sixty-three percent of social media is made up of images. That means nearly two-thirds of the updates you see on social media are visual content, according to a Citrix report from January.
Nearly half of all Internet users have reposted a photo or video they have found online. An equally intriguing stat from the same 2013 Pew Research Study is that 54 percent of all Internet users have posted an original photo or video that they personally have created.
Content with relevant images gets 94 percent more views than content without. This oft-cited visual content stat is evidence that visuals have been vital to online success for some time. The original study from content platform Skyword came out in 2011.
Ninety-four percent equates to almost double the views, and the boost is noticed across all topics and categories.
Tweets with images receive 150 percent more retweets. Retweets, replies, and clicks all benefit from images.
Here are the most common ways that marketers create visual content.
Eye-catching, creative photography — think stock photos or Instagram pics, or of your own products
Video — YouTube, Vimeo, or Wistia embedded right into a post or shared directly to social media
Screenshots — helpful images of your product or workflow
Infographics — visual information, either super long and meaty or bite-sized and informative
Data visualization — standalone charts and graphs
Comics — relevant comic strips or cartoons
Memes — popular memes customized to fit the context of your post or update
Visual note-taking — casually-designed layout of ideas, typically text-heavy
Miscellaneous graphics — images that complement the content
When you think about it, most modern websites are heavy on visual content to direct you around the site.
What Visual Content Should You Be Thinking About?
If you’re looking for quality typography for your next design, check out Google Fonts. This directory of web fonts makes it easy for users to add a font to their website in seconds or download it to their computer to use later.
All of the available fonts are open source, meaning users can customize, improve, and share them as they see fit.
Infographics are highly sharable, and you can put them together fairly easily with a little bit of research and design flair. When choosing a topic for your infographic, think about something your target audience needs help with and, instead of writing a blog post, research some facts, stats and tips and think about how you can demonstrate these visually.
The good news is that if you are new to designing, there are some tools to get you started.
HubSpot’s 10 Infographic Templates
We all know we need to create visual content. Trouble is, creating graphics can often feel like a huge undertaking — especially if you don’t have a design background.
With this pack of free infographic templates, you can create professional-looking infographics and save hours of time in the process. The best part? You can easily customize them to fit your company’s branding.
Whether you’re looking to create an ebook, infographic, business card, or email header, Canva has a template to simplify your process. In fact, the free web design tool offers professional, easy-to-customize templates for just about any design need you can think of. We are huge fans of Canva here at Write My Website.
One of the most important elements of web design is your color palette — you want to make sure your images, graphics, and font colors all help convey your message and maybe even drive conversions.
With Pictaculous, you can upload a photo and then instantly get recommendations for colors to use, including their respective HEX codes. Your color palettes will never be uncoordinated again.
Embedding videos in business websites is very simple. In WordPress, all you have to do is post the address of the video and it’s done for you. Recording videos is also easy now, with the availability of smartphones and cheap cameras.
The next time a customer asks you a support question, whip out your recording device of choice, record a response and upload it to YouTube. This video can then be embedded in your blog. You’ll also get the benefit of additional views and traffic from people searching YouTube.
Free Photo Sources
On the one hand, stock photos can be bland and boring. On the other hand, they can also be expensive. Here are a few free sources that we love here at Write My Website.
Pixabay is a web designer’s dream. Not only does this site offer an easy-to-use search feature, the images are absolutely brilliant. And most don’t require any attribution at all. This is our favourite.
One of the simplest sites on this list, MorgueFile has a streamlined layout and carefully curated list of photos. Its selection isn’t as large as that of some of the other sites on this list, but the photos included cover a wide range of topics. You can find images of everything from wildlife to antiques.
New Old Stock
New Old Stock is a collection of antique photos, many taken by government agencies or discovered in estate sales. You can scroll for hours without growing bored. Plus it is really cool.
Have you seen those cool videos where a hand is drawing while a voice narrates? These are relatively easy to make through tools such as Videoscribe and GoAnimate.
VideoScribe is a desktop app that you will need to download and install onto your computer (Mac or PC). An iPad app is also available.
GoAnimate lets you export/download your video in HD as a MP4 file.
Creating good visual content can be time-consuming, even with all the great tools available to use. If you don’t have the time, contact us at Write My Website. We are a full service digital marketing agency and we can create all kinds of high quality content for your business.