Visual elements can help boost engagement for your blog and drive more leads to your small business website.
Visuals help break up your text and help emphasise your copy.
Read on to find out why visuals like graphics, videos, images and GIFs can help boost your blog post engagement.
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You’ve all seen them.
The business blog post that is just a solid wall of TEXT.
Text so visually uninspiring that your eyes glaze over and soon you find yourself clicking the back button to high-tail it out of that site asap!
Yes, blogs are about words. Lovely juicy SEO-friendly words, but they need some visuals to help wash them down.
Why are visuals important in blogs?
If you want to educate people then it’s worth knowing that 65% of people are visual learners.
If you want engagement, then did you know that 40% of people respond to visual information more than text?
And here’s a shocker.
The average person reads only 20% of your text on a website. Oh an arrow to a web copywriter’s heart…but the sad truth.
Your visuals are doing as much of the talking as your written words are so you shouldn’t overlook them.
Visuals such as images and videos can help your business blog post stand out from the rest.
By including relevant visuals like gifs, graphics, infographics and videos in your blog posts, you can help keep readers engaged and stop them from hitting that back button.
Plus more and more people are using Google’s visual search.
When you have high-quality and optimized images, your images could rank first when people perform a Google (image) search. This helps you bring more visitors to your site and you don’t have to have a photography site to appear in these results!YOAST
Now we know why using visuals is important in blog posts, here’s how to use them effectively.
1. Utilize Unique Visuals
People don’t just want to read about what you’re offering, they want to be able to see it too! Include unique visuals of your products or services in your blog posts using infographics or high-quality images.
While stock imagery is massively helpful, if it’s available for free then it’s probably been used A LOT.
Try to take your own photos where possible. It will make your content stand out more!
2. Use Captivating Graphics
Incorporating graphics into your posts will draw readers’ attention and make them more likely to engage with the post for longer periods of time.
Highlight key points and create visual stories by utilizing custom illustrations, charts, icons and graphs that explain concepts in an easy-to-understand way.
Canva and Visme are two great online tools for creating captivating graphics without having any design experience. With a user-friendly interface, you can create professional-looking visuals in minutes.
Honestly it’s super simple.
Canva even provides lots of templates for you to get started with too.
If you’re looking to add some visual elements to your blog posts, these tools are definitely worth checking out!
Bonus Tip: If you’re using illustrations try and pick ones that are by the same designer or the same group of images. In Envato and Canva this is easy to do, by searching by the designer’s name.
3. Try using GIFs
GIFs, or Graphics Interchange Format files, are a great way to add some visual interest to your blog posts. They can be used to explain complex concepts in an easy-to-understand way, or simply to add some fun and personality to your content.
There are a number of websites that allow you to create GIFs for free, such as Giphy and MakeaGif. All you need is a video or series of images that you want to turn into a GIF. Simply upload the video or images, choose the start and end points, and hit “Create.”
If I’m going to use Gifs, then I like to keep to a consistent theme.
So for certain blog posts, I like to choose Gifs that are from the same family – like Schitt’s Creek, Bob’s Burgers, or a certain celebrity.
4. Use video
Google loves video too now! Having a video could give your blog post some more visibility and encourage people to spend longer on your blog post than they would have done if it was just text.
5. Embed from social channels
Embedding links from social posts is another good way to add visual content to help expand on a concept or point.
It’s a quick and easy way to share appealing graphics from influencers, or brands to illustrate a point.
6. Focus on Quality Over Quantity
When creating graphics for your posts, it’s important to focus on quality rather than quantity.
If you want to boost engagement choose visual content that is good quality and reflective of your brand.
Quality visuals should be clear, concise and visually appealing and help to convey your message.
Finding high-quality visuals to accompany your blog posts can be a challenge. You want visuals that are both relevant and appealing to your readers, but finding the right source for them can be difficult.
Luckily, there are a number of sites that offer high-quality, royalty-free images for you to use in your blog posts.
Sites like Unsplash and Pexels offer tens of thousands of images that you can use without any restrictions. Simply search for keywords related to your post and find an image that perfectly encapsulates what you’re trying to say.
7. Make the photos you use relevant
Always remember that the visuals you include should be relevant to the topic being discussed in the blog post so they add value and are not just there for aesthetic purposes only
8. Optimise your images to load quickly
Make your images small so they load quickly. Large images will take a long time to load. Shrink large graphic images using tools like Tiny Png.
9. Enhance your image SEO
Optimize your blog post’s SEO potential by including alt tags with descriptive titles for all of your visuals as well as subtitles underneath each image where appropriate.
Alt tags are a form of meta tag used in HTML to provide an accessibility feature for visually impaired readers. They are also known as ‘alt attributes’ and provide a text description alternative that can be understood by search engine robots. This allows search engines to crawl images and index them, boosting the SEO potential of your blog post.
How to write alt tags for your images
When writing alt tags, it is important to remember that they should accurately describe the image and not be keyword stuffed for SEO purposes.
The best way to write an effective alt tag is to keep it short, relevant and descriptive; think about what search term someone might use if they were looking for the same image, and use that phrase as your alt tag.
Warning. Avoid duplicating or reusing alt tags across multiple images as this could have a negative impact on your SEO. Alt text is there to help visually impaired people understand what the photo is about (plus having an SEO benefit) so remember to describe what is in each picture and think about the “human”
Make that alt text as juicy as possible and make the alt tag more meaningful by adding context. You want enough detail that explains why you’ve used this exact image at this point in your text.
For example, if you had an image of a cake with sprinkles on top, then instead of using something generic like “cake with sprinkles” you could use something more descriptive such as “vanilla sponge cake with colourful chocolate sprinkles”.
The following GIF from Bob’s burgers of the cast dancing has no purpose other than be a celebratory end to this blog post.
Infusing your blog posts with quality, SEO-rich, engaging visuals is a great way to stand out from other brands online, boost engagement and drive more leads from a small business website.
Leverage the power of visuals to capture the reader’s attention and create conversations around content!
Need help making your blog post more readable? Check out this blog post on “11 easy ways to make your blog posts more readable.”