The Importance of Quality Photos and Videos on your website
In this day and age,your online products and services can be accessed at any time – day or night, from multiple devices. It’s important now, more than ever to ensure your hotel website imagery, including videos are of high quality to captivate your audience. The majority of consumers in today’s market are engaging with brands via the internet, and they expect an impressive visual experience.
The Power of Images
Studies have found “that the human brain deciphers image elements simultaneously, while language is decoded in a linear, sequential manner taking more time to process. Our minds react differently to visual stimuli.” (Ref http://www.billiondollargraphics.com/infographics.html)
Users will absorb information more quickly through quality images and video whilst also allowing you to highlight specific messages to your audience.
Images as Communication Tools
Your hotel website is also a representation of your brand; your photos and videos have the power to communicate this with your audience. This can also filter through to your social media platforms, where image based sharing is highly popular, particularly on sites such as Pinterest, Facebook and Tumblr. Take advantage of this option – but do so with caution.
There are a few important Do’s and Don’ts you should consider when assessing your hotel website and adding imagery to your pages.
Remember the appropriateness of your image
Your images need to support the points and messages you are trying to get across to your audience. Ensure your choice of imagery will do just that so there is no confusion by users. For example if you have different hotel rooms based on specific rates, don’t add an image of your luxury room for the lower-medium rates even if it’s a great professional image. Not only is it inappropriate, but it can leave you with an unhappy customer should they book based on the visuals from your website.
Tell A story
Your audience is visiting your site with a purpose in mind; you need to tell a story with your images and provide them with an experience they can remember. This is of particular importance for hotels, as your site can project the “physical presence” to consumers online.
Have the same image style across your hotel website to ensure consistency and fluency across each page. For example if you are describing the various dining options at your hotel, have a key aspect of what you would like to capture in mind, and apply this across each dining option.
Add images that don’t relate to your products/services
You may have a great selection of images to choose from for your hotel website, but take the time to consider what the contribution of this image is to the overall message you are projecting to your potential guests. Your products and services should be the focal point rather than great looking models who may quickly attract users and just as quickly see them disappear from your site.
Use Trademarks/Copyright images
There are a few options you can choose from when it comes to image selection – helping yourself to existing images online is not always the best option. Ensure your choice excludes images with trademark or copyrights that can lead you to legal issues. It is often best to create your own imagery that other brands cannot purchase from a stock image site making it specific to your brand.
Far from Reality
A beautiful sunset, setting on a calm beach, gentle waves with escarpment views…lovely! However, is this what your actual hotel location has to offer? Although you may wish to steer away from the negatives – i.e. the view from the hotel room is actually a brick wall, avoid adding images that are so far from reality that your audience will be left with the wrong impression. Focus on your strong points, and what sets you apart – without stretching the truth too far from fact.
Having a hotel website with the right user functionality, along with high quality images and video can be of benefit to your business in many ways. Today’s consumers are frequently connecting with brands online and it is essential that you provide them with high quality engaging content and imagery so as they don’t leave your site and head over to the competition. Before deciding on the important aspects, consider some of the do’s and don’ts and set your site up for success.