You’ve all heard that on the Internet, content is king. For most people, text is the first thing that comes to mind when they think of content. But it also includes images — specifically, the kind of images that are more than just decorative elements.
Thoughtfully chosen images can communicate at a glance the content of a particular page and work in tandem with the text. High quality images can enhance the overall level of professionalism apparent on your site. They provide visual interest that draws visitors in, as well as resting places for the eye. They can even invoke emotions that prompt the visitor to action (such as making contact with your law firm).
On the other hand, poorly chosen images are space wasters that clutter the screen without adding any value to your visitors. They can confuse or irritate by being unrelated to the content of the page. They can bore them by being too obvious, lazy or generic. They can be hard to see because they’re too small, the contrast is too low, or the image is too complicated. And of course, they can just plain be ugly or unappealing.
So, what works? What should you (or your designer) look for and what should you avoid when selecting stock photos for your law firm website?
Well, if there’s one piece of advice that we can give you, it’s to avoid law firm cliches as much as possible — images of gavels, scales of justice, law books, the Constitution or the Bill of Rights, courtrooms, the Statue of Liberty, eagles, etc. Unfortunately, these are exactly the kinds of images that show up when you search for “lawyer” or “attorney” on all of the stock photo sites (often the starting point for naive web designers looking for pictures for a law firm website).
By avoiding cliched images, you will be on the right path to selecting compelling images that actually support the text on your website. Look for high quality photos that are sharp, are reasonably high contrast, and where the subject matter is distinct and easy to understand.