Images play a huge role in the attractiveness of your website.
Images - when used correctly - are key elements of a page or post as they nicely split up text and give a great visual addition to the website. We all know the saying "a picture paints a thousand words" - this could not be truer when on a website. Images often sell a product or idea, which in many cases is not always possible with text.
Though, if not used correctly, images can have an adverse effect on your website. One of the most common misuses of images on a website is when they are not readily optimised for the web. It is vital that the images are resized to the smallest required dimensions before they are uploaded to the server - there are a number of reasons for this:
- Site speed: Each image has a file size. The higher the file size is, the longer the page will take to load. If a user has a relatively slow internet speed, it's going to take them a fairly long period of time to download a 10MB image. If the page has a gallery of 10MB images, they will be waiting until Christmas for the whole page to load.
- Server resources: Whether you host your website on your own server or you are using a third party hosting service, each plan will have limits to the resources you can use. The higher the size of the images, the quicker you will hit your disk space usage cap. When you hit this cap, your website will have it's speed dramatically reduced by the host so that their resources don't take so much of a hit, and you would be required to pay more to upgrade your hosting plan so that you would have some free disk space. This would happen again and again if the images were not optimised.
- Consistency: It's good to maintain a consistent style throughout your website, both in copy styling and with images. Cosmic's 'rule of thumb' is that images are displayed in full width, half width and third width formats. This is much easier to do when the images have already been resized and cropped to the exact size they need to be so that you don't have to struggle with the scaling options within your CMS. While these can be handy, the file size will still be large and you don't have the ability to actually crop some of the height or width, just reduce the size either to scale or by squashing one side. Resizing and cropping beforehand will ensure your images remain the same size throughout the website and continue to look professional.
So these are Cosmic's three reasons as to why you should be resizing images for your website - we hope you found this guide useful and we will soon be releasing articles on handy tools that you can use to manipulate the images for your online presence and much more!