You’ve heard it many times: Pictures are worth a thousand words.
Now, words can also tell a story, but they take longer. They need attention from your target audience to be understood.
This, unfortunately, is not a luxury you have with your insurance website. You have to grab someone’s attention in the seconds.
That’s not long enough for someone to read about your agency, or peruse your lines of business. It is long enough for a photo to grab someone’s attention and convince them to look through your website.
The Most Important Image
There is one picture in particular that needs to captivate, and that’s the first picture they see. The image that tops your homepage is going to shape the viewer’s impression of you and your website.
This image goes by many names. I’ve heard hero image, splash image, and header image. No matter the name, though, the purpose is the same: To keep the viewer engaged and on the website.
To that end, we’re going to go over some tips and tricks to pick out that perfect image.
1. Put the Effort In
Most people make their first mistake before they even pick out their image. The mistake is they don’t give this process its due respect.
I hear it all the time, “I’m not a designer,” “I don’t have an eye for this,” “I don’t have time to look through hundreds of photos.”
The truth is, you get what you give when it comes to picking the design details of your website. If you don’t do your due diligence in designing your website, it will show. Online visitors will lose interest.
Imagery is important. It’s also easier than you think. That is, if you think a photo looks vibrant and modern, it probably is. You could also run it by your designer or website design consultant. They’ll be happy to share their opinion with you. After all, that’s what you pay a consultant for.
This is what it looks like when someone spends hours looking through photos...
This agent is a former member of the military. He found something that is patriotic, but also works with his color scheme. His agency is also in the Northeast, and the Statue of Liberty is local to that region.
To find something that covers all your bases, you have to really look. You can’t just pick the first thing that appears to you. The early effort you put into the process will show benefits in the future.
2. Choose Wisely to Show You’re Local
Now that you are in the right mindset to search for a photo, let’s talk about how to actually pick out the right image. The first idea I want to go over is localization.
As an independent agent, it’s important your potential and existing clients know you’re local. That you’re a member of their community.
A great way to do that is use a landscape of your city as your header image. Look at the below example. Is there any question where they’re located?
I would say for anyone in the Chicago area, this will resonate and lead to potential customers.
Remember, most people could buy insurance from a major carrier rather than an agent. What gives an independent agent the edge? Community. Play off of that. It can serve you well.
If choosing your location isn’t going to work, there is another option. Make sure to pick something that tells the story of what you’re selling and who you are.
For example, for life insurance, the image should portray families, families, families.
You’re selling a product that’s intended to protect families. If you can find an image of parents and kids laughing and playing together, that is what’s going to hit home. I always tell my clients people gravitate toward people.
This also requires staying positive. Happy families will help you garner trust. Showing scenes such as funerals, terminally ill patients and headstones will have people running for the hills. Avoid those at all costs.
And, a bonus, personal thought: Puppies can help you sell anything. Take a look at this photo and tell me you don’t want to go buy a new car, right now.
3. Choose Your Colors Wisely
Colors are so important when picking photography. Here are some tips to get the most out of your imagery.
Avoid black and white imagery. It’s rarely as eye-catching as you think it is. Even if the rest of your website scheme is black and white, use your header image as a splash of color. Sure, monochromatic images look classic, but they don’t draw the eye anywhere.
Use vivid, vibrant colors. Here’s a great example.
The lens flare and green grass draws the eye and acts as a contrast to the classic black and gold color scheme.
Another good rule of thumb is to make sure colors complement, if not match, your branding and color scheme.
The primary colors for this website are gold and forest green. Since these two colors match the main hero image, it makes a powerful impression.
I could write a 20-page paper on the importance of choosing the right photography. Alas, I promised you 1,000 words. The final thought I’d like to leave you with is this: Know what story you’re trying to tell, and stick to it.
Do you have any questions or tips of your own to add? Leave us a comment below!
About the Author
As a website coordinator, Matt Farrell is the initial contact to customers who purchase Insurance Website Builder. He coordinates all aspects of website design between the customer and our graphic designers. Before joining ITC in 2016, Matt worked as a meteorologist and broadcast reporter. He has a bachelor’s degree in communication studies from the University of North Texas and a bachelor’s degree in meteorology from Mississippi State. Matt enjoys bowling, playing golf, and spending time with his wife, two dogs and a cat.More Content by Matt Farrell