It’s true, photography can make or break a website. I’m so thrilled to have Suzy Rounce of Switchback Creative guest posting on this topic!
Suzy and her husband, Trevor Rounce, are the power houses behind Switchback Creative, a small digital agency that offers creative branding, website design & development, logo & graphic design and advertising for brands. Head to their site to check out some of their latest work!
One of their fabulous website creations was for Christina Vaillancourt. I had a great time helping Christina create some images for her new site; from headshots to brand storytelling pics. See some of them below while Suzy talks about the five things to focus on with respect to website photography. – Kate
Photography can make or break a website. Take your website from something you have seen before, to a truly customized representation of your brand that tells your company story. Based on our experience with building custom websites for 100’s of brands, for more than a decade – here are five things to focus on that will make your website standout through photography.
- Brand personality, demonstrate your tone and vibe
- Share your space and environment
- Reveal something about yourself, your culture and your team
- Action! Show your product or service in action
- Use a professional photographer to make it happen
Knowing how easy it is for businesses to gloss over great photography (or default to stock photos) when they build a website, we wanted to remind business owners why they should take it seriously, take it to another level. The difference between good and great websites has a lot to do with what your photos say about your brand.
Brand personality, demonstrate your tone and vibe
A photo is worth a 1,000 words. Tone and vibe are hard to explain in words, but showing that in a photo is much easier. It could be serious, dark, light, colourful, curated, spontaneous, or luxurious. All of these show personality in an unexplainable way. Do you have a space that can bring that out? It could be a store, friend’s house, backyard or street that suites your brand narrative. Think about two things you could photograph that represent your vibe.
Share your space and environment
The spaces we spend time in, and the environment where we do our work, says a lot about us. Sharing a piece of that and going out of your way to create that peek-behind-the-curtain is helpful for potential customers to see on your website. It can be your office, your home, your favourite location or objects and vignettes that share a taste of your company. A couple things to note: in order to ensure you look prepared and professional you will need to put your best foot forward. It should be staged but still an authentic version of your space. You might need to pare down clutter and mess and up the ante on the visual aspects. Make sure it’s recognizable when people visit your office or shop, they shouldn’t feel confused about where they are in comparison to your website. Remember under promise, over deliver!
Reveal something about yourself, your culture and your team
Putting your face, as well as your name and team behind your business is really important. Especially in this time where everyone has an opinion on social platforms, but rarely is it your face and reputation standing in-front of that brand. Team members will always come and go – believing in your culture and people to trust them on your website is a signal to customers how much you care. If you can go the extra step and show more of your personality to your audience, that is even better. Don’t just do a group shot standing in front of your building in your in a suit – show who you are and what you stand for.
Action! Show your product or service in action
People want to see how to use your product or how you work when offering your service. Action shots, of your team, of your product in use, helping customers and doing what you do best. See if you can capture a moment that matters in your business. Event, demonstration or idea of how you work. It makes your website less generic and instantly custom to only you! Not AI generated, fake or stock photo people in make believe offices.
Use a professional photographer to make it happen
A professional photographer – expert in their field, that specializes in brand photography is a great way to use their artistic eye to bring out the best in you and your team. They will have a process, suggestions and ideas that will make your photos better. Their experience will have taught them things that work and don’t, combining that with your ideas and vision will make the secret sauce that will stand out to everyone that views your site. A website isn’t a place for Instagram candid type photos. You are trying to put your best foot forward so find a photographer that suites you and dive into their process and ideas.
When you combine these 5 aspects together you will have a website that feels authentic to your brand, unique and very informative to your website visitors. All of that means they are 5 steps closer to buying from you and understanding what you are all about.
Written by Suzy Rounce. Suzy is a visual communicator and the co-founder of Switchback Creative who runs it with her husband Trevor, a full-stack web developer. Suzy has been in the industry for more than 20 years and considers storytelling the foundation of what all companies should build their marketing experiences on. Over the past 9 years Switchback Creative has worked with more than 275 businesses helping them connect to people’s hearts and minds through digital experiences. They have been recipients of the Airdrie Business of the Year Award and finalists in other award categories over the years. Suzy, along with the Switchback team craft design experiences that create not just customers – but raving fans!
Brand Storytelling photo sessions – Capturing the visual story of your heart-centred business.
Kate Daniel is a Calgary, Alberta Brand Photographer serving creative & ambitious entrepreneurs.