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Photography is one of the most effective ways to add style and professionalism to a website. And when done properly, it can do wonders for the look and feel of your website. Because the things we see have a huge effect on our decisions, impressions, and opinions. And photography really can make or break the success of web design. 

Ultimately photography can break down barriers and build empathy, trust, and familiarity. Accompanying long blocks of text with visuals is also a fantastic way of communicating more effectively with an audience. 

Let’s take a look, then, at what exactly good photography can add to web design. . .


It may seem an obvious point, but relevance is absolutely crucial when in comes to your choice of photography. It’s surprising how many websites feature completely arbitrary stock photography that has nothing at all to do with the product or service on offer. 

The important thing to remember is that whilst it’s beneficial to use photography in web design, not just any photography will do. It’s sometimes even the case that irrelevant and poorly-chosen photographs can actually detract from the quality of a website.

This is where professional, bespoke photography often has the edge over stock. Stock photographs rarely make a perfect match, and it’s often the case of choosing the best of an OK bunch. This is because, with stock photography, you’re trying to pair pre-existing photographs with pre-existing designs. You’re bringing together two separate pieces and hoping they’ll fit. 

Obviously stock imagery has its place. It’s perfect for low-budget projects and pressing timelines, or for general use. Blog posts, for example, make a perfect home for stock photographs. But when it comes to a business’s website, stock imagery runs the risk of marring the aesthetic with a cheap and generic vibe

Always remember: stock images are there for anyone to use, so if you put one on your homepage you might not be the only person using it

Bringing in a professional photographer, on the other hand, allows you to manipulate the image to your liking. You can provide a brief, explain what the purpose of the photograph will be, and let the photographer do the rest. And although it may sound dramatic, sharing images with other businesses could seriously diminish your credibility in the eyes of prospective clients. 

And it’s hard to stress just how important it is to work with a professional photographer. Most people these days have access to a good quality camera, even if it’s the one on their smartphone. And many think that megapixels always equate to quality. But of course that isn’t the case. 

The simple solution is to always work with professionals. They’re guaranteed to cultivate the best images for your project.  

Of course, after all that, stock photography can be perfectly fine, especially if you’re willing to spend a bit of time looking around. But for the best results, and to achieve the most relevance, it’s always advisable to go with a photographer.  


Photography can have an enormous impact on how much people trust your business. There’s something strangely comforting and familiar about imagery. It gives a face to a website. When it comes to the web, reams and reams of text is only ever off-putting. People don’t like too much uninterrupted content. It can feel too sales-focussed and forced.

Adding images to your website, especially of people, can generate strong feelings of trust and ease in your audience

Photographs help to build trust and rapport. And whether you’re selling a product or a service, people will always feel more reassured and comfortable with an image-rich experience. 

An excellent method for building trust quickly is to use high-quality headshots. Showing yourself and/or your staff members on your homepage is a great way of letting people know you aren’t just a faceless corporate entity (or an anonymous cowboy).

In addition to photographs of you and your staff, think about including product shots. If you build fences, show the fences. If you’re a tattoo artist, show some of your designs.

Just bear in mind, when it comes to placing photographs on your website, never to neglect the homepage. That’s arguably the most important place for images to appear. And don’t forget that people like to buy from people. After all, everyone prefers it when they can put a face to a name. 

Points of interest

One of the biggest advantages of using photography in web design is that it gives you more control over where your reader’s attention is directed.

Photographs can be used to highlight important elements or themes in a text, or to help explain more complex concepts. It’s widely known that, when it comes to the internet, most people tend to skim over large blocks of text. But high-quality and well-placed images can tackle this habit. 

An attention-grabbing image can really break up an otherwise monotonous visual landscape. And it can inject points of interest and visual stimulus in order to hold a reader’s attention. 

The real point here is that a good image can make people stop and pay attention for a while. And that’s a priceless commodity in the digital sphere, where captive attention is a scarce resource. 

Photography: a detail not to be neglected

Websites are made of many things, and like with anything else one weak link can break the chain.

So it’s important never to neglect what can appear to be the most insignificant things. In the end, photography is a hugely important element of web design. And though it may not always seem to be an integral factor, it can absolutely be the death of an otherwise great-looking website.