All the articles that discuss website enhancements or facelifts will mention media somewhere along the way. Why? Because rich media entices and engages viewers.
Your customers do not want to read your website; they want to skim it. Media allows for that.
The benefits of media richness
Promotion. Your company offers a wide variety of services and/or products, and all of them are of top quality. However, there may be some products or services, or other points of value, that you would like to specifically localize and highlight.
Videos and images are a surefire way to offer a saturated preview and comprehensive understanding of value for customers. Talk up the best your business has to offer by emphasizing the right stuff in the richest media modalities.
SEO. Want to be on the top of Google’s charts? Of course you do! This is entirely possible when you maximize your keywords, make your content searchable and endorsable by Google, and tag your images and videos in a way that search results can read.
Images and videos, therefore, allow you an optimization opportunity that might be missed otherwise with just traditional text content.
Interactivity. Getting one customer to check out your content and engage with it is excellent; getting many customers to do the same is obviously better. To multiply traffic in an instant, all a company has to do is provide shareable content for users. It’s easier said than done, of course, but devising media-rich blogs and web content is a good start.
Engagement. Savvy web users have high standards for convenience. The Internet is supposed to be the fast lane on the information superhighway, and your website should be traveling at 80 mph.
Customers expect your site to be rich with valuable content, including media, that they can browse and share with ease. They’re more likely to bounce from your site if they have to read paragraphs on end to find the valuable, meaty stuff.
The truth is, they simply have better things to do.
How to step up your media game
Photo optimization. Everyone knows by now that images are the gateway to better engagement and retention of website visitors. However, images that break, exceed bandwidth, or are of poor quality will have the opposite effect.
InObscuro offers an image optimization tutorial that can help guide you through the beginnings of image optimization, including how to save images properly, what sizes to use for which types of images, and more. Optimizing your images for use on your website will improve customer perceptions of your site and your company as a whole.
Video production. If you’re going to post proprietary videos anywhere on the web, it’s essential that they represent you as professional, modern, and capable. Do not distract from your content and message by creating a video that has poor sound quality and lighting, or is out of focus.
Use the best sound recording equipment and set up lights in a way that discourages harsh shadows or overexposure. Be sure to set your tripod on a level surface and focus the camera so the entire video is shot under optimal conditions and does not appear shaky or blurry to the viewers.
Infographics. The benefit of an infographic is that it relays a wealth of information in a skimmable, bite-sized morsel that takes up less space on your site and offers tremendous value to readers. Hubspot offers an infographic to explain the best practices for infographic creation. Concision, color scheme, up-to-date content, and shareability are all discussed.
Media-rich social media. Facebook and Twitter are great, and they reach the most users. However, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, and Vine are more media-rich ways to interact with customers.
While the former platforms offer full capabilities to link and embed videos and images, the latter are truly media rich, and rely only minimally on text integration.
The best way to collaborate with these sites is to create content that is Pinnable or Instagrammable — i.e., content that is image heavy and offers a quick way for customers to share on these sites. For video sites, create content that will appear proprietorially on Vine or YouTube, then share those links on other social media and your website for optimum exposure.
Icon generation. Icons and other buttons are a fabulous way to direct the flow of activity on your website and guide viewers toward the information you want them to see. Icons also look attractive on your site and give customers the perception of value, as opposed to the traditional hyperlinks that may be less design-oriented. Graphic designers and developers can often work together to draft icons.
And, here’s a final bonus – there are many sources for free icons as well – definitely take advantage of them.