Every blog needs a good background image or at the very least a header background. These images are used to show visitors what the blog is about, at a glance. It is important that these images are well designed, visually appealing, and also suitable in terms of format and file size, because all of those things can have an impact on your search rankings.
Let’s take a look at a few example blog headers. This header looks good at the default size, but if it were to be viewed on a phone with the wrong aspect ratio, it would look skewed and less appealing.
This image, on the other hand, is great on mobile devices, but because it was created at a specific resolution, if it were viewed on a tablet PC or a desktop, it would show that size and quality – and not in a good way.
Ideally, you want the images that you use to be high resolution, but you also need to use a file format that can cope with that. There’s little point using images that are too high resolution because they will have too high of a file size and this will make the site take too long to load. Appropriate compression can make all the difference.
If you’re not using photography, and instead using vector images, make sure that the transparency you select is appropriate, and make sure that you choose the correct compression algorithms when you export the files.
Many people make the mistake of assuming that SEO refers only to text. A few companies gave us their opnion on what they think, one of the firms mentioned that “The fact is that images matter too. The right file name, title, and meta information will help with SEO. The right file size will help to improve loading times – reducing bounce rate and therefore helping to improve rankings. Even how the image looks can make all the difference.”
If your background is the wrong color compared to your text, or if it is too ‘busy’ then that will impair the end user experience. Imagine trying to read text that is overlaid over this background, for example:
That would be hard to read, wouldn’t it! This background, by comparison, is vastly different and would be much nicer to use.
We have a number of free backgrounds that you can download and use as you wish – or take for inspiration. You can work with those backgrounds to do almost anything that you wish – put them on your website as is, modify them, share them, or turn them into header images. The choice is yours.
Whatever you decide, make sure that if you borrow images for a website background, the images are either creative commons, or that you own the right to use them. Make sure you follow the rules of any creative commons license that you take up. It is not OK to just download an image and use it without getting permission first. If you use something that you do not have the rights to then at best you could get a takedown notice, and at worst you might get taken to court. You will, either way, end up looking unprofessional to the people who find out that you ‘borrowed’ images without permission.
There’s no need to steal images when there is a wealth of creative commons imagery out there, and there are highly affordable stock photos too. For higher value brands, you might want to consider paying to get exclusive rights to a photo, so that you don’t end up with a competitor having the same logo, background or header as you.
If you don’t have the time, confidence, or software to make SEO friendly background images yourself, then why not use our background creation service? Just send us a brief and we will give you a quote for a high-quality background, and work with you to create a bespoke image that truly reflects your brand. So getting an image that fits your website is an important matter and should not be taking lightly.
SEO requires a multi-pronged approach, and a mobile-friendly, fast loading, easy to use site is a big part of that. Pick the right image and you will find that things work well, and hopefully that your site will appear in keyword searches and image searches for whatever your subject matter is. Of course, you will need good content as well as good images – but one without the other is not going to give you the full benefit.
We are eager to help any webmaster – whether a hobbyist, a business owner, or a freelancer, to get their site up and running and make it the best that it can possibly be. Take a look at our tutorials to see what makes a good background and a good header image, and browse our collection for inspiration.