A picture paints a thousand words.
What you want is for the image you have chosen to illustrate your point to look as good as possible and to be displayed on your visitor's device as quickly as possbile. Notice I used the word "device". That is because we can no longer rely on our visitors to be sitting at a desktop - they may well be out and about checking out your site on a mobile phone or even a tablet. They are not going to be happy with fuzzy pictures or images that take an age to download and eat into their mobile data limits. As a site owner you have a responsibility to make sure the images on your site are optimised, look great and appear as speedily as possible.
For the purposes of this blog series and to keep it simple, on a website, there are two basic sorts of image.
- Photographic Images: many colours, gradations, subtle details.
- Graphic Images: characterised by solid blocks of colour, clean divisions between the blocks
Each has its own needs and quirks. The next blog in this series will look at how best to prepare photographic images for the web.