At What Point Should You Consider HD Imagery for Your Website?

August 14, 2012 Mike Weisert

You’ve probably been hearing about HD imagery on websites, especially with the introduction of Apple’s branded “Retina Display.” The Retina Display claims to make individual pixels imperceptible to the human eye.

Your first inclination may be to begin updating all of your current imagery to higher resolution photos. Before you begin, consider the following:

  • Higher resolution photos require more time to download. You need to carefully weigh the benefits of higher resolution photos versus page load times.
  • Is the image a design element and not a photo? If you are using images as design elements (rounded corners for example), you should talk to your interactive partner about switching to CSS today. It scales across any pixel density and will free up valuable bandwidth.
  • Start with high quality images. You cannot simply take your existing website photos and increase density. It will add file size, but the image will not noticeably improve.

On legal websites, imagery is most prominent in two places: the homepage and lawyer biography photos. On the homepage, HD imagery will be best served if it is reinforcing key content messaging, such as a client success story. On lawyer bios, HD imagery could be effective in making the lawyer more personable or making the page appear more polished. If you have compelling imagery of your lawyers (beyond portraits), adding HD images may enhance the story you are presenting.

HD imagery will improve the user experience if utilized as part of your overall content strategy. Be sure to consider load times, especially for mobile users, and consult with your interactive partner before transitioning your site images.

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Mike Weisert

At the time of publishing, Mike was a Senior Strategist at One North.

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