Everyone knows the old cliché, “a picture is worth a thousand words.” For centuries, people have used illustrations to tell stories visually. In more recent history, cameras have enabled us to capture still images in photographs. Now, images are having a tremendous impact on the web as well. Images are used to gain readers’ attention, to help narrate a story, to reinforce a point and to provide additional information. They create strong impressions and can be used to supplement content at any level. They can even be added to emails to improve engagement.
Who Uses Images Online?
Anyone can use images online! Everyone from hobby bloggers to Fortune 100 executives can improve their web presence by using vivid, well-chosen images. Think about it. Profile pictures, social media buttons and even news headlines – everything can be made better with images.
Is Image Hosting Right for Me?
Once a webmaster decides to add an image to a page, he or she has to decide how to host that image. The first consideration the webmaster faces is whether to host the image on his or her own site or to use a third-party image hosting provider. So what’s a webmaster to do?!
At HostandStore, we always recommend hosting images yourself. The primary reason being that you don’t have to worry about your image’s server being unavailable. If all of your files are hosted in one place, then there’s no guesswork in determining where to turn for assistance should something go wrong.
Another benefit to hosting your own images is that your domain can experience major SEO gains by using alternative text tags, commonly called “alt tags.” This can help new visitors find your site because it optimizes your image to appear in search results.
Of course, there are some very well established third-party image hosting providers out there. Companies like TinyPic, Imgur and ImageShack each offer their own unique benefits. Depending on the goals a webmaster has for his/her site, a third-party provider like this may be completely sufficient. At the end of the day, you must find what makes sense for your particular situation.
Do you host your own images or utilize third-party hosting services? Tell us about it in the comments below!