In this article we explain the importance of vector background patterns for websites, and how will these vector background patters impact the SEO of your website.
“Design is thinking made visual” – Saul Bass
Everybody loves anything that is visually appealing. If not for this reason, why would any brand or company invest so much in visual advertising through mediums such as billboards? And in this age of digital marketing, websites are definitely the digital brand ambassadors for your business. That’s why you shouldn’t take this channel for granted! Websites are capable of bringing and promoting your business to far-reaching places that you probably only dreamt of at the beginning.
A website’s success is measured by the number of users/readers/followers – in other words, network traffic. Different folks would tell you a number of strategies they used but a common answer to that would be the effective use of images. Statistics shows that images are one of the top aspects contributing to consistently increasing (or at least, regular) network traffic. And when we talk about images, a few strategies should be used alongside to ensure success. Simply put that placing random images on your web page here and there won’t make the cut. And doing so might even cause you a backlash instead of gaining anything from it. Be mindful that when we talk about images found on your website is not only limited to the icons used for buttons or infographics on display on your blog post. But more importantly, the vector background patterns for websites you use.
Importance of Vector Background Patterns for Websites
Background images are important to any website. Using it not only add a splash of color to your page but also a great marketing tactic to promote your brand. Why wouldn’t it? If you are unaware, background images take about 90% of your website content. And if it takes that much space, you should use it to gain from it!
Platforms such as Blogger and WordPress are offering various background images to choose from. Apart from the “default” options, plugins are also easily downloadable that increase your options which background image to use. On top of that, you can also hire a web designer (or make your own!) to create a custom background image for your site – cool stuff! And if you hired somebody to make you a custom-made background image, you have more likely heard of vector images.
Vector background images are gaining popularity when it comes to background patterns for websites. Apart from being highly scalable minus the annoying pixels, new versions of web browsers and screens are now capable of displaying the crisp and vivid colors in a vector image. Unlike a few years ago when this is seemingly impossible due to unsupported display options, the vector vs raster image debate was unheard of.
Using vector background patterns for websites is clearly an option. But similar to any business strategy, it pays to know of these tips to make sure using vector images for your website background image is the best option.
Identify your brand with the image you intend to use
Choosing vector background patterns for websites are an important and crucial part of website design. Luckily, there are a lot of background patterns for websites (some of them are even free!) to choose from – vector images included! While it is true that there are hundreds of options available when it comes to free background patterns, you shouldn’t just choose ANYTHING that looks “good”. Simply put, a background image may look catchy when you look at it but is it a good choice as a representation of your brand? Is it capable of truly reflecting what your business is all about? Or, are you simply choosing that image because it is a vector image?
These are some of the initial questions you need to ask yourself before settling for a vector image (in fact, any image) to use. As a rule of thumb, don’t settle for a background image just because a competition uses it. Use it only if the image feels right for you and your business.
Effort to ‘vectorize’ the image
In case you didn’t find any free or ready-made vector image to use, you have the option to vectorize any image you want! Well, almost any image. Thanks to photo-editing tools available in the market, you can easily create your own vector image or convert an existing raster image! All you have to do next is to find a talented graphic design artist to do it for you or if you have the time, learn to do it yourself!
Of course, there’s a catch. It is true that you can technically convert raster images to vector. However, there are some designers who will tell you that there are some images better off to remain in its rasterized version. The reason being is due to the amount of effort it takes for the vector image to look “good”.
One of vector images’ weakness is its inability to have the same level of detail in the images it produced. Especially if you intend to convert an image such as a landscape photo or a portrait, vector images are not capable of going through the exact detail in color and shade transition. Details such as gradients and effects are some of the things that will get you shorthanded with vector images. And if you plan to use these types of images, then vectorizing it is not a smart move.
You may find graphic artists who will never say “no” to you and will find a way to convert the image to vector. However, just think about the amount of effort and time to vectorize the image: tracing every single line and going through each soft edge on a gradient. And in the end, find out that the finished product may look mediocre, unfurnished, and without smooth transition lines. Would you want an image like that for your website background – more likely not.
As a website owner, a positive user experience should be on the top of your priority during the “design phase”. Statistics show that a slow loading website as one of the reasons why people MAY not return to visit. Of course, other factors may contribute to the performance issue. These may include, but not limited to incompatible plugins and tools installed on your web page. But huge-sized images are also to blame! And this is where vector images shine brightly – as one of its major selling points is its small file size.
Unlike raster images, vector images don’t use pixels to form an image. It uses mathematical calculations to create geometric shapes – making use of hundred thousands of tiny lines to create a wireframe-like image. These images are built using computer software to arrange the vector node positions, plots, and lengths of these minuscule lines. And because the vector images use lines instead of dots to produce the image, it allows it to become very scalable regardless of the file size. As a result, using vector background patterns for websites is a practical choice and can greatly minimize the loading time.
Some website owners think that image conversion to vector is the simple answer to file size reduction. To be honest, vectorizing is NOT a full proof solution for this. Similar to the previous point discussed above, some raster images are better off in their original format rather than convert to vector. Especially if you intend to keep the “finer details” intact, this will only result in a lot of work only to realize in the end that the goal to reduce the file size is not possible to achieve.
How does it look – do you like it?
So you hired a graphic designer to vectorize an image (or custom-made) for you and submitted it for you to use. Looking at the image, can you honestly say that the image you are looking at is something that you like? Did it pass your expectations, at least? Especially for converted vector images, was the finished product the way you imagined it to be?
As mentioned in the previous items, converting from raster to vector is not impossible. But the finished product MAY NOT be desirable depending on the type of image used for it. And in effect, using a vector image for your website background may not be the best thing to do! Especially if your website niche makes use of landscapes, portraits, or images encapsulated with “emotions” – you could be better off using raster images instead!
Will it look seamless with the rest of your website design/layout?
This is not only applicable to vector images but as an overall tip when choosing a background image. Don’t choose or keep a background image that only looks good if seen on its own. Keep in mind that your background image should look in harmony together with other elements in your website. Whether it is the customized button or the color scheme, ensure that the vector background patterns for websites will not go clashing with your other website component.
Website platforms have a preview button for a reason: to see how all elements will fall into place once the website goes live. Using this “basic tool” is a great way to spot potential “flaws” and inconsistencies to your website firsthand. And for any website owner that would like to make an overall positive impression to your followers, it pays to be able to see the “issue” rather than have them spot for you!