Optimize Your Photos for the Web

It doesn't matter if your emailing photos of your grandson or putting images of your latest product on your online store. Too many people don't consider optimizing their photos for the web. We've all been on too many web pages where it seemed that the photos would never load, and sometimes they didn't. So here are some steps to make sure that your photos show up on your site.

1. Always have a back up original format copy of your image. Never alter the original. Believe me you will regret it.

2. Crop to size. Make sure that you crop out any extra information that isn't needed. Remember the larger the photo the longer it takes to load or send.

3. Resize to reduce pixels. There should be an option to resize according to pixels. You're going to want the largest size to be no more than 250 pixels or you can reduce the dpi to no more than 96.

4.Reduce the color palette. Many images have millions of colors so the first thing that you need to do is reduce the colors to 256. You will lose some depth with this.

5. Save the file in a standard format. JPEG is the most common for photos and you can compress the image with a JPEG for further reduction in file size. It's not unusual to see GIF or PNG as well.

Remember that with a 56k connection a 150k file will take 20 seconds to load. If you're creating a web page every photo that you add will add to the time it takes to download all of the images. If you keep the images small in size the smaller resolution will not be as obvious.

About The Author

Copyright 2004 Kelly Paal

Kelly Paal is a Freelance Nature and Landscape Photographer, exhibiting nationally and internationally. Recently she started her own business Kelly Paal Photography (www.kellypaalphotography.com). She has an educational background in photography, business, and commercial art. She enjoys applying graphic design and photography principles to her web design.

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