I Need a Hero: How to Boost Conversion With One Image

I Need a Hero: How to Boost Conversion With One Image

Lesley J. Vos
Written by Lesley J. Vos
November 22, 2016

We’ve all heard that:

A picture says a thousand words.

Headlines and great offer matter, but nothing can complete your landing page and spice your conversion better than a suitable image. With most people being visually-oriented, photos are a powerful tool for web designers, as they can tell a story, meet the eye, and motivate users to scroll and take some action.

Your homepage or landing design influence conversion much more than you think. A visitor’s initial contact with your website is topmost, and one way to leave a positive impression is creating a hero image.

What is that?

A hero image is a picture in the visible place of your website’s landing or main page. We’ve all seen them, and they look like this:


They might be:

  • Trustworthy pictures.
  • Applicable photos or videos.
  • Content with emotional, educational, or persuasive connotation.

That’s all well and fine, but here goes a kicker:

A hero is NOT simply the main page picture. It’s the image of decision for visitors to make, and it’s the photo expressing a defined goal.

Why Do You Need a Hero?

Visitors go in for websites that are easy to read, perceive, and use. You have about 0.05 seconds to build an impression, so your hero’s image is the fastest way to help people acquire your information and message right.

The research from Google confirms the above number. And yet, using the hero image, don’t forget about your offer: don’t foul up, no matter how attractive and engaging it is.

Heroes are elegant, and they lead the way.

How to Choose and Create Your Hero?

As a rule, the conversion of your image depends on its branding. Make sure your hero meets the following criteria:

  1. Is it relevant to your keywords?
  2. Does it help to understand the goal of your website?
  3. Does it contrast with a web page design? Does it make visitors see your CTA button?
  4. Does it make your brand look trustworthy?
  5. Does it stress the worth of your offer? Does it demonstrate its advantages?
  6. Does this image express the desired emotion, spurring visitors into action?
  7. Does it demonstrate clients that they will become heroes once they’ve made your targeted action?

A good example is the below image:

eCommerce Conversion, Landing page,

It follows the goal, it looks trustworthy, it expresses emotions, and it makes clients look like heroes.

[Tweet “Ever heard of a hero image? Find out how to use this strategy on your #eCommerce site this season.”]

Your hero image might be of four types:

1. The image of your product

That makes intuitive sense.

It’s an eye-grabbing picture of high quality with the goal of complementing your product’s description. To boost its conversion, make sure it matches your design and contrasts with your text.

Here goes the example:

Ecommerce, Convert, Conversions, Food

2. The image of context

That’s the case when your hero is not a product but lifestyle of its consumers.

The above-mentioned example of Bid4Papers goes to this category, too. Another one comes from Bla Bla Car, the biggest community uniting drivers and passengers on the way. Their homepage image is a road, which doesn’t demonstrate the product itself but makes it clear that this website is about travels.


Travel, Ecommerce, Business, Conversions

3. The image of creators

In point of fact, it’s the photo of your product’s creator. The web page with such photos contains tons of useful content based on personal talents or achievements. Also, it suggests a subscribe button or shows visitors where to look for more information.

The biggest mistake of some webmasters:

They use photos of people unrelated to the website. Stock photos that most of us ignore or images of unknown people found on the web won’t do the world of good for your conversion. Feature real people for better results.

[Tweet “You could hit your #conversions target with one bullet; A Hero Image. Find out how w/@LesleyVos“]

Let’s take Jeff Walker’s blog as the example.

The New York Times bestselling author, he shares a step-by-step launch formula for any new product. The homepage of his websites contains Jeff’s photo with him offering to sign up for a newsletter.

Conversions, Product Launch, Landing page, Online business, Ecommerce,

4. The image with no context

They can help because of their strong visual cues or right psychology behind their colors. Even with no products or people on it, such images might match your identity or convey a message to visitors.

The example is Crazy Egg:


Crazy Egg, Heatmaps. Conversion

Or Keas:

Convert, Conversion, Landing page,

When chosen right, visual content complements your offer and adds some context (read: story, emotions) to your product, therefore enhancing its perception and value. A hero image helps to enlist the respect and trust of your clients.

What else can become your hero image?

  • The process of your product’s creation.
  • Your team working on the product. (The great example is HubSpot’s products page.)
  • The delivery process.
  • Your managers working with clients.
  • Bonuses supplementing your product (instructions, presents, booklets, and others).

The easiest method to learn what image would work best for your website is A/B testing. It allows to receive actionable measurements and see if your chosen hero converts, generates leads, and evokes emotions.

Originally published November 22, 2016 - Updated April 15, 2019
Lesley J. Vos
Content writer and marketer, Lesley writes blog articles for PlagiarismCheck.org and contributes to top publications on digital marketing, blogging, and copywriting. Follow her on Twitter to say hi and read more works of hers.
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