Practical Construction Websites and Design: Your Gallery

When you go to an art gallery, do you see the blank canvas hanging on the wall? Do you see a perfectly formed tube of paint sitting there on a stool along with a brush still stiff from it’s packaging?

No, you see a painting or sculpture presented to you in all of its finished glory!

So why on earth would you put before pictures on your gallery page? I know the answer, but it’s wrong. Your gallery is supposed to be your verifiable proof that you can do what you say you can throughout the rest of your site.

Having a picture of a tattered home’s exterior with the shutter falling off next to a shiny new image of the same exterior DOESN’T help you sell. It confuses.

People look at these pictures and wonder ‘what did they do here?’ or ‘what am I supposed to be looking for?’

I can hear your response already…But Darren, how about if I label them before/after?

Which Gallery is the most appealing to Your Clients and Customers?

I refer you back to paragraph one and ask you this question…Do you prefer to think or dream?

If you like to think more than dream, good for you, but your prospect is on your gallery right now dreaming. She is imagining herself in her new space and dreaming about it. Sure, she will think about it at some point, but right now, she is living in a fantasy world where she doesn’t want to think ‘does this picture go with this room or is it over here?’

The point is, in good construction web design, the trick is to not make people think, and this is especially true with your gallery page. You can use before and after pics in other places on your site (we normally don’t, but you can) but leave the gallery for the pretty pictures!

Since each page of your site ranks independently, visitors may never see your homepage. This means you have to make the topic of the page the most visible part of the page. For example, if you are a remodeler and the reader shows up on your bathroom remodeling page, make those words the biggest text on the page. Put it in your headline, sub-heads, bullets and bold and italics.

Not only is it giving the search engines a better idea as what the main point of the page is, but you are also helping your reader get at what they want…information on what they searched for in the first place!

When you design your site, design it with passion. Passion is what conveys from the pages to your reader. And readers buy with passion. If you can write content for your website that has YOUR passion for your work baked in, I promise you will have more clients or customers contacting you.

Darren Slaughter is the founder and president of, a digital agency focusing on website design, social media management, and content creation for home improvement contractors.