In the early days of the internet, it was considered good enough to create bulky, full-text articles. But now it takes more than words to make a good impression on website visitors and search engines.

When people get online, they find and absorb information and should enjoy the experience. The human brain is hardwired to absorb visual content, making vivid images a much more effective and efficient method of communication.

It’s no surprise that visual content is considered a staple of any content marketing strategy today. There are different types of visual content that you can use. Some of the most common types are images, videos, infographics, and memes / gifs.

After years of working on websites, writing content, and working on visibility and conversions, I’ve learned firsthand how powerful visual content can be. Here’s why you should be using it for the benefit of your website:

Keep your target group on site longer

By adding visual content to your content marketing efforts, your visitors will stay on your page longer. This is because visual content provides information in an easier and more engaging way.

It can also increase your average dwell time while lowering bounce rates. Since both are viewed as important SEO metrics, two things matter: ranking and improved SEO performance.

Rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs)

It doesn’t matter how often Google changes or updates its algorithm. When you create high quality content, visitors will be drawn in. Some of the content you create should be visual content. This is one of the most important types of content that Google considers when assigning page rank.

When you create articles that have images in them, they’ll appear on the top pages of search engine results and appear up to 94 percent more often than articles without images. In addition, sites that incorporate video content are 53 times more likely to rank the first page on Google than any other web content.

While Google can’t read the visual content, the algorithm looks for images by matching and linking shapes in the images. Because of this, you need to optimize the visual content of your website.

Visual content can help you get better results and get higher rankings. You have to get it right, however. Contact professionals for more information on using visual content and the potential benefits for your website. If you are informed, what to do and what to expect, you will get the results you want for your website.

The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.