A post of the blog KISSmetrics gave us a useful blast from the past in applying a discovery by Ogilvy, one of the seminal researchers in advertising, to the present day, in particular to web graphics. Not all that is old is out of date and not all that is new is improved.
Ogilvy's discovery? That graphics do not always have the desired effect and that badly executed graphics will drive away readers, not keep them. Why should web graphics and layout prove any different? Technology is not magic: whether on a page or a computer screen, what we have discovered about human cognition and behavior still matters.
Ogilvy came up with 4 principles governing the use of graphics. Read The Shocking Truth About How Web Graphics Affect Conversions to learn more.