Quick Guide To E-commerce Photography.
Excellent product photography plays a pivotal role in the success of e-commerce businesses. In the digital realm, where customers can't physically interact with products before making a purchase, visuals become the primary means of evaluation. Compelling product images have the power to grab attention, engage emotions, and influence purchase decisions. They showcase the quality, features, and unique selling points of a product, instilling confidence and trust in potential buyers. With high-quality photography, businesses can bridge the gap between the physical and digital worlds, providing customers with a captivating and immersive online shopping experience. By investing in top-notch product photography, e-commerce stores can differentiate themselves, enhance brand perception, increase conversions, and ultimately build a loyal customer base. In a highly competitive landscape, where first impressions matter, excellent product photography is not just a luxury but a necessity for businesses to thrive in the digital marketplace.
Here is a quick guide on 11 things to consider when photographing your products:
1. Show your products from all angles:
When customers can't physically interact with your products, it's essential to provide comprehensive visual information. Including images from different angles allows customers to examine the product thoroughly. For example, if you're selling a clothing, consider capturing images of the front, back, sides, and any unique features. Providing multiple angles helps customers gain confidence in their purchase decision.
2. Use plain and clean backgrounds:
A clean and uncluttered background puts the focus squarely on your product. Opt for a plain white or neutral-coloured background to provide a professional and consistent look across your product catalogue. This ensures that nothing distracts from the item you're selling. You can use a lightbox setup or a solid-coloured backdrop for this purpose, and use the same style for all your images.
3. Experiment with close-ups:
Close-up shots are perfect for showcasing intricate details and textures that might otherwise go unnoticed. These images help customers understand the quality and craftsmanship of your products. Consider capturing close-ups of unique patterns, stitching, or textures. For instance, if you're selling handmade ceramics, focus on capturing the fine details and textures of the glaze.
4. Utilise a lookbook style:
A lookbook or lifestyle imagery adds a touch of storytelling to your product photography. By placing your products in real-life scenarios, you can help customers envision themselves using or wearing the item. Consider creating a series of images that portray your products in a context relevant to your target audience. For instance, if you're selling activewear, showcase your products in action during a workout session.
5. Invest in good lighting:
Lighting is a critical aspect of photography, and it significantly impacts how your products appear in images. Proper lighting helps bring out the actual colours and details of your products. If possible, shoot in natural light, as it provides soft and flattering illumination. Position your products near a window or shoot outdoors during the daytime. However, if you're shooting indoors, consider investing in artificial lighting equipment like softboxes or studio lights to achieve professional results consistently.
6. Focus on colour grading:
Consistent colour grading across your product images helps create a cohesive and visually appealing brand identity. Choose a colour palette that aligns with your brand and use it to enhance your photographs during post-processing. This can be achieved through photo editing software like Adobe Lightroom or Photoshop or even Canva. Experiment with different tones and styles, but ensure that the colours accurately represent your products.
7. Highlight product features:
Each product has unique features that set it apart from others. Highlighting these features in your photography helps customers understand what makes your product special. For example, if you're selling a smartphone, focus on capturing images that emphasise its advanced camera system or sleek design. Showcase the product's key selling points to entice potential customers. Here's an example of a product with its standout feature highlighted: Image Example.
8. Be consistent with image ratio:
Based on the products you sell, you need to decide if landscape, portrait or square is better to showcase your products. Fashion is usually displayed in portrait images as it follows the human body, while homewares are usually square or landscape. Choose a ratio and be consistent with it. If you sell multiple products that would benefit from different ratios, group each in its own collection so the layout remains consistent.
9. Provide size references:
For items like clothing, accessories, or home goods, it's important to provide size references to give customers a sense of scale. Use props or models to show how the product looks when worn or held. This helps customers gauge the item's size and can prevent disappointment upon delivery. For example, if you're selling handbags, include images of the bag being held or worn by a model to showcase its proportion.
10. Optimise your files:
Ensure your files are optimised for web. If you need transparent background, save your file as png. If you have a solid background, save as jpg. Ideally, you want each product image to be well below 1MB in size, at 72dpi. When saving, follow a simple name format such as storename-productname-size-colour.jpg as this will help your images to show up on Google Images results.
Experimentation is key to finding the photography style that resonates best with your target audience. Monitor how customers respond to your product imagery and make adjustments accordingly. Pay attention to metrics like conversion rates, bounce rates, and customer feedback. Continuously optimising your product photography can lead to higher engagement, conversion rates, and customer satisfaction. Regularly assess your product images and make improvements based on the data you gather.
Remember, the tips provided here are guidelines, and it's important to infuse your brand's unique personality and style into your product photography. By following these suggestions and incorporating your own creativity, you'll be well on your way to capturing stunning product photos that engage customers and drive sales for your e-commerce store.