Start E-commerce Photography
Have you ever browsed an online store because a great image appeared in your Twitter feed? Welcome to the power of e-commerce product photography!
When starting an E-Commerce store, photos are one of your most influential selling tools.
Good photography in e-commerce attracts the right customers, tells a story, and improves the overall quality of the store. Poor photography in e-commerce can damage trust, disavow customers, and even mislead, lead to returns, and hurt profits.
What if you know nothing about product photography?
Then you’ve come to the right place – learn how to plan a shoot and prepare photos for publication.
1. Develop a style for your photos
Most eCommerce owners are busy and often all on their own so aim for a “shoot day” to snap all of your product photos at once.
To make sure your photography days run smoothly, get a clear idea of the style you’re going for.
Get inspired by great product photography
First, look at some good examples in your industry. If you want to sell coffee, learn how other cafes treat their photos.
Pinterest can be a great source of inspiration and an equally great place to store images you like. If you use Pinterest, start the “Idea Capture Board” to collect your favorites.
Choose the style that suits your product
Product photography can vary widely in painting style and detail – but it doesn’t have to be complicated. Many great eCommerce stores use simple photos of their products on a white background:
2. Make a list of photos
When you decide to search for your photos, plan a photo list. This should include:
- What product is in the picture?
- What type of frame is it (eg stylized, on white, on a coffee table, folded or arranged, etc.).
- Camera angle.
- Important style or adjustment action (for example, turning skylights on/off).
- Essential items and props for recording.
For example, one item on your list might read Cotton T-shirt with beads front and back. In the near future, the half-body mannequin. Pair it with red jeans and a long gold chain with a cat pendant.
The photo list ensures that your shots go at a constant pace with little or no distraction – and you don’t forget anything during the day! Cross out the items in the list when you’re done.
3. Choose your camera, lighting, and background
Choosing the best cameras for professional photography is mandatory. When you’re starting out, the best cameras are the ones you can safely access and use. If you have a friend with a fancy camera who spends an hour helping you out, that’s great too.
While professional product photographers choose DSLR cameras and shoot in RAW, you don’t have to invest in expensive cameras to get beautiful photos. However, the cost of DSLRs and cameras has declined in recent years.
Next to your camera, pay attention to the lighting and background. Natural light is your easiest and cheapest option, and you can enhance it with additional lighting if you have one.
For your background and style, use your inspirational photos as a starting point and see if you can recreate some of the scenes. Keeping things simple and clear is almost never a bad idea. Take lots of pictures now!
4. The importance of retouching
When you’re done with your photos, take some time to review all the shots you’ve taken. Choose the ones you want to use on your website – then learn a little about image manipulation.
Even if you use the right lighting and a pretty good camera, the process isn’t quite complete. For a truly professional e-commerce website, edit or improve your photos before adding them to your product list.
This basically means eliminating errors and resizing, as well as ensuring that all photos are equally bright, sharp, and have the same background. There are affordable online services that can do this for you, such as Wiz Cut Out Pro; Email them photos and edit them in bulk for a fee.
Finally, make sure you use the same dimensions for all images. Using the same dimensions (eg a square image) means less hassle when it comes to thumbnails and how your photos appear in the design. Adjusting the dimensions beforehand will ensure that no odd cuts occur.