Why Quality E-commerce Product Images Matter
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. But did you know that great pictures could actually be worth thousands of dollars to your e-commerce store?
Yes, even if what you sell is far from what is considered attractive or sexy by society’s standards—say calculators or water filtration systems—quality product images can make all the difference between a busy online shop and one that just floats in cyberspace.
Humans are naturally drawn to visual imagery, and product images are one of the greatest factors that shape a customer’s first impression on what you sell. Here’s why you should pay attention to the photos you post on your web shop:
They communicate the details of your product in ways your copy cannot.
Buyers want to ensure that the specifications you listed on your site are exactly what your product offers.
They boost your brand’s reputation.
Your product photos speak loads about your style and identity as a brand. Whether your brand is minimalist, hippie, vintage, contemporary, or anything in between, good quality photos make your brand distinct and even more recognisable. Plus, they also make the most boring products less boring. Just take a look at Dollar Shave Club’s product page.
They help you get some buzz in social networks.
Pinterest, Tumblr, Polyvore and Facebook—these visual social networks are where online shoppers often converge.
They are also great places to share your products, thus, adding exposure to your site. If you want to benefit from these social networks (who doesn’t?) then having quality photos is a must.
So given the importance of quality product photos, how can you make sure yours look enticing from the screen no matter what? Follow our tips below.
Seek images from your supplier
If you’re not manufacturing or producing your own products, then try to source images from your suppliers.
For instance, if you’re sourcing water filtration systems from an established manufacturer to sell through your online store, the supplier may be able to provide quality imagery for you to use. They likely have a trove of professionally shot photos taken by a team of photographers and stylists.
Having multiple product suppliers, however, could be a problem since they may have different treatment of their product range photos. It will help if you use similar images from each supplier. This means picking photos with at least the same setup, framing and treatment, which leads us to the next tip…
Keep your photos consistent
The importance of using uniform images cannot be emphasised enough. Let’s learn from two of UK’s popular fashion websites, Forever21 and Boohoo. The moment you visit their sites, you’ll immediately notice that there isn’t too much going on with the design itself.
Forever21 basically features a white screen, a few more plain graphics, and some black text. Boohoo exudes the same vibe as well. So what makes these digital storefronts good? Well, it’s none other than their product images—quality pictures, shot in a consistent, uniform style and framing.
Try to navigate through to Boohoo’s sportswear department and notice how the product listing showcases images where models are posing in the exact same spot, and feature the same background colours.
The images have been cropped to uniform proportions as well. Proportions are an easy and important concept to grasp. Essentially, to maintain a clean and consistent look in your product images, all of them must be proportionate. This means they need to have the exact same ratios. Creating a template will save you the time of having to crop and resize the photos one by one.
Don’t rely on your iPhone or Galaxy
They may be smart phones, and their camera capabilities may be up a notch than other phone models, but they aren’t the best equipment to use to photograph your products.
If you plan to take the photos yourself, make sure that you have the right tools for it. These include a digital SLR camera, a good clean, white backdrop, and Photoshop (or another professional photo-editing program).
If you don’t have any of these, then it’s wise to call the professionals.
Bear in mind that not all photographers are the same. So make sure to find a photographer with experience and expertise in product photography.
They have the training and the equipment to ensure your products’ best angles are captured and showcased in your site.
Yes, it’s an added expense—but one that’s definitely worth the buck.
No matter how lovely your web design is, no shopper will be interested in staying longer and buying from you if your product photos are small, blurry or horribly photographed.
It’s like using cheap and tacky furniture in a grand and ornate mansion.
So make sure to keep the tips we shared above in mind the next time you consider posting a selfie of you using your products on your shop!