Imagine scrolling through an ecommerce website that has poor image quality of the products it sells. It may have lighting issues, cluttered backgrounds, poor color representation, and a lack of consistency. Will you consider purchasing from that website? This is because bad product photography causes mistrust and degrades a customer's shopping experience.
Whereas, a captivating photo of a product can do wonders for sales.
It helps in establishing credibility and improves the buying experience, both of which result in fewer returns and more sales.
Take a look at Wildly Organic.
This US-based ecommerce business sells organic and natural foods. By incorporating 360-degree product photography on its website, the company was able to increase its conversion rates by 14% and reduce its bounce rate by 13%.
Even Penny Skateboards, an Australian brand that sells skateboards and accessories used lifestyle photography and user-generated content on its website and social media channels to increase its engagement rates by 600%.
Product photography can be a game changer for your ecommerce store and most brands choose to outsource their product photography, which is smart since you need an expert who knows what they are doing.
Nevertheless, if you want to perform this in-house, you'll need some tools.
Types Of Equipment Needed For Product Photography
When it comes to ecommerce product photography, the camera you choose can have a significant impact on the quality of your images. A high-quality camera is essential for capturing detailed product shots that showcase your product's unique features and help attract potential customers.
While a DSLR or mirrorless camera with a tripod mount is ideal, it may not always be feasible, especially for those just starting in the field or on a tight budget.
The cameras in today's smartphones are state-of-the-art and can capture stunningly detailed photographs. You can get the best shots with a smartphone if it has a good camera and if you use a tripod to keep it steady.
Choosing the right lens for ecommerce product photography is just as important as choosing the right camera. A good lens can help you capture sharp and detailed images that effectively showcase your product.
A macro lens is a popular choice for product photography because it can capture small details and textures that might go unnoticed. With a macro lens, you can take close-up shots of your product and highlight its unique features.
However, the choice of lens ultimately depends on the type of product you're photographing and the look you're trying to achieve. For example, a zoom lens may be more suitable if you're shooting larger products, while a wide-angle lens may be better suited for environmental shots.
To ensure high-quality ecommerce product photography, a stable tripod is a crucial tool. It prevents blurry or out-of-focus images by keeping the camera steady while shooting. Even when using slow shutter speeds or shooting in low light conditions, a tripod provides a stable base, resulting in sharp and detailed product images.
Using a tripod not only keeps your camera steady but also enables you to make precise adjustments to your composition. This means you can take your time and produce high-quality product images, ultimately helping you differentiate yourself in the marketplace.
4. Lighting Kit
Proper lighting is critical in ecommerce product photography, and it can make a huge difference in the quality of your images. The right lighting setup can help you highlight your product's best features, and create a professional and polished look. A lighting kit with a softbox or umbrella lights can provide even and diffused lighting, which can help minimize harsh shadows and create a natural-looking image.
Product photography benefits from this lighting arrangement because it presents the product without any distracting shadows or highlights, and the soft light highlights the product's colors and textures, creating an eye-catching image.
5. Backdrop for Background
To achieve professional-looking ecommerce product photography, it's crucial to have a clean and consistent background. A distracting background can take the focus away from your product and make your images appear unprofessional. A white or neutral-colored backdrop is a popular choice as it provides a simple and uncluttered background that allows your product to be the center of attention.
It's also easy to achieve a consistent look across multiple products when using the same background. A solid-colored backdrop can also make it easier to remove the background in post-processing, allowing you to create a transparent or custom background for your product images.
6. Product Staging and Props
When it comes to ecommerce product photography, it's essential to showcase your products effectively to capture the attention of potential customers. Depending on the product you're photographing, you may need to use additional props or staging items to create the desired effect.
For example, if you're photographing clothing or accessories, you may want to use a mannequin or model to showcase how the item looks when worn. For other products, you may need to use background props to create a lifestyle look and help your customers visualize how the product can fit into their lives. It's important to choose props that complement your product without overpowering it, creating a cohesive look that effectively showcases your product's unique features.
5 Amazing Product Photography Examples
1. Clothing brand
Everlane is a clothing brand that sets an excellent example of effective ecommerce product photography. Their images feature clean lines, minimalist styling, and consistent color schemes, which produce a visually appealing and cohesive look across all of their product photography.
Moda tip: When shooting clothing, it's important to show how it fits a real person. You can either use a mannequin or a model to showcase the clothing. Make sure the clothing is well-ironed and doesn't have any wrinkles or creases. Use appropriate lighting and a neutral background to make the clothing stand out.
2. Jewelry brand
Mejuri’s product photography features a consistent and minimalist style, with a focus on highlighting the unique details and craftsmanship of their jewelry. They often use clean white backgrounds and natural lighting to create a soft and elegant look.
Moda tip: When photographing jewelry, it's important to capture the details and shine of the piece. Use a macro lens to get up close and personal with the jewelry. Consider using a lightbox or a white background to make the jewelry stand out. Also, try to experiment with different angles to find the best way to showcase the jewelry.
3. Electronics brand
The ecommerce product photography of Apple is renowned for its sleek and minimalist approach, reflecting the brand's design ethos. Their product images are of high quality and often feature a simple and elegant display against a white background.
Moda tip: When photographing electronics, make sure to showcase all the features of the product. Use a white or neutral background to avoid distractions. Use proper lighting to ensure that the product is well-lit and that the details are clear. Experiment with different angles to find the best way to showcase the product.
4. Food brand
Oreo's ecommerce product photography showcases their iconic sandwich cookies with high-quality, colorful images featuring close-ups of the creamy filling and crunchy cookie, often with playful use of props and backgrounds.
Moda tip: When shooting food, it's important to make it look appetizing and delicious. Use a shallow depth of field to make the food stand out and create a blurred background. Use props like utensils, plates, and napkins to add interest to the photo. Also, make sure the food is well-presented and styled.
5. Beauty brand
Fenty Beauty uses high-quality images that showcase their wide range of makeup shades on models with a variety of skin tones, making it easy for customers to find the perfect match. The photos often feature close-ups of the products, highlighting the unique finishes and textures of each item.
Moda tip: When shooting beauty products, focus on the details and texture of the product. Use a white or neutral background to avoid distractions. Consider using props like brushes or sponges to showcase how the product is used. Use appropriate lighting to highlight the product's features and make it stand out.
8 Creative Ideas For Better Product Photography
1. Incorporating props
Using props in your product photography can add dimension and capture the viewer's attention. Props have the ability to showcase your product uniquely and creatively, while also telling a story about your brand or product. It's crucial to consider what props would best complement your product and enhance its overall appearance.
To illustrate, suppose you are photographing a camera. In that case, you could include a tripod or other photography equipment in your shots to showcase the product's functionality. Alternatively, if you are photographing food, you could use utensils or a napkin in your scene to make it more visually appealing and appetizing.
However, it's crucial to choose props that complement the product and don't overshadow it. By thoughtfully selecting props and setting up the scene, you can produce compelling product images that draw potential customers' attention and boost sales.
2. Use different backgrounds
Employing various backgrounds is an effective way to make your product distinct and create a distinctive appearance that captures potential customers' attention. A plain, solid-colored background can provide a clean and simple look that highlights the product. A textured background, such as wood or brick, can add dimension and appeal to the image, resulting in a more visually captivating photo.
Patterned backgrounds or backdrops with scenes can help to create a story or context around the product, making it easier for customers to visualize how the product might fit into their lives. When choosing a background, it's important to consider the color and texture of the product to ensure that the background complements the product rather than overpowering it.
3. Play with lighting
When it comes to ecommerce product photography, lighting is crucial to achieving the desired effect. Experimenting with different types of lighting can make a significant difference in the final image, whether you're aiming for a natural, soft look or a more dramatic effect with shadows and highlights.
One option is to use natural light, which can create a soft, diffused effect, particularly when used near a window or outdoors. Natural light is ideal for showcasing products in a natural setting or for creating a bright, airy feel.
Studio lighting can help you achieve a more dramatic effect with stronger shadows and highlights. This type of lighting is especially useful when you want to highlight specific details or create a more sophisticated look. Colored gels can be used to add an extra layer of creativity and atmosphere to your product photos.
4. Show the product in use
One effective way to engage potential customers and increase the likelihood of a successful sale is by showcasing the product being used. By providing visual examples of how the product can be used in real-life situations, you are enabling the customer to better visualize themselves using the product and experiencing the benefits it can provide.
For instance, when photographing a kitchen gadget, you could consider including an image of the gadget in use while preparing a meal. This not only demonstrates the gadget's functionality but also gives potential customers an idea of how it can fit into their own cooking routine.
Similarly, when showcasing clothing, it is essential to provide visuals of the garment being worn by a model. This enables potential customers to see how the clothing fits and how it would look on their own body type.
5. Use creative angles
Experimenting with different angles when photographing products can provide a unique perspective and make your product stand out. By showcasing your product interestingly and creatively, you can capture the attention of potential customers and increase the likelihood of a successful sale.
To illustrate, when capturing an image of a pair of shoes, you may want to try a bird's eye view angle to highlight the intricate design and details on the sole. This perspective can offer a better understanding of the product's construction and materials, providing the customer with a unique view of the shoe that they may not see in a typical side-view photograph.
Similarly, when photographing a beverage, taking a photo from a low angle can provide a unique and interesting perspective. This angle can showcase the condensation on the glass, adding a refreshing and thirst-quenching appeal to the product.
When photographing products, it is important to frame them in a way that showcases their key features and highlights their best qualities. This can be achieved by using the rule of thirds to create balanced and visually interesting compositions and experimenting with different angles and perspectives to add variety to your product shots.
The rule of thirds involves dividing the image into thirds both vertically and horizontally and placing the product at the intersection of these lines. This creates a sense of balance and harmony in the composition and draws the viewer's attention to the most important part of the image.
In addition to using the rule of thirds, you can also experiment with different angles and perspectives to add variety to your product shots. For instance, you could try taking photos from above, below, or at eye level, or use close-ups to highlight specific details of the product.
Establishing a consistent and recognizable brand identity is crucial for any business, and product images play a vital role in achieving this goal. By using a consistent look and feel for your product images, you can reinforce your brand identity and create a professional image that resonates with your target audience. This entails using the same background, lighting, and editing style across all of your product images.
Maintaining a consistent approach to ecommerce product photography can aid in developing a cohesive visual identity that fosters trust and loyalty among customers. This consistency ensures that your brand is presented professionally, which can enhance the perceived value of your products and ultimately boost sales.
8. Product placement
Incorporating lifestyle context into your ecommerce product photography is an effective way to give customers a better idea of how your products might look or be used in real-life situations. This approach can involve using props or models to create a visual narrative that showcases the product in a relatable context. By doing so, you can help customers envision themselves using the product and create a stronger emotional connection to your brand.
This technique can also be useful in highlighting the unique features and benefits of your products more engagingly and memorably. Overall, incorporating lifestyle context into your ecommerce product photography can help increase sales by making your products more relatable and appealing to your target audience.
Buy a computer and photo editing software
To refine and perfect your product images after a photoshoot, you will need a computer and photo editing software. Programs such as Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom are popular choices and offer a range of editing tools to adjust color, brightness, contrast, and other factors. These programs allow you to fine-tune your images to enhance their visual impact, correct any imperfections or flaws, and bring out the best in your product shots.
Producing high-quality and crisp product images with good focus and detail is essential in making your products look more appealing and engaging to potential customers. Clear and sharp images provide customers with a better understanding of what they can expect from the product and can increase their confidence in making a purchase. Additionally, quality product images can help reduce the likelihood of returns or complaints by giving customers a realistic idea of the product's appearance and features.
Image size and file format
Ensuring that your product images are optimized for ecommerce platforms involves using the appropriate file format and size. Typically, JPEG and PNG are the two most widely used file formats, with JPEG being the ideal option for photographs and PNG for graphics. Striking a balance between file size and quality is crucial to avoid affecting page load times. Using images that are either too big or too small can hurt the user experience, so it's crucial to optimize the file size while maintaining image quality.
Using diffused and even lighting is essential in creating a consistent look across your product images and minimizing harsh shadows. Softbox or umbrella lights are effective tools to achieve this, as they provide a soft and diffused light that creates a gentle, even illumination. If you're working with natural light, you can diffuse it with a white sheet or scrim to create a similar effect. It's important to avoid using direct sunlight or flash, as these can create harsh shadows and wash out colors, making your product appear less appealing.
Refining your product images with photo editing software is a vital step in achieving a professional and polished appearance. You can eliminate any distractions or imperfections by adjusting the brightness, contrast, and color balance. This creates a consistent look across all your product images, giving your brand a cohesive and refined visual identity. Photo editing software offers various tools to help you refine your images and enhance their visual appeal.
Ecommerce product photography plays a critical role in the success of online businesses. By showcasing products in a visually appealing and engaging way, businesses can attract potential customers and drive sales. With the right techniques, such as using props and different backgrounds, optimizing file formats and sizes, and refining images using photo editing software, businesses can create compelling product images that stand out in a crowded online marketplace.