When you operate an eCommerce site, there are many outside services that you will need. A lot of online retailers presume that they can do everything themselves. Unfortunately, that is not the case.
The essential factor is professionalism. That means you will, from time to time, need to contract in other services. One of the vital services when it comes to making your eCommerce site a success is product photography services.
Professionally photographed products will help to contribute towards making your eCommerce site a success. Customers find it hard to interact with products online. That all changes when you have products that have been photographed by a professional. Each photograph on your site needs to tell a story. Only a professional product photographer can help you to achieve that.
Product Photography In A Nutshell
If this is your first time setting up an eCommerce site, you are probably wondering what makes good product photography so unique. Well, here are a few questions that you may want the answers to when it comes to product photography services.
- What services do product photography studios offer?
- Do Amazon photos vary from social media photos?
- What is re-touching?
- Who is responsible for the creative content of the photoshoot?
- How do you work together with a professional product photographer?
- How much do product photography services cost?
Hey – What Are the Product Photography Services?
Many of us who set up eCommerce sites are not very clear on what services product photography studios provide. You may even wonder why you should contact a dedicated product photography studio in the first place. Do you need to spend the extra money? Yes, you do. It will help you to make money.
Product Photography Explained
Product photography is best categorized as a branch of commercial photography that deals mainly with product images of objects for eCommerce sites. However, the product photography is also used in high-end magazines, billboards, commercials, and TV commercials.
Good examples of product photography include photo shoots of perfume bottles, watches, and drinks brands. These days, it would be fair to point out that product photography pops up almost anywhere. Product photographers work differently from other photographers. Strict parameters are used when shooting products. Often the photographs need to comply with standards set by websites such as Amazon and Etsy. The purpose of the photographs is to facilitate and increase sales.
In other words, product value must be built into the photographs. To create images that help sell products, photographers often use specialist tools, including props, models, and textured backdrops.
Re-touching is used once the photographic process has been completed. Thanks to our digital age, it is a vital part of product photography.
What Makes Product Photography Unique?
Attention to extreme detail is what makes product photography unique. A specialist product photographer pays attention to everything. That includes the setting, lighting, the photography process itself, and post-production. Take a look at perfume bottle or drinks bottle photographs, and you will see that someone has gone to a lot of effort to make the most out of minute details. That is what makes the product sell.
How When Should I Use A Product Photography Service?
Most photographers specializing in product imagery offer a range of services. But are they worth paying for?
Although there are different case scenarios, the advice of a professional photographer is worth its weight in gold. This is why you should contract a professional instead of trying to go it alone.
- If you are just setting up your first eCommerce site or launching a new product, you are probably on a tight budget. You may have watched a few videos on YouTube and probably even experimented with taking a couple of photographs.
- If you are not happy with the photos, it is good to contact a product photography service. On the other hand, you may just get some cost-effective advice regarding what equipment to use and what program to use for re-touching.
- If you have grown your business and produce over 10,000 photographs per year, it is time to step things up a bit. It would help if you took your business to the next level. The best way to do so is to contract a professional product photographer. He can help you take professional photographs while you get on with other jobs that are just as important when increasing product sales.
- What is art direction? Art direction may sound over the top when you are starting. However, as time moves on, you will realize that this is a crucial part of product photography. As mentioned, every photograph will need to tell a story and enhance product value. The best way you can do that is to contract a product photography studio.
Core Values Of The production
What matters when it comes to product photography?
Just like any other industry, some values matter more than others. It would be fair to say that there are more essential core values in product photography than in any other part of the photography business.
As already mentioned, detail to attention is an essential part of this kind of photography. It may take a photographer several hours to set up a shoot. That includes planning the process, setting up the lighting, and making sure the studio is dust-free. When using a model, the photographer also ensures that the model meets the product’s needs.
The success of the shoot is dependent on many factors. When you are contracting a photographer, you must give him as much information as possible. Be very clear on what you want to get out of the photographs
Different Types of Product Photography
Not sure if the products on your eCommerce or website deserve the attention of a product photographer? If so, think again. Many website owners have found that professional product photography has made an enormous difference.
Food photography – making food, bread, and cakes look nice is more challenging than you may think. Tricks of the trade are used when food is photographed. For instance, did you know that shoe polish can make the grilled chicken look delicious?
Fashion photography – this is a vast subject. Fashion photography includes everything from eyewear, jewelry, handbags to clothing. It may seem easy on the surface, but in reality, it is not as easy as it would seem even to make the most well-made handbag worth its hefty price tag.
Cosmetics and Perfume imagery – do you want to be part of this multi-billion dollar industry? In that case, you should invest in product photography. Yes, the well-written text helps to sell a product. However, ultimately, it is the photograph that sells the product.
Homeware is increasingly buying homeware such as kitchen equipment, lined appliances, and decorative items for the home online. Well photographed products make all of the difference. Don’t for one moment think it is easy to photograph homeware products. Photographing a shiny stainless steel fridge with shiny surfaces is very challenging. Lifestyle photography is an essential part of the sales process. It is yet another form of product photography.
Gadgets and electronics – we are spending more money on consumer electronics and gadgets than ever before. Yes, they have come down in price, but most of them come with a hefty price tag. It is also a very competitive market. So how do you make sure that someone buys your newly developed gadget instead of another one? Speak to a product photographer, and he will tell you all about hero shots. That is the technique used when photographing high-value items.
Toys for children and adults – yes, we all like to play. But, when it comes to toys, every photograph must tell a story. They need to be bright, cheerful and speak for themselves. That is particularly important when you are trying to sell products to children. Therefore, high-quality close-ups are an essential part of toy photography.
Sports and outdoor gear – the sale of outdoor and sports gear is one of the largest markets on the internet. Products are often photographed against a white background. However, there are occasions when a photographer needs to photograph the product within its setting. For example, say that you are selling a new pop-up tent. Photographing it in a studio is one thing. However, photographing in its natural setting will take the photograph to the next level. Knowing when it is better to use a natural environment makes the skills of a product photographer important.
Cars and industrial equipment – as a photographer, you never know what kind of assignments are going to be coming through your door. One moment you are photographing a perfume bottle, and the next minute you are photographing a car. Large item photography is set to be the next “new normal.” We are increasingly buying more oversized items and even automobiles online. However, making them look good and emphasizing their selling points is not easy.
Handmade and antique products – photographing handmade and antique products is an art form. An increasing number of online retailers and eCommerce sites are selling antiques and handmade products. When you genuinely want to build value into your Etsy or eBay sellers account, you should consider professional product photography.
Supplying Photographs In Different Formats
One thing that you will come across when you are setting out in eCommerce is different photography formats. To most beginners, the many different formats required sound a lot like a foreign language.
Not to the professional product photographer. He will understand what they all mean. PNG and JPEG are okay most of the time, but there are occasions when other formats are called for. You may even have heard of PSD, TIFF, PNG, RAW, MP3, and GIF. Some are perfect for sites such as Instagram, while others work better with TikTok.
What About Props, Models, Backgrounds, and Other Photography Aids?
Almost all photographers rely on props and other equipment to make a photograph unique and make it stand out. However, nothing could be more critical when it comes to product photography. For instance, where would a photograph of a Scottish Highland whiskey be without a lovely crystal glass?
When you look at a photograph of a high-quality item, you will often come across a white background. It is a stylish way to photograph exclusive brands such as Rolex watches and top brand skincare. What does it do? It allows a potential buyer to only focus on the product. Second, a white background adds value to the product as it enhances the finer details of the product.
It usually is the set standard for sites such as Shopify, Amazon, Etsy, and eBay. In general, you will find that almost all successful eCommerce sites use white background photography. However, colored and black backgrounds are more popular on social media. You will often see them pop up sites such as Instagram and Pinterest.
It is not only backgrounds that matter. Other techniques such as flat lay, mannequin, modeling, and hanging items play a role in enhancing a product.
If you are looking to obtain indoor lifestyle shots, discuss the basic concept with your photographer. You need to be on the same page regarding what you want to see in the finished image. For example, if you would like to promote your French cottage furniture, you want to see a touch of France in the final image.
The right kind of lighting and shading matter as well. You will also come across different styles of product photography. The most popular styles are outdoor, lifestyle, and 360 style.
Outdoor lifestyle photography calls on the photographer’s skill. Not only will you have to deal with temperamental light, but you may have to deal with the logistics of getting to a set. Weather is one of the biggest issues for outdoor product photography. Lifestyle photography helps to sell anything from a sofa to a new washing machine.
360-degree photography is often used when photographing shoes, bags, and other smaller fashion sites. The final results are used as GIFs or other video formats.
What Is Channel Of Distribution And Which Is Right For Me?
Established eCommerce retailers seldom use the same channels for distribution. Therefore, when you first meet up with a product photographer, it is essential to discuss your distribution channels. In addition, not all image formats work well across all sites. So instead of sharing your images across all of them, focus on the ones that work for you.
If you are looking to attract a high-end customer, you are less likely to find them on TikTok. Having a photographic studio produce a massive range of images using various formats isn’t cost-effective. Instead, discuss what you are trying to achieve with the studio. The most popular sites include eBay and Amazon. In addition, Etsy is quickly becoming popular with smaller online retailers.
Social media is a great backup and promotional tool for eCommerce. You should at least try to be on a couple of social media sites. The most visited site is perhaps still Facebook, but other ones such as Instagram and TikTok are quickly catching up. What about product videos on YouTube? When you want to explain a product in greater detail, YouTube is the best channel to use.
What Are Photo Editing Services and Why Are They So Popular?
When you set up your first meeting with a product photography studio, the studio team will talk to you about photo editing. Of course, there are different techniques available. Still, the most popular one is Photoshop. If a product photographer does not talk to you about editing photos, you have to ask yourself why. Does he not have the relevant experience or equipment?
Re-touching, or photo editing, is the best way to enhance a photograph. All products have what can only be called good and bad sides. It is the job of the product photographer to make the excellent side stand out. Sometimes, it is not easy to find a product’s best side. On occasion, it is not until the photographs have been taken you will pick up on the product’s good and bad side.
The best thing about re-touching photographs is that you can enhance what is excellent about the product. For example, it could be that a watch only looks expensive from one particular angle. Also, as they say, the devil is in the details. So enhancing and paying attention to all of the details that make your product unique is what you do when you put it through the re-touching process.
Online retailers with many sales experiences know that re-touching is an essential part of the entire photography process. The process of enhancing your photographs can take longer than taking the images in the first place. It is during re-touching the photographer picks up on all of those small details that make your product look great.
The funny thing is that many eCommerce site owners don’t even notice the small details when they look at the product. It is not until they see the finished photographs they realize the small details make the product stand out. The most common ways of editing a photo include light correction, background, form adjustment, and color correction.
What about watermarking? When you want to protect your brand, you should ask for specific photographs to be watermarked. Then, you can remove the watermark yourself when you want someone to use the image. Watermarking gives you extra protection when you have been working hard to develop a brand. You will see it pop up all of the time on sites such as Getty.
How Many Photographs Should I Ask For?
That is a good question.
It all depends on how you are being charged. When you are being charged per photograph, you need to keep an eye on costs. On the other hand, if you are being charged per day or shoot, you don’t have too much to worry about regarding the number of photographs.
In general, it is safe to say that quality matters about quantity. Please give a detailed brief, and the photographer will get it right the first time. Overwhelming yourself or a potential customer with photographs is not a good idea. Instead, use the best photographs so that a customer can make a buying decision quickly. In that way, you are going to sell more products.
Can A Product Photographer Enhance My images?
If you already have a set of images, and your product has not changed, there is every possibility a photographer can help you to enhance your image.
But, if your product has changed or had your photographs for a few years, it is time to upgrade them. Photography techniques will have moved on. Having new photographs made will help your product look more up to date. In addition, all eCommerce site owners know, attracting new interest in an established product will result in more sales.
You could argue that new imagery will cost more money. But, you should ask yourself if it isn’t worth investing in your top sellers? You will find that top brands do it all of the time. Professional product photography services are worth it. It is as simple as that. When they fit into your budget, you should, by all means, use them. As we all know, a picture can speak a thousand words. Often it is the image that will prompt us to buy a product.
Take a look at some of the top online retail sites, and you will notice that they focus on high-quality product photography. Even lifestyle photography is being increasingly used to sell products. However, never lose sight of the fact that every image tells a story. That is what the best product photography services can do for your eCommerce site or social media following.