E-commerce is the latest revolution in the way we do business. Out of convenience and necessity, online shopping has grown significantly in recent years. There is a lot of revenue and an even more significant opportunity to reach new consumers through e-commerce. Online purchasing is an option every business owner needs to pay attention to for both products and services.
“One in four consumers have increased online purchases, with the biggest change in online shoppers’ activities during the pandemic being an increase in purchases made from Australian online retailers. This trend looks set to continue – with nearly one in two people (49 percent) shopping more with domestic online retailers in 2020, and 52 percent saying they will continue to do so this year.” – CommBank Consumer Insights
How well placed is your business to capitalise on this surge in e-commerce?
Here are some tips that you may wish to implement.
Considerations for Your Business Website
Now that it’s been demonstrated that e-commerce is essential, the next logical question is, what do you need for it to be effective?
For any online product or service sales campaign to be effective, you will need commercial-quality photos. Words will always be needed by both search engine algorithms and humans, but your ROI will fall far short of your competitors without images that speak in your brand’s voice.
So what are your choices in growing your business photo library?
Fortunately for the small to medium business owner, you have a few choices in how you can add to your digital asset library.
One option is to use a full service brand agency that will take care of your content creation, marketing, and advertising campaigns if you have the budget.
Another option is to engage an advertising agency and take care of the rest in-house.
If your staff has the capacity for an extra project such as this, take advantage of your internal resources and take the photos yourself in-house. Buy the equipment and use your best efforts to get that professional look in your photos.
One thing to consider is whether you will hire talent or use your staff as models. And who will you work with for a mood board and project brief, followed by developing shot lists?
For a cost-effective midway solution, engage an e-commerce photographer who can work with your in-house marketing manager from ideation and concepts to pre and post-production.
Whichever direction you take, consumers will judge the quality of your photography. People are naturally attracted to good images. The most critical measures of success are conversions and abandoned cart statistics.
What is E-commerce Photography?
E-commerce photography entails capturing shots of products for digital use. In most scenarios, the captured photos are displayed on e-commerce sites advertising the products for sale. The typical duty of an e-commerce photographer is to capture a suitable shot and edit them with software tools until it meets specific requirements. The quality, file size, style, angle are all considered during an e-commerce photography shoot.
Tips to Consider for E-commerce Photography
If you choose to do it yourself, here are a few simple tips for capturing your websites’ product photos.
Your camera and lenses are critical as they highly influence the outlook of the shot. For a starter, utilizing a full-frame DSLR camera is essential for e-commerce photos. Although this type of camera is expensive, it is worth the price. It produces high-quality images and allows you to precisely dictate how your shots will look.
The background of the picture is another essential aspect. Many e-commerce photos don’t make use of an extremely busy background. Instead, using a neutral, subtle color with an out-of-focus background allows the product to stand out.
Lighting is another vital element for taking professional photos. You can use natural light to soften the look of your products. It is advisable to avoid harsh and direct sunlight. This creates dark shadows, which may not be desirable.
Aside from natural light, you can consider artificial lights that brighten the product’s look and reduce shadow effects. Although studio lighting can be expensive, it is most effective as it can illuminate the environment and enable you to take high-quality images. Some equipment you may wish to consider are stands, lights, light modifiers, and triggers.
The angle of your camera influences the outcome of your shots. There are several angles for photography:
- Eye-level: This is the usual way of taking shots. It shows the products from the average level.
- High-level: Here, the camera is angled over the product to show it from above
- Low-level: Low-level allows the photographer to take the shot from a lower surface, thereby striking a dominant pose.
- Slanted: Slanted angle captures the product from a particular side view. It creates a dramatic effect.
Which angles to use are usually decided during the pre-production, ideation, and shot-list phase.
Creating an Efficient Studio
Whether you’re using an external studio, need an on-location shoot, or an in-house temporary area for the photo session, make sure it fits your purpose and is within your budget. What you need will depend on the size and types of products, and how you want the shots to look and feel.
E-commerce is an essential part of business today, and many online stores don’t convert well without great photos.
Your website, copy, and photos will define your products and whether they are desirable. Hire an agency, do it yourself, or hire a professional photographer.
Whatever you choose, ensure you consider an e-commerce facility on your website and use these tips to create a unique brand that will attract customers to your site time and time again.
“The opinions expressed by BizWitty Contributors are their own, not those of BizCover and should not be relied upon in place of appropriate professional advice. Please read our full disclaimer."