3 Steps To a Better Photo
When I first started my business, I did not have a clue about how to take a proper photo. As years passed, I learned how to use the 3 tips to help me create a perfect listing photo. I hope that you take these 3 tips and apply them to your photos. If you want to see more of my tools and resources I use, go to HTTP://the-handmade-mastermind.teachable.com/courses
New to selling online? Then check out this blog post that have 5 good tips to making sure you will bring in more sales!
Backgrounds and Props
When you look at a product on a shelf, or even online it should give you some kind of feeling towards it. If it does not evoke some kind of emotion, then you may not have the conversion rates you wanted.
If you are on Etsy and searching for something, and you came across a picture of an item and you thought "oh, that's really cute!".... that is what I mean by invoking a emotion.
You can use simple backgrounds, such as a plain white background like I do in some of my photos. But most of the time using a plain background won't work, or invoke any emotions from buyers. That is why in my photos I do use white backgrounds behind white stationery, but I break up the whiteness by putting a colored envelope behind the note cards. I also use an assortment of props that go well with that I am selling. The props I use that compliment my stationery are small props such as: Paper clips, Pens, Pencils, Tape, and a Stapler. This way it grabs the buyers attention and will help them envision this product on their desk. I seen many colored backgrounds like these work very well, when applied correctly. I have also seen photos that are blurred out. And this technique is called depth of field. I would highly recommend using this technique if you sell certain products. Such as Jewelry and Bath and Body products. If you sell either of those products, I would recommend doing your research on how to make a good photo from using that technique either by taking it from a camera or even a cellphone.
If your product is white, then your background should not be white. It is okay to have white on white, as long as you have some sort of color breaking up the background from the product. If you don't know what exactly you want your photos to look like, then I would recommend that you do research. And by that I mean, research what other people are doing with their products. It is best if you look at products that are similar to what you are selling. You can search on any social media platform. Such as Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook etc.
If you are selling jewelry, then you would research other jewelry photos and see what it is that is making that photo stand out.
If you see a picture that you think is working well for that particular product, then I would recommend trying to duplicate what they did in their photo. The props that you are using in your photos should help make the customer envision that produbringinct in their own life. It shouldn't be over complicated to where they don't even know what it is your trying to sell. The props should not outshine the item you are trying to sell, they should compliment the product. Make sure that you are placing the props carefully, and not just throw a few props carelessly. The photo has to have a realistic feel to it.
Contrast and Lighting
What is contrast and how does it work for photos? Contrast works by making your photos stand out. It is important that you have contrast, and I don't mean the kind that you create in photo shop but ones that come naturally within a photo. I find that a lot of people have problems when it comes to lighting. If that is the case for you, then I would recommend investing into Photo Shop or any other program. It will help you adjust the lighting and exposure within your photos. If you are still finding that your photos aren't coming out the way you want even after editing them in Photoshop, then I would recommend that you invest in lighting equipment like these. Besides the kick of color you may have in your photos, if your white does not look white then Photoshop can also help with that as well. If you notice that in your photos that the white looks yellow or has a bluish tint to it, then you would need to adjust the hue in the picture. Again Photoshop or any other program can help with this problem as well. If the white looks grayish, then there is a possibility that there is white underneath it, and all you have to do is adjust the brightness. Do the research and find out how you can change the lighting in your photo, without having to retake it multiple times. If you are having problems getting rid of the "shine" in your photos, then I would recommend trying to use a deflector. Something that will bounce the light off. Be careful when taking pictures with natural light. It can sometimes create a cast shadow over the item. The way I help to prevent this from happening is by using a plain white poster board.
Composition is the placement of your product along with the placement of your props and how you crop it. Sometimes how you place your props and take the photo, it can look like you didn't do it on purpose. It can look out of place and messy if not done properly. When researching what composition is and how you should use it in your photos, I want you to also research the term rule of thirds. It doesn't have to necessarily have to apply to you, but it could help with your other photos. It is a good tool to use in case you don't know where to start when taking photos. I highly recommend that you place your product and props in a few different ways. That way when you take the picture, you can look back on it and think which way works best for you. Having a good camera does help, but it is not necessary. If you are just starting out, you will find that most cellphones work just as well. That method will work for people who are just starting out and aren't quit sure what they are wanting from their product photos. However, if you do invest in a camera I would recommend a Cannon or a Nikon. If you sell smaller products, I would suggest also investing into a light box similar to these to make your products stand out. What I use for my products is a few plain white poster boards. And this is perfectly fine to use if you aren't ready to invest in a light box. I place my item on one of the poster boards and use the other poster boards to bounce the light off. Instead of using a plain white background or a colored, I would suggest using stock photos.
Not sure how to use composition for your photos? Then check out this book that goes into detail how to do use it for your photos.
Still need tips on how your photos should look? Then check out my blog post that tells you how to take a proper photo to help bring in more sales.
BONUS: Stock Photos
If you are thinking about using stock images for your product photos, then I would suggest that you get them made. I only recommend that because the stock photos that are out there, aren't exactly geared to your target customer. It is best to get a photographer to take pictures for you. If you do decide to get stock photos made for your products, then make sure that the photos can be used for more than just one product. I would get stock images made that work with your shop in general. That way you can use the image for more than just products. For example: when you have a sale, events that are going on in your shop, or even holidays.
If you don't have the money to get your stock photos made or need stock photos for marketing graphics, check out who I use here.
GOT ANY QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS? LET ME KNOW BELOW, I'D LOVE TO CHAT!
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