If you have products to sell online, you are going to need some great images of them to attract potential customers, to convince those potential customers to buy, and to inform them of what they’ll be getting when they do. This is especially important when you are dealing with products whose appearance is one of their key selling points (for example clothing, jewellery, or home décor), but can even be important when you are selling something whose value is purely practical (like tools or cleaning products), because the images give an indication of quality.
Your Options: DIY It, Or Hire a Professional
To get those great photographs and begin marketing your products online, you will of course need someone to take them. You can either hire a professional photographer or creative agency such as Fashot.co.uk to do this, or take the photos yourself. If you are a professional photographer you will of course want to do your own shots and save money, but if your knowledge of photography is amateur or even more casual than that (but you’ve managed some nice enough shots on your phone before), you’ll need to establish whether you can really do your products justice on your own.
What Are Your Competitors Doing?
While it can be possible to learn to take good product photos yourself, you will not be able to match the look achieved by professionals in the field who know all about staging the shots, use specialist photographic lighting and equipment, and are experts in post production and retouching. This means you need to establish how high the standards are in your market. If you are looking to sell on a very ‘DIY’ oriented marketplace like Etsy, then having natural, simple photos you took yourself can be just fine, and if anything, overly polished shots may look out of place. However, if you are marketing your high end clothing boutique you may well want more of a high end look to your images in order to appeal to the right people.
Your Brand Identity
Think about your brand. If you want to seem like a friendly, family run business that offers sensible, value for money products, you may prefer the DIY look for your product photos as it shows your customers they are paying for exactly what they are getting, and that you aren’t adding on the costs of overheads like photographers or models. If you make your products yourself, you may even want to be in the photos demonstrating or modelling them, to show that you are proud of them and use them yourself too. If your brand is more slick and you want to look extremely successful and professional, then of course, you want this reflected in your product images.
There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to whether you should take your own product photos or not – but when deciding, do consider carefully the way each option reflects on your brand and whether it fits in your chosen marketplace.