Your future customers are waiting to browse your goods, and when they do they will almost certainly buy with their eyes before their wallets. That means it’s crucial for your product pics to look enticing as heck. Recent Etsy shoppers reported that quality images were the No. 1 influencer in their decision to purchase, more so than the item’s cost or positive reviews. What makes a quality image? Good lighting, demonstrating scale, relevant backdrops, clear focus, and skilled editing. Here are our best tips for shooting and editing product photos that will move your wares from shelf to shopping cart.
Lighting is key
Begin your shoot by setting up somewhere with great lighting. Take advantage of natural light — think sunlight streaming in through a window — or opt for an artificial source like a 100w LED bulb. If you shoot outside, look for areas of open shade, which are “places where your product is in the shade, but there is ample light in the surrounding areas,” she says. “Covered porches are a great example of open shade” and they are excellent for an al fresco photo session.
If you’re shooting indoors, forgo the flash and instead go with an artificial light source. There are copious online tutorials for how to DIY a lightbox, i.e., a white, open cube lighted from the top in which to photograph products. Building a lightbox is cheap, and you’ll get expensive-looking results. Pics taken in a lightbox have that “floating in white space” look that’s great for making your product the star of the image, but you can also style the interior of your box, or easily remove and replace the background in the editing stage.
What equipment are you working with?
Shooting your products on a phone is a totally reasonable choice given that modern phone cameras can seriously approximate shoots done with professional gear. Experiment with portrait mode or macro mode can be done
Are you more of a professional photos? Young suggests keeping the F-stop in the lower range (1.8-3.2 for a 50mm or 35mm lens), because “the lower you set your F-stop, the more blur you will create in the background. “In this way, you can truly focus a viewer’s eye on your product.”
Try flat lay photography
Flat lay photography gives a bird’s eye view of your products and is especially useful if you’re selling products that wouldn’t stand up alone for photographing (e.g., notebooks, cutting boards, belts, or jewelry). Flat lay is also an excellent way to show scale because you can arrange a number of objects together to give an idea of the relative size of your product.
Editing product pics to perfection
Next, let’s talk about editing the photos after you’ve finished shooting. First things first, get your photos into PicMonkey and then you can begin to tweak, touch up, and tailor. Get the importing/uploading details: Getting Images into Your Hub.
You can approximate picture-perfect photos with many powerful editing features in PicMonkey: Resize or crop your photo to best show off the product, clean up the background using erase or the clone tool, and try touch up to brighten and smooth. You can apply effects to your photos, and even add your logo as a watermark.