Amazon photography is a necessary element in your success on the platform. There are decades of scientific research about imagery & visual learners. I’m a visual learner & have a much easier time comprehending images.
In two recent ‘How To’ videos that I did, I showed you a full guide from the start to finish for your product photography, and in today’s blog post, whether you’re shooting fashion or products, I’ve outlined a few important guidelines that will help you produce the best possible results simply and easily that are optimized for increasing conversion rates on your listing.
How to shoot Amazon-specific photography
There’s no denying that strong photography can help sell your product. It’s the closest your potential customers get to touch your product and feeling it.
Amazon Photography, although much more straightforward than advertising photography (which I also did in the past and still do from time to time), is equally powerful in influencing consumers to buy, but there are a few key steps to keep in mind when making your product images for Amazon FBA.
Preparation and teamwork for Amazon images is in my eyes a necessity.
Preparation is an important part of any photo shoot.
Whether it be a bath mat, cleaning and dusting a bottle of keto supplements, thinking about the shots you need, or experimenting with your lighting before, preparation is key to any successful product shoot… no doubt.
You can never be too planned beforehand when it comes to your product images, so take your time with this factor of your shoot.
Some of the key things to do before the shoot include prepare your products, create a shot list, and think about your lighting. I like to take my time with this.
Preparing your items could include a variety of steps to take— it largely depends on the product you’re preparing for.
For clothes, make sure the items are clean and smooth. Pay attention to the fine points like loose threads or missing buttons — these may seem like minor details but correcting them before you start shooting will save you way more time on post-production.
Which is where my time just slips away from me. I sometimes sit several hours in a row behind my computer fixing small details that I just can’t pass by.
If you’re shooting packshot products, for example a box of supplements, check to see the box sits well and that there are no open edges.
Before you open your camera, make sure you have a comprehensive shot list (I use my detailed action plan with the insight document the client’s prepares) that you can refer to throughout the product shoot and make sure I can meet the clients expectations.
This should include details like what angle with I will photograph, the goal with this image. The color theme throughout the listing. Several variations of lifestyle shots.
Once you have the “detailed action plan” and the “insight documents” ready of the shots you need, you can start thinking about your lighting.
What surfaces do you want to shoot on?
What colors are we using for this?
What items do I include to compliment the product?
Do you use soft light or hard light?
The key thing is to remember the goal you have for the product, this way, you know the benefits you need to pop-out of the photo and there is no misunderstanding whatsoever.
Really, Amazon FBA product photos require not an insane amount of equipment, but also not just your phone.
You can get away with little more than a few lights and reflectors for your lighting, any DSLR or mirrorless camera, a good base for shooting on and a tripod, but not less than that.
Other important accessories, which you’ll see me use in the product photography shoot, include a stand for the model and product, a white acrylic sheet for the base surface (I love this little sheet), a fully white foam board and black material, a computer to look at the pictures, a tethering cable and a large silver reflector.
These are just some basics you’ll need for shooting your product, which you’ll find come in handy for many situations.
While there are many articles that you can read online that encourage you to use your window light, there is no doubt that when you use studio light, you will have far greater control over your composition and when you do your product photography (because we can’t control the sun, unfortunately).
The amazon main image photo requires clean white backgrounds with bright, well-lit products.
My top three tips for creating white backgrounds:
- Consider where you place the light: The height, angle, and distance from the background all have an impact on the end photo.
- Measure your RGB values: Check your RGB values to see if you’re at 255. Ideally, you want to be a little bit below this before lighting your product. with 255 I mean the red has to be 255, Green 255, and Blue 255.
- Check for flare: Flare can make your subject appear flat and washed out, which you want to avoid if you want the best end result. Which we want right???
When it comes to lighting and shooting products for e-commerce, you can easily get away with a two-light setup using just a large softbox with a reflector.
Other accessories that you may find useful include diffusion, mirrors and white or black foam board. This is all up to your creativity.
Depending on your product, you may want to either maximize texture or reduce unwanted reflections, so you’ll have to think precisely about the position and gap of your light in relation to the product, but I already talked about that.
And again, keep in mind the fact that you need a versatile setup that will allow you to work quickly and efficiently.
4. Shooting process
Once you’ve done step 3, setting up your lighting carefully and are sure your tripod (your product stand) is securely in the right place and that your product looks the way you want it to look, you’re ready to start the most exciting part, the shooting…
In theory, this is where all your planning beforehand will come together.
And at this point, you are happy you have done your planning, otherwise, you would be scratching your head at this time with no clue or clear goal on what you will want to do.
I always say, the more clear your planning is, the better the outcome of your product photography is.
1 quick tip is to not forget to pay attention to the details (this is where tethered shooting can be particularly helpful).
Remember to refer to your detailed action plan and insight document throughout the production. I like to check it again at the end of my shoot, because I hate it when I miss a image and have to remake the scene.
If you’re collaborating with a team of stylists, make sure to talk clearly and don’t hold back to get the best result you want.
While it’s the art of getting the best shot right from your camera, don’t disrespect the finishing touches in the post-production as there is always, I really mean ALWAYS, something you have to retouch about the product.
The bare minimum is cropping your image
But you can also play with the exposure of your images, brighten up a few places and liquify rough edges.
While you don’t want to spend the full day on each shot, correcting these little details will make a big difference in your end result.
If I can give you one tip then that would be to plan everything out. I have talked about this already but I really mean it.
I have had plenty of non-planned photo shoots that went in the books of mine as a complete failure. (or a learning process :P)
Next to that lighting can make another big difference between good and bad for your Amazon FBA product listing.
So if I were you and you don’t have that much knowledge regarding lighting, watch a course at least before you start your shooting.
It really makes the difference.
Amazon, as well as every other online marketplace, is just going to continue to grow. I recommend you to just take the first step in your business if you haven’t already. Most quote-on-quote Amazon sellers fail because they never started. So if you just start and place your first order when you are ahead by miles.