Photography is a key element of any successful ecommerce business, pictures are the only chance your customer gets to visualize themselves using/wearing the product and associating themselves and their lifestyle with whatever it is you’re selling. The right picture can affirm to them that ‘yes, this product fits my lifestyle’ or ‘no, this isn’t me’ – a well taken product shot can be the difference between a browser and a buyer.
But great product shots aren’t anything new; now it’s about how you take these images and combine them with your website to maximize impact and ultimately increase conversion.
So how are the very best implementing images with great web design? Here are some examples of incredible product shots on forward thinking websites – by the elite, to inspire you.
Everyone has heard of Fitbit by now and whilst they have the slight advantage of only having a small amount of product variations, they showcase their products in a way that is (frankly) stunning. Mixing the traditional infinity backgrounds (white backgrounds with no line where the floor meets a back wall – giving the illusion that it goes on forever) with shots of the product being worn/in action, they manage to make the product desirable whilst at the same time justifying its purchase in your mind. It does this by showing you the product in use and says ‘look, you can have a healthier lifestyle with Fitbit.’ It’s a classic case of making the customers decision for them.
The Jewel Hut
The Jewel Hut builds on beautiful photography by mixing in a bit of beautiful web design. Offering not only razor sharp images presented beautifully on an infinite background – with just the suggestion of a reflection at the base of the product (lovely), but also a 360 degree viewing tool that allows you to spin the product and view it from any angle. This enables the customer to see all aspects of what they’re looking to purchase, the next best thing to actually being in store and having it in their hands.
The homepage does an excellent job of showing products with flowers or worn by your favourite TV celebrity, just eradicating any doubts you may have had that this product isn’t absolutely what you want to wear.
Bose’ product imagery is as close to perfection as you can find. Huge ‘hero’ images that take up the entirety of your screen boasting products that look high quality and well designed, padded headphones are shot so well – with sharp, close up images you can almost feel how comfortable they’d be on your ear.
The images are bold and confident, there’s hardly any copy, just images that say ‘you want me’ – and you really do. They even offer up technical drawings to demonstrate their unique technology, showing you the products don’t just look good, they’re going to perform too.
Let’s face it, wallpaper isn’t usually inspired. But the collection over at inspiredwallpaper.com and (more importantly) the way it’s presented actually is. How have they achieved this? Through beautiful product images with some nifty design features added in. The user can view anything in their range at full screen at the click of a button. There’s also the ability to search for wallpapers based on colour schemes – a simple but fairly genius idea for such a visual product.
Clothing giants Asos are ahead of the curve when it comes to presenting clothing products. Not only is their entire product catalogue shot from multiple angles, they use less conventional looking models to appeal to a wider range of audiences and demographics. They also go one step further than most by offering video. Most ‘looks’ can be viewed instantly, with your desired clothes being paraded up and down a catwalk. Where applicable, different colour variations can be viewed at the click of a button and they have the good sense to specify the model’s height and the size he/she is wearing in the product specifications. All simple and easy to implement ideas but ideas that give the customer confidence they know exactly what they’re buying. A classic case of using well thought out visuals and design to remove some of the fears a shopper might have when buying clothing online.
Perhaps the original and the best, the godfather of product photography. Apple have mastered the art of making a product desirable. Big, confident, minimalist images showcase the beauty of the design and by using colour on the product (watch strap, on the screen etc.) they make the most of their trademark infinitely white background, enabling the product image to pop out of the screen. Alongside this they give you the chance to watch videos showing off the product’s many capabilities and use the opportunity to tell you that your life isn’t quite as could as it could be (i.e. after you’ve clicked buy).
The key to the image/design blend
Product photography is as important as ever but the days where good photography was enough to set you apart and mark you out as a market leader are behind us.
It’s vital now that your website’s design and images sit in perfect harmony together, complimenting each other. This is what the big players in ecommerce are doing and because of this, it’s what customers are expecting to see from reliable, trustworthy brands.
Whether it’s the implementation of 360 degree viewing tools or simply using products as your big beautiful hero images, there’s a host of subtle ways to improve the synergy between your images and design.