We’ve all heard the phrase “a picture is worth a thousand words.” When it comes to blogging, pictures are probably also worth a thousand followers…and thousands of dollars in sales while we’re at it. One of the biggest mistakes you can make as a blogger or creative business owner is not carving out the time to take quality photos of your products. Whether you’re selling an item online or sharing a DIY tutorial on your blog, people will judge that photograph first and foremost. Here’s a list of 5 mistakes to avoid while taking your photographs.
1. You Aren’t Using a Real Camera
While camera phone technology is improving, and many of them may produce high enough quality photos, it’s best to use a real camera. People can often tell if the photograph was taken by a camera phone. The quality is usually lower and the photograph smaller. There’s just no way to capture all the detail with a phone.
2. Your Photos Aren’t Clear Enough
There are plenty of reasons why a photograph can come out poorly: the camera didn’t focus all the way, you moved, the camera was unsteady, etc. When taking your photographs, make sure it’s clear and visible so that the customer can really see the product. Investing in a tripod wouldn’t be a bad idea, either.
3. You’re Lazy About Quality
This ties into the previous mistake. When you’re posting your photos, make sure they’re high quality. This means making sure that your photos are not only crystal clear, but that the lighting is right. It means ensuring your white balance is set correctly. In particular, look at your ISO, aperture, and shutter speed. If these are terms you aren’t familiar with yet, don’t sweat it. We’ve got a crash course in photography terms and basic techniques right here.
4. Your Products Don’t Look Appealing
Imagine two photographs next to each other. The first one looks like the product’s been placed on a table with no thought. You can’t tell what it is because it’s poorly lit, and the angle is slightly off. The other is well-lit, clear, and has been set up to truly sell the product. Which one would you prefer? The answer seems simple, but you would be surprised at how unaware people are of how much power their product photos have.
Making sure a photograph is clear and visible is easy enough, but making sure that it’s also appealing is key. Take a bit of time find the best lighting, angle, and placement. Ask yourself, “Does my product look the best it possibly can? Would I click on this photograph if I saw it on a site?” It is imperative that your product photos represent your work in the best and most honest way possible, especially if you only sell online.
5. There’s Only One Photo Per Product
Whether you’re selling on a blog or an online shop, giving the customer multiple views of the product is great. They’re not seeing the product in person, so they can’t tell what it would look like on or how big it is. Giving them multiple angles, close-ups, and shots with the product in use will help them decide if it’s something they want.
The Last Word…
You may be thinking, “this is going to take a lot of time,” or, “I’ve never taken a photography course.” Don’t worry! You have plenty of options. You can take a course, or check out a book from the library and read up on it. You can also take a look at our simple photography guides! Another great resource is asking someone you know who takes good photos to give you some tips, or hire a photographer if you have the money. If you don’t have the money, see if the photographer would be willing to take some photos for you in exchange for an item or two from your shop. It’s worth a shot!
What is the best piece of photography advice you’ve aver received?