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How to Take Great Product Photos with Just Your Smartphone

Want to take amazing product photos but don’t have a professional camera? Here’s the good news: your smartphone will do the trick!

In this article, we’ll be sharing some nifty tips on how you can take professional-looking product photos with the smartphone in your pocket.

Why product photos are important for your business

Believe it or not, good product photography can increase your conversion rate by 30%. Imagine visiting an online store only to find blurred, low-quality product images. Wouldn’t that be a turn-off?

Having high-quality product photos tell the story of your brand. It also signals to customers the quality of your products and gives you room for a higher markup.

Product photography tips for better photos

Now that we know what great product photography can do for your business, let’s dive right into how you can nail those shots with your smartphone.

1. Research images on Pinterest

The best place to get started is by looking for inspiration online. Pinterest is a great resource if you’re looking for amazing product photography references. 

Getting started is easy. Simply create an account and start saving images onto your Pinterest mood board. Pay attention to the composition and props used in the photos. When you’re taking your own product shoot, you can mirror some of these elements to help you nail the shot!

2. Use the rule of thirds

Image credit: Tony Mellinger

Knowing a few basic photography principles can help bring your photos to the next level. Here’s how the rule of thirds works:

Break down your image into thirds (both horizontally and vertically). When you’re taking your shot, position your product on one of the gridlines. This composition style brings attention to your product and directs your viewer to what’s most important in your photo. 

You can easily turn on the gridlines in your camera settings to help you nail your shot. Here’s how:

iPhone

  1. Open the Settings app on your iPhone.
  2. Scroll down and tap Camera.
  3. Under Composition, toggle on the Grid option.

Samsung Android

  1. Launch the Camera app.
  2. Tap on Settings.
  3. Toggle on Gridlines.

3. Use a white or grey backdrop for consistency

Eliminate distractions in the background with a clean backdrop. If you’re new to photography, we suggest you use either a white or grey backdrop for your product photos.

Here’s how you can create your own backdrop: 

1. Buy vanguard sheets or mahjong paper from the bookstore. 

2. Make sure your backdrop measures at least 100cm x 100cm (depends on the size of your product)

3. Clip your backdrop to a sturdy board and place your product on your backdrop. 

Bonus: invest in a lightbox if you want to have even lighting and a more professional look.

4. Capture your product from various angles

Taking your products from different angles helps to bring new perspectives to your shot. Don’t just take 1 to 2 photos from the same angle. Get experimental. 

Here are some great angles to try:

1. Front angle

This angle mimics how we usually encounter any product if we were to see them in a physical store. 

2. Profile angle

This may or may not be essential, depending on the product you’re selling. For instance, beauty products may look the same from all angles. But if you’re selling a pair of shoes, getting a profile angle will help to bring out its design.

3. Top shot

This shows how your product will look if you’re looking down on the product. Top shots are used mostly in flat lay photography you often see on Instagram.

5. Always edit your photos

Some light enhancement on a photo editing software can bring your photos to the next level. You can toggle with in-app filters or play around with the settings to give your photos that extra oomf. 

Here are some great photo editing apps to try out:

1. VSCO

2. Snapseed

3. Adobe Photoshop Express

4. Adobe Lightroom CC

Show off your amazing product photos on your online store

Ready to take amazing photos of your products? There’s no better place to show them off than your very own online store. Get started with Cococart and start converting more customers today! 

FAQ

What kinds of product photos should I take?

You should take a wide range of product photos ranging from plain background photos to lifestyle photos. Plain background photos allow customers to see your product clearly. Lifestyle photos give context to your products and gives a more inspiring vibe.

In general, you should take photos of your product from 3 different angles so customers have a better look of your product on your website.

Where should I post my product photos?

You can post your product photos on your website or share them on social media channels like Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook. Social media platforms are great at engaging your customers and drawing new customers to your business. Learn how to create engaging organic content here.

Can I use stock photos for my ecommerce website?

If you can't take photos of your products at the moment, you can generate mock ups that best reflect how your products look like. You can also use some stock photos to represent the service that you offer if you don't sell any goods on your website.

Make sure to use free images that do not infringe on copyright laws.

Should I get a professional photographer to shoot my product photos?

If you have the budget and want to offload what's on your plate, you can consider looking for professional photographers. Read this to find out how you can connect with professional product photographers.

How much does product photography cost?

It depends. If you contact an agency or a photography studio, projects can start at $2000. If you're looking for a more cost effective option, consider freelance photographers instead.

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