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Top 10 Ways To Improve Your Shopify Product Photography

As the 10th largest online services platform, Shopify is home to over 1 million businesses in 175 countries. With this platform, you can create an eCommerce website and sell products or services effectively.  But the question is, how do you make the most out of your Shopify store? The answer is high-quality product photos that convert online store traffic to your sales funnel—all you need to do is follow Shopify product photography guidelines and expert photographers’ hacks.  So, to ensure your Shopify store offers a seamless and engaging journey to target customers, go through our comprehensive guide.

What is Shopify Product Photography?

Young male photographer taking photo of stylish red shoes on white platform in photo studio with modern equipment

Shopify product photography refers to all processes, like capturing, editing, and optimizing product images for your Shopify online store. High-quality and professional product images convince shoppers to purchase by showcasing the product in the best possible light, angle, or setup.

In short,

  • Shopify product photography’s key purpose is to showcase to people what they will get after purchasing.
  • Increase customer loyalty and highlight your professionalism. 
  • Highlight products every detail like features, descriptions, and more that give buyers a satisfied impression of the product.

There is a common question among Shopify sellers: Does product quality affect their online sales after listing trendy products? To get the answer, go through the next section!

How Does the Quality of Photos Affect Sales on Shopify?

Empty white cosmetics tube on bamboo plate
As per a study, there are over 4 million live eCommerce websites built by utilizing the Shopify platform and earn, on average, 2.1 million active users per day. The question is: how do they achieve a lot of conversion rates on their eCommerce store?  The answer lies in high-quality, feature-rich, and engaging product visuals that increase sales. Here we’ve demonstrated a few reasons why image quality is a top priority:

Creates a better user expectation

As per the study, high-quality product imagery has a 94% higher conversion rate than low-quality imagery. Correctly sized visuals improve your user experience and allow visitors to see details without scrolling. Low-quality, pixelated, or too-small images impact your webpage and overall content quality.  Also, this issue leads to customers questioning the quality of your product or services. So, image quality matters most to compete with your business rivals, highlight your product’s uniqueness, and deliver more visual information to potential customers. For ideas, you can check out the sustainable shoe store Allbirds.

Improves website page speed

Statista highlights that around 22% of users abandoned carts due to long loading times and complicated checkout processes. Uploading large image files results in slower page loading times, which impact your SEO score, too. Smaller photos (both file size and dimensions) are best for fast loading across devices.  However, you can check your page speed or contentful paint using Google’s PageSpeed Insights. So, to avoid a high bounce rate and attract more users to your website, optimize your page speeds.

Boost website ranking

Search engines value your product image quality to rank your sites for selected keywords. So, to rank higher on search engine result pages, use high-resolution product images because they directly impact UX. As you know, Google uses several metrics to determine which web pages rank top in the search results. The image quality is one of Google’s algorithms. So, to boost your eCommerce business and keep competitors away, highlight in-depth product details.

Reinforce branding

Professional product photography conveys the essence of your eCommerce brands by utilizing the best lighting, backgrounds, and other relevant elements. Visually appealing imagery creates a positive impression on your consumers and ensures reinforcing branding. 

A product image with detailed information like color, style, shape, pattern, and other elements offers buyers realistic vibes. Online shoppers prefer pixel-perfect images with different angles, giving them a brick-and-mortar shop experience.

Encourage sharing

The social commerce market is expected to reach $1.7 trillion in 2024, and the top marketplaces are Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and others. Uploading visually appealing photos is the only way to increase your social commerce conversion rates.  You might be familiar with Huda Beauty (@hudabeauty), the most viewed brand on Instagram. Almost 40 percent of users follow their hashtags. The brand engages customers with stunning product images of its minimal styles.  Want to improve your Shopify store to be more attractive, SEO-friendly, and true to your brand and audience? You must follow the Shopify product image guidelines we’ve highlighted in the next part!

Shopify Product Image Requirements

As per Shopify guidelines, you can add up to 250 product photos, 3D models, or videos using Shopify Basic. The limit for the Shopify plan is 1000 files, and for Advanced Shopify users, you can upload up to 5000 files.

General Shopify image size recommendations

Shopify has no absolute image size guide because of its different themes and customizable options for brands. But the general Shopify product image recommendations are:

  • Maximum image resolution: 72 DPI
  • Maximum image file size: 4472 x 4472 pixels or 20 MB
  • Square image dimensions: 2048 x 2048 pixels
  • Minimum dimensions for zoom: 800 x 800 pixels

Before going through in-depth details, let’s take a look at additional Shopify product image sizes below:

Image Type File Size Aspect Ratio Resolution
Product image
Less than 300 KB
1:1
No larger than 2048 x 2048 (square)
Hero image
10 MB
16:9
1280 x 720
Product collection image
N/A
N/A
1024 x 1024
Banner image
N/A
16:9
1200-2000 x 400-600
Blog image
N/A
3:2
1200 x 800
Slideshow images
N/A
16:9
1600 x 500
Logo
N/A
4:1 (rectangle) 1:1 (square)
400 x 100 (rectangle) 100 x 100 (square)
Video placeholder image
N/A
N/A
1600 x 900
Background image
20 MB
16:9
2560 x 1400
Checkout page top banner
N/A
N/A
1800 x 300
Gallery
N/A
N/A
800 x 800
Featured Promotions
N/A
N/A
840 x 840
Newsletter popup image
N/A
N/A
425 x 575
Favicon
N/A
1:1
16 x 16
Thumbnail image
N/A
1:1
300 x 300
Social media icons
N/A
1:1
32 x 32
Lightbox images (full screen)
N/A
16:9
1920 x 1080
Shopify suggested sizes for different images need to be adjusted based on a responsive website design. Let’s discover Shopify’s most common image size guidelines! Mainly, there are five types of images you’ll notice: 
  • Background images
  • Hero images
  • Banner images
  • Blog images
  • Logos
Along those, we’ll discuss different types of image size requirements for a better understanding.

Background images

Recommended image width: 2560px Recommended image height: 1400px Aspect ratio: 16:9 File size: 20MB Background images are the largest images on your Shopify website. These dimensions allow background images to load quickly on any web page without harming the visual quality. For example, , Cowboy, Beefcake Swimwear, and other popular brands showcase their products center stage. However, it fills the screen no matter what device you use to view on.

Hero images

Recommended image width: Between 1280px to 2500px  Recommended image height: Between 720px to 900px Aspect ratio: 16:9 File size: 10MB These images are similar to backgrounds but require a small height – about half the size. If you want to feature more text (i.e., product features, brand name, etc.) on the screen without making users scroll down, you can do it. For example, BLK & Bold hero image – a narrow aspect ratio; but fills the screen and leaves room for content.

Banner images

Recommended image width: 1200-2000 pixels Recommended image height: 400-600 pixels Aspect ratio: 16:9 (4:1 or 3:1 for collection banner images) Like the Shopify homepage or FAQs page, a banner image is displayed at the top of the webpage. Visitors first notice banner images when they land on your page. The image will always be in landscape orientation.   However, the size and shapes depend on where you live and what you want to show your visitors—for example, banner ads, Google Ads, and others. You need to follow Google’s sizing guidelines for submitted images. For more details, you can check out the Tallow Ash banner image.

Note: Banner images will not be square-shaped because their width exceeds their length.

Blog images

Recommended image width: 1200 pixels

Recommended image height: 800 pixels

Aspect ratio: 3:2 

File size: 3 MB

These images depend on the type and size of Shopify themes. In general, the featured image is 1200 x 620 pixels, the rendered size is 894 x 462 pixels, and the main header images of blogs are sized across your theme blog.

Logo

Recommended image width: 100 pixels

Recommended image height: 100 pixels

Aspect ratio: 1:1 2:3, 4:1

File size: 1 MB

The logo will be the smallest image on your Shopify website (unless you use a favicon). If you plan to design one, it’s best to opt for a rectangular or square aspect ratio. Most logos are square (1:1), and rectangular logos are best for longer brand names or those consisting of words.

Slideshow images

Like banners, Shopify slideshow images are in landscape orientation (1600 x 500 pixels) or between 1200-2000 x 400-600 pixels with a 5:2 aspect ratio. The smaller the image, the better the view of the menu dropdowns.

Mobile image size guidelines

Modern man checking his phone

For smaller mobile screens, users prefer to zoom in for better product visuals. So, try to keep a balance between image size and file size. Always use high-resolution images with great zoom capabilities. 

Keep the aspect ratio similar to images to maintain a uniform design across the page. However, the square and vertical images fit well on mobile screens.

Pro Tip: There are three main factors you must follow before optimizing Shopify images:

  • Compress image files using the recommended Shopify image size. 
  • Add alt-texts to the images of products and collections to improve your Shopify SEO.
  • Double-check the Shopify theme guidelines for recommended image sizes.

Now that you’ve enough guidelines about Shopify image size guidelines, it’s time to focus on product photography so that you can give the best product visuals to the audience.

10 Best Product Photography Tips for Shopify

Now that we’ve covered Shopify image guidelines let’s start shooting. Below are the top 10 Shopify product photography tips that ease your way and help fulfill your product goal.

Proper Prior Planning

First thing first, before shooting product photography, you need to demonstrate a clear concept, like –

  • Who is your target audience?
  • What are your product photography purposes?
  • How many variations or products do you plan to include in your Shopify store?

All of these factors ease your product photography setup and help to showcase a unique and clear concept. After getting the answers, you need to clarify other factors, such as –

  1. What’s your product’s ultimate goal or how do you represent your brand? [Finalize the product representation types like classy, professional, or creative and focus more on your buyer’s desires and requirements. ]
  2. Do you want to highlight product-specific features, use cases, ingredients, or trendy styles?
  3. Which product photography type do you choose to highlight your products?

After finalizing your photography goal, it’s wise to focus on product photography types, such as: 

  • Individual product photography [product’s full collection – size, color, look, etc.] 
  • Group product photography [a variety of products or display the range]
  • Lifestyle product photography [want to tell the story behind the product and give a real-life experience]
  • Packaging shots [provide a better shopping experience and build trust]
  • Detailed or close-up shots [showcase small items, sharp details, or jewelry luxury views]
  • Scale shots [show off how big or small the product is]

Read this article to learn about “Amazon Product Photography

Choosing Natural or Artificial Light

Product photography shoot of shoes in studio lighting

The second and most important factor is lighting. A slight change in lighting can affect product visuals and mislead consumers. Shooting under natural light is the best way to begin with. It is a cheaper and easier lighting option to manage. However, you must avoid harsh sunlight and select the best lighting for compelling visuals. 

On the other hand, artificial or studio lighting, such as candles, light bulbs, or other professional equipment, can be highly effective in product photography. However, it’s important to note that these methods require a certain level of professional skill to set up correctly. You’ll also need a good understanding of color balancing, light settings, softbox positioning, and more. With the right knowledge and equipment, you can use artificial light to create a sophisticated and polished look for your product.

Pro Tip: For indoor product photography, place your product in front of a window and switch off the other lights. But for outdoor product photography, choose golden hours.

Choose A Suitable Backdrop or Background

Product photography backdrops are another important part of Shopify product photos. If you visit top eCommerce stores, you’ll notice plain backdrops, designer ones, or outdoor backgrounds behind product images. Backdrops and props both help you to set a mood or story for your product.

When selecting a suitable backdrop, it’s not just about aesthetics. It’s about strategically aligning with your brand and product story, such as –

  • Commercial product photography mostly prefers using bold colors, simple backgrounds, and clean lines to demonstrate a product’s story.
  • Theme product photography includes hanging products, mirror reflections, adding movement, embracing the season’s beauty, and other backdrops that add extra complements.
  • For luxury product photography of perfumes, jewelry, or other fashion products, you can choose soft lighting, warm colors, and evoking settings.
  • Flat-lay product photography is a versatile approach that allows you to showcase your products in various ways. You can add supporting elements, color, and texture and experiment with props like fabric, confetti, loose materials, and more, all against a backdrop that enhances your product’s features.

Consider Shooting Different Angles Of The Product

BigCommerce and Square found that product imagery is the #1 thing online shoppers want more of. So, to highlight your product’s creative and unique outlook to online shoppers, try different camera angles, including –
  • Front angle – You can shoot from eye level or front-on to make products identifiable. By doing this, you can provide a simple and clear visual for your Shopify store.
  • Profile angle – You need to take a one-sided product view, i.e., @nikebasketball Instagram image. Here, you can highlight the brand logo or unique features.
  • Three-quarter – 45-degree product view is known as a three-quarter or diagonal composition that is taken from a high-level angle and captures two different product sides in a single image. If you want to shoot multiple products, you can utilize it.
  • Back angle – Want to add context, product ingredients, or feature details? You can utilize this angle.
  • Birds-eye view or high angle – When you want to add extra details, you can use this angle.
  • Low angle – Do you want to add creativity or provide product size? For creative appeals, you can use this angle.

Keep Focus on The Product

Online shoppers value attractive photos and accuracy. That’s why 22% of returns occur due to the mismatch of the items they get compared to online visuals. So, when choosing props and backdrops, always focus on the main product. For this reason, most Shopify product photos are placed on a plain white background.  It’s important to balance showcasing the main product and maintaining your brand aesthetic. Avoid using too many props that could distract users from the main view. For instance, you can incorporate colors, shapes, and styles that align with your brand identity to preserve your brand’s unique aesthetic. However, consider choosing pastels and soft materials over bold ones for a cozy feel and gentle outlook. This way, you can create a visual experience that resonates with your target audience.

Tell The Product's Story

Brand and product stories play an important role in communicating with consumers. All you need to narrow down two things: why they buy your product and how they meet their pain points.

However, to create a convincing Shopify product story, you can utilize six key hacks such as:

  • Star with compelling questions: First understand your customers to build engagement and then ask different questions like:
    1. How do they experience or purchase the product?
    2. Which factors give them the confidence to trust?
    3. What encourages consumers to buy?
  • Focus on buyer persona: Buyer persona or ideal audience demographics like needs, location, job role, etc., help to portray an effective story and marketing strategy.
  • Solve the audience’s pain points: One of the key elements of a convincing product story is addressing the audience’s desires, problems, and solutions. This can be effectively done through product photos highlighting the product’s value and relevance to the consumer.
  • Relatable product story: Try to build a connection via your product story for emotional response.
  • Include CTA: You can add a CTA to evoke consumers’ actions. However, follow the eCommerce platform or media guidelines you want to upload for this.

Deep Dive into Color Theory and Psychology

Every evoking and professional photography secret lies in color theory and psychology. Popular brands also follow color theory to evoke brand value in the audience, making them unique. So, to build an emotional connection, you must focus on color psychology, such as:

  • Red symbolizes strength, passing, and excitement.
  • Orange highlights fun, vitality, cheerfulness, etc.
  • Yellow highlights warmth, joy, and happiness.
  • Green represents nature’s soothing and calm beauty and growth.
  • Blue symbolizes balance, trust, serenity, and wisdom. 
  • Purple highlights luxury, sophistication, and creativity. 
  • Black is formality, drama, and sophistication. 
  • White symbolizes cleanliness, simplicity, and innocence. 

However, the meaning of the color depends on the brand’s ultimate goals. You also need to understand the color wheel to provide a balanced and relevant combination. For example:

  • Complementary colors are direct colors that are opposite to each other. 
  • Analogue colors or “cousin colors” are three colors placed next to each other. All these colors are best for landscape photography. 
  • Triadic colors are red, blue, and yellow. 
  • Monochrome colors are any composition used for a single hue or variations of its tones and shades.

Consider 360 Degree Product Photos

360-degree product photography is the most popular type of product photography across eCommerce marketplaces because it reduces return rates and increases sales. Online shoppers love 360-degree views the most, as they provide them with a realistic store experience. 

To create 360-degree product photos, you must take multiple shots of a product from different angles and stitch them together to create a seamless panoramic view. Also, you can –

  • Place the product on a turntable. 
  • Turn the table from left to right or vice versa.
  • After capturing, upload all photos on the 360 product photography program for animation. 
  • Now, you can upload those to your desired site.

Remember Brand Identity and Guide

E-commerce success lies in demonstrating brand values and highlighting its unique identity. Brand identity represents the company’s visual details, such as logos, color palettes, typography, unique voice, and more. 

Brand guidelines are crucial to build loyalty and authenticity among customers. Do you want to build your brand identity through Shopify photography? You can follow popular brand guidelines, such as –

  • Walmart’s logo, photography, typography, illustrations, editorial style, and other elements represent its brand identity. Its primary color is “Walmart Blue.”
  • Starbucks’ iconic Siren logo and green color palette most attract audiences. Their campaigns and seasonal product launches are also creative.

Editing and Enhancing Product Photos

After taking several shots, you’ll need to retouch photos for a professional outlook and maintain Shopify image guidelines. You might take great shots, but sometimes you need to adjust lighting or others. But for editing your product photos, you must consider several factors, including:

  • Sharpness: By using good lighting and a stable tripod setup, you might capture sharp images. But the goal is to lightly sharpen images to give its edges for a more defined look.
  • White balance: It represents the blue and red tints on the white areas. By adjusting the white balance, you can make the photograph cool or warm depending on your branding goal. 
  • Brightness and contrast: If you want to guide the audience to certain areas, you can adjust brightness without turning it too much. A high level of brightness removes the real look and damages the quality of products. Contrast refers to the separation of light and dark areas in your photos. A higher contrast can give the textures of your photo more depth.
  • Color saturation: Slightly increasing saturation will bring out more color and provide a sense of liveliness to your images. However, avoid too much saturation because it misleads customers into envisioning your product’s appearance in real life.

Essential Equipment for Product Photography

Regarding Shopify product photography, it’s important to select the right camera to highlight your products in the best light and attract audiences’ attention. Here’s a quick list of the best product photography equipment to get you started: 

  • Camera: First, choose the best camera for product photography. It might be a DSLR camera, a mirrorless camera, or a smartphone camera. Whatever you choose, incorporate lighting, exposure, styling, and post-processing decisions. 
  • Lens: Second, select the best lens for product photography. Expert photographers suggest different types of lenses, such as 50mm f/1.4, 85mm f/1.4 or f/1.8, 100mm, and more. All you need to consider is your product itself so that you can capture its essence and represent it professionally. For example, outdoor shooting of 100mm or more is great, but a macro lens (20mm) is best for small details.
  • Lighting: Lighting impacts your audience’s overall product image quality and appearance. Good lighting is key to eCommerce platforms. In addition to natural light, you can invest in different lighting equipment, such as softbox lighting kits, ring lights, light tents, continuous lighting kits, and others. 
  • Tripod & shutter release: A tripod is essential to providing stable, blurry, and shadow-free product images. When your camera’s shutter is slow, you can handle this situation with a tripod. Also, a shutter release should be used to reduce the camera’s unnecessary movement. 
  • Kit cleansing: Your ultimate goal is to creatively and engagingly capture the product’s uniqueness. So, kit cleansing tools like glass cleaners, scissors, goof off, and other tools are essential to making high-quality product images. Also, pay attention to unwanted wrinkles on clothes or fabrics.  
  • Elevated surface: When you want to place your product, you’ll need a pedestal or elevated surface. Sometimes, taking a photo sitting on a floor might look unprofessional and messy. To avoid this issue, you can use kitchen tables, tape, and many others.

Pro Tip: You can use a bounce card with a reflective surface to create a directional light source.
You must coordinate with models to capture real-world people for a lifestyle fashion photoshoot.

How Do I Bulk Edit Product Images for Shopify?

Female graphic designer working with computer at table in office

You have two options for Shopify bulk product image edits: editor tool and outsourcing eCommerce product photo editing. If you have enough time, you can try photo editing tools like Adobe Photoshop, but it requires advanced Photoshop skills. 

Hiring a top-notch photo editing company gives you advanced post-production services from in-house industry-expert graphic designers. Also, you get high-quality work at an estimated time that helps you compete with your business rivals. 

From clipping path photo editing services to color correction, shadow making, eCommerce photo editing, background removal, and more, a professional photo editing agency can offer a comprehensive range of services. With 24/7 customer support and the ability to process images in bulk at an affordable price, they cater to the needs of all types of businesses.

Frequently Asked Questions about Shopify Product Photography

Professional and experienced product photographers may charge from $40 to several thousand per photo. Others may charge based on different factors, such as per hour, bulk images, or photography genres.

The square product image of 2048 x 2048 pixels is the ideal size in Shopify.

WebP is the best image format for websites’ fast loading speed. However, it is not universally supported by all browsers. Other popular image formats are JPEG, SVG, GIF, HEIC, TIFF, and PNG.

Yes. You can shoot product photos at home using the perfect tools and techniques. Follow our professional product photography hacks and highlight your product’s features like a pro.

Yes. Shopify provides a comprehensive, easy-to-use, and user-friendly platform for photographers to show, sell, and manage their photos online. The platform is ideal for establishing a successful eCommerce presence. 

Conclusion

Shopify product photography is important to selling your products online and earning more conversions. Shoppers notice product photos first when they visit your eCommerce store. 

Remember, if a picture is worth a thousand words, then a high-quality and realistic product photo is better than any sales pitch.

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