5 Product photography tips for selling on Etsy
Product photography on Etsy is a fine art as your photos ultimately decide the kind of sales you’re going to get once people land on your shop. It’s so important that, according to Etsy, 90% of shoppers believe having good product photography is a decisive factor in whether they’ll buy the product.
You’re allowed up to 10 photos per listing, with a minimum recommendation of 5, and 1 to be used as the thumbnail (the photo that gets shown alongside other people’s listings) so it’s important to really nail your photography from the get go.
Photograph your product in the right light, and at the right angle and it could sell by the dozen, in the wrong light or at the wrong angle and you could end up with nothing - same product but completely different outcomes.
As part of our work to support Etsy sellers we’ve put together some Etsy Product Photography Tips to make sure you show off your products and get the sales your shop deserves. You don’t necessarily need to pay a professional photographer or even buy an expensive camera, you just need to know what works and how to go about it.
Etsy Product Photography Tips 101
- Have a clean, clear background
- Use natural daylight
- Show the product in action
- Capture details
- Show different variations of the product
1. Have a clean, clear background
If you want to sell on Etsy then rule number one for getting the right thumbnail photo is to have a clean, clear background. Even if you think your room looks tidy, any items in the background can distract the eye from your product or confuse the image. Often the best approach is to photograph from above the product down onto a clear surface.
You’ll commonly see the ‘studio shot’ in people’s Etsy listings, this is a high resolution image of the product with a plain white background. For smaller products you could just use white paper or card, this puts all the focus on the product.
2. Use natural daylight
The optimum time to photograph your products for Etsy is in midday light, which gives the product and your own brand a nice homely feel. Although you want to be careful of putting the product in direct sunlight which can create harsh shadows.
It might be tempting to photograph your product at night to give it a cosy aesthetic, but this can reduce the quality of the image and requires some strong lighting skills and equipment (which if you have is great). But a straightforward way to a clear and appealing image is to use natural daylight.
If you’re using a phone then you can actually use a lightroom app to increase the natural light in the image and reduce shadows.
3. Show the product in action
It can be hard for people to conceptualise your product on Etsy without a photo that shows them where it goes and what it looks like in action. If you’re selling jewellery then you might want to show what the jewellery looks like on a hand or wrist or ear. Or if it’s a lantern then you’d want to show it working in a room (at night in this case!).
If you don’t include a product photo like this then it can be hard for the shopper to know the scale of the product. We’ve all bought clothes online that don’t fit us like we thought because it wasn’t shown on a model - well don’t let the same happen with your products.
4. Capture detail
If you want your products to stand out from the competition on Etsy then you’ll need to show off your craftsmanship and the work that goes into making the product unique. This means capturing the minute detail of your work.
It helps to use a decent phone camera or professional level camera to take these so that the image has a high resolution (ideally fitting within 2700 pixels wide and 2025 pixels tall). Not only will it look good but having a photo within these specs helps optimise your product listing for Etsy’s search engine, meaning people will find the product more easily.
5. Show different variations of the product
If you offer the same product in different colours or shapes then make sure to show the entire range in the one listing. You never know, one might catch the attention of a casual browser. This means getting a careful arrangement that allows the Etsy shopper to get an insight into each product.
You’ll want to remove all other distractions from the image as there’s already a fair bit to look at, so following the studio shot approach would be the most advisable way to shoot the products.
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