You might ask, “Just how important is photography to my website?”
Well, lets just say it is more important than you would probably think! Besides having a website that has potent content, having high quality, professional photography is one of the most beneficial and important things you can implement into your website. A good photo can draw the visitor in, engage them, and help to keep them on your site longer – just as a bad, low quality photo can have the exact opposite effect.
Now stock photos are fine, but hiring a professional photographer to take custom shots is even better!
Stock photos can be great and are definitely better than blurry cell phone pics – 😉 – however, I have found that hiring a professional photographer is quite often the best and most beneficial option. Photographers are able to capture your products and brand in a way that stock photos and cell phone pics simply cannot. Plus, who doesn’t like being unique?! With a keen eye in composition and lighting, they make sure your brand really makes a statement – in turn helping your website look more professional which helps your brand earn the trust it deserves. I mean, tell me this picture below doesn’t make you hungry and eager to try out their brunch!
Tell your story through beautifully shot, moving photography.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words and in modern web design that statement couldn’t be more true. Current web design trends are flat (non dimensional) and simplistic with the goal of offering an easy, intuitive user experience. Gone are the days where walls of text were used to convey a business’s message or story. These changes, fueled by society’s limited attention spans, require you to convey your message in short, easily digestible bits across your website. This is where nice photography can come in handy. Beautiful and unique photos not only help breathe life and character into these flat modern designs, but they can also help get your story across at a glance. Done right, pairing your custom photos with a headline and small copy blurb can be a powerful combination that will catch the visitor’s eye – making your site stand out while others simply blend in. (Details matter!)
UpStream does an amazing job of pairing simple text with a powerful picture to immediately convey the feeling they want to come across and you know instantly what they are about.
Make your products really shine.
Online sales have been growing by at least 15% year-over-year so having an online presence to sell your products is as important as ever now! Ecommerce sites can be beneficial for businesses whether you have a few products or an entire store to sell. However, just having an ecommerce site is not enough.
There are many things that go into a successful ecommerce site (but that’s a whole other blog post) and one of the key ones is product photography. You can have all your products online for purchase, but unless you have good photos of them they may not sell as well. Your visitors want to see a crisp and clean image of the product they are interested in. And if you can offer it from multiple angles, or in a real life scenario, all the better!
Quality product photography is especially important for smaller businesses or sites that aren’t yet a household name. It can help lend credibility to your online store, making it easier to compete with the other more established ecommerce sites out there. Remember, there are a vast number of online stores on the web so if your photos don’t showcase your products in the best possible light then your potential customer might decide to go check out your competition. So, spend the time getting quality shots of your items and let those products shine!
Rachel’s Ginger Beer’s website is a great example of beautiful product photography that really showcases the items in an enticing way.
Brand, Brand, Brand.
Every business owner knows that branding is important. But most probably don’t think about the images on their website as being part of their branding. As we discussed above, photography in general is key, but you can take it a step further by having your photographer treat the images in a way that is consistent with your businesses’ branding. Talk with your photographer and designers. Let them know what kind of look or aesthetic you are wanting to achieve. Do you want them to add filters or special lighting effects to the photos during the editing phase to help them mesh with your brand better? If your branding is open, light, and airy, then you probably want your photos to reflect that as well. They should be light in tone and hues, and so on. I know we here at Asen are always happy to discuss these ideas before a shoot so that everyone comes out happy in the end!
The C&C Coffee and Infinity Foods screenshots below are great examples of this. Infinity Foods does an excellent job of harmonizing their photos with their overall brand and website aesthetic. And C&C Coffee has treated their photos with a duotone using their brand colors to really give them a custom style and punch. In the end, making sure your photos and brand are cohesive will give you the most bang-for-your-buck!
So to sum it up…
Make sure your photos enhance your brand online! Your online competition is fierce, so always stay on your game, and ahead of the game if possible. Value every aspect of your online presence including your website and remember quality details make the difference!