So, you’re setting up shop on Amazon? It’s a smart move. More than 197 million people shop on the site. That’s a huge well of potential customers that you can draw from. The downside is that you’re joining a crowded market. There are now six million third-party sellers on Amazon. It goes without saying, but if you want to succeed, you need to stand out.
When selling products in the physical world, the logic is simple. To make a product stand out, you need to focus on visual aspects. This normally centers around a product’s position on the shelf and location in a store. But selling online doesn’t need to be so different. You still need to focus on the visuals.
Think about it; when shopping online, there’s one element that usually catches your eye first: the product photo. This is your chance to make an impression on customers – make sure that it’s a good one.
Even if you deploy the help of ecommerce marketing software, if your images aren’t up to scratch, people won’t buy your products. Certainly, optimizing Amazon priduct images requires commitment.
You might be unsure where to start, but don’t worry. With these five simple steps, you’ll be attracting new customers in no time!
1. Follow the Guidelines
The process of preparing Amazon product photos can take a while. You’ll need to find the right photographer and carry out editing. There’s no point putting in all this effort, only for an image to be rejected. Like most selling platforms, Amazon has guidelines that you’ll need to follow. Amazon has the following rules for all product images:
- The pixel dimensions of an image should be 1000 in either width or height.
- The image must use either sRGB or CMYK color modes.
- The name for your image file should include a product identifier (e.g., an ISBN number). This should be followed by a period and the file extension (“.tif” or “.jpg”).
But the rules don’t stop there. Amazon also has a specific set of guidelines for the main product images:
- Only use white backgrounds.
- There should be no inset graphics or text overlays.
- Your product should fill 85% of the frame.
- The image should be clear and high quality.
- The image shouldn’t contain items other than the product.
Alongside these rules, it’s important to remember that different products will have their own image guidelines. For example, clothing should either be seen flat or worn by a model. If you’re selling music, video games, or books, the cover art should fill 100% of the image frame.
It’s fair to say that there’s a lot to take in here. But it’s best to absorb these rules first, rather than learning the hard way later.
2. Add Viewing Options
When you go to a shop and look at a product, you’ll probably want to get a sense of an item before buying it. This usually means picking a product up and viewing it from different angles. Obviously, a customer can’t pick up a product on Amazon, but they’ll still want as many viewing options as possible.
A single product image won’t tell people very much, especially if the item is in a box. To make an informed decision, people want to know what’s inside the box. To keep browsers happy, offer multiple photos.
Try to include different angles of your products and give a sense of scale – size can often be a concern for buyers. If you’re including an item in a product bundle, show it alongside other products.
The more interactive you can make the buying experience the better. Amazon already offers a zoom feature on larger product images. Why not add a zoomable picture, so customers can view products in more detail? At the end of the day, the more information you can give a shopper, the higher the chances of them making a purchase.
3. Focus on Format
You’ve probably splashed out on finding a good photographer. But now your picture needs to look good. The file format is one of the most important factors when posting images online. The right format can bring out the best elements of an image. But higher quality file formats also come with the downside of larger file sizes.
When it comes to Amazon product images, you’ll want to focus on quality. This means that you’ll probably want to choose a PNG image. This is a vector image and doesn’t lose any quality during compression. But hold your horses – while a PNG might seem like a good choice, it unfortunately isn’t an option available to you.
In fact, Amazon only supports two image file formats: JPEG and TIFF. Let’s look at each format:
JPEG – This is the most common file format online. JPEG files take up less space, but there’s a downside to this option. JPEG uses lossy compression; this means that it loses some picture quality when being saved. Certain programs allow you to choose the quality of a JPEG image. If you do go with this option, make sure you choose a higher quality.
TIFF – TIFF images come with the bonus of offering much higher quality. With this file format, you can also save multiple images within a single file. But be warned. Unlike JPEGs, TIFF files take up more space.
4. Use ALT Text
The term “alt text” is one you’ll probably hear a lot in ecommerce. More and more businesses are using this feature to make their products more accessible online. Alt text is a description of an image. If a blind or visually impaired user is browsing, they can select the image, and their screen reader will offer narration.
Worldwide 2.2 billion people have some form of visual impairment. Why should these users be prevented from experiencing your products? Luckily, Amazon adds the option to include alt text on all your images.
Take care when writing your alt text. Long and rambling descriptions aren’t going to help. Instead, try to be succinct and to the point. Also, the speech-to-text functionality enabled by CTF loader on computers that run on Windows 10 or 11 can speed up the process of creating alt text and is particularly useful for people who have difficulties typing.
Gain an SEO Boost
But alt text isn’t just important in terms of accessibility. It also plays a part in Search Engine Optimization (SEO). If you’re running a business online, this is probably a term you’re very familiar with. SEO determines a website’s position in a search engine. When it comes to Amazon, you want your products to have a high position in searches. If you include certain keywords (popular search queries) in your alt text, you’ll gain an SEO boost. Do some research into online shopping trends, and learn the keywords that are relevant to your product.
5. Always Edit
It’s usually not enough just to take a picture and upload it straight away. It’s always a good idea to add a few extra touches. This might mean increasing the brightness of your product images or bringing out additional colors. Before uploading a product image, ask yourself “Would this appeal to a customer?.” If the answer is “No”, what can be done to make the image more attractive?
It’s a good idea to have a set formula for presenting your products. That way, your catalog will have uniformity and look more professional. Finding the right formula can take time. It can be a good idea to test photos to find a format that works. Send a survey to customers to get better insights, and use an engagement platform to gauge response.
Of course, sometimes, you might also need to carry out some edits to meet the Amazon guidelines. For example, if you’re showing an object on a crowded desk, you’ll want to crop out items that don’t relate to your product.
Remember, only take on the editing duties if you have some experience in graphic design. Otherwise, your images will look sloppy. It’s usually better to enlist the help of a professional.
Bonus: Remember all the elements
Pictures are important, but they’re not the only element that you should focus on. The product description is equally important. Make sure you take the time to plan a description that will wow and inform your audience.
To do this properly, you’ll need to carry out plenty of research. How do successful competitors create their descriptions? You’ll need to make sure you highlight the most sellable attributes of products. Try to consider how the text can complement the product image, and give more detail about features that have been shown in photos.
Make sure that you make it easy for shoppers to contact you if they have any questions. Investing in a digital phone number can be a good first step. This allows for high call quality and ensures that you can answer calls from multiple devices.
Want a shortcut to create Amazon Product Photos?
Try Cherrydeck Branded Stock Amazon. You can create a library with hundreds of ready-to-buy Amazon product images featuring your own items in a matter of weeks. All you have to do is send out your products and Cherrydeck will take care of the rest.
Did you like to read our insights on Amazon Product Photography? Stay tuned for more on the Cherrydeck Blog.
Jenna Bunnell – Senior Manager, Content Marketing, Dialpad
Jenna Bunnell is the Senior Manager for Content Marketing at Dialpad, the best cloud PBX for businesses and AI-incorporated cloud-hosted unified communications system that provides valuable call details for business owners and sales representatives. She is driven and passionate about communicating a brand’s design sensibility and visualizing how content can be presented in creative and comprehensive ways. Jenna has also written for other domains such as LandingCube and Pressidium. Here is her LinkedIn.