Category: Web Site Photography

7 things you need to know about ecommerce photography rates

As an ecommerce merchant trading in today’s busy online marketplace, you’ll know that how you showcase your products online has never been so important. It’s simple: the better your products look on your website, the more you will sell. Your ecommerce images maximise visual appeal, showcase your products’ unique selling points, and create a sense of desire amongst consumers. Over 50% of those who buy online consider product photography to be more important than information about the product, rating and reviews.

With this in mind, outsourcing your product photography to an experienced professional is an investment worth making. Not only will a professional ecommerce photographer capture high-quality photos to transform your online store, but you’ll be able to use these images to create lots of vibrant and engaging marketing collateral too.

How much does ecommerce photography cost?

You’ve decided that investing in professional product photography for your ecommerce business is the right move. Now, you’re probably wondering how much it will cost to hire a photographer to produce these all-important product snaps. 

There’s no simple or set answer when it comes to ecommerce photography rates. Of course, fees will vary depending on the volume of images you need and usage you require, but there are some other important factors to consider too.

Let’s take a look at some of the things that affect the cost of ecommerce photography in more detail …

#1 Studio type

photography studio set up

When on the hunt for a professional product photography service, you’ll notice that there are two types of studios that could help. The type of studio you choose will affect the price you pay.

If you’re looking to use a local service, then an independent studio is a great choice. A simple internet search will highlight all the independent photographers based in your area – there may be more than you think! Often, local independent photography studios are a one-person operation, which means the photographer you’ll be working with can offer a wealth of experience across all areas of a project. You’re more likely to receive a more tailored, individual service that really takes into account the unique needs of your business too. You may be able to negotiate rates with an independent photographer.

For large-scale product photography projects, a larger full-service studio may be a better fit. Although this type of studio can usually handle larger shipments of products, you might not receive the personalised service that a local independent photographer can offer. Furthermore, you’re less likely to be able to negotiate rates.

#2 Charging structure

As you would expect, different photographers and studios charge for their services in different ways. Depending on the size of your individual project, you might prefer one charging structure to another.

Ecommerce photography rates are usually calculated by the hour or day, per product, or per image.

At Spencer Cobby Photography, fees for white background product packshots and simple lifestyle shots are based on either an hourly, half-day or full-day rate:

Per hour – 1-4 images depending on brief – £95

Half day (4 hours) – 1-20 images depending on brief – £270

Full day (8 hours) – 1-40 images depending on brief – £425

These prices include studio time, photographer, basic digital clean-up and colour correction. These rates are used only as a guide, and are negotiable subject to volume and usage.

#3 Product type

Ecommerce photography rates can also differ depending on the type of product being photographed. This is because some types of products require more pre-shoot preparation than others. For instance, some products might require extensive cleaning or styling before photography can get underway.

Clothing and food items are good examples of products that require extensive preparation. Clothes might need ironing, folding in a certain way, or pairing with other apparel on a mannequin. Food products often need to be presented in a special way in order to make them look as edible as possible. Preparation means time. And time translates into increased fees. There may be some preparation time factored into the initial rates that you are quoted, but it is always worth checking this before a shoot takes place.

flat bread pizza with cheese and chilli topping from The Flat restaurant, Exeter by Spencer Cobby Photography

#4 Image type

Another key factor to consider is image type. Are you looking for a set of formal white-background shots? Would you like lifestyle images to showcase your products? Or is a mix of image types the best solution for you?

White-background shots are an effective way of communicating key details about your products and really highlighting any unique selling points. A set of high-quality, consistent photos like this give your ecommerce store a professional feel, helping to increase trust between you and your target audience.

Lifestyle images showcase your products in real-life scenarios, often with models who resemble the target audience. As well as telling the story of your brand, these types of product photographs are an effective way of connecting with customers’ emotions and creating a compelling sense of desire. They offer consumers a tangible lifestyle idea to aspire to – a must for arousing interest and increasing sales.

Think about these options in advance. Which image type will work best for your business? Lifestyle images require sets and props, so come with an increased price tag. The cost will depend on many factors, including location, models and sets – more on this next.

#5 Set construction

If your lifestyle images require a set to be built, this is going to significantly change the photography rates.

Sets can range from simple backdrops with a few relevant props, to full room settings with extensive detail. Depending on the complexity of the set, they can be time-consuming to design and build. The photography process can also take much longer when a set is involved.

product photography shoot for Nkuku by Spencer Cobby Photography

Photography rates for lifestyle set images will depend on set design, materials needed and props required. Here at Spencer Cobby Photography, we love to get creative, and can produce your chosen backdrop before we begin shooting. This comes at an additional fee. We can accommodate small tweaks to your set at no extra charge, which means each image we produce for you is unique. For more significant changes, there may be additional setup charges.

#6 Location hire

You may need to hire a location for your product photography shoot, which can impact the photography rates you pay. Getting out of the studio tends to open up much more room for creativity. It offers the chance to capture more distinctive images that will engage customers and really reflect what your brand is about.

woman photographing product in a large white room

The cost of hiring a location can vary greatly depending on your needs. As such, most professional photographers will need to provide a bespoke quotation when it comes to a location-based shoot.

When budgeting for this type of shoot, think about how long you will need your location for, if any special equipment is required, and how you will transport your products there.

#7 Post-production options

Remember to take into account the cost of editing when budgeting for your product photography project. The editing process is where images really come to life, so it shouldn’t be overlooked.

Here at Spencer Cobby Photography, we provide basic digital editing as standard. This includes clean-up and colour adjustment on all images. Each photograph, whether captured in the studio or on location, is carefully edited to specification. We also offer advanced editing options to our clients, including cut-outs and clipping paths. This service comes at an additional cost, which is dependent on specific needs and image volume.

Spencer Cobby ecommerce photography

With this knowledge of ecommerce photography rates under your belt, we hope you’ll be able to make an informed decision when it comes to hiring the right product photographer for you.

Professional ecommerce photography is one of the many services we offer here at Spencer Cobby Photography. Thanks to our extensive experience in the industry, we can create high-quality product images that connect with your customers and ultimately help increase sales. Whether you require formal cut-out shots or more relaxed lifestyle images, our local Exeter studio is more than equipped to accommodate your needs.

If you’d like to find out more about our ecommerce photography rates or perhaps discuss a bespoke quotation, please do get in touch. We love connecting with ambitious brands looking to optimise their online stores with high-quality product photography.

You can explore some of our recent ecommerce photography work over on our website – check out some examples here.

Website photography trends for 2019

As highly visual beings, us humans are drawn to the imagery in a website before anything else. This means website photography has to be top notch. It needs to tell the story of the brand. It needs to showcase products or services. It needs to create an emotional connection with consumers. Great website photography can be the difference between someone choosing to invest in your brand, or turning to the competition instead.

In order to ensure your website has a positive, lasting impact on visitors, keeping up with the latest website photography trends is a great place to start. Tailoring the style and content of your imagery to appeal to current trends will enable you to maintain a stylish, relevant website that resonates more strongly with consumers.

To help you, we’ve rounded up five website photography trends to embrace in 2019…

Candid photography

image showing website photography by Spencer Cobby Photography for WaterBumps, showing four pregnant women swimming in a pool together

 

Brand authenticity is key for consumers, especially when they’re looking for a product or service to invest in. You need to create a sense of trust between you and your audience. This will help foster positive brand-consumer relationships, and in turn drive conversions on your website.

One way you can help to demonstrate your authenticity is by including candid photographs on your website. This type of photography style is now favoured over forced portrait photography with its often impossible postures and insincere emotions. Consumers want to relate to the people and scenes pictured on your site. You can make this happen by featuring emotive images that feel natural and genuine.

When it comes to staff headshots for instance, try more relaxed shots that capture your staff with genuine smiles. Not only does this represent your team as friendly and approachable, but it follows the trend for candid photography that’s set to become increasingly popular with consumers this year. For lifestyle shots, capture your models naturally interacting with everyday situations. This will help consumers connect with your products, creating a sense of desire. 

Drone shots

image of a DJI Phantom 3 drone in the air

The use of drones is transforming the photography industry. These high-flying cameras enable photographers to capture unique aerial viewpoints, with some truly stunning results. For visual brands, high quality drone imagery can give you an edge over your competitors. Not only will you be able to offer a unique view to your audience, but you’re portraying yourself as a creative, adventurous and innovative brand. Impactful drone shots will evoke an emotional connection with potential customers, one that they’re likely to talk about with others. Depending on your brand and its offering, drone photography could be the creative tool you didn’t even know you were missing this year.

The ability of drones to produce innovative and affordable aerial photographs has caused quite the stir in the tourism industry in particular. What better way to show the beauty of a travel destination than by a breathtaking aerial shot? Travel marketers can showcase a unique view of a resort, its amenities and surroundings, creating beautiful visual content for their websites.

In 2019, commercial adoption of drones is set to rise rapidly. Expect to see drones disrupting traditional photography in more and more industries. What do you think – could drone shots work for your website?

It goes without saying that flying a drone comes with great responsibility. Always make sure you are aware of legal regulations before you plan a shoot. It’s suggested that you check with your local air safety authorities for area-specific regulations.

Nostalgia

2019 is predicted to be the year of the comebacks, with the re-emergence of retro cameras and old-school photography styles. In homage to this trend, more and more websites will use old photographs to create new meaning. Photographers and designers will draw on inspiration from the past and combine with modern techniques to create distinctive sites that command attention.

90s inspired websites will be all the rage, with palettes, patterns, fonts and photos that are reminiscent of that iconic decade. Expect to see lots of nostalgic collages used across sites this year, embracing the archetypal styles of the 90s, with a modern twist. This trend will combine the homemade aesthetic of layered magazine cut-and-paste collages with a digital vibe to add a contemporary edge. A statement collage is a great idea for making a strong visual impact on your website’s homepage.

Also part of this nostalgic flashback trend is the comeback of 80s opulence within website photography. Shutterstock have reported a resurgence in image searches for ‘chain print’, ‘leopard print’ and ‘peacock’, suggesting a nod towards the extravagant textures that defined the 80s era.

Creative provocation

The internet is a bustling hive of competition, with thousands of brands battling for the attention of the same consumers. Having a website that stands out from the crowd has never been more important. Increasingly, it’s only the brands who provoke and stimulate with their visual content who are managing to successfully capture the public’s attention.

Brave, bold and daring visuals are set to become more prominent in 2019. By taking a more unconventional approach to photography, brands can give themselves an edge over their competitors. The key to embracing this trend is to feature memorable website photography that inspires conversation and provokes thought. Dramatic images with loud messages are set to become more popular as brands fight to stay relevant.

Environmental awareness

Consumers are demanding increasing transparency from retailers. They want to know where products have come from, how they are made and how the environment is affected in the process. As conscious consumerism continues to rise, shoppers will back brands who are actively supporting environmental causes.

A major visual trend for 2019 will see businesses using their website photography to raise awareness of environmental issues. As a brand, you can use imagery to give visibility to global concerns and help provoke change. You can communicate your brand’s environmental stance too, using website photography to tell your story. As they say, a picture speaks a thousand words. With this in mind, you can harness the power of vivid imagery to really connect with your audience, earn their custom and cultivate trust.

Embrace these trends to create a successful website

Armed with these five website photography trends, you can ensure your brand stands out from the crowd this year. By reflecting cultural and technological trends through your website’s photography, you demonstrate that you are a current, responsive brand that can provide a positive, trusted experience.

Spencer Cobby website photography

We have worked with a vast range of brands to help make their websites shine. With our unique vision and attention to detail, we can transform your site with photography that sells your products, services and your staff. Our extensive knowledge of the industry means we are always aware of the latest trends and technologies and know how to apply these to serve our clients’ needs. From product packshots on a white screen, to outdoor lifestyle shots and staff portraits, we offer a full range of website photography services.

Feel free to contact us if you have any questions about how we can help transform your website. We love to hear from passionate brands looking to improve their online presence through powerful photography!

Food and Drink Photography: The Flat, Exeter

Interview with co-founder, Chloe Whipple

We recently ventured on a food and drink photography expedition to The Flat restaurant: a bustling vegetarian/ vegan restaurant located on Fore Street, the hub of all things Indie in Exeter. Having just celebrated their first birthday, we sat down with co-founder Chloe Whipple.

What inspired you to open a restaurant?

Both of us had been living and working in Exeter for a while. Pietro (co-founder) had worked as a pizza chef in several restaurants and had begun to feel like he couldn’t express himself creatively in the kitchen. He found that others didn’t seem to have the same values and desires as he had.

We thought about the freedom and ownership of running a business and what values we would tie in and both felt like it was time to start something new.

Pietro talked about how, when he was in his teens, he would cook huge meals for his friends. They wouldn’t go out and party like we do here, but would spend hours sitting together talking and eating. He loved the social element of everyone gathered eating really good food together. That’s a really big part of our heart for The Flat – we’ve created a space for people to ‘come into our home’ or ‘our space’, to feel welcomed, relaxed and to give them great food.

What is unique about your restaurant?

I think being a vegetarian/ vegan restaurant really appeals to people, although we never intended that to be our identity. We just wanted to follow through with what we felt was sustainable and what we believed in.

The size is quite unique- it’s small, intimate and personal – sort of a community feel.

As far as the menu goes, we wanted a foundation of traditional Italian recipes, but with a British influence. So our food is a fusion of classic Italian flavours and local British ingredients.

photograph of a flatbread dish from The Flat restaurant, Exeter by Spencer Cobby

image from Spencer Cobby Photography of a main dish served at The Flat restaurant in Exeter

The interior is quite unique – it was a little tricky on a budget, but in this case it caused us to be more creative and think outside the box. The wood panelling was already here, we just scraped the paint off and found this rustic, beautiful wood underneath! All the other wood is either upcycled old floorboards used to build the bar or wood reclaimed from yards or tips.  

Our tables were made new – I designed them and then had a friend build them, so even then we used someone in our local community which I love.  We were going to have artwork, but soon decided that it would be too busy and take over the simple beauty of the wood, so we decided to have plants as art.

an example of food and drink photography from Spencer Cobby Photography showing a petit fours dish from The Flat Restaurant, Exeter on a table with a plant

Are your ingredients locally sourced? If so, where from?

Our fresh ingredients are supplied by either Riverford Farm, Darts Farm or sometimes Shillingford Farm. We try to be as local as we can be and as organic as we can be, you know? It’s all about finding that balance.

All of our dried food is from the South West as well. But it’s really hard to get everything locally. For example, take olives and olive oil – those are shipped over from Italy, you just can’t grow them here. With Pietro’s Italian heritage and our Italy-inspired menu, we love sourcing things like our tomato sauce from Italy – you can’t grow tomatoes like Italian tomatoes here! One of the ingredients we use – ‘radicchio’ – often comes from Chioggia, Italy, which is where Pietro grew up. It feels like little parts of his hometown arrive every week, it’s fun.

image showing Spencer Cobby photography of a pizza in a takeaway box from The Flat

We are constantly aware and seeking out the best, most eco-friendly options. It’s not just the food, but even little things like our loo roll – which is 100% recycled – and our takeaway boxes. Our cleaning supplies are green products sourced from a local business in Exeter called “Green My Business” – some of them are even homemade.’

What do you love about Exeter and Fore street?

So much! I love the size of Exeter – it’s not too big and not too small. It’s so easy to have a community and meet new people all the time. I’ve lived on Fore Street for 8 years. There’s such a collision of different people, imaginations and creativity. The shops on this street are a manifestation of those individuals and their passions – and the shop owners here don’t tend to be money driven. They’re here because they want to make a difference and because they love what they do!

Here, it’s real and it’s raw. We do life together and we see people at their best and worst. It’s eye opening and a good reminder to be thankful for what we have and to always give back when we can.

You just celebrated your first birthday as a restaurant! How’s it all going and what have you learnt?

We have been so pleasantly surprised by how busy we’ve been and how we’ve been received by our customers and other shop owners on the street. Everyone has been so welcoming and generous and it’s actually not been as scary as I thought it would be!

It is such a joy to share The Flat with our growing staff team – it’s so cool learning from each other and getting excited about the restaurant, the food and what we, as a team, are creating. We’ve recognised that really valuing our staff feeds into the atmosphere and everything we do at The Flat. Creativity is always flowing and we are forever tweaking things!

We’ve learned lots of practical things too, like finding suppliers and different ways to source our food, things like that. We are finding our own routine and system – finding our groove with what works best and what doesn’t.

What’s one of your favourite things about running The Flat?

I just love clearing empty plates. I know that sounds funny – but there’s something so satisfying about clearing away completely clean plates from people’s tables and seeing that they’ve just scraped them spotless. That’s when you know they’ve loved what they’ve eaten!

You can find out more about The Flat on www.theflatexeter.co.uk. Do visit our website to find out more about the food and drink photography services we offer. And please do contact us if you have any questions about how food and drink photography can help your business.

5 things to know about website photography if you’re launching a business

In the throes of launching a business? Don’t know where to start when it comes to your website photography? Photographs are sometimes relegated to the bottom of the to-do list when building a website for a new business. But with the power to make or break your brand, photographs not to be underestimated. Your website photography will help tell the story of your brand. It will evoke emotional connections with your audience, not to mention help with your brand awareness and SEO. You’ll need to take time to understand your audience and the market in general, and really tailor the style and content of your photography to appeal to current trends.

We’ve rounded up the top five things you need to consider before you get started with your website photography …

Understand your target audience

If you’re building a business from the beginning, one of the most important things you need to do is define and understand your target audience. Aside from the basic demographics to consider – age, gender, occupation and location- it pays to consider the lifestyles your target audience lead. What does your typical customer enjoy doing? What are their values? What motivates them?

Try to establish an empathy with your audience and understand exactly why they need your product or service. What problem of theirs does it solve? Also, what does a typical customer expect to see when looking at your website? What type of photos will they connect with? With a clear and detailed vision of who your target audience is and an understanding of how your business can help them, you can begin to tailor your website and its photography content to suit their specific needs.

For a useful guide on defining your target audience, take a look at this handy QuickSprout chapter.

Using people in your website photography

People are an ever-popular photo subject on websites. As humans, we tend to look for other humans in photographs and instantly build an emotional connection with them, which in turn drives buying behaviour. In fact, research has shown that the presence of human photos on a website landing page can increase conversion rates by having a positive impact on a visitor’s first impression of trustworthiness. Studies also suggest that human photos with a focus on the face have a much better impact on conversion rates. The emotional connection produced is often much stronger.

If you’re opting for photos of people, think about whether you want models or your real staff members to appear in your website photos. If you’re publishing images of staff online, you’ll need to get their informed consent to do so (check out our recent blog post on the new GDPR regulations for more information).

When people visit your new website, they will want to get to know you and find out if your business aligns with their own values. One of the most effective ways to humanise your brand and help potential customers get to know your business is to show them actual photos of your team.

Consider whether lifestyle portraits or formal headshots will best convey your brand story. For some inspiration, take a look at these relaxed and friendly lifestyle portraits we shot for the Devon Partnership NHS Trust recruitment web page, compared with these more formal headshots we produced for Thomas Westcott.

image for website photography for Devon NHS partnership recruitment page                                           Image: https://jobs.dpt.nhs.uk/

 

Keep photos consistent with your brand

Clarity and consistency are simply key when it comes to building a memorable and respected brand. If your website photography is inconsistent, visitors to your site may find it difficult to remember or recognise your brand, which can hinder your business growth. Here are some tips for branding your images:

  • Include your logo in the image.
  • Give all your website photos a theme or design style that fits with your brand’s story.
  • Use your recognised brand colours.
  • Use consistent typography.

By taking the time to get on top of visual branding, you’re engendering stronger connections with your target audience, making your brand more recognisable. The chances of your content being remembered is also increased. In turn, this drives business referral rates and increases growth. Of course, having a consistent set of website photos provides visitors with a professional, credible image of your business and increases consumer trust.

Research visual trends

You’ll want your new website to really stand out from those of your competitors, especially if you’re launching a business in a particularly crowded marketplace. Think about the sorts of visual content that will really speak to your target audience. What can you do with your website photography to make a strong visual impact?

Here are some of the biggest visual trends of 2018 if you’re in need of some website photography inspiration:

CONCEPTUAL REALISM

According to Getty Images, attainability and relatability are key when connecting with today’s consumer. Authentic, believable lifestyle images are one of the main ways to appeal to customers in 2018. ‘Aspirational’ scenes no longer resonating.

SPEAKING VOLUMES WITH A SINGLE IMAGE

Following the vast social and political changes of 2017, this year we’re witnessing a shift in website photography. It is becoming a little more open, raw and dynamic.  We are seeing a rise in powerful, single images designed to make a big statement. Businesses are attempting to appeal to consumers’ increasing need for social accountability and ethical fairness,

STATEMENT COLLAGES

2018 has also seen an increase in the statement collage. Combinations of images and illustrations with bold, brave colours are being used to create unique design statements to get a website noticed.

Humanise images but be clear and neat

It’s important that you don’t forego clean, clear, clutter-free images whilst trying to connect with your audience. Achieving a good balance can be tricky, but is certainly worth investing some time perfecting.

An example of a website with engaging, humanised images that communicate clearly is the aptly named All Clean. We shot these images of real staff cleaning air ducts on a one-day photoshoot at a client’s premises. The resulting photographs bring the service that All Clean offers to life, allowing website visitors to visualise their own premises being cleaned by the photographed staff. The images act as storytellers, clearly communicating the service on offer to potential customers. We were careful not to over-complicate or clutter each shot. We wanted the focus of each image to be on the work that was being done by the staff.

Great website photography can be the difference between potential customers purchasing a product or service, or turning to a competitor instead. No matter what you’re selling or who you’re selling to, website photography is an important asset that you cannot afford to get wrong.

We provide unique, quality website photography that sells your products, services and your staff. We offer individually catered packages to suit all businesses, and guarantee to make your website shine with our unique vision and attention to detail. To find out more about the services we offer, including e-commerce product photography, lifestyle photography and staff headshots, visit our website. And please do contact us if you have any questions about how we can help with the launch of your new business.

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