Your Side Hustle: Online Selling | Pro-Product Photography
Updated: Apr 6
With shoppers going online more than ever, now might be the time to launch that dream of having your own e-commerce online business.
Be your own boss, work the hours you want and being in charge of your own destiny. Online sellers have been around since the invention of the internet, but now, and right now 2020, it's exploded into the fastest growing entrepreneurial sector for start up businesses. Now might the time to delve deeper into the online shopping world at your fingertips (and the fingertips of everyone else!)
2. WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO SELL?
Fortunately, choosing what to sell is as easy as going online shopping yourself. Find something you are passionate about, but do it differently to others. Basic business start-up steps like market research, having a business plan, timeframe, budget, finding your market niche and research into your competitor's products. There is nothing you can't find on the internet from what to sell, how to sell and even statistics with apps like Zonguru.
Think about where you are going to source this product from, too. Supply chains are disrupted at the moment, so a local supplier might be a better option than cheap overseas manufacturers.
3. CHOOSE YOUR PLATFORM
There are many online selling options but the main players are:
Many sellers also have their own online website store and instagram page where you can build loyalty and relationships with your potential customers.
4. MAKING IT REAL
There is no online shop without photos of the products. Professional photography is the only way to show the features, quality and desirability of any product.
Here, the studio is fully equipped with professional lighting equipment which makes for the highest quality photos. Attention is paid to every little detail including retouching to minor blemishes which are visible in high resolution product photography.
“In e-commerce you don’t have a shopfront or bricks and mortar, so you need to invest in good photography because that is your shopfront. That is the connection from the product to the consumer. You have to bring the emotion into buying the product. And you can’t do it with your phone. ”
~ Amazon seller, Nina Camilleri
5. PRODUCT VS LIFESTYLE PHOTOS
Product photos clearly show the features, colours, materials and dimension of your product. Specifications from most e-commerce site require a pure white background which is produced in post production.
Lifestyle photos create the emotional connection that generates the desire to purchase based on an emotional need/want.
Often props, sets and models (or hands) are required to give your product the 'wow' factor. Whilst a white background is clean, it's also sterile and give no reason to buy.
6. WHEN YOU'RE READY
The next step is booking a shoot. I take the time to find out more about your product and to understand the types of photos you want to achieve. I provide advice for what works well in online shopping. We will work together closely to create a storyboard so there is a clear direction for the shoot and the photos resulting from the shoot. I'm a photographer, but part of what I do is styling and I can source props so your product looks amazing and stands out from your competitors.
7. PACKAGE INCLUSIONS
Consultation and idea sharing (creating a storyboard)
Product Photos with pure white background
Photo retouching to remove small blemishes (scratch, dent, crease, etc)
Compositing of one image to show features (see image left)
Resizing to comply with e-commerce image specifications
The studio is perfect for Lifestyle photos with product in use and in-situ as home & garden scenes
Every product is different, so every shoot is different. For a basic Amazon listing of a small product with 8 photos (6 product photos including 'features' photo and 2 lifestyle photos) a 2 hour shoot is $490.
Half Day and Full Day shoots are recommended for multiple items or more complex lifestyle photos.
9. THE SHOOT
With the storyboard, we have a clear map as to what photos you are looking for. With product shoots I generally shoot on my own because it consists of the product and a white background, all our correspondence can be done via email or phone. Generally, for the creative lifestyle shoots it is better that you are present so that you can provide feedback as we shoot, but it's not essential as I shoot many on my own and can provide live updates. Most of my regular clients just leave it to me after providing visual references (storyboard) and brief. This is where communication is the key.
10. POLISHED, PACKAGED & READY FOR DELIVERY
Your photos are finalised with editing to commercial standard, resized to specifications and digitally uploaded to Dropbox ready for you to upload to your selling platform.
Starting a new venture as your side hustle can turn into the career and lifestyle change you've been looking for. Change brings possibilities and opportunities. But sometimes fear and uncertainty holds us back because we don't know where to start. So send me a message and let's start something!