There is no escaping the fact that Amazon is currently the largest and most successful eCommerce platform (though this may change at some point with Facebook Shops). It makes sense then, for many thousands of eCommerce retailers to use Amazon as a principal platform for sales.
As discussed elsewhere, your online sales success depends a lot on your product photographs – read more about that here – but Amazon itself has several specific guidelines which govern the quality and style of photographs that it will accept.
One of Amazon’s first rules even explicitly states that professional photographs should be used: “The image must be the cover art or a professional photograph of the product being sold.”
We will explain the main rules for Amazon listings below, to give you a good idea of what is required if you are looking to organise your product photography.
After checking through the list of requirements, you will see why most eCommerce retailers quickly conclude that it is faster and often less expensive to pay a professional to take over the product photography for them.
We will also, therefore, compare a few companies that offer Amazon-specific product photography services.
Each item you list on Amazon needs at least one or more product photograph; the primary product image is what Amazon refers to as your ‘main’ photo.
This is the image that is displayed in product searches and is also the first image shown on each individual product page.
Aside from these, Amazon also publishes comprehensive style guides for many different categories with further requirements (link further down this page).
These are the key image standards for your main photograph:
- Your product photograph must accurately represent your product and not have anything else in the image.
- It must be a clear photo of your product, without ragged edges or any blurring.
- It must be on a pure white background (this will require post-processing work on the photo), with RGB colour values 255, 255, 255.
- The product photo should be a minimum of 1,000 pixels or more in height or width, but at least 500 pixels on its longest side.
- The image can be JPEG (preferred), TIFF or GIF format.
- The product must occupy more than 85% of the frame of the longest side of the picture.
- There must be no text, logos or borders or any other graphics in the photograph.
- The product must be shown completely in the image (no cropping or missing parts) except for photographs of necklaces.
- You cannot show multiple images of the product in the photo.
- No packaging or labels to be showing (except for stockings/socks).
- No mannequins to be shown – i.e. you must use ghost mannequins (except for stockings/socks).
- No people or models of any kind in the photograph (except for adult clothing).
For additional images
Apart from your main image, you should also have some supplemental photographs. These will show sides of your product that are not visible in the main picture, and the guidelines above should be followed for these as well.
Separately, there are also several different styles of product photograph which can further help your customer to decide to purchase. These may be used to complement the additional product photographs and do not need to conform to some of the rigorous guidelines above (labels, packaging, text, etc). It is important (both to you and Amazon) that the quality of the photographs are of the same high quality, however.
Finding a professional product photographer
For many eCommerce retailers, producing their own product photographs is not economically viable – either because they have no photographic experience or due to the amount of time it would take them to produce images which meet Amazon’s standards.
Most online retailers, therefore, turn to professional product photographers to complete this task.
Professional photography services already know how to optimise the shoot and retouching for Amazon stores and will do this if you tell them where the photos are being used.
They will also complete the whole process faster than you can as an individual.
It’s worth looking around at a few companies as they all differ in service and pricing structure.
Pic-up.co.uk have varying charges for different sized items (and different categories); their prices generally start at around £12-£15 per item (one view), with a minimum order of £300.
Productphotography.co.uk have a lower-price package for £125, which includes 8 images (approx. £15 per photo).
Some services will also scale costs when a large number of items are being photographed; this is useful if you have multiple lines of products but can mean lower numbers are more expensive.
For instance, productphoto.com charge $25 per photo for a small number and scale down to $7 per photo for 700+ images.
An alternative approach
For a refreshingly different approach, Splento’s pricing is based on a fixed charge per hour.
Their professional product photographers can be hired from just £99 per hour – and this includes retouching and delivery of the finished photographs within 24 hours (guaranteed).
Rather than scale price according to the size of your order, Splento has scaled their entire photographic process so that lower prices are available for everyone – regardless of the size of the order or number of photos you require.
For more detail about this unique approach, contact Splento today and see the difference they are making to the product photography industry.
Booking is simple through a straightforward online form and they are available 24/7 in any location – wherever you are.
Follow this link to see the latest examples of Splento’s product photography portfolio.
If you decide to take and process your images yourself, you can find more details that you need in Amazon’s Style Guides.
You are also welcome to contact Splento even if you just need a little more help or advice with your Amazon eCommerce product photography.