In this article we will show you how to optimise product photos for BigCommerce by looking at the following:
- BigCommerce product photo
- BigCommerce product image size
- BigCommerce image format
- BigCommerce CDN
- BigCommerce image manager
- Product photography tips for optimisation
BigCommerce product photo
If you’ve made the move towards BigCommerce, this is great for expanding your online store. However, the work doesn’t stop there – one crucial consideration for your eCommerce success is optimising your product photography for BigCommerce. Optimising your photos for the Internet is important because it allows you to reduce the loading time for your webpage and to increase the site speed. Slow loading times can be unbelievably frustrating for online shoppers. Even a few milliseconds can be the threshold for losing many potential clients. Therefore it is incredibly important for you to optimise your product photos to nurture your lead generation. Having properly optimised product photos is also essential for SEO purposes.
In this post, we will make BigCommerce image optimization simple for you so that your customers will be satisfied, and you can reap the benefits of your well-earned lead generation.
BigCommerce product image size
You must have the right size photo. Images that are too large will increase the load time and images that are too small are of poor quality.
On most cameras, even smartphone cameras, the images produced have a very large pixel size. This is bad news for eCommerce because it slows down the speed of your site. On BigCommerce, the optimal product photo size is 1028px by 1028px, and other photos should be under 1000px on both sides. Having square images with the dimensions 1000px by 1000px is the BigCommerce standard as they display well and look appealing to customers.
Because many cameras will take images larger than this, it makes sense that you won’t have an image that comes out this size. There are many great online photo editing services like Pixlr, Canva, and Image Resizer which make it easy for you to edit and resize images for web optimisation.
You should also make sure you have product zoom enabled so that you can display a much higher resolution image.
BigCommerce image format
Make sure you save image files in the right format when taking your photographs as this can affect your image quality. BigCommerce permits three different image formats: JPG/JPEG, GIF, or PNG.
If you’re not familiar with different formats, we would recommend using a JPEG file format. JPEGs are very commonplace online and this file type is widely supported by digital cameras. JPEGs offer a decent colour rendition, and the compression settings allow for a good balance between image quality and file size.
GIF files are good for smaller image sizes, but the disadvantage is lower quality images. GIFs are ideal for creating small icons and thumbnails but perhaps not for your featured product photos as the bigger the image size, the poorer the colour rendition.
PNG files produce great-looking photos as they process a wide range of colours well, and this is the only file type that will support transparent backgrounds if you are using them, but this comes at the expense of a large image. If you are editing an image more than once, you should export it as a PNG file as this format can handle the image being processed multiple times.
A content delivery network (CDN) helps to improve high availability and performance by distributing the service spatially relative to end-users. By reducing the physical distance between the server and the user it can speed up page load time. BigCommerce has a CDN for this reason. If you have a custom-designed theme, you can use the BigCommerce CDN to serve the images in your theme at a quicker rate for improved optimisation.
BigCommerce Image Manager
BigCommerce stores with Stencil themes come with Akamai Image Manager. This is brilliant as it automatically optimises your product photos for you, changing the size, quality and file format per image and device. So when you upload an image, it is optimised for the best page load performance while keeping the image quality high.
This means that even if you upload a very large image from a digital camera, it will reformat it for optimal online viewing. It will also optimise past images you have uploaded that aren’t in an optimal format. Akamai Image Manager may save images as .webp instead of jpeg.
Product photography tips for optimisation
Because product photography is essential for making a sale in the competitive eCommerce industry, as well as making sure you have the right load time on your page, you need to make sure that your product photography is top-notch. Here are some tips for taking amazing product photos:
- Use the right lighting. If you use the right file format, but your lighting is poor it is unlikely that your product will photograph well and customers will be persuaded to purchase your product. Using natural light is a good option. Be sure to shoot by a window to get the best lighting possible. You can also use professional lighting. Another possibility is to use the Amazon photo studio which is an affordable, portable product photography studio designed for eCommerce merchants.
- Use a tripod. Using a tripod is necessary to produce a clear image without camera shake.
- Use a white background. Using a white background is recommended for your main image as it allows your product to stand out clearly.
- Take multiple photos. Taking multiple photos is not only good for SEO, but it provides your customers with more images of your product. When a customer can see your product from multiple angles they will have a well-rounded perception of your product.
- Consider lifestyle product photography. As you can use multiple product photos, consider taking lifestyle product photographs. Taking photographs that show your product in context can be very influential for your customers as it prompts them to imagine themselves using it.
While optimising your products is important for your eCommerce success, we also cannot emphasise the importance of high-quality product photography enough. While it is possible to take DIY product photos, a high-quality professional product photo improves the look and feel of your site and in turn, your brand image. When you invest in product photography, you can expect your conversion rate to improve significantly.
Book with Splento to find a reliable, on-demand photographer who will produce amazing product photos for your BigCommerce store, at a fixed affordable rate. Get in touch with us today to speak with a team member about your product photography needs.