Put simply, packshot photography (sometimes called packaging shot) is the photo of a product, still or moving, which captures the image of the product along with the packaging or label.
Packshot photography is a great tool to boost eCommerce. The aim is for the image to show off the product as the consumer might encounter it at the store or online. Because packshot photos feature the packaging and labelling, consumers will already be familiar with the product when they see it for sale. This creates a sense of familiarity with the product before anybody has even purchased it, as well as accurately representing the product to reduce complaints.
But the packaging for a product is usually the first thing we throw away. How do we turn it into something that helps sell our product?
This might be true, after all, we buy a product for its actual purpose. That being said, it’s clear to marketers that product packaging affects sales. The appearance of packaging should be designed to attract attention, while also reflecting the quality of a product. If the packaging of a product is flimsy or unprofessional, people will be less likely to give your product a chance.
Assuming that your product lives up to these expectations, including the packaging next to the product itself helps to hit those expectations before your product has even been touched. Interested? Here are some expert tips on how to boost your eCommerce by producing a top packaging shot.
Know how to produce your packshot
First things first, make sure you know the best way to produce your packshot. There are two main ways to show off your product with a packshot: manually, by photographers, or digitally, using CGI.
You’ll likely be using a photographer for most of your packshot needs. Taking a physical image of your product is the best way to create a realistic advertisement that shows off a product that consumers will recognise in-store. It also reduces the risk of accidentally missing out on any key bits of information that should be included in the packshot.
By taking physical photographs, you should also be able to choose from a number of shots to decide which angle shows off your product the best, increasing the chances that your packshot boosts sales.
In some cases, however, there won’t be an option depending on what product you’re trying to sell. If your product is a digital service such as post-production software or a video game, you might not have any physical packaging to photograph. In this case a digital version of your products logo and design, perhaps with a small snippet of what your product has to offer.
If your product is physical, you might still opt to try using CGI to create a 3D packshot. Becoming increasingly popular, 3D packshots allow you to easily colour and fit your product on the screen, creating your image however you want it. You can also spin the image 360 degrees to show off the most of your product. It’s worth noting, however, that 3D imaging can be quite costly, and although are very often a good investment, can make your product look cheap and fake if done poorly. If you’re interested in showing off your whole physical product without the risks, a 360-degree packshot might interest you more.
Packaging is key
An obvious tip – when it comes to promoting your product with packshots, the actual packaging needs to be well designed and eye-catching.
This might not have anything to do with taking the actual photo itself, but it’s probably the most important point. If a product’s packaging is bad, no matter how hard you try to make the photo look good, the end result will be an unappealing product which people will likely avoid.
Try to make the packaging suit the product. If you’re selling something aimed at a child, you might use brighter and more vivid colours, whereas if you’re trying to sell some cologne or perfume, you might decide to go for bolder, more impressive colours such as gold.
And while we’re on the topic – keep the logo clear. If the text is illegible then any consumers won’t know what they should be looking out for. Similarly, depending on what you’re trying to sell, a simple logo might be underwhelming. To keep ahead of the game, take a look at the top logo trends for 2021.
Keep it simple…
If the purpose of packshots are to present products as they would be encountered in stores, then the image should be delivered as naturally as possible. As a photographer, your primary goal is to photograph the products labelling, form and colours as clearly as possible – there should be little if any distraction from the product and its packaging.
Of course, post-production is still a necessary stage of creating and developing a winning packshot. As with any photo, you should colour-correct and fix the brightness where it might be too bright or too dark. But try to avoid overediting pictures as this will set unrealistic expectations for consumers.
But stand out
There are ways to keep the focus on your product while still making your packshot stand out.
One of the easiest ways to grab someone’s attention with your packshot is to use a simple white or blank background. Not only does this keep the image clear of any visual noise, but your product will pop against the background, keeping the spotlight directly on it. Likewise, the product should take up as much space in the image as possible. This also reduces the amount of visual noise in the picture, while making your product unmissable.
If you do decide to play with the design of the image, any elements should be clear and used to support the purpose of your product. For example, if your product is a carton of juice, you might include the crosssections of any fruit or vegetables used around the product and its packaging. This helps clear up any details about your product, in this case, what its contents are, while also adding some flair to the image. If you include any details like this, make sure to use lighting to subtly highlight the product itself to keep the focus on the product itself.
Show off the product
Shoot your product from multiple angles to catch as many details as possible. This is particularly important if your packaging cover wraps around the product. In this case, try to capture the cover as fluidly as possible to make it easier to read. You can use multiple of your product to show this off in a single picture, keeping all the information in one single place.
You might also decide to utilise 360-degree photography to make a 360 packshot. By creating a spinning image of your product, you can show off every single detail in a continuous flow. Not only does this help boost your eCommerce, but any interested buyers will know exactly what your product is, so will be able to buy it without any uncertainty.
When buying a product, consumers like to know what exactly they’re spending their money on. By promoting your product with a packshot, you’re showing details to your consumers before they even pick your product up, creating a sense of familiarity with your product. By following these tips, you can boost your eCommerce and sell a product that consumers everywhere recognise.
If you’re interested in what professional packshot photography looks like, take a look through Splento’s gallery of product photography.
Or if you’re interested in getting this treatment for your own product, don’t hesitate to contact us today!