Getting your images right

People are drawn by images. So if you’re thinking about setting up your online shop take a look at the ones you use, that are easy to use and that you like the look of. You will probably notice one thing they all have in common – good images and an intuitive product layout.

Getting a similar look may take a little time but is well worth getting it right at the outset. You want your customers to be able to find your products easily on your website, so before you add any images, we advise that you map out your products and categories as it will save you time in the long run. If you haven’t, take a look at this for some pointers.

You’ve chosen your theme, so you already have information about image size and page layout. So now is the time to make sure your images are uniform. This will make your online shop look professional and will give customers the chance to browse and enjoy their online experience.

  • Research ecommerce sites that you like using
  • Plan your categories before moving onto images

You will need to obtain images from the manufacturer and get permission to use them on your website. Or if you are producing your own goods and working on a budget, take the best photos you can from multiple angles in the highest res available to you. Experiment with backgrounds to decide what shows your product off to best effect.

Create a uniform look

Go to Photoshop or a photo editor of your choice and set up a template in the size needed for your website. Then drag and drop each image into your template. This is where the high res image comes in useful as you can usually resize without losing quality. Product dimensions vary but try to make sure that your images take up the same space and position within the template. This makes for a good experience for your customers as they browse your products.

Save each photograph and name them using a meaningful title that website readers will be able to index. This also means you will be able to find them easily when it comes to uploading them to your website. When you upload your image, make sure you also complete the ‘alt text’ field on each image. Bear in mind that website readers pick up on these titles too, for people who are sight impaired, so it’s worth describing the product a little bit instead of using generic terms like ‘bracelet 1, bracelet 2’, or even not naming them at all. So, go for names like ‘silver bracelet with blue heart stone’.

  • Get permission to use manufacturer images
  • Edit photos so they’re the same size and shape
  • Give each image a meaningful title
  • Add ‘alt text’

A note about site speed

You may have heard the term ‘site speed’ and this is important. Customers who visit your website want it fast and data confirms that means within 3 seconds. There are lots of factors involved in site speed and one of them is image size. Big image files will take longer to load than smaller ones. So you can help your website along by ‘optimising’ your online images. This just means that the image size is automatically compressed without affecting overall look. Again, there are free resources available online. Some tools offer both a free service and pro version so you can always upgrade when your store takes off and you have more images to manage. So, get your image files optimised as it will help with site speed.

If you need any help with creating your online shop or want to launch or upgrade your ecommerce site, get in touch and we’ll be happy to help.
Call Sue or Helen on 0845 077 2821.

Great image courtesy of Alexas_Fotos

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