When it comes to your website images are everything
“An Image says a thousand words”
This has never been truer than when building your website. A couple of beautiful strategically placed images can mean everything when trying to maintain the attention of your viewers. This is particularly true when the image is of your product.
There is nothing more off putting than a distorted or blurred image. It’s an immediate turn off and you can seriously damage your internet reputation.
But it’s an easy problem to rectify with these simple steps:
Stage the image
If your images are of locations outside if possible take the picture on a brighter day. A picture taken in the sun looks so much better than that on a dull and cloudy day. This also applies to indoor images although simply turning on a light or lamp can make a big difference. Take a step back before you take the picture and look for any moveable objects such as tools step ladders and materials. These can detract from the overall look of the image so where possible move them out of the frame or try to take the picture at a different angle so they aren’t included.
If you are photographing items it is well worth the effort creating a dedicated set up for taking the picture. If the items are small enough you could create a small stage to place the items on. A wooden box painted white is ideal. Then experiment with an item and look at the angle of the camera and consider angling a lamp to create more light. Once you have found the right set up it can be easily and quickly replicated for the rest of your items to give your images a professional and uniform feel.
If you are working with larger items look for a good backdrop you could rest the item against. A neutral coloured or brick wall often works well. You could also consider adding props around the item for a more artistic feel. Although be careful that the item doesn’t look like it’s included in what they are buying.
If you are only taking occasional pictures you may not want to go to the expense of actually buying a camera. Most cameras these days have resolution that more than adequate for taking pictures for use online. But if you are selling stock that is continually changing such as craft items you may want to invest in a camera that has a few more features than your phone does!
A good investment if you are selling items would be an angled lamp either desk or floor standing to help you get the lighting just right.
You can buy professional light boxes if you don’t want to make one yourself. However these can be expensive but a cheaper option could be to buy a small inexpensive kitchen unit. Ikea make a fan unit in a white finish which costs just £31. Or you can get small pop up white tents designed for the purpose Which also start at about £30 depending on the size you need.Although less robust they do have the added advantage of being portable and will let light through.
Being able to add finishing touches to your images is essential. We've all heard of the popular image editing software Photoshop. But at £350 it's far from accessible to the average small business not to mention the time it would take to master its myriad of features. There is however a much simpler free option called http://pixlr.com/ which is very similar, or an even easier to use product called http://fotoflexer.com/ . Both of these editors will allow you carry out advanced edits to your images.
There is also a brand new image editor now available as part of the www.reason8.com website editor. As well as being able to crop rotate and correct an image you can also add clever effects such as picture frames of caption text. Better still you can upload up to 10 images to your website at a time then edit them as you add them to your page.
Displaying your Images
Size is an important consideration when adding an image to your website. If you've taken the image yourself or purchased the image from an online stock image supplier you shouldn't have a problem. Size may however be a consideration if you’ve obtained the image from else where . For an image that will be placed on a page you will need to ensure that the original image is ideally at least 600 pixels wide. If your image isn’t and you try to edit the image to be a larger size you will find your image will lose its clarity and become distorted.
You'll find that once you get the hang of it creating beautiful images is easy to do and can turn a good website into a great website.