Buying products online will always present extra challenges compared to real life shopping, you can only use two of your five senses to make that crucial decision whether the purchase is right for you.
Because you can’t touch it, you can’t smell it and you certainly can’t taste it, you’re left to rely on eyes and ears before making that final click.
Touch is the reward for the “high street” shopper, they love to feel and handle the goods appreciating the texture; how rough or smooth it is, relishing and enjoying the sensual curves of an object, testing the weight, measuring the size and feeling the quality.
Our sense of smell, although dwarfed by many other members of the animal kingdom, brings immense pleasure to those who buy in the physical shop, smelling the richness of leather, the fragrance of cologne or the pungency of a ripe cheese, all helping to make shopping a pleasurable experience for so many people.
Finally, we come to taste, probably the most difficult sense to convey visually
Taking a bite out of your monitor or keyboard, will just leave you crunching plastic, most certainly an uninspiring prospect, but even Google haven’t yet come up with a way of conveying flavour over the internet.
Happily for us all, the human brain is an incredibly powerful sensory organ which uses the sophistication of its memory banks to create imagined taste and smell, simply stimulated by looking at a picture, remembering and recalling flavours and aromas we associate with a visual image.
Imagine the acidity of a succulent, juicy, slice of lemon and your mouth starts to water, see a crumpled and discarded sock lying on the floor and the abstract odour can overwhelm.
This is why getting the images right on an ecommerce website is so incredibly important and probably explains why 31% of shoppers in the UK visit and research the high street before purchasing online and 34% research online before visiting a real shop to confirm these missing senses, according to a survey by Deloitte for Ebay.
So when a potential customer clicks on a thumbnail it’s essential that they as much visual information as possible from clear, sharp and legible pictures of the product with plenty of views from different angles.
Clicking on a thumbnail image the expectation is to see a high quality and detailed photo of what you want to buy, but when the subsequent picture opens failing to show anything other than a badly pixelated smudge, or the photos are from an insufficient number of angles or just aren’t close enough to show important detail; the chances are they’ll just move on to another site.
By giving your visitor a memorably good experience, providing as much visual information as possible will keep them on your page, make them keen to buy and hopefully return and recommend the site to friends.
As a professional product photographer I know and understand the importance of all visual media on ecommerce websites, whether photos or video and how important it is to exceed your customer’s expectations, so if you have a website in need of pictures that will do just that, please give me a call or for video contact my colleagues at Dudleigh Films.