Image quality can make or break your product listings.

Product images are the first thing that will grab a shopper's attention, and they'll likely be the last thing to influence the shopper before checking out.

Shoppers want their product questions answered.

They don't want any stones left unturned, and they definitely don't want new unanswered questions to consider.

By putting a bit more effort into your images and your product data, you can easily cover all your bases.

Of course, none of us intend to complicate the buying process, but some items can't be described enough with text alone... and all items benefit from detailed visuals.

optimize product images main

Images have the ability to answer questions that text alone simply cannot. Worst-case, they provide at least some form of visual representation. Best-case, they can give you a solid competitive edge and reduce return rates.

Follow these product image best practices to provide consumers with all the visual information necessary for them to make an educated decision on their purchase:

1. Use High-Resolution Images

Hi-res images give shoppers a sense of trust for your products.

Top quality photography can make an immediate impact on how shoppers judge your products. Furthermore, each channel has specific requirements for image sizes. Make sure your images are at least 1000 pixels in width/height so as to meet image standards for all channels.

You'll still want to consider the image guidelines for individual channels. Here's what you need to know about the top 5:

2. Use a White Background

Fairly straightforward... but this can't be overstated.

Not only is this required by certain channels—namely, Google and Amazon—but plain white-background images showcase products in the least distracting, most visually honest way possible.

white background example

Even if a channel allows all kinds of product photos, you'll want your main product photos to be clean and minimal. In-use photos are great for alternative shots, but be sure to have a standard set of white background images for each of your products.

3. Show Color Variations

Don't just provide the alternative color swatch.

If possible, take a photo of the actual product in each color it's offered in. This attention to detail will help influence those interested in your product's variants.

color variations example

After all, color swatches are not always 1:1. People want to see real visual depictions of the items they're interested in.

4. Use a Variety of Images

Pictures can speak louder than words.

Try to anticipate what questions customers may have and think of how you can answer them with imagery.

Provide alternative views and angles. Since shoppers can't hold your product, feel it, test it, etc. address their questions/concerns with visual information. Take product photos from every relevant angle, in every possible orientation.

optimize product images variety example

Provide in-use images. Does your product do something? Make sure you grab some action shots (or even a video) of the product doing what it's meant to do.

Display product variations. Offer a plus size in that dress? Think of photographing both traditional and plus size models wearing the dress. Color variations are important on their own, but size and type variations are equally important.

5. Enable Zoom

It's hard to tell what a product really looks like based on the picture shown in your ad. Give customers the ability to zoom in and inspect product details.

This is another reason high quality photos are important. Low quality images don't lend themselves to being good zoom material.

You can also take close-ups of materials and/or product features to provide additional context.

optimize product images zoom example


6. Add Alt and Image Title Tags

Many shoppers begin their product search by referencing images alone.

By providing high-quality images and effectively filling out Alt and Title tags, you have a much better shot (pun intended) of finding your products on image search results.

Alt tags helps search engine bots better decipher photos.

Title tags don't influence SEO nearly as much, but they're what humans see when they happen upon product images.

For best results, you'll want:

  • A wholesome, informative title tag that describes a product in as few descriptive words as possible.
  • A rich description that references everything there is to know about your product, including supporting keywords.
  • A specific alt tag that references those keywords.

Since title tags are for humans, and alt tags are for bots, you don't want to use the same exact content for both. If you do, not only will optimal alt tags make your image titles seem awkward and robotic, but your products may come off as over-optimized... which search engine bots don't appreciate.

Now It's Your Turn

By simply providing customers with the visual information they're seeking, you do more than just make a sale, you build brand trust... and trusted brands earn LTV customers.

Ask yourself the questions you'd ask if you didn't know what you know about your products. 

Minimalize what you'd otherwise have to convey with text. Use imagery to do the talking for you. Remember, pictures can speak louder than words.

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