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online store product photos

Why online store product photos and copy must work together

Online Stores
1. How product imagery can impact your online store
2. Why online store product photos and copy must work together
3. How many product shots do you really need?
4. Tips to ensure photos enhance your online store design
5. Ecommerce product photography 101 for beginners
6. Why an About Us page is important for online stores
7. Online store copywriting tips that engage and convert
8. Ecommerce Microcopy and CTA’s: Getting it write
9. What copywriting mistakes are causing you to lose sales
10. Ecommerce strategy: how to get customers to come back to your online store
11. Marketing strategy: Start a blog on your online store
12. Digital direct marketing tactics for your online store
13. Market your online store with these 8 ideas

So you’ve hired the best photographer in town to take photos of all the products you sell on your online store. That’s great! But you’re only halfway there. Your spectacularly beautiful product photos will be useless if the copy relating to each product photo is inconsistent, poorly written or non-existent. Let’s call it a marriage – online store product photos and copy must work together! Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why this is the case.

6 reasons why online store product photos and copy must work together

1. Some shoppers are more wordy than visual

Although they do say that a picture speaks 1000 words, it is also true that words can be just as, if not more, powerful. Yes, the images are great and they grab the attention of the shopper, but the product copy must effectively match the product image and keep his or her attention. Some shoppers will quickly glance over the image and read the related product copy to ascertain whether it is, in fact, a product they are likely to purchase. These shoppers just prefer words. They like the descriptions and often find them more believable than the product images. We all know that images can easily be photoshopped these days.

By only focussing on the product images then you are isolating those shoppers who prefer to read about a product to gain the information they need. Correspondingly, if you only focus on the copy and share terrible product images that do not represent the product well at all then you will be isolating those shoppers who are more visually orientated. If you successfully focus on both then you will successfully reach two completely different types of people in your target market.

The shoppers who are wordy want to read more about the product: what it was made out of, where it was made, how it was made, who was it made by, what it can be used or worn with, advice on how it should be used, the product dimensions, the product weight and much more. We like to call these people detailed. These online shoppers are more interested in the facts than in the fluffy imagery. They want to know all the product details – perhaps because they know exactly what they are looking for and they can confirm this by reading the copy.

2. Product photos may not load the way you intended

Despite the vast improvements in internet speed, there are still many times when it’s painfully slow. When this happens the amazing online store product photos that you have spent so much time uploading will not load the way you intended. There is nothing that you can do to prevent this from happening every now and then. Yes, you can reduce the size of your images, but that could become another issue if the images become unclear. Even so, your images still may not load properly, which will leave your online shopper in the dark. The best way to combat this is to ensure that your product copy is comprehensive enough to paint a clear picture of all the product features without even needing an image. The more descriptive your copy is, the better.

3. Copy communicates credibility and build trust

Copy that corresponds to online store products is important because it reassures your shoppers that it’s the correct product. It’s unlikely that anyone will purchase a product based on an image only. People need to know the details, and these details need to match the product image. If there is consistently mismatching, badly written or no copy at all for your products then online shoppers will not trust your site.

Make sure your product copy includes all the information that your shoppers would need in order to build your brand’s credibility, which is fundamental in the online shopping realm.

4. A brand is more than just the visual

Speaking of building a brand’s credibility, it is key to note that a brand is about so much more than just the visual aspects. A brand has multiple elements that come together. Brands are often compared to humans who have physical traits, but also personalities, values, reputation, goals and identities. Similarly, brands become recognised over time by not only their visuals aspects, like logos, but also their reputations (revealed through service delivery) and personalities (often revealed through copy and marketing).

This means that you need to pay attention to all aspects of your online store to ensure they all portray a consistent brand. So you cannot just focus on your logo, online store design and online store product photos in an effort to make your brand look good. It is the copy (whether online, marketing collateral or elsewhere) that often communicates the brand’s personality.

5. Brand consistency is pivotal

A consistent brand is a strong brand. As mentioned already, it is pivotal to ensure that all aspects that make up your brand are consistent with one another. This is particularly true for an online store. It is no good having a product photo of red and white trainers, but the copy alongside talks about black high heels. You also cannot have a product photo that includes multiple products (e.g. a make-up kit) and then speak in the copy of only one product (lipstick). It will also not be helpful to have a brilliant product photo with false information in the product copy, as your consumer will inevitably be disappointed when they receive their delivery. Everything has to match up because your brand’s integrity depends on it!

6. Shoppers rely on the small print

Remember that your online shoppers are smart and savvy, so they’re not going to part with their money easily without first doing a bit of research. Most consumers will make sure they read the small print and check all the information thoroughly before they add anything to their cart. When it comes to online shopping, consumers often rely heavily on copy because although they can see an image of the product, they cannot physically experience it.

Take a look at the likes of Apple iStore or Exclusive Books to learn how they effectively make their online store product photos and copy work together. And if you’re now determined to improve your online store product photos and copy, give us a call.

Yes! I have an idea and I need your innovation to turn it into an online store invention!


Louise is the write woman to be the Marketing Manager at Flicker Leap.

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