Taking photos is not really your thing? That’s fine because you don’t have to be an expert in every field. But what if you still need great product photos for your online shop or a marketplace? After all 93% of consumers consider visual appearance to be the key deciding factor in a purchasing decision, so you have to make sure your offer looks attractive. However, it turns out that you don’t necessarily have to follow all these ambitious DIY guides to make your listing looking good. In fact, there are plenty of alternative solutions to self-made product pictures that might also be a great time-saver for photography lovers. Let’s take a look at them!


Hiring a professional

Hiring a professional is the easiest, but most probably the most expensive option. Professional photographs have the necessary equipment and knowledge to take great product photos, so you don’t have to worry about the quality. Moreover, they can also support you with their experience and suggest great props arrangements or real-life settings. The easiest way is to search for a photographer in your neighbourhood, so you can easily bring your products to the studio. However, there are also companies and individuals specialized in taking professional e-commerce photos. You can also find a lot of offers from freelancers who will be happy to help you with the photos for a little money. You will find some examples here.


If you are a reseller, you can try to get product photos directly from the manufacturer you are cooperating with. Why should a manufacturer share his photos with you? Well, it should be in the manufacturers interest to support the vendor in any possible way (including free product photos) to help him sell as many products as possible. At the end the vendor’s performance is in the best interest of both parties. You can ask the manufacturers directly for photos or you can search for them on their websites and in their product catalogues.


Photo stocks & Mock-ups

As you may know there are also a lot of online photo stocks. Sometimes you can find there nice photos of products in real-life settings or with props. There are, however, no details about the model. If you are not sure which model it is, use the photos only in general context. In the photo stocks you will mainly find photos of very famous products from big international brands, like Apple. Examples for such photo stocks are Shutterstock (paid) and Unsplash (free).

Another option are product mock-ups. You can use them for basic products like pillows, plain t-shirts or mugs. For example, you can download a ready photo of a model in a t-shirt or a photo of a tea cup in an interior setting and will just have to add a logo or choose a colour. There are free and paid mock-ups. You can find some examples here.

Remember to always make sure that the photos you buy or download for free have a licence for commercial use.


Product catalogues

There are some companies that sell catalogues with product data, which include descriptions and high-quality product photos. In the catalogues you will only find products with a GTIN number.  Mostly you cannot buy data just for one product, but you have to buy whole catalogues. The good thing is, if you buy such a catalogue you will get at once everything you need to sell your products online. This solution is mostly used by big merchants and can be successfully applied for such product categories as electronics. A good example of a company selling product data catalogues is icecat.

Exchanging products for photos

If you are at the beginning of your e-commerce career and you are low on budget, you can also try to exchange your products for photos. This exchange strategy is working very well already for a while in the influencer world. Companies are offering influencers services or goods in exchange for sharing an advertising post with their audience. This can be also applied to get help from good photographers in exchange for products.

In order to do this, you must find bloggers or social media influencers that are good in photography (check their photos) and who like your product. Try to look for people who are interested in your industry or active in your niche. This strategy assures that they will be open for a cooperation.

Exchanging products for photos is a great option for lifestyle brands that need great real-life photos in order to make their customers picture themselves using the product. Additionally, the photographers may want to post their photos of your products on their social media channels or for example test your product and then write a review or an article about it. Thanks to that they will help you reach a new audience.


Marketplaces with product catalogues

This is the perfect solution if you are too busy to take care of product photography, but you don’t want to spend money on paying somebody else to do that for you. Just start selling on a marketplace that offers free product catalogues. Mostly they include pictures of many different products as well as a descriptions of them. The photos are done accordingly to the e-commerce standards and are of high quality. Thus, a big part of every merchant’s job is taken over by the marketplace and they have more time to concentrate on other crucial things. Be aware that photos and product information will most probably be available for articles from bigger brands. An example for a marketplace that offers the merchants free and multilingual product catalogue for a wide range of products is myWorld.com.