It’s not a far stretch to say that high quality imagery is vital to the success of your e-commerce food business. Why? Because it could make or break a sale.

Boost your profit by having high-quality photos that evoke cravings and highlight your products in the best way possible.

Let’s explore the importance of having good product photography along with some actionable tips on creating great food photos on a budget.

Part 1: Benefits of Good Product Photography

  1. Keeping on brand – The first thing that your customers will notice when they visit your e-commerce site is your images. You want all of your photos to be consistent throughout your website and across all venues to improve brand recall. Try to avoid using stock photos, as they aren’t the best photos to represent your business.
  2. First Impression – Your photos reflect the quality of your products. They help customers visualize what they’re getting before they actually have the product on hand. Food shot from different angles allow customers to identify features, such as how moist the cake is or how creamy the filling is.
  3. A Taste of Your Brand – People eat with their eyes. Great food photography should be able to highlight how appetizing your products are. It should even make your customers crave for your food and drinks.
  4. Share on Social Media – 72% of Internet users are present on social media. Great food photography encourages people to share your products with their own network. This is similar to word of mouth but with an even wider reach. The more engagement your images receive, the higher the probability of increasing your sales.

Part 2: Tips for Food Photography on a Budget  

You don’t have to spend a fortune to get professional looking, high-quality photos. With the right techniques, you could even do it with your smartphone. Here are some tips you should try when you’re on a budget.

  1. Plating – According to a study done by the Department of Psychology at Montclair State University, plating affects how a person perceives the taste of the food and the care taken in making it.

Presentation is key to make your products as appetizing and mouth-watering as it can be. Think like an artist. Experiment with colors and textures. It’s also best to start in the middle and work your way around your central piece to create balance and symmetry.

  1. Composition – Composition draws the eyes of the viewer to wherever it is you want them to focus on. While it’s very tempting to have everything in the picture, there are instances when less could be more.

Shoot in different angles to find the best view for your products. For instance, if you’re selling cream-filled donuts, cutting it in half and showing the filling oozing out of the donut could be an effective way to show how fluffy your donut is and how much filling each donut has.

Taking a close up shot of your food is a great way to highlight texture. Color is also important in composition. Use complementary colors to make your images look easy on the eyes. Contrasting colors are great for making a particular element on the photo stand out.

  1. Lighting – Great lighting is the secret to emphasizing colors and textures. You don’t have to buy expensive lighting equipment. Sometimes, you only need natural light to take the best food photos.

If you want to maximize natural lighting, consider shooting during the golden hour. It’s the time right after sunrise or right before sunset. Shooting outdoors beyond this period could give you harsh lighting, which isn’t great for your photos.

If you’re shooting indoors, you could experiment with lighting from the sides and make use of the shadows to present textures. You could also use diffused lighting to soften the light and shadows on your photographs. Never use lighting from the front to avoid harsh spots on your photos. This could make your food look bland and ugly.

  1. Post production – Don’t skip on post-production. This is the time to correct color balance, try different filters, improve lighting, and even crop your photos for a tighter look. A word of warning, though. Too much editing could do more harm on your images than good. Only perform simple and light touch-ups to improve the look of your photographs.

You don’t have to be a professional photographer to create appetizing photos. With practice, you could nail these techniques and start creating food images that effectively sell your brand and tell your story.