May 06, 2016 | Shares:

Shoot Amazing eCommerce Product Images (Without a Professional Photographer)
3 min.

shoot product images

Shooting your eCommerce product images on a regular basis can be tedious and expensive. To help you perfect your product display and leverage your images to the max, we have compiled tips from professionals on how to easily and effectively shoot products at home, as well as a comparison of how the most popular home-shooting methods stack up.

The 3 Golden Rules of Shooting Product Photos if You Aren’t a Professional Photographer

1. Make sure you are shooting with a white surface and background

Product display has to match your online store’s overall design, which is in many cases based on a white background. Therefore, to make sure the product’s image seamlessly integrates with the page, use a neutral white background.

2. Use both front and back lighting

To shoot high quality images, you’ll need both front and back lighting.

The basic rule for front lighting is that it has to be in the same direction of the camera (either below or above the camera). The front lighting’s purpose is to eliminate unwanted shadows and create an overall sharp and clean image. It doesn’t have to be expensive – a strong light bulb and a tripod will do the trick.

For the back lighting, the goal is to create a soft yet well lighten background. It will enable to easily “burn” the background to achieve a 100% white background. There are soft light boxes out there for every budget, and again, it doesn’t have to be the most expensive one to produce a great photo.

3. It’s not about fancy equipment: It’s about the right equipment

You don’t need to break the bank to get photography equipment. Any DSLR camera (starting at $350) will be good enough. Just remember to use a tripod or a stable surface. If you want to shoot 360-degree views of your products, all you need to add is a simple rotating table and an interval timer. Both should cost below $50.

 Your options for shooting product images at home

If you want to shoot professional-quality product images without the help of a professional photographer, you have a few options. Here’s a guide with tips on how the choices stack up:

The “Do it Yourself” Solution

The minimal solution requires a DSLR camera (which you can rent), a flat white surface and lighting. Lighting is usually the tricky part, but for less than $50 you can buy a lighting tent to soften and unify the lighting.For 360-degree images all you need to add are a rotating table and an interval timer. For a simple back lightning solution you can add a softbox.

Pros: Cheap!

Cons: The set-up time is longer than packshot boxes and it make take some trial-and-error to get to really good images, but it’s definitely possible. You may also need to touch up the photos digitally to crop and whiten out the background.

The Simple Solution

There are many different packshot boxes that provide a full solution for product photography. All you have to do is position the product in the box, and they will do the rest for you, producing HD and even 360-degree images of the product.

Pros: Easy and fast solution for product photography.

Cons: A wide range of prices, but this option tends to be expensive and it limits the size of the product you can shoot. The software is usually basic (some editing capabilities) and doesn’t always include a player to embed on the website.

The Sophisticated Solution

There are many vendors out there, such as iconasys, that offer a great value solution that includes both the actual packshot box and the software. You are probably wondering why it’s important… the simple answer is that it’s a good value-for-money for online retailers that shoot many products on a regular basis. The combination of equipment and software make the process faster and simpler to manage.

Pros: Easily achieve great results and very high quality images.

Cons: Can get quite expensive, but there are different tiers of equipment. Though some offer a very good editing software, many don’t offer the actual player to embed on the website.

If you are using 360-degrees product display or interactive objects to display your products, you’ll also need a powerful and scalable player to make sure you create the best possible shopping experience.


The bottom line is simple: Your product images have to be amazing. Great product images improve conversion and ensure a positive shopping experience. The good news is that there is a very wide range of solutions and all of them can produce high-quality images even without hiring a professional photographer.

Aimee Millwood
Aimee Millwood, Director of Content at Yotpo
Aimee loves hummus and hates misplaced commas.

@aimeemillwood – Follow me

  • Its amazing to see some inspiring post like this. It would be amazing for you if you can take your own shot! Just need to aware of some technicalities like light, background and the camera set up. Then it would be an awesome shot for sure!

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