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Set An Economical E-commerce Budget With The Right Kind Of Product Photography Rates

What Is An E-commerce Budget?

Knowing how much you can realistically afford to spend on product photography is essential when planning your online store. That doesn’t mean you have to skimp on quality, but it is crucial to set an e-commerce budget that allows for the best photographs of your products.  

Your e-commerce budget can vary depending on the type of photo needed, location, and time of day. With product photography, you’re not only paying for the time it takes to photograph products but also for post-production processing and design fees.

If you’re considering hiring a pro photographer for your products, there are a few things to consider. These include their experience, their equipment, and their fees. For amateur photographers or in-house product shoots, some basics to keep in mind are:

  • What type of camera do you have?
  • How much lighting is necessary? 
  • And how long will it take to shoot an entire product page?

Here are four important considerations for setting an economical e-commerce budget with the right kind of product photography rates.

  1. Think about your audience. Shooting for a general audience will typically cost less than shooting for a more niche market. Also, shoot photos that will work well in large and small prints. Scaling down or enlarging these images will not distort the quality too much.
  1. Consider what type of photos will look best on your site. Candid shots of products in their natural state are usually the most successful. But feel free to experiment with different angles and focal lengths as well. 

Varied perspectives can also add excitement and interest to your product shots. Therefore, be sure to include some pictures from different distances and elevations to capture all the details of your product.

  1. The most important thing to remember when setting an e-commerce budget is to account for the number of images required to create a product thumbnail, product image, and product listing. 

For example, if you anticipate creating four product thumbnails and twelve product images, you must allocate your budget accordingly. Furthermore, remember that product images are also important for your shop’s banner and home page. Therefore, getting them shot in high resolution is also essential.

  1. Photos of more complex products may require more time and skill to capture effectively. Photos taken at a complicated location (such as a model standing in front of a dramatic background) may require more time. On the other hand, photographs such as a model posing against a plain backdrop are relatively simple to execute. 

Pricing For Different Types of Photography

Your budget for an e-commerce website depends on the number of products you hope to sell. It also depends on how much money you think it will take to produce high-quality images.

Here are three types of product photography and their associated costs:

Headshots: A single headshot usually costs $50-$100. Headshots often appear on product pages and ads.

Close-ups: Close-ups typically cost between $75-$150 per shot. They are used for detail shots, such as in descriptions or product specifications.

Full body shots: Full body shots can run anywhere from $200-$500 per shot. They are used for large images on product pages, in ads, and on the website itself. Be sure to factor these costs into your overall budget when choosing which type of photo to shoot.

Package shots: These images show off the product in its entirety and range from essential headshots to full-body pictures. Package shots typically cost between $50 and $200 per photo, depending on the complexity of the image.

Single product shots: Single product shots illustrate an item or detail within a product. It’s essential to capture different angles and perspectives while shooting single product images. Single product shots typically cost between $30 and $100 per photo.

How To Set A Budget For Ecommerce Photography?

It’s important to remember that product photography isn’t just a one-time expense; it’s an ongoing cost that will affect your bottom line. Hence, setting the proper budget for an e-commerce website will help you keep the costs in check without compromising the quality of product images. You don’t want to overspend on photography services only to discover that your products are too difficult to sell with poor photos.

Here are a few tips on how to set an economical e-commerce photography budget:

  • Start by calculating your average monthly sales volume. This number will help you determine the approximate cost of a product photo shoot. Say your average monthly sales are $1,000. In this case, a product photo shoot costing $200 per hour would make sense for your brand.
  • Also, consider the type of photography services you’ll need. Do you need photos of products in their entirety (including the background), close-ups of specific features, or photos that reflect your website’s style? Once you know the type and number of photos you’ll need, factor that into your e-commerce budget.
  • Many companies offer photo editing, backdrops, and more. It’s essential to find a company with talented photographers who can capture your product’s essence in every shot. For example, if you have an art or jewelry item, it might be best to work with a company specializing in high-end fashion photography.
  • Scout out local studios or businesses that offer photo services at reasonable rates. Smaller businesses typically don’t charge as much as larger studios. They don’t have the overhead costs associated with running a business (like employee wages). Plus, they may be more accommodating in scheduling last-minute requests.

Choosing Product Photography Rates That Stick To Your Budget

When setting e-commerce budgets, it’s essential to stick to a fixed price range for product photography to keep costs under control. However, this doesn’t mean you must sacrifice quality photos. With some research, you can find product photography rates that work with your budget while still providing high-quality images. 

Here are a couple of tips to help you find feasible product photography rates:

Decide on Your Primary Focus: Before you start shopping for product photography rates, deciding what type of photos you want is essential. If you only have limited funds available, it might be best to focus on primary photo shoots such as models or close-ups of items. 

However, if you have a higher budget and want more creative pictures, consider hiring a professional photographer specializing in product photography.

Consider Location Costs: Depending on the photo shoot location, you’ll likely need to factor in additional costs such as travel expenses and rental fees. Before starting your search, estimate these costs, so you don’t overspend unnecessarily.

Additional Tips

Start with an estimate of what you believe your product photography rates should be to maintain a consistent look across all products. It will help narrow down the potential freelancers or studios you could use.

Think about the purpose of the photo shoot. If it’s for brand promotion and online visibility only, you may be able to afford more expensive rates. But if it’s more of a necessity for documenting production processes and ensuring quality control, you may be better off going with cheaper options.

If you want to reduce your e-commerce product photography budget drastically, consider investing in AI-assisted photography. AI-enabled product studios offer stunning product images on a large scale while keeping your costs low.  
Professional photography studios like FlixStudio provide end-to-end photography solutions with AI-powered photography. With FlixStudio, you can achieve professional product images at a fraction of the cost and time.

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Arunava Acharjee

(Product Marketing Manager)