What is Product Photography? 10 Techniques and Secrets to Make a Difference

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Product photography becomes more challenging. Most people understand the role of precise composition, lighting, creativity, and editing. But it’s hard to make a difference. It means creating a high level of aesthetic sense to produce images that immediately entice viewers to make a purchase. 

Paying careful attention to your product photos gives your business an edge over competitors, helps win customer favor, and boosts revenue. 

In this article, we look deeper into what is product photography, trending product photography types in 2024 and tips to have a successful album.  

What Is Product Photography?

Product photography is a type of commercial photography. It focuses on capturing images of products for commercial use.

These photos highlight product features, complement written copy, and provide a detailed impression for potential buyers.

In other words, the value of the product must be conveyed through the photos. To create images that effectively sell products, photographers often use specialized tools, including props, models, and textured backgrounds.

The resulting images can be used in catalogs, brochures, or websites. Whenever you open an advertisement, such as a weekly flyer from your local grocery store, or visit a website selling items, you see many examples of product photography.

Product Photography vs Traditional Photography

The goal of product photography is to capture realistic images of the product. But the ultimate goal is marketing, to help increase the sales and revenue for businesses. No need to touch products, through images, potential buyers can understand what the product is like and feel of it. 

Meanwhile, in traditional photography, photographers have more room for creatity. The subject doesn’t need to be depicted realistically or even attractively. The goals of traditional photography are vast: artistic expression, emotional response, realism, or something else entirely. Additionally, in traditional photography, the subject can be anything: people, landscapes, property, animals, or a product.

How Images Influence Buying Decisions

How product images influence customers

Product images play a crucial role in influencing customer psychology and driving purchase conversions. Research has shown that images can attract attention, evoke emotions, convey messages, and build customer trust in a product.

Attracting Attention

Buyers love images like fastfood. Instead of reading long boring text, they like looking at high-quality awesome pictures. A research by the Nielsen Norman Group found that users tend to look at images before reading text. Therefore, product images can be the deciding factor in whether customers continue to explore a product.

Evoking Emotions

Product images can evoke various emotions, from pleasure and curiosity to desire. For example, an image of a luxurious car can evoke feelings of success and sophistication, while an image of a delicious dish can stimulate the taste buds and create a craving.

Research from Iowa State University indicates that positive emotions can increase the likelihood of a purchase. Thus, product images that generate positive emotions can drive purchase conversions.

Conveying Messages

Product images can convey messages about the features, benefits, and value of a product more visually and effectively than text. A study by 3M found that people process images 60,000 times faster than text. Therefore, product images can help customers quickly and easily understand a product.

Building Trust

High-quality, realistic product images can help build customer trust in the product and the brand. Research by BrightLocal shows that 60% of consumers are more likely to choose a business with product images in local search results.

The art here is how to create copywriting product images that help potential customers imagine products in the best way possible. In the next part, we delve into types of e-commerce photography,

8 Popular Types of Product Photography

To get closer to the definition of what is product photography, let’s explore the most helpful techniques in e-commerce photography

  • Lifestyle Photography

Lifestyle product photography

Consumers want to see products in real-life scenarios. Lifestyle photos help customers visualize how the product fits into their everyday lives and routines. This trend is all about creating relatable and aspirational images that resonate with the target audience. Lifestyle photography is effective for specific products like fashion, beauty, home decor and furnitures, food and beverage, fitness, travel. Seems like the type works for many industries. 

  • 360 Product Photography

360 degree view product photography

Interactive 360° views allow customers to examine a product from all angles, providing a more immersive and informative shopping experience. This is particularly beneficial for e-commerce, where customers cannot physically touch or interact with the product. If you are selling things like gadgets, jewelry, vehicles, real estate, 360° product photography can help you thrive. 

  • Product Photos on a White Backgroundwhite-background-product-photography


White background images are popular on e-commerce marketplaces. These are usually individual product shots. White background photography is considered the most common type of product photography. In fact, analysis of product photos from top fashion brands shows that 95% of them feature a white background.

The consistency and lack of background distractions make it easy for buyers to distinguish between products. It also facilitates showcasing different color variations of a specific product. This is the most cost-effective way to display your products.

Also read: Add background for product photos

  • Scale Photography

Scale photography captures products in a way that provides a reference point, helping people imagine how small or big the item is. For example, the image below shows a small product held by someone, giving you a sense of its size in relation to the hand and fingers.

  • Detailed Photography 

Detail product photography aims to showcase small elements that are difficult to see in a standard product image. This style is used with clothing, footwear, and accessories—especially in luxury goods categories.

This tactic also applies to other industries and products such as cosmetics or skincare items. Using detailed shots to demonstrate how their products look on real faces.

  • Flatlay product photography

Flatlay product photography has carved out its own niche on social media platforms, especially Instagram. These images are captured from a bird’s-eye view perspective. The layout relies on creative ways to arrange your products, making it a great way to inject fun and diversity into product imagery. Moreover, this style particularly captures attention on social media platforms.

Flatlay photos provide buyers with a visually pleasing impression as they can see exactly how many items they will receive.

  • Ghost Mannequin

Ghost mannequin photography is a technique commonly used in apparel photography to showcase clothing in a way that gives the illusion of an invisible or “ghost” mannequin wearing the garment. This is achieved by photographing the clothing on a mannequin, then editing out the parts of the mannequin that are visible, leaving only the clothing itself. The result is a clean, professional-looking image that highlights the fit and design of the garment without any distractions. This style is particularly popular in e-commerce and catalog photography for clothing brands.

  • Packaging photography

If your product lacks any standout advantages in terms of functionality and value compared to competitors, differentiate it through packaging. Everyone wants attractive packaging. Product packaging imagery refers to images on boxes, bags, labels, or any packaging containing your goods. However, there’s a consideration of whether that packaging design can effectively showcase the product, something commonly seen with food and beauty items.

I have a table, where you can find which photography types are suitable for your products. 

Product Recommended Photography Types
Clothing and Apparel Lifestyle, Flatlay, Ghost Mannequin, Detailed
Cosmetics and Beauty Products Lifestyle, Flatlay, Macro, Detailed, Before/After, Scale Photography
Electronics and Gadgets Lifestyle, 360°, Product-Only on White Background
Food and Beverages Lifestyle, Flatlay, Close-Up
Home Decor and Furnishings Lifestyle, Product-Only on White Background, 360°
Jewelry and Accessories Lifestyle, Flatlay, Macro, Detailed, Product-Only with Reflective Surfaces
Shoes and Footwear Lifestyle, Flatlay, On-Model
Sports and Fitness Equipment Lifestyle, Product-Only on White Background, Action Shots
Toys and Games Lifestyle, Flatlay, In-Use/Play Shots
Vehicles and Automobiles Lifestyle, Exterior/Interior Shots, 360°
Products with Unique Packaging Packaging Photography
Small or Large Items Scale Photography

Also read: 9 techniques for product photography editing

Expert Tips to Create Great Product Photography 

Apply AIDA model to product photography 

The AIDA model describes the steps a consumer goes through when making a purchase. It not only applies to content writing but also creating images. 

  • Attention: Grabbing the consumer’s attention with appealing product photos.
  • Interest: Building interest by showcasing the product’s style.
  • Desire: Creating a desire by helping customers visualize the product in their space.
  • Action: Encouraging them to take action (purchase) because they now see the product as desirable.

To create images following the AIDA model, you need to understand both of your products and target customers. 

Apply AIDA in product photography

For example, if your product is a decor item, you must fully understand the style of that decor item, whether it is vintage, modern, preppy, mythology, etc. Then, make sure to refine the product photos to match the style, evoking emotions and imagination in customers about the space they are about to create. This way, customers will genuinely feel the desire to purchase your product. 

Apply storytelling 

Storytelling is a powerful tool to involve audiences in your product. The technique replaces simple product images with those that evoke the essence and experience of audiences. By showing the product in use, such as a family enjoying a toy set, a man wearing hiking shoes in a long haul, it helps customers envision themselves using it, enhancing appeal and connection.


In summary, product photography can stem from a hobby or evolve into a profession in your photography journey. Regardless, it plays a crucial role in e-commerce as well as traditional roles in print media. Whatever the future holds, there will always be a demand for quality product photography.

Once you’ve decided to pursue a career as a product photographer, the next important step is investing in professional photography equipment and mastering effective product photography techniques.

The product photography market will ensure a stable income source if you aim to become a professional. As you master the necessary skills, you’ll find more opportunities for your work over time.

About Adam Leon 24 Articles
Adam Leon is a software engineer from India, born on 5/5/1990. He received his education from the prestigious Indian Institutes of Technology, where he developed a strong foundation in computer science and software development. As the author of Remove-BG.AI, Leon has dedicated his work to exploring the realm of background removal and image processing using artificial intelligence. His expertise in the computer science field is evident in the practical features he shares on the website https://remove-bg.ai/, contributing to the growing landscape of AI-powered image processing solutions.

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