Yes, consumers visit your website and view your products, but can they physically experience those? This is where online stores will always lag behind physical retail stores as the latter let people see a product from every angle and perceive it in detail.
Now, a static product photo on your website is nowhere near to the experience of holding a product in your hands. Offline stores excel profoundly at converting visitors to buyers because they can show every product minutely.
So, what can you do to show a product in all its glory? The answer is 360° product photography. Why? Because – it’s one of the latest trends in the eCommerce product photo editing industry and sellers have been using this technology to make the product images more engaging for potential buyers.
Now, 360 product photography is everywhere. From Google Street View to Facebook to adrenalin junkies capturing their escapades in surrounding vision – this swing has hit the big time. And why not. We human beings are hardwired to see our surroundings in a 360° view. With the advancement of virtual reality, the shift from 2D to 360° photography is taking the eCommerce landscape by storm.
This is the reason retailers and brands have seen an increase in the conversion rate up to 45% after following a 360° product photography tutorial.
Let’s dig in more!
What is 360° View Product Photography?
Even a short time ago, photographers used to shoot with physical film, and digitization was like a glint in their lenses. Since the last decade, the product photography industry has seen a dramatic change in terms of both hardware and software, and 360°product photography is another milestone in this evolution.
It’s basically a type of product content that enables you to capture and display products from multiple angles. In this kind of photography, you would require a specialized turntable to fire your camera that’s fixed to a tripod and rotate the product. The result is a 360°view of the product that can offer a unique experience to online shoppers that is both creatively engaging and visually appealing.
A 360° perspective of a product is made by simply capturing a product from every possible angle. The range can be anything, from 8 to 360 photos, and the more images you capture, the smoother the product spins.
What are the Types of Equipment You Require for 360° Product Photography?
You can either follow a 360° product photography tutorial and shoot images by yourself or go to the studio. In the case of the prior, you can find all the needed instructions and information to set up the special tools and equipment. With the right tools, your photos will be no worse than studio quality. Hence, make sure you own the following apparatuses.
- Turntable: It’s a must-have to capture all sides of a product.
- DSLR camera or smartphone: Depending on the quality of images you want.
- White/colored background: It’s mandatory for cleat shots.
- Tripod: A compact and convenient tripod as you wouldn’t want shaky 360 images.
- Lightbox: For background and item-focused lighting.
- Remote control: To ensure you don’t somehow move your device while shooting 360 product images.
How Do You Excel at 360° Product Photography?
Although it seems like a complicated process, in reality, it’s not that difficult. You just have to follow a few steps as part of the 360°product photography tutorial, and voila! You’re all set to take your product photos to the next level.
Firstly, if you’re not shooting a larger object than, say a handbag, you don’t need a big space. A small office or a room is more than enough for an inexpensive and successful DIY 360 view product photography studio. Additionally, if the windows in your space have natural light coming in, ensure to close the blinds and turn off other light sources in the room.
Now, let’s glance through the step-by-step 360°product photography tutorial to get you started on this game!
Step 1: Adjust the Light and Set the Background
Most preferably, use a white background that’s winded with Lightbox. In case you’re planning to use lamps, place them on both sides to light the space as bright and clear as possible. And if you’re going to use a lightbox, just turn the light on.
Step 2: Position Your Turntable
Equip your 360° product turntable on a table and plug it in. Once you have successfully positioned it, place the product you want to photograph at the center. Do not hesitate to spin it and make sure it does not jiggle. Keep patience, as it might take a while to adjust.
Step 3: Fit Up Your Camera/Phone
Install your phone or camera on a steady tripod and position it in front of your turntable. To ensure you have sufficient white space around it, zoom into the subject. Then turn manual focusing on and adjust your lens till the product looks sharp.
In case your subject is something reflective – for instance, if it’s made of glass or has a display – use cloth or a sheet of paper ahead of your camera to prevent unwanted reflections.
Step 4: Ensure Smooth Rotation of Your Turntable
Now it’s time to turn on your camera remote mode and shoot a test image to ensure your remote has decent connectivity with your device. Once it’s ready, you can start spinning your 360 product turntable. Remember to rotate the turntable in a clockwise direction as it’s the industry standard. Most hardware and software for 360° view product photography have been designed clockwise by default. This recommendation will do nothing and make your life a bit easier for you!
Step 5: Shoot in JPEG
Of course, you can use the RAW format, and there’s nothing wrong with it. But as a basic rule of thumb, shooting in JPEG will make the whole process a little easier for you. The benefits being – you can shoot and edit faster, and the file size is smaller than RAW.
Keep in mind that you need to take a myriad of photos to get a 360°view of your product. So JPEG format clearly helps with that.
Step 6: Bring On the Editing Game
Once you’re done with capturing 360 product images, it’s time to clean them up. The key is to edit a batch where you can implement your edits to a bunch of images at once and all. And in this regard, Lightroom can be a perfect tool for editing your shots.
First of all, upload your images on Lightroom. Then click on ‘Develop’ and use CTRL+A for selecting all the images. Now in the Develop option, choose ‘Whites’ and drag it to make the background completely white.
Next, opt for “Tone Curve”and alter your Lights, Shadows, Darks, and Highlights. The aim is to ensure your 360° product has the right colors and proper exposure.
Once you’re done with editing, you can easily export them.
Step 7: Let a 360 Viewer Come into the Picture
After the post-production, you now need to upload the product images to a 360 viewer. There are hundreds of 360° product photography apps in the market. Although most of them would require you to subscribe, you can find options allowing you to do trials.
You can add tags, titles, and descriptions to your file of edited pictures. After pressing upload, your full 360 product photos will be ready in only a few moments. Now you can upload the 360 images of the product on your website.
So, there you have it. 360°product photography is an invigorating new frontier in the eCommerce product photo editing world. It offers online shoppers a substantial way of observing products and controlling how they want to view them. And if we talk about the standpoint of eCommerce sellers, it’s a tangible way to increase conversions by showing off the products in minute details.
Here’s a bonus tip to this tutorial: if you’re unsure about the editing part and worried about running the good-quality 360 images you have taken of your products, the best thing you can do is look for photo editing services. Leave this job up to professionals while you can focus on your website strategies. This is a handy solution for getting high-quality 360° product images and boosting your website traffic.