Tips for Starting a Product Photography Business

Product photography, also known as e-commerce photography, is a concept where pictures of products are taken and uploaded on social media or websites to help drive sales of products or services.

With the increase in online shopping, there are lots of brands and products available all over the internet; with pictures, e-commerce businesses can communicate in clear and simple terms what they are selling and why it’s worth buying.

However, there’s more to product photography than clicks of images that show what a product looks like. Excellent product photography can help position your product, enabling customers to see how the product can fit into their life.

According to research, well-considered imagery of a product or service increases customers’ sense of ownership of the product. It can also boost your business, reinforce your brand standpoint, and provide context without needing much professional input.

Are you thinking of starting a product photography business as a side hustle? Do you wish to learn the skills to help your ecommerce business? If yes, then join us as we share tips for starting a successful product photography business.

Why Product Photography?

Product photography is a lucrative niche in photography. Its benefits include:

• Very Lucrative: When a company hires you to shoot products, it’s usually not a one-time project. If you do an excellent job the first time, you can be sure you will be called again when needed. And since businesses always need to shoot new products or reshoot old ones, you will never be out of a job.

• Flexible: Most product photoshoots are mainly for ecommerce websites; hence, you can choose to shoot the pictures anywhere and anytime. The products can be delivered to you anywhere you are for the product photography. This allows you to pitch to clients anywhere in the world.

Tips for Starting a Product Photography Business

If you are thing of starting a photography business, then there are a number of things you need to know. This section highlights some tips to help you get started.

Gears Needed to Start a Product Photography Business

The most important and basic requirement of product photography is having the right gear. These include:


Since most of the pictures you will be shooting will be done in a controlled environment (with artificial lights and all), you don’t need all the features of an expensive camera. You will mostly be shooting at a close range; hence, you will need a camera that allows you to control the aperture to capture the whole image in focus. There’s a list of the best Sony lenses for product photography for you to consider. This will help you always get excellent results.


You will need some background to get the result you desire. Aiming for an environmentally friendly concept, you will need flowers, woods, and plants, amongst others. But if the aim is a minimalistic effect with no distractions to the product, then a white background is what you need. You can purchase white polystyrene paper from a local store near you or construct a DIY standpoint with some wood. It’s cheap and effective.


Lightings are important gear in product photography. That said, the type of lighting required depends on the product you are shooting. If you are photographing fashion accessories or flat lays of skincare products, natural light is your best bet.

However, if you are capturing perfume or wine, you will need a powerful artificial light. There are many lighting options available; diffused lighting for instance is one lighting option that takes up less room. Overall. go for a lighting option that works for you and is within your budget.

You will also need other gears, such as reflectors, lenses, a tripod and others.

Other Tips to Note

Developing a Product Photography Portfolio

To build your portfolio, take random pictures of things around you; accessories, books, clothes, etc., on a white background. You can get a clean white background by setting the lighting to get the white background from the camera. You can also choose to outsource the editing of the pictures or do it yourself in photoshop. The latter is more time consuming though.

Build Reviews

To begin with, do some small projects for free or at a low cost, and in exchange ask the customer to leave a review on your website. Do this as often as you can afford. These reviews will go a long way in helping you sell your services later on.

Besides, beyond building a review, getting feedback will help you test and determine if your roof is working. The feedback can help you adjust or fix defective areas and become better.

Create a Portfolio Website

The next phase to starting your product photography business is to build a portfolio website. Nothing complex, just the simple stuff. There are many options available such as Squarespace; there’s also WordPress for those who prefer something more technical.

Only spend some time building and creating the site; it should look professional. You only need a portfolio page and a contact page to start with.


Marketing can be hard, for instance, people will likely not buy a product with no reviews.

One way to market product photography is through channels like Adwords, Facebook ads, and SEO. There are also cheaper and more effective ways of marketing your product photography—research companies that sell the type of product you wish to shoot. After getting the needed information, contact the company, and let them know about your work.

While cold calling can be tedious, you need the connection gotten through this means to scale your business. As with any other products, selling product photography is based on relationships. Thus, the more people you are able to connect with, the higher your chances of succeeding.

An Area Code Relevant Business Phone Number

A professional area code business number lends you authority and professionalism. It also marks you as a legitimate business person in the area in which you’re working. Locals will recognize the number and know instantly you’re a local businessperson.

For example, if you’re operating in or around Dallas, Texas you’d logically want a 469 area code attached to your phone number to mark you as a professional working in Dallas. It’s probably easier than you think to get a 469 area code too. Any local business should focus on acquiring a local business number. It just gives the customer that extra level of confidence.

Final Thought

In the era of technological advancement, companies no longer rely on brick-and-mortar stores to sell their products but rather rely on websites, where they display and sell their products. But these products don’t just pop up on the website, they require product photographers to capture the products beautifully, and that’s where you come in. If you can hone your skills and follow the tips shared in this article, then it’s only a matter of time before you have all the big companies seeking your services.

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