People like aesthetically pleasing webpages its no secret and its why visual content is an extremely important asset used to establish your brand’s identity online.
We often find that the average consumer is more likely to forgive websites with poor functionality (to a certain degree) if they are at least pretty to look at. This is because we as humans are visual creatures its just as the old saying goes “A picture speaks a thousand words”. Therefore, brands create color schemes, use pictures, and develop logos to make themselves memorable and recognizable. Think of the visuals:
Red and yellow plus the letter ‘M’ and we know its McDonalds
Starbucks has its iconic green mermaid
Google uses a mixture of colours but specific fonts and visual theory to ensure their brand is identifiable.
Apple has their literal apple logo but with the iconic bit taken out of it. Minimul colour.
But of course, those are huge companies with a lot of money so what about small businesses and sole traders? What about those of us who don’t have a myriad of marketing teams fully focused on revenue and leads through SEO fueled ads?
Not to worry just because you don’t have a team of professionals and an endless supply of money doesn’t not mean you can’t still have a stunning website with high quality images that help your brand be distinguishable.
Let the team here at We Fix I.T. give you our best tips and tricks on how to take stunning professional quality pictures for your website without fancy equipment. We ourselves are a small company in a small town and we understand the struggles of Googling “how to take website photos” and ending up with a bunch of results of stunning YouTubers with professional equipment living in LA showing us how their team makes it work.
But realistically we don’t live in LA we don’t have statement buildings and carparks casually around our small rural town in Northern Territory Australia. We have beautiful trees, desert land and a cool building here and there but nothing compared to the man-made landscapes of Melbourne and Sydney.
So how do you work with what you already have, to get stunning images for your brand?
Option 1 - Use Stock Photos
The first option honestly is to not take your own images at all and instead utilize stock photography. There is nothing wrong with stock images being used on your brands page. They are visually appealing you can find many free options online and its common practice. But the tricky part is having to find images that are the right fit for your needs. Along with this if your business is about selling products, working as a designer and or displaying hand made items. Stock images just wont work as they will not be able to facilitate the personal connection your website should provide to your audience.
1. What type of photos do you want to capture?
This is a good question to ask yourself before you start to select the best equipment for the job.
Do you want to get photos of your staff working?
Staff photos often are an easy way to get employees in action and take natural looking photos. When taking natural shots, the person with the camera will try to stay in the background and take photos while people go about their daily work tasks.
Headshots / Staged Shots?
Head shots and staged photos on the other hand need to be more polished looking. Often these types of pictures require more effort during the set-up phase as lighting and clothing would need to be taken into consideration along with space and specific colours.
location shots are a mix of both; lighting matters as does the state of the location (clean/dirty/etc) but most of all to do these types of photos right framing the scene matters.
2. Work with what you have i.e. Smart Phone Camera
It’s not always about needing a fancy camera or commercial lighting. You don’t need to have those items to take good photos; sure, it can be helpful but often if you’re not trained to use the fancy stuff your pictures will be worse rather than better. Instead use smart phone with a good quality camera! Phones can be great tools for on-the-fly photography. So much so that companies have even made accessories such as lenses, tripods and more to help adapt your mobile into a monster camera.
3. Invest in some basic Equipment and Tools
Although you don’t have to go and buy an expensive camera it is a good idea to invest some basic photography equipment. Investing in items like a tripod, editing software and making sure you have a computer to help upload and edit images makes a big difference.
4. Do some reading/ Watch some YouTube videos
Learn about some photography basics such as composition, framing, resolution, ISO and/or even how to use your phone camera in pro mode. Understanding the basics will help you feel a lot more confident during the shoot and it will allow you to experiment with different photography techniques to find the ideal vibe you want to put forward through your photos.
We recommend Jordi Kaolitic’s short three minute YouTube video as a good place to start.
5. Take your time and learn as you go
Taking photographs can be daunting whether you are the photographer or the model. Don’t lose your cool because things aren’t going right; rather learn to adjust the type of pictures you’re taking to the state of the environment around you.
Nervous models? Show them how to pose, converse with them and give them pointers on how you want them to feel so that they can better preform.
Bad weather? Make it a tone rather than cancel the shoot.
Remember you always need more photos so why not try and shoot what you can to have variety.
A final thing to keep in mind and something that’s always helped us at We Fix I.T. Always take more photos than you think you will need. It’s better to have too many options than none and often taking multiple stills of one frame can help in the editing process.