Stock photography is the biggest area of the media world. But why? It’s convenient, easy to access and cheap. However, there are also a number of drawbacks – particularly in e-commerce. Read on as we explore the ups and the downs of stock photography, and how the alternatives compare.
What is stock photography?
Stock photography is a stock or a collection of images online. Users can browse the images, which are organized using tags and categories, to find one that fits the bill. If they find one they like, they can purchase the image either for a standard fee, or based on how it will be used. They are often licensed for particular use. Some are even free.
A few good points
Clearly, this system has some advantages. For one, it’s cheap. Stock photos are affordable even on the tightest budget. They have a range of prices, based on size, resolution and usage rights. It’s also time efficient. The images can be downloaded at the click of a button, and are ready to use instantly.
With the amount of stock photography sites and the number of budding photographers getting involved, you also benefit from impressive variety. There are thousands of images covering all sorts of topics. Whether it’s a maple
Another downside is exclusivity. When you hire a photographer or agency, you get exclusive photos that are yours and only yours to use.
What’s not so good?
The main problem with stock photography is that it’s not always so easy to find exactly what you want or need. In e-commerce, this is huge. Stock photos are taken of generic situations, settings, and objects. They’re OK, just about doing the job.
Stock photographers want to take generic photos that will be used by as many people as possible. To achieve this, they take photos that don’t say anything in particular. It’s impossible to convey a consistent brand message when your images are bland.
Owned by everyone
Stock photography can never make you sure who else has purchased and used those photos – and for what purpose. It’s impossible to stand out from the crowd if you’re using the same photos as them. You can’t convey a unique selling point without unique images.
There’s also the issue of licensing. Some stock photos are prohibited for advertising, with others that can’t be used multiple times. It’s fine as a one-off. But if you’re using multiple photos, it can become confusing and time-consuming remembering which rights you have for each photo.
The choice is yours
All of these downsides are bad enough for any business website. But in e-commerce, it’s even more important to get photography right. Customers want to see your exact products, not some generic images. With professional photography, you can show off your products, display them at their best and highlight how they can benefit customers. A picture really is worth a thousand words for your products.
With photography, you get what you pay for. Stock photography is cheap, and this message can be projected onto your products and brand too. Professional photography, on the other hand, allows you to specify exactly what you need.
We are from Ecommerce Photography. If you want best images of your products then do contact us.