Use creative photography to bring your online store to life

As well as the realistic, hi quality photos you need to sell your products, you can bring bags of personality to your business by adding more creative imagery. Snaps of staff at work, artistic ‘still life’ arrangements and other editorial shots can all help lift your store from a simple online catalogue to a business with soul.

Now you’re probably wondering how the hell you can do that with no budget and no specialist skills, but take heart. Help is at hand!

Let me introduce you to the hugely popular Smartphone app, Instagram, a photography tool with its own social network. Its 100 million users share over 40 million photos each day, so it’s constantly buzzing with visual activity.

I’m a huge fan. I use it to capture everything from birthday parties and favourite meals to the beautiful things I see in an otherwise dull day. The filters instantly turn my standard photos into the colourful and inspiring images that you might see in a high-end magazine.

Road to CachiHere’s a before and after from my own holiday snaps.

The photo on the left is taken directly with my iPhone. It looks a bit flat, doesn’t it? Now look at the one below with an Instagram filter applied. Instant va va voom!

Road to Cachi InstagramNot just a pretty picture, reach a new global audience

Instagram effortlessly brings your photos to an image-hungry audience of millions. The photos you take are shared straight away with your Instagram community and can be posted to other networks like facebook and twitter. And just like facebook, you can tag your photos, follow other people, like their photos and make comments.

Your photos can also be downloaded from your phone, so you can use them in lots of other ways like on your blog or website. I’ve also read that Instagram pics are very popular on Pinterest.

To make it even more irresistible, Instagram has just made it possible to record video. You can take up to 15 seconds of video on your phone, apply one of their famous filters and share it with your social networks. I can see endless opportunities here for a short clip of your products in use, or behind-the-scenes footage of your business. At the moment, there’s no easy way to embed an Instagram video into your webpage, but that will no doubt be covered by some clever little tool soon.

Here’s an example of online retailer “the Iconic” using Instagram on their blog.

If you’re looking to inject some creative style into your online store and showcase your products to a worldwide audience at the same time, check out Instagram. You can read how to set up an account for a business here.

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About Alison Hardy
Alison Hardy

Alison Hardy Alison is a freelance copywriter and content marketer. She specialises in dynamic online copy that helps small businesses reach and connect with the people that need them.

With a Southern Pommie accent and an unAustralian dislike for seafood, Alison came to Australia at the end of the last century. Despite these obvious disadvantages, she was offered a job in the ecommerce department of a local Internet company and has been working in digital communications ever since.

In the heady days of the first dot com boom, before she became a queen of copy, Alison helped produce websites. But project management wasn’t creative enough for this sassy lassie so she switched her attention to marketing and communications. Much more fun!

She spent the next 10 years in marketing roles, promoting businesses in the education, art, technology and online retail industries. This invariably involved writing persuasive copy online, offline and sometimes even in the line at the post office. Her talents helped her produce powerful copy for a wide range of purposes like websites, flyers, adverts, enewsletters, emails, social media and blog posts.

In 2012, she became one of the growing number of fearless people who take a leap of faith to work for themselves. Nowadays, you will find her in her slippers with a cat on her lap, wrestling sentences to create smart content to bring businesses to life.

A wordsmith, online champion, creative problem solver and a lover of strong tea, Alison has been working with us at Spiffy Stores for many years. She has helped us with marketing advice and writing content for our website, blog and knowledge base.

She’s pretty nice to work with, and thankfully has learnt to polish off a prawn or two so she can’t be all that bad. If you would like to hire her to write great copy for your website or marketing materials, visit www.alisonhardy.com for samples of work and her contact details.