Amazon is an e-commerce behemoth and is, therefore, a magnet to not only buyers but sellers who recognize the audience the platform permits them to reach. Many businesses (upwards of 300,000 of them) list their products and convert many successful sales. But with the opportunity to do great business come a few quirks, and in order to build a great listing that draws attention from the hundreds of other options that pop up alongside it, takes some effort.
Setting up a listing on Amazon is easy. Setting up a successful one is a bit tougher. One of the significantly weighed pieces to whether your product listing is the image associated with it. If you think about it, when you scroll through the listing of options to buy, the image is the first thing that grabs your attention. This gives you, as a seller, about a second to appeal to a prospective buyer, getting them to click on your product instead of their countless other options.
It is because of their paramount importance in making a sale, that Amazon is a stickler for certain image requirements on the product listings they allow. This could make the path of dealing with these requirements a tough one to navigate. This guide aims to help beginners figure out the necessary actions to take for a successful Amazon listing in terms of images, but serves as a good review for veterans as well.
Technical Image Requirements
There are multiple technical components to getting the best possible image to represent your product and your brand. First, with regards to dimensions, the images should be higher than 1000 pixels per side. These dimensions allow the customers to clearly see the image of a product in high resolution.
However, don’t excel too far in image size. There is only so much room available on the product page, and if the image is too big, Amazon will scale it down. Scaling down a high-resolution image exponentially increases its graininess. Amazon recommends that the minimal image dimension of 500 pixels per side and a maximum of 10,000 per side be adhered to. The recommended size of the image is 2000 x 2000 pixels (in a 1:1 ratio).
For images with optimized dimensions, Amazon will permit a 5:1 aspect ratio zoom, however, they will not initiate when the user hovers over or clicks on the image if the image is not at least 1000 pixels on its longest side, and 500 on its shortest.
Image Attributes And Types
Amazon prefers that JPEG file types are used for the image files, but it does permit TIFF and GIF files as well. The filename of the image must include the product identifier, which is the Amazon ASIN, EAN, JAN, UPC, or the 13-digit ISBN, followed by a period (.) and the file type. There cannot be any dashes of spaces included in the file name either.
They recommend that the background be completely white and to fill in at least 85% of the image’s frame. Amazon suggests that if the file is not already fitting this requirement, that it be cropped to abide by the minimal ‘dead space’ standards.
With the volume of images Amazon is dealt to store for their products daily, it is understandable that they would want to cut down on the disk space these take up. For that reason, they ask that the images be compressed. They will themselves also compress them when the images are uploaded. These are requirements that span Amazon product images and are expected to be abided by any sellers posting a listing. Tools like TinyJPG can be used to achieve the compressions that meet Amazon’s size requirements.
Design-Based Image Requirements
The image should not only display in high resolution, it should overall be a quality picture that clearly and simply displays the product being sold. This is an effort to not have the product be misrepresented as that will hurt sales, both current and future.
This means that the photo needs to be of the physical product, not a drawing or a depiction of it. The only exception to this rule is digital products like covers of albums or ebooks. The image needs to be clear in the sense that it is professionally lit and is in-focus.
The images also should not contain extraneous objects. This could make it confusing to the buyer trying to figure out what they are on a product page for. People wearing a piece of clothing is fine, but if the image is simply of a clothing item, there should be no other objects in the frame.
It goes without saying that the image should be of the complete image of the product, not a partial representation. The images should also not be diluted with unnecessary text or graphics, nor should it contain any watermarks.
Utilization Of Image Slots
Merchants are permitted to display anywhere between 7 and 9 images per product page. It is recommended that, if possible, all of the available slots be used. If you think about it, the biggest disadvantage that an online retailer has is that its products are intangible to their audience. If we can hold something in our hands, we trust that it’s real and valuable on a psychological level. Because this is not an option for online retailers, the next best thing is to show the product from as many angles as possible, or in many different variations. Think about the product and how a buyer in a brick-and-mortar shop would evaluate it. What angles will they look at?
Once the photos of the product are ready, prepared for Amazon standards, they will need to be prioritized. Only one image will display as the primary one. So, in the interest of putting your best foot forward, that is the one that should primarily serve as the image that draws users’ attention. The others should be prioritized in a logical order. The first images should display the product in context, then from different angles, and finally should be images that show the mechanics or the science behind the product.
Inclusion of wording and language is fine to a degree, but only if it enhances, clarifies, or helps to explain the product being sold. There should certainly be no promotional language that peddles sales and limited-time offers. Do not promote the item as a ‘best seller’ and most certainly don’t tag the images with imitation ‘Amazon’ choice’ badges, unless you are looking for a good way to have the product listing yanked or rejected.
Needless to say, there should be no offensive language to any group, for any reason, regardless of nature.
You capture the interest of a buyer with the first image they see, that much is true. But first impressions can only take your product listing so far. While showcasing your product is important, relevant information that may not be clear should be added. If your product is selling in multiples for example (5-pack) but that is not clear from the image, make sure to add a discreet but visible clarification to the image.
How does your product help where competitors might not? Is your product easy and intuitive to use? Showing the product in use is a very good idea and highly recommended. It is a quick and easy way to relay the product’s utility without needing to expand upon it with text. If you are selling clothes, showing someone wearing it can give the buyer a better idea of how it looks rather than it just being laid out flat on a bed or a floor.
If the product is makeup, showing someone applying it in their bathroom or another realistic environment connects with people who may have had to do that very same thing. If your products are those used for swimming, showing a person swimming with your product visible is another good way to make an emotional connection.
Amazon does have some guidelines on their images to be sure, but it all comes from a good place. The point is not to be constricting here. Amazon has, certainly by now, product listing efficacy down to a science. They know what triggers buyer behaviors and what is ineffective in that regard. Instead of offering suggestions, they set standards to conform sellers to particular rules with regards to the use of images in order to assist their sales and improve conversions.