Amazon Images Beyond The Basics

Navigating the vast and intricate landscape of Amazon’s marketplace can feel like taming a behemoth. It’s their playing field, and we’re merely players in it. Research shows that product images on Amazon are pivotal in influencing customer buying decisions, accounting for 60-70% of the purchasing choice. It’s critical, therefore, to get this aspect of selling right!

You might be wondering how to make your images stand out, optimize them effectively, and safeguard your visual assets. I will walk you through some strategies and tips to elevate your image game on Amazon. Please note that this guide is written in July 2023, and Amazon’s UI and image policies tend to change without prior notifications to sellers. Staying on top of trends is your responsibility. Let’s dive in, assuming you’ve mastered the basics, such as well-shot photos on a white background for the primary image, infographics, and lifestyle photos for secondary shots, etc.

The first essential insight is the different display modes for product images on Desktop and Mobile.

Here’s the same search result on the Amazon app (mobile) versus the Amazon desktop site:

Even with square image the presentation will be in vertical rectangles on mobile

The difference is stark! Mobile displays favor vertical images, while desktop tends to highlight more traditional square images (actually slightly wider). So, what should we infer from this? Larger images tend to perform better. Look at these two drills. Which image do you prefer?

Which image do you prefer?

In my experience, optimization should cater to your audience and demographic. Most Amazon purchases are made on mobile, and even if not, the customer’s journey often starts there.

App vs Desktop Amazon views
almost twice as much traffic

It’s high time to revamp your image assets to a more vertical format for several reasons:

Remember, Negative Space is a Faux Pas:

  1. Larger Target Area in Search Results: If the display favors taller images, your product will be shown bigger, which increases visibility and selection chances. A taller listing also pushes rival listings further down the page.
  2. Product Page Image: The same logic applies. A taller aspect ratio makes the image appear larger on mobile, aiding the buying decision with a clearer image.

Amazon’s product image guidelines recommend that the product should occupy 85% or more of the image space. Maximizing this rule means trimming the image to the product itself, leaving minimal white space. This will make your product appear larger in the search, increasing visibility. Here are a couple of points to consider:

  • Amazon seems to auto-crop images, but manual cropping allows you more control.
  • Drop shadows, reflections, or other elements can influence the cropping, so scrutinize your asset closely.

Safeguarding Your Images:

There’s always a possibility of competitors misusing your images. I had a similar experience with my product, the PencilCozy. As expected, other manufacturers copied it, but shockingly, they also saved my image, removed my logo, and placed theirs. I began incorporating discreet elements in the images, which could be later reported to Amazon for removal if misused. Such tactics make copying your images more difficult and expensive for infringers.

For example, note the serial number with the brand name in the middle in the image below:

Lastly, let’s not overlook video content. The latest version of the Amazon mobile app is promoting videos aggressively. Therefore, it’s beneficial to have a product video or solicit an influencer review. In this context, too, vertical orientation outperforms. This changes all the time see the same search result in 1 month apart.

Amazon app search results with and without video 1 month apart
Video results front and center in June ’23

Armed with these insights, I hope you can enhance your Amazon image strategy and stay ahead of the competition. Anything I missed, let me know in the comments.

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