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How to Leverage Product Photography to Sell More Cannabis Products

by Hasum | | 420 Smoke Shop Near Me | 0 Comments

What Is Product Photography?

Product photography refers to photography meant for commercial purposes. It typically involves taking your products’ photographs in the best light to offer an accurate visual representation of how they appear to the naked eye and to make them more attractive to the customer.

Since online shoppers don’t have the luxury of seeing the products in real life, they are entirely reliant on the photos you provide to make purchase decisions. Therefore, if you want to make a sale, the product photography is crucial to your cannabis e-commerce business.

Benefits of Product Photography in Ecommerce

Unlike physical stores, which typically rely on foot traffic from a specific geographic location, e-commerce is unbound by geographical limitations. This basically means it enables you to reach a broader customer base. That said, you still have to convince people to buy your products without seeing them in person. Here are a few reasons why product photography is crucial to your success in e-commerce.

Product Photography Offers a Professional Representation

Your website serves as the forefront of your e-commerce business. And unlike physical stores, you don’t get the chance to greet your customers so you can show them you’re a professional business. Instead, your website’s visuals do the talking.

As long as you avoid common product photograph mistakes, you should be able to give your website a professional look and show you take your business and its products seriously. Therefore, customers will be more likely to buy from you.

Provides Quick Product Information

Good product descriptions work great when it comes to giving product information. But without something to help customers visualize the product, even the best product description is utterly useless. That’s where product photography comes in. It helps your customers to fully understand the product information and reconcile it with what they see.

Clear, high-quality product pictures give customers quick information about a product. They can see its color, shape, and quality with just a glance. This significantly improves their chances of purchasing the product once they see it matches their needs.

Provides Quick Product Information

Conveys Product Quality

Even if your cannabis products are a perfect fit for your customers, you still have to persuade them to make a purchase. You have to convince them that your products beat the competition. They want to see that your disposable cannabis vapes are as stylish as you claim or that your cannabis flower is perfectly trimmed and fresh. Product photography can help you achieve this.

Establishes Realistic Expectations

Up to 30 percent of products ordered online get returned to the vendor. Of the products returned, 22 percent are returned because the customer didn’t get what they saw in the photos. So, unless you want to get hit with a high number of returns, you need to ensure that your customers are happy with what they get.

The primary purpose of any e-commerce business is to sell as much as possible. However, you shouldn’t give your customers unrealistic expectations just to make a sale. By giving your customers multiple photos from different angles, you make them more confident in their purchase. The accurate impressions they get can reduce your return rate, ultimately saving you time and money.

Reinforces Branding

Most customers only buy from brands they trust. Taking consistent, professional photographs of your products can help support your branding. When you take photos with consistent lighting and background, they look more cohesive, which, in turn, accentuates your brand’s personality.

How to Create Great Product Photographs for Your Cannabis Business

Give Customers a Full View of the Products

If somehow a customer ends up ordering a product without getting a good look at it, there’s a big chance they may get disappointed with their order and end up returning it. When this happens, you waste lots of time, not to mention the money you could have gained from the sale.

Therefore, you should give your customers a chance to view the products in their entirety. You can achieve this by:

  • Taking multiple photos
  • Taking the photos in proper lighting at multiple angles
  • Allowing your customers to zoom in on the small details

Don’t Go Overboard With Filters

If you’ve been taking product photographs for some time now, chances are you already have a good digital single-lens reflex camera (DSLR) and editing software. You might have even perfected getting the right angles and lighting and utilizing filters.

And although filters work pretty well for personal photos and selfies, using too many of them in your product photography will only make them look less realistic. If your product’s photos look too different from what they are in real life, you might alienate your customers, leading to a higher number of returns.

Use Stock Photos Wisely

Use Stock Photos Wisely

Stock photos offer an effective means of adding professionalism to your cannabis e-commerce website. That said, many businesses are already using them, and you may end up using the same stock photos as your competitors.

As your business expands, it’s always a good idea to invest in professional photography. If that’s not within your budget, you can try out some DIY product photography or offer your customers a gift card when they send you photos you can use.


If you’re just starting out, you may find it difficult to take the photographs yourself, and the learning curve can be a bit overwhelming, especially if you run a busy schedule. In this case, it’s wise to consider someone to do it for you.

Getting a professional photographer to take pictures of your inventory might seem a little bit over the top, especially for a small cannabis business. But when you consider the potential benefits, you’ll realize that it’s worth the extra spending. Moreover, professional photographers have high-quality cameras, lighting setups, and prime lenses, which are guaranteed to produce high-quality and visually appealing photos.

Use What You’ve Got

Technology has advanced so that you don’t need a DSLR anymore to create good product photographs. You could probably get away with using a smartphone to take decent photos, as long as you have the right skills.

This doesn’t mean that you can use just any smartphone. You have to use a high-end smartphone with a high-resolution camera. That said, having the best smartphone is only half the battle. You still have to consider other elements like composition (how the image is structured), lighting, and overall aesthetic.

Regardless of the product, you’re photographing, you should always have plenty of lighting. You should also try to keep the background clean and the image centered. Most importantly, you should always ensure that the product is in focus. So, take your time setting up the shot until you get it right.

Additionally, try using a good photo editing app. Although these apps won’t cover any shortcomings in terms of skill, they can help improve the overall quality of your shot.

Stay Honest

Creative editing might work for magazines and other entertainment businesses, but when it comes to e-commerce, it might just end up harming your business. Creative photography is mainly aimed at accentuating the aesthetic appeal of an object. And while it might make your products look cool, you’ll still be lying to your customers.

Apart from contributing to a high number of returns, creative editing may also harm your long-term capabilities. Therefore, although that grinder may look great next to some cannabis flower, consider photographing them separately to avoid misleading your customers.

Prep Your Products

You should always prep your products before a shoot. This typically involves cleaning them, testing them for reflections, determining the lighting you need, and keeping each product you want to shoot close.

You can also organize all your cannabis products in the order you want to shoot them. This way, you create a workflow for your product photos. This will ultimately speed up the process and make you more efficient.

The Right Gear for Taking Advanced Cannabis Product Photographs

The Right Gear for Taking Advanced Cannabis Product Photographs

Now that you know how to do it, it’s time to gather the necessary tools. Getting top-notch photography equipment is always a good idea. But if you’re just starting out, you can take the DIY route instead. Here’s what you’ll need:

Shooting Table

A shooting table is basically a flat surface where you can display your cannabis products during a photoshoot. There are lots of professional shooting tables out there. But if you can’t afford one, you can always use a regular table or chair—just make sure it’s sturdy and looks nice.

Studio Lighting

Where are you going to be taking your photographs? Regardless of the location, if it doesn’t get enough natural light, you’ll need to invest in some decent studio lights. Two to three softbox light setups could work pretty well for a small product staging area. Lighting equipment helps diffuse harsh lighting and helps you adjust shadows to achieve desired results.

Light Tent

If you want to take professional cannabis product photographs, you’ll need something to act as a backdrop. You can easily purchase a lightbox online or build your own using a plastic storage container and white paper or cloth.


It can be pretty difficult to achieve consistently clear and focused images, especially when using a smartphone. Luckily, a tripod can help stabilize your camera, thus helping you achieve excellent images consistently. The best thing about it is they go for as low as $20, so you don’t have to worry about breaking the bank on this one.

Mobile Grip

If you’re using a camera, then you don’t need a mobile grip since it already has a screw hole at the bottom that attaches to the tripod. But if you’re using a smartphone for your photoshoots, you’ll need a mobile grip to hold your smartphone in place and attach it to the tripod.

Photo Editing Software

Like with any other photography, the final step in cannabis product photography is using photo editing software to spice up your images. There is a lot of free photo editing software on the market, so you won’t have to spend a dime. You just need to free up some time in your schedule to learn how to use them correctly.

Why Should You Consider Hiring a Professional Cannabis Product Photographer

Why Should You Consider Hiring a Professional Cannabis Product Photographer?

Although you don’t need to be a professional to create beautiful product photography, you might still encounter some limitations due to a lack of experience, as with any DIY project. Professional photography can be a bit expensive. But if you have the cash, here are two reasons why you should go for it:

Professional Quality

Your experience, coupled with the quality of your equipment, determines the quality of the photos you take. Professional photographers already have the experience. This, along with the top-notch equipment they bring to the table, is the ideal recipe for high-quality product photos.

Consistent Editing

Working with a professional photographer enables you to provide consistency in both style and quality, time and time again. This may be difficult to achieve as an amateur photographer with little to no experience in photo editing software.

But since this is a professional photographer’s forte, they are able to enhance your brand image with consistently clear and high-quality images.

The Bottom Line

The cannabis e-commerce business is picking up, and the competition is getting pretty intense. Traditional strategies like SEO, website design, and UI might help you rank higher in Google, but product photography guarantees sales. You can leverage the tips above to help you improve your product photography and eventually make more sales.

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