I’m sure you’ve heard that images and product photography are the most important part of an Amazon listing for raising conversion rates and boosting sales.
If your product looks better than the competition customers are more likely to purchase yours… But what does science say about photos on Amazon?
There are decades of scientific research about imagery & visual learners. I’m a visual learner & have a much easier time comprehending images.
My reading speed is pretty slow & takes my brain a lot more time and effort to process.
Science explains why this is the case for me & many Amazon shoppers, so we’ll exploit this research to boost Amazon conversion rates on our top selling Amazon product detail pages.
Visuals are Processed 60,000 x Faster in the Brain Than Text
Wait… what?! Yes that’s what the science says.
We can get the sense of a visual scene in less than one 10th of a second. You can just glance at something and instantly have a sense of what’s going on. Your brain recognizes things makes connections to things it recognizes.
When selling on Amazon, if you haven’t optimized your images to communicate the main benefits of your product at lightning speed… you’re leaving $ on the table.
Reading requires a lot more processing power to get through.
If you look at something for two seconds, the amount of info your brain comprehends is equivalent to reading at 30,000 words per minute.
My reading speed is about 400 words per minute (decently fast), 30,000 wpm is insane!
The Brain Evolved with Images, Language is New
Our brains have been highly efficient visual processing machines since the very first human was born.
We look at something with our eyes and our brain turns it into information with incredible efficiency. It’s something intrinsically woven into our DNA.
But language isn’t, & written language is only a few thousand years old. A drop in the bucket of human evolution.
As a little kid it took years and years of consistent practice to be able to read, understand language, and communicate with each other effectively using words.
But from the day we were born you were able to look at images and get an idea of what’s going on, recognize patterns and understand.
Visuals Bypass Amazon Shopper’s Short-Term Memory
The world’s best memory athletes use visual techniques to remember. If they’re remembering very long numbers, they see a chunk of those numbers and create a visual in their brain that represents them.
If it’s a string of 5 words, they remember one visual image that represents all five words together. They’re taking something nonvisual and turning it into a visual because the brain is more effective at remembering visuals.
This is something super applicable to boosting conversion rate on Amazon listings.
Our brain has something called a short-term working memory which lasts for about 15 seconds. When you’re trying to remember a credit card number, typically you remember the first four numbers, type it in, second four numbers, etc.
But by the time you’ve typed in the last number, you probably don’t remember what the first four numbers were. Certainly, two minutes later it’s completely gone from your memory.
Whereas if you’re driving to work and saw an attractive member of the opposite sex there’s a good chance you can remember his/her hair color, what they were wearing, how they’re walking, if they’re wearing headphones or not.
The richness and memorability of visuals is far less likely to get discarded by your short-term working memory. For Amazon shoppers this means they’re more likely to come back to your listing after shopping around on competitor’s Amazon listings.
Visuals Trigger Shopper’s Emotions
Images are much better at triggering emotions than text. If you see an image of a child in a war-torn country wearing ragged clothes, holding their mother, instantly you can feel compassion for them.
To trigger that same emotion with text requires an entire paragraph to write out that much detail, and there’s a smaller chance it would trigger the emotion as strongly.
When it comes to conversion optimized Amazon listings having images showing the model in the act of receiving the main product benefits helps trigger emotional responses.
Showing them in the act of receiving positive emotions or solving the negative emotions your product solves is a really powerful way to get shoppers to feel emotions, making your product much more memorable (more likely to buy).
But this can work against you as well…
Stock Images Can Hurt Your Brand Image
In the same way shoppers can quickly gain a positive impression of your Amazon product they can quickly gain a bad one.
This is the problem with using stock images, pixelated images, bad lighting, or just low quality in general.
In a worst-case scenario, your stock images give the subconscious impression of a scam to shoppers. It wasn’t too many years ago that buying things online was risky and people were wary of scams.
Scammers use stock images along with offshore companies with terrible English & 15-year olds in their mom’s basement.
Make sure your images are top quality or else they can work against you and give the wrong impression of your brand.
How to Take Better Photos for Amazon Products
So that’s a little insight into the science of why imagery on Amazon is so important.
Armed with this information and understanding, you’re in a much better position to create an Amazon product photography shot list, hand it to your product photographer, & get some top-notch results that will increase Amazon sales.
If you’re looking for someone to completely take it off your hands, Kenji ROI does really great product photos.
Getting inside the mind of your customers is in my opinion one of the most important skills you can have as an Amazon seller.
Applying the psychology of sales copywriting to images will increase your Amazon conversion rates more than any other single investment.
Recommended Additional Reading
Looking for some eCommerce photography tips and tricks? Check out this article.