In the eCommerce sector, product photography (and it’s sales conversion) is measured on a variety of factors, some of them being:

  • Value perception: the quality of the image is directly proportional to the value of the product. Customers want to “see” their desire.
  • Visual appeal: A recent report suggests that over 67% of consumers put high-resolution images as one of the main factors in their decision-making process. 
  • Shareability: Social media- one of the top avenues for eCommerce marketing and sales, is vital for brands today. Customers are 40x more likely to share brand stories that feature captivating imagery. 
  • Marketable engagement: By 2020, the internet will have over 5.6 bn active email accounts and currently over 65% of users prefer HTML marketing. Content engagement for brands is highest with picture content at 65%.

With global e-commerce sales to hit a whopping $4.9 trillion by 2021, photography is fast becoming a distinguishing factor between brands in an already saturated marketplace.

Fast fashion retailers are a prime example of the strength and reach of high-quality product photography in their omnichannel strategy.  A leading UK fashion retailer Boohoo adds up to 300 products on their website, every single day. Retailers like Zara stock new styles almost twice a week in their 2000+ stores worldwide and even more online. 

Fashion photography popularly operates in 2 ways: Mannequin and Model Imagery. 

Mannequin Vs Model Photography:

Commonly known as the “hollow man” effect, mannequin photography is a ghostly representation of the product. It is meant to showcase how a piece of clothing is actually worn. It is mainly used by e-tailers as it is easy to style and involves simpler compositing and post-processing techniques. While it is observed to be cost-efficient to model photography, having a wide range of mannequins is equally expensive. 

Model photography  on the other hand not only offers unlimited creative possibilities, but its case in the clothing and apparel industry can be made by 3 factors:

  • It provides an “immersive real-world” shopping feel. Seeing the product’s fit, layout, design on high-quality images spike conversion rates by 5%.
  • By providing a variety of model sizes, brands increase fashion accessibility as customers associate themselves with the models
  • More opportunities for upselling and cross-promotion affecting cart sizes and checkouts 
  • Lesser product return rates as customers true product representation

But perhaps the most significant factor is that – model photography motivates consumers to aspire to a specific image. The diversity of model photography combined with its high-quality output adds significant value to the etailer’s ability to deliver a rich, alluring and intuitive shopping experience.

The biggest perceived con to model photography is that it requires an expensive production setup-the models, stylists, photographers, studio and efficient workflow. With over 52 micro seasons to cater to in a yearly calendar, it leaves most businesses with a massive supply chain to optimise, logistical and post-production budgets to bear. 

Say hello to Artificial Intelligence-powered Model Photography: All the bang, for the best buck

The fashion and apparel industry has also seen an influx of innovative tech, which is one of the primary drivers contributing to it’s accelerating growth. While Artificial Intelligence has seen many uses in the fashion industry, it has significantly reduced cost and time spent on model photography. Attractive model imagery can be created in a matter of hours at a fraction of the cost. 

On our premier model imagery product FlixLook, all the algorithm needs is a picture of the garment, and it does the rest. It fits it on various models w.r.t sizes, shapes, ethnicities and even pairs accessories of choice. The machine learning gets more accurate with every model shot, and is always on top of current fashion industry trends. Fast fashion output at a minimal studio setup cost!

As AI model photography is more consistent, it addresses two main problems affecting both- The Brand and The Consumer.

  1. Higher product return rate
  2. 2% Conversion rate

Lower Rate of Returns= More Sales= Happier brands!

Returns are the bane of the fashion eCommerce industry and retailers lose close to $642.6Bn every year from preventable returns.

If the customer isn’t sure about the size, fit, style or price- there is a high chance that the items in the cart won’t be checked out.

Customers want to have maximum information about the product before committing to buying online, and visual consistency plays a huge role in retention. In order to develop experiences captivating this reality, model images need to be represented with absolute consistency – be it fabrics, colours, accessories, fit options or full ensembles.

In AI model photography, since the algorithm learns and improves with every image, visual consistency is maintained. Human error is completely out of the equation, brands can create attractive model images at low costs and increase sales by 95%. The AI also helps retailers personalise the images, leading to improved customer satisfaction and reduced rate of returns. 

Rise above 2%

Typical conversion rate for eCommerce lies between 1-2%. While there are plenty of factors driving it, photography is one of the top reasons for successful transactions. Optimising the product discovery and checkout experience will definitely add value to the customer purchase journey and reduce cart abandonment instances. 

Another factor to keep in mind is that desktop conversion rates are almost 3x times higher than mobile! Customers find it easier to compare multiple options- which is cumbersome on a mobile device.

Model photography here plays a pivotal role- with the larger screen space, customers want to zoom in on every product detail, compare and make the informed choice. From awareness to purchase to targeting, model photography is important in every step of marketing and conversions.

With FlixLook, businesses can create high-quality product images in record production time for all eCommerce marketplaces with pre-defined specifications! The algorithm understands the desired output and page conversion optimisation techniques and applies it to all images.

What are you waiting for? Join the FlixLook revolution!

AI is the present and the future and we want your brand to harness its maximum potential for your store’s success. All you need is one image, and we’ll take care of the rest. Schedule a call with us and get on board the revolution!