We live in a world filled with images, and there is little doubt that they have a big impact on how you see a product. Open any magazine and you’ll see how large the photographs of products are and how they fill the page. The internet is similar with big images of products almost everywhere. Forty percent of people respond better to content that has a visual element rather than plain text.
In the early days of the internet, websites mainly had text without images. Website managers soon figured out that visual content engages site visitors. Soon, it became common for websites to include images, and today there are few sites that are mainly text.
It takes the average person fifty milliseconds to decide whether or not they want to stay on your website. The more engaged a visitor is, the more likely he or she is to stay. This is good news for freelance photographers because there are many ways they can benefit from the impact visuals have on the web.
1. Showcase Your Work in Front of Brands
Companies are typically aware of the statistics on visuals and how important they are, so they also seek high-quality photos to use on their sites. Freelance photographers can take advantage of this by uploading their work to sites like Unsplash and Pexels. This exposes their work and name to the people who make hiring decisions.
The advantage is that if the company likes your images, they may hire you to do additional work for them, such as taking photos of products or designing a logo.
2. Offer Candid Shots
Another idea is reaching out to local companies and offering to take some candid shots of the team at work, which could be a good addition to a company’s About page on their website or to add to the blog for personal flare.
Try to take a wide variety of candid shots to show the personality of the people working there. Include both recreational time, such as lunch, and times when employees are immersed in work. Team building events also offer an excellent opportunity to take a few candid shots.
3. Convey Helpful Services Using Images Only
Photographers can work with companies to show a particular product’s usefulness. Take a look at the slideshow on Soundproof Cow. The photographer has taken images showing the acoustic panels the company makes in use. The viewer can easily see that the panels look like artwork, even though they have a specific function of improving sound quality and buffering sound in large rooms with high ceilings.
The ability to both soundproof a room and keep it looking stylish is useful for medical offices, music studios and even homes. The photographer shows these locations in the slideshow, offering a wide variety of location shots that show off the product and its style and functionality.
4. Make and Sell Website Themes
Visuals have a strong impact, and more websites are using large, unique images in their designs. This is an opportunity for a photographer to branch out into the business of making website themes.
During your slower months as a photographer, you can spend some time using your unique images to create templates and upload them to sites like Template Monster for sale. This creates a wider market for your work and allows you to take photos and turn them into something functional for businesses.
5. Use Your Work as Stock Photos
Most blog owners use photos to accompany every post they publish. Many blog designs today offer a featured photo option. A featured photo shows up on the main page of the blog and often on the post itself as well. All of these photos must come from somewhere.
This is where the photographer enters. You can create a side income by taking and uploading images to stock photo sites like iStockPhoto and Dreamstime. The images must be of a certain quality for the sites to accept them. Consider using a light box for images of small items, for example.
Selling your work on stock sites is a matter of taking images people want and uploading a large variety of them. Once you take the images and upload them for sale, the income runs on autopilot. You’ll do the work once and make money each time someone buys the rights to use your photo.
6. Share Images on Social Media
If your main goal is to share your work and start building a name for yourself, you can always post your images on social media. Let’s say you are a landscape photographer. Share images of your beautiful photos for free with a link back to your site, where people can buy prints of that image and others.
A word of caution: Many people consider images uploaded to social media to be in the public domain, or they do not fully understand copyright laws. It’s best to avoid sharing every image you take.
Instead, only share occasionally as a way to increase name recognition and drive traffic to your site. It would be impossible to track down all the copyright violations from people who grab your image from social media and use it any way they want.
Use social media as a tool to build traffic to your site, but consider the images free use — just as you would if you uploaded to Unsplash or Pexels.
Photographers can benefit from the trend toward more visuals. Website owners know that the key to success is to attract visitors to their site and keep them there. Most site owners understand the importance of visuals in attracting and keeping people on their site. Help them.