A Product Photography Dallas Pricing Guide for 2023
In this guide, let’s look at the costs involved with product photography and how you can save money on your next photoshoot.
You may be asking yourself if your brand is ready for professional product photography.
Are you considering doing some product photography work for your product or brand? Professional imagery can go a long way in elevating the image and culture of your brand and your products. There are many service providers, each with its own pricing structure. As a result, product photography pricing can vary quite a bit between providers.
Consider whether professional product photos will help you achieve your marketing goals. Of course, there are some cases where your money is better spent elsewhere. But, in other instances, professionally shot photos are an excellent investment for your brand and increase your sales.
Who should consider hiring a professional photographer?
Large and small brands and advertising agencies will regularly hire professional photographers when selling through online marketplaces or on their own online stores. If one of these sounds like you, professional product photos just may be the best choice.
If You sell a product on a marketplace such as Amazon.com or Walmart.com
If you’re selling products on one of these platforms, you’ll want to have high-quality visual content. Professional images make your product easy to identify and make you stand out from other sellers offering similar merchandise. Much of your competition will be using professional photography, so consider hiring a professional to help represent your brand and remain competitive in the marketplace.
If you have an online store using Shopify, BigCommerce, or a similar sales platform.
If you sell directly through an online store or marketplace, it’s vital to earn the trust of your prospective customers and give them the confidence to complete the sale. Customers may hesitate if they feel the product was represented unprofessionally or doesn’t accurately represent the product. Does a company that cuts corners on its brand’s image also cut corners in other areas? Consumers understand a company that puts effort into its brand or product also puts effort into other areas of its business.
If you manufacture a line of products.
Possibly the number one best case for hiring a professional product photographer is the product manufacturer or brand owner who makes their own products in large quantities. Whether selling directly or in a marketplace, these companies can photograph each product once and reuse the photos for multiple media usage.
How do studios price Product Photography?
There are a lot of photo studios out there, and they may all take a different approach to price, each with its advantages. In addition, some studios will use several pricing structures depending on the client’s needs. In contrast, there’s no right or wrong way. So let’s look at the more common product photography pricing structures.
Price Per photo
This is the most common pricing structure. Most photography studios specializing in product photography will offer per-photo pricing. It’s the simplest upfront pricing structure and works just like it sounds. For example, if a studio charges a rate of $40 per photo, and if you order 10 photos, then you will be charged $400 for those photos. Most studios will offer per-photo rates in a volume-tiered structure. For example, 10 photos are priced at $40 per photo, but that rate drops to $35 each if you order 20 or more photos. A tiered structure helps both parties by giving the client a lower rate while raising compensation to the photographer with larger orders.
By the hour
Hourly rates are also sometimes appropriate when working with a product photography studio. While hourly rates can also be quoted with any project, they are most likely used when a more straightforward per-photo method doesn’t make sense. For example, a studio may quote an hourly rate when a project involves a large amount of set-up, product preparation or assembly, or creative styling. If a client sells cleaning products and wants them photographed in a kitchen setting. Projects like this may require a large number of props, set construction, product preparation, and or assembly. Because of this, a studio is likely to quote an hourly rate rather than a simple per-photo rate.
What factors affect product photography pricing?
Unfortunately, not all products will fit the standard product photography pricing model. Expect a studio to quote higher prices when asked to shoot products that fall outside their standard size limits, specific product types like jewelry or items that need more time and editing, or when a project needs to be delivered with a rush order.
Your product type
Most studios will specify what type of products will meet their standard pricing, a size limit is usually the first thing on the list of those specifications. Usually, a beachball-sized object or smaller is a standard charge. If you have a more oversized item you might need to have photographed, it’s a good idea to check with the studio on their size limitations and how this plays into their pricing structure. In addition to size, most studios will charge extra for products that require a large amount of preparation, cleaning, or assembly before being photographed.
The type of photography style
The style in which the product needed is photographed also affects the cost. On one end, you have white background photography, which is considered the standard go-to for most product photography studios. Alternatively, you have lifestyle shots, which may require elaborate sets. Usually, white background photos will fall within a standard pricing model with no upcharge. Beyond those normal styles, prepare for additional charges if you’re looking for more involved creative work such as lifestyle or groupings of multiple products.
An efficient photo studio will often have its schedule mostly committed a week or two in advance. But they will also leave some room for high-priority rush projects and their premiere clients. If you need to get your project done ahead of everyone else, studios can move your project ahead on the list for an additional fee.
When choosing a mail-order photography studio, shipping costs will contribute to the overall cost of your project. Of course, if you have a large or heavy item you need shot, the cost of shipping these items will become a more significant factor.
How can I save money on product photography costs?
Nobody wants to overpay for a project. So here are some things the savvy shopper can do to save money on product photography costs.
Many product photography studios use a quantity-tiered pricing structure. This gives quantity discounts for larger projects. Instead of placing several small orders, place one large order to take advantage of tiered pricing. Keep in mind, however, some services a studio offers (like lifestyle shots or packages) may not qualify for tiered pricing.
Send a return shipping label with your order.
Most studios will give a slight upcharge for shipping and handling while providing a return shipping label is usually no extra charge.
Send perfect product samples.
Please select the best available product samples and package them carefully when shipping them to your photographer. Sometimes photographers are tasked with photographing defective, damaged, dirty, or scratched products. Instead, send your photographer clean, undamaged products with little to no visible manufacturing defects. This will help prevent additional charges to correct these issues in post-production.
The bottom line
Product photography pricing can vary, but that doesn’t mean it needs to be confusing or unpredictable. Here are some key takeaways to consider when hiring a Professional Product Photographer for your next project:
- Make sure professional product photography makes sense for your project.
- Plan your projects and prepare your product samples to reduce costs whenever possible.
- Consider the products you’re shooting and the visual style you’re after. Consider how these may complicate your photography project and prepare to simplify if necessary.
- Choose a photo studio that meets your needs. The closest studio isn’t always the best choice for your project.
- Familiarize yourself with the studio’s pricing before you make first contact.