Optimizing your product images

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Shopping online eliminates some of the most primal senses. When you cannot smell, touch, or sample a product – you must sell to the eyes. That’s why curating your online store with amazing photos should be a top priority. Optimizing your product images for size, proportion, sharpness, and format will help you show off your merchandise.

In this article:

Size

All images have two sizes: pixels (the space on the screen) and kilobytes (the storage unit).

To balance a size that’s big enough to display your product and small enough to load quickly, we recommend 1000 x 1000 pixels at 200 KB for the main product image.

This balance is key when loading product images to your catalog. While Ecwid will accept images of any size and optimize those images to fit your customer’s screen, large images can slow down your site. The last thing we want to see is a customer leaving your site because they grew impatient waiting for the page to load. 

When selecting one of the preset sizes for thumbnails on the catalog page, your photos may suffer from image noise or an abrupt color transition. To avoid this, save images in the correct format and use special compression services.

You can compress your high quality photos without quality loss using tools like TinyJPG and JPEGmini.

Proportions

Proportions are important – they define the look of your site. Design recognizes a limited set of standard proportions (1:1, 4:3, 3:2, 3:4 and 2:3). Choosing one ratio for all images will give your store a structured and professional look.

You can also adjust the ratio for your images in the Image Aspect Ratio section in your Ecwid Control Panel → Design:

Change aspect ratio

Sharpness

After reducing an image, you probably noticed a loss of sharpness. Most modern photo editors provide a "save for web" option with a reduction algorithm that directly affects the sharpness. In Photoshop, we recommend that you use the image size below 1000 px and quality = Bicubic Sharper.

Select sharpness

If you are an experienced user of photo editors, you may prefer more advanced options. In case you’re a novice, check out our blog for a Step-By-Step Guide to optimizing your product images.

Format 

Select an appropriate format to give your images the highest quality with the smallest size. The most popular formats are:

GIF (Graphics Interchange Format — “format for sharing images”) is capable of storing compressed data without loss of quality. The format supports animations.

PNG (Portable Network Graphics) uses lossless compression and stores an unlimited number of colors.

JPEG (Joint Photographic Experts Group, the name of the developer) is the most common format for storing photos and other images.

So what to choose?

  • If you have a picture, choose JPEG or PNG.
  • If you have an animated picture, Choose GIF.
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