E-commerce Thumbnail Image Best Practices

E-commerce plays an increasingly important role in the marketing mix. In the first six months of 2020, e-commerce sales were up 30.1% from the same period in 2019 (digitalcommerce360.com). Expectations are that this strong growth will continue. Our current situation is an inflection point in consumer buying with longer-term shifts towards e-commerce buying. Optimizing your e-commerce thumbnail images will help you succeed in e-commerce communication. Here are 8 ways to achieve this.

1. Align thumbnails with the shopper decision tree.
Don’t rely on in-store physical product images for e-commerce. Create new product thumbnail images specifically designed for e-commerce. Understand what’s important for your shoppers when searching for your product and amplify those elements in your thumbnail to make those elements instantly recognizable.

2. Maintain the majority of the physical pack’s key elements to ensure it’s still recognizable on the digital shelf.

3. Use search engine optimization keywords that align with shopper search terms.
How are shoppers navigating your category? What words are they using and are your product descriptions using those same words to ensure you’re top of search?

4. Ensure your product is represented in search results.
Products in the first 2-4 spots on a results page are most noticed. Ensure that across various search results your product comes as close as possible to the top of the search results.

5. Understand ROI by website & category for search result banner ads vs. promoted products.
Banner ads can often be overlooked in favor of promoted products. Sponsored products (often placed in the first 2-3  items in the search results) tend to align well with areas of visual attention.

6. Maximize image size within the thumbnail.
Not all shoppers are using a large desktop screen – many rely on mobile to understand the product from the thumbnail. Ensure your product takes up as much space within the thumbnail as possible.

7. On the product landing page, keep critical purchase information in the top viewable portion of the page. The less scrolling the shopper needs to do, the better.

8. Select the most meaningful product angle for your thumbnail.
Consider what angle best visually demonstrates how the product is to be used or worn and place the product in a way that matches its intended use. Consider providing alternate views on the product page that further showcase product details and/or video to support more complicated use cases.

Contact us to learn more about how to optimize your e-commerce thumbnail images. Click here to download our E-commerce Thumbnail Image Best Practices Guide.

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