What do we mean by that? We believe that in order to thrive in a crowded online marketplace, retailers need expert retouching, next morning delivery, and no overhead. Our brand new subscription plan, Professional, has been designed from the ground up to provide all three.
Let’s take those one at a time.
The Finishing Touch
E-commerce puts your images right next to the leaders every time a customer searches. If you want to compete, your images need to be as good or better than theirs. To reach that level, you need professional retouching.
What exactly is “retouching,” anyway? How is it different from other forms of image editing?
Our definition of retouching is any Photoshop work that directly alters the product and/or the model. Retouching includes work like removing skin blemishes, evening out skin tone, reducing fabric creases, shaping garments, recreating areas covered by props, and otherwise improving the product and model within an image.
Activities like removing the background, cropping, resizing, or adjusting alignment are essential image edits, but they’re not retouching.
Retouching isn’t about Photoshopping a model until they’re Vogue cover-worthy; it’s about representing your product as accurately and appealingly as possible.
A sample gets shipped all over the place and spends a lot of time on shelves. Steaming your garment may not have been able to completely remove wrinkles from folding; retouching can do that. Maybe you used pins to adjust fit on your model; retouching can ensure pinheads aren’t visible and smooth out any hitches in shape.
Put simply, retouching is how you apply the finishing touch to an image. It’s a continuation of the hard work you’ve done in the studio in preparing your product, setting up the studio, and capturing images. It’s like having a digital stylist polish off your photo.
The Traditional Choices: In-House or Outsource
Once you’ve committed to retouching, the traditional dilemma is choosing between hiring in-house or outsourcing. If you want to do it in-house, you’re paying $70,000+ a year per retoucher and you’re still hitting bottlenecks. The work is super seasonal, so your in-house team either has nothing to do or way too much.
On the other hand, most outsourcing sucks. Communication is difficult, quality is inconsistent, and the headaches just aren’t worth the cost savings—if there actually are any, considering management time and opportunity cost.
A Better Way: Professional
For Professional, we’ve distilled lessons learned editing millions of images for leading brands and are bottling them for the rest of the world. We’ve created dozens of retouching packages based on industry best practices, and developed an onboarding flow that guides you to the right package.
We have category specific retouching packages for apparel, footwear, bags, wallets, belts, sunglasses, jewelry, furniture, health & beauty, and much more. Within categories you can drill down further until you find exactly what you need. For example: apparel has many different packages for model, laydown, and mannequin imagery.
Selecting from visual representations of different kinds of retouching allows you to get nuanced retouching refined to your needs. Using an intuitive online interface, you’re guided to best practices without the hassle of complicated back-and-forth communication regarding difficult to describe aesthetic choices.
Using retouching packages allows us to achieve consistent high quality. You know exactly what we want, and we know exactly what you’ve requested.
Next Morning Delivery
Scale is a serious challenge for growing retailers in all areas, and this is especially true when it comes to retouching.
Product photography is highly seasonal. For example, when the new Spring lines come in, your studio may be firing 10 hours a day for a couple weeks—and then it’s quiet for a while except for occasional reshoots.
That means an in-house retoucher is often either idle or overwhelmed. You pay the price in long studio-to-web lead times that keep you from listing your latest and greatest products.
Professional eliminates bottlenecks with a next morning delivery guarantee. “Next morning” means that all images uploaded by 6:00 p.m. your time will be returned by 10:00 a.m. the following business day.
Seriously. Upload on your way out of the office, and they’ll be ready for you with your coffee in the morning.
Getting your products online faster not only gets you turning over inventory more quickly, it also enables you to do things you couldn’t before. Flash sales. Topical imagery for current events. Anything you can think to shoot, you can have back tomorrow.
Is tomorrow too long to wait? An "expedite" button allows you to put the rush on any order and get it back in three hours or less. No more hunting down someone in-office who can juggle competing deadlines.
As we said, the ability to scale is key to any retailer in growth mode. Professional solves that challenge for post-production.
Because Pixelz can handle any volume of images, whether it’s a batch of 10 or 10,000, your workflow doesn’t change as you grow. You simply shoot, upload, and get your images delivered back the next morning.
Your costs remain predictable and proportionate, reflecting your image volume exactly. There aren’t long-term commitments or big bumps in overhead from hiring new staff.
10 Image Free Trial
Seeing is believing, which is why Professional has a 14 day free trial during which you can get 10 images retouched for free. Find out what a difference retouching can make to your business, and how much it simplifies your workflow to get images back the next morning.