How Professional Food Photography Can Boost Sales

Clean Plate – Professional Food Photography

Professional food photography can take your marketing from average to amazing, it can boost sales and lure in new customers. It is a simple move on a restaurant’s behalf – as it only requires hiring a photographer to do all the work for you, and there will be a significant improvement in how appealing the food, drinks, and premises look.

A famous quote that you may have heard is – “A picture is worth a thousand words”, which is certainly true in marketing. In the age of the internet, a picture grabs the attention of consumers more so than words ever will, especially if the image is visually striking. This is how modern marketing works. An interesting statistic to reflect modern marketing is 10% of people will read information without an image, compared to a huge 65% of people who will read the information when it is paired with a relevant image. A photograph can display the level of presentation, size of portions, the personality of the restaurant, and quality of food all in one, therefore it is unbelievably crucial to master this aspect of marketing.


Professional food photography visually shows what the restaurant sells, rather than just an online menu. By seeing the food prior to visiting and seeing how delicious it looks will imprint on the future consumer’s mind rather than a dish name. For example, if ‘restaurant A’ sells ‘fish and chips’, which is a typical meal that most restaurants sell some form of, a customer may decide to dine in ‘restaurant B’ for convenience. However, if the customer has a tasty image of  ‘restaurant A’s’ fish and chips, which has given them a craving for that particular dish – it is unlikely they will go to the other one.


You can also use food photography to strategically showcase your best food by bringing a spotlight to certain dishes – or a whole new menu. So, if the restaurant’s chef has a specialty or the place is famous for a certain dish, then it would be wise to bring more attention to those meals – which a professional photographer can effectively communicate. Photography can add an artistic flair to each dish and depict more than just ‘food’ to the customer – but an experience of eating it.


Building trust with customers is vital for your business, as it will result in good reviews, returning customers, and free word of mouth advertisement. As a restaurant, you must build this up by accurately depicting the food you offer without underselling or overselling it. If customers are able to visualise their dish before ordering, they know what to expect with an accurate depiction. Furthermore, this plays in favour of the restaurant, as it can reduce the number of complaints or disappointment (which is inevitable) over the food.


As marketing is becoming more and more online-based, it makes more sense to focus on the online side. Working in the food industry relies on only the food to build the brand, so by hiring a professional food photographer, you can work together to craft an identity for the restaurant. If your restaurant is elegant, sophisticated, simple then you will want that to be depicted through photographs so that you attract the right kind of clients and customers know what to expect from your business. Professional food photographers have great attention to detail and artistic ability in order to portray the personality of the restaurant within the imagery, which is something an amateur and phone camera could not even begin to represent on the same level. The branding of your restaurant compared to the competition will ultimately be the deciding factor for customers.

By using the same images on the website, blog, advertisements, social media, and any other marketing outlets you are creating brand recognition and taking it to a whole other level. Using the same photographs will help customers to retain the information, which is definitely what you want as a company.


Each photograph humans view has a psychological effect because the individuality of each photograph is able to provoke certain emotions or sensations within us. For example, if somebody has just seen an advertisement for a restaurant, the marketers behind the advertisement will want to provoke feelings of hunger or craving, so that they are more likely to buy their food or visit their restaurant. So, a good photographer will be able to display the food in the most enticing manner so that the person viewing the advertisement begins to feel hungry. In order to get the most out of an emotionally provoking advertisement, the images must be of excellent quality for the desired effect. This is almost impossible to do with photographs captured on a camera with limited equipment and software.


It is undeniable that a social media presence is one of the most effective marketing tools that a business can utilise in the present day. With that in mind – why would you not want a killer social media feed? By posting with professional images, your business is standing out amongst hundreds and thousands of others by adding a personal yet elegant touch. Also, if you pay for social media advertisements or you are considering paying for them, the primary image will be responsible for encouraging potential customers to find out more. All in all, the more appealing the photo(s) are then the more likely customers will be enticed in.


A common question is “why should I pay for professional photography when I can just take pictures on a smartphone?”. This is a valid question as initially it may make more sense to save on costs and use phone photography. However, sales speak for themselves. Restaurants that use professional photographers to showcase their food have more customers. Menus and websites that display phone photography can often look cheap and unprofessional when compared to menus and websites that display professional photography.

Phone photography can put you miles behind your competitors. There are so many drawbacks of using a phone for food images; for example, the lighting is never quite right regardless of how much you try to adjust it… But with a professional photographer, they are able to adjust in through camera settings, external lighting, a variety of lenses, tripods, shutter releases, exposures and interesting compositions. They will also use professional software after the shoot to give the food the delicious looking ‘pop’ it deserves.

Additionally, if you want the ‘real’ feeling to the photographs – leave it to the customers on review sites for others to see. Your main priority is to attract customers and make the food look as tasty as possible in a creative manner that differentiates you from any other restaurant.


Furthermore, professional food photographers, like myself, are fully trained in their craft. Their expertise can be used to your advantage, as they know how to make the food look more appealing and how to edit photographs to bring out the best possible content. Professional photographers have access to the best equipment and software – you pay for the quality. Additionally, once the photographs are sent over to the restaurant, they can be used for anything, whether that is menus, websites, advertisements or social media posts. 

In the food and services industry, it is important to stay one step ahead of your competitors, as competition is a continuous hurdle within this industry. By creating a unique brand identity and having top marketing skills – you are giving yourself the best opportunity to succeed. Hiring a professional food photographer can aid your business in building up an individual identity, and constantly attract new customers – as it shows a level of professionalism to the world. With an initial cost comes long term rewards.

If this sounds like something you’re on board with – get in touch today to discuss your requirements.

See more of my work on Facebook!



  1. Marketing Your Restaurant | Clean Plate - […] Professional food photography is a brilliant way to market your restaurant and create unique brandin…. The professional photographs that…
  2. The Falcon Hotel, Uppingham | Clean Plate - […] If you have a new menu, or want to showcase some of your current food – contact me today…

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Get In Touch

I'd love to hear all about your business, let's arrange a time to meet up and discuss your photography requirements. Send me a message through one of these methods and I'll get back to you as soon as possible.

Barney, Rutland food photographer

Also see:

Wedding Photography

Family Photography


07919 927105


My Location

Oakham, Rutland

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