Contractor editing before and after project photos on his mobile device

Showcase Your Home Services Company By Taking Great Pictures

Chipped and damaged exterior paint   refinished exterior paint

Article Summary

High-quality project photos are a vital asset for contractors who want to enhance their online presence and attract more customers. The article discusses the keys contractors need to take better quality photos, such as proper lighting and equipment.

For those with contracting businesses, like painters, lawn care specialists, or cabinet makers, before and after photos need to be an essential part of your marketing strategy. Let's discuss how taking great pictures of your work can make the difference between just another visitor on your website and a new customer.

Why You Need Terrific Project Photos

Contractors are busy, really busy. So, it's easy to think that taking great pictures is an unnecessary add-on to your already tireless routine. Consider some of the reasons why terrific project photos are well worth the effort:

  • Fabulous photos get shared on social media.
    • Clients sharing project photos is FREE advertising! Don’t miss the opportunity.
    • No lead is better than word of mouth from a satisfied customer.
  • Stand out in the crowd
    • A good photo gets noticed – and you want potential customers to notice you.
  • Portfolio is your brag sheet
    • Print the photos and place them in a professional binder.
    • Show them, don’t tell them. Portfolios prove you can solve your customer’s problems.
    • Wonderful photos make a better impression than mediocre ones- even if the work performed is spectacular!

Clearly, project photos need to be part of your everyday process during a project and part of your marketing strategy. If you find that it's just too much to remember, why not delegate it to your office admin to ensure that your work still has its moment in the spotlight?

House before a major exterior painting project   House after a major exterior painting project

Keys to Taking Great Pictures

Taking great pictures comes down to two things - equipment and lighting. Sure, there are some seriously talented photographers out there who might say otherwise. But for us amateurs, these two aspects will improve your photos dramatically.


  • Invest in a digital camera- clients want to record the before and after, so share your photos with them. Then, ask them to share them on social media too!
  • Why not cell phone images? Cell phones have limited ability to capture natural light. They are adequate for quick shots but don’t meet the needs if you want a professional look for your business.
  • Want a few superb photos of your favorite projects? Local college photography classes are a wonderful place to find someone willing to take after photos inexpensively. They know how to edit and crop for an appealing composition, AND they work for experience, referral, and minimal cost.


  • Taking great pictures requires as much natural light as possible. This gives true colors and reduces reflections. Be sure to take your photos during the day as much as possible.
  • An inexpensive tripod uses slow shutter speeds to collect natural light (without flash). Keeping the camera still gives sharp and clear photos (no blurring).
  • Put light sources like bright windows behind the camera when possible.
  • When taking room-sized photos, avoid using small flash-usually it brightens only the foreground, leaving the rest of the image dark.
  • Turn on lights to fill areas. If you take frequent before-after photos, an inexpensive set of camera floodlights gives them a professional look.
    • For as little as $25, you can purchase a photo light on a stand on Amazon that will fill in dark areas for your photos.
    • Slightly nicer ones also come in easy-to-pack pack and carry case.

Home with deteriorating exterior paint   Taking great pictures of projects makes the difference, like with this after photo of a exterior painting project

Showing Off Your Work with Before and After Photos

Here are some additional tips to make absolutely sure that the photos you take make a big impression on your potential customers.

  • Focus your camera on the area you are updating – island, cabinets, backsplash, new paint, water-damaged floors.
  • Try to capture before and after photos from the exact location and angle (access to the before pictures when taking the after shots is a significant advantage!). Doing this makes the most dramatic and attention-grabbing photos for your gallery and social media posts.
  • Take more pictures than you think you need. You can delete the ones you don’t use, so why only take one or two? Take 10 with different angles and light. Then, choose the best two to save. Once you leave the client’s home, it is hard to ask to return because you didn’t get a usable shot.

There's no doubt that before and after photos are great content for general contractors, painters, landscapers, pool builders, or cabinet makers. Put these tips into practice during your next project and see how it makes the difference in your marketing strategy! Projects Plus Marketing works with all kinds of home service companies to help them reach their professional goals and run successful businesses. Want to be part of the action? Contact us today to see what we can do for you! Or check out our blog for more home services marketing tips!