How to download product images.

One of the most important yet overlooked aspects of drop shipping is developing a process for downloading and maintaining the product images from the supplier.

There are countless ways to go about this process. This tutorial is focused on providing a simplified image download process for business owners and product managers.

Note: If you are comfortable with programming or system administration you may want to explore more advanced solutions such as wget.

How to bulk download the product images manually

For the following tutorial you will need to download and install the following:

  1. HTTrack Website Copier
  2. A copy of your latest feed.

In addition, you (the user) bear the responsibility for maintaining a list of which images you have already downloaded.

Prepare the project

Below is a checklist of requirements to follow before continuing this tutorial.

  1. Make sure HTTrack Website Copier has been downloaded and installed on your computer.
  2. Download the latest copy of your feed in the CSV format.
  3. Create a new directory your computer to hold the project information and product images. For this tutorial, we created the directory C:\Images , but the name or location doesn't matter.

Step 1: Compile a list of image URL's to download

Download a copy of your feed and locate the column of images you want to download. We recommend you select the large images from the product feed.

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Figure 1. The large image column from a product feed

Step 2: Create the new list of images in a plain .txt file

Once you have located the correct column, copy the entire column in a new text file. This should create a list that looks similar to the one below. Save that file to the directory you created for the project.

For the sake of this tutorial, we saved the file to C:\Images\Image_list.txt

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Figure 2. A new list of files named image_list.txt

Step 3: Open up HTTrack Website Copier

Open up HTTrack Website Copier. You will be presented with the screen below. Click the next button.

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Figure 3. The open screen for HTTrack Website Copier

Step 4: Start a new project in HTTrack Website Copier

Choose a name for your project and select the directory that you created in the beginning of this tutorial. This directory will hold all of the downloaded images in addition to associated project files. Click next when finished.

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Figure 4. Create a new project in HTTrack Website Copier

Step 5: Set Download Options

Select the "Get separated files" action from the drop down box and choose the list of image URL's you created in step 2 of this tutorial. Click next when finished.

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Figure 5. Download options

Step 6: Start the download

The next screen in HTTrack Website Copier will give you the option of saving the project or starting the download.

Since this is a tutorial on how to download the product images click the next button and your download will start.

Important Note: The download can take a very long time (up to 12+ hours in some cases) depending on your internet connection. To avoid extra charges from your ISP, we recommend you check with your ISP for bandwidth caps before starting this download.

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Figure 6. Final screen before downloading

Step 7: Download the images

The next screen will show you the progress of your download. If you are downloading all of the product images at once this could take a long time. It's best if you let it run overnight to avoid any disruptions in your download.

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Figure 7. Download progress

Step 8: Finish the download

Once the download is finished, the screen will verify the download and will let you know of any errors. From here you can click finish and the program will close.

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Figure 8. Final Screen

Step 9: Verify your downloaded images

Browse the directory you created in the beginning of this tutorial. Depending on what you named your project, you will find a directory that contains all of the downloaded images as seen below.

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Figure 9. Directory of product images

Conclusion

Now that you have all of the product images you may want to do some processing or send them up to your website via FTP or some other transport mechanism.

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