Video Commerce: What It Is and How to Use It

So you went down the YouTube rabbit hole again…

This time you got caught up watching a bunch of unboxing videos, but eventually stumbled onto your favorite fashion brand’s feed. They just published a livestream recording from a couple of days ago. In it, a noteworthy influencer shares her favorite summer outfits.

One outfit, in particular, really caught your eye and you just had to have it. Lucky for you, the video included a link to purchase the outfit in the description section. So you did.

Does this scenario sound familiar? It should! Video commerce has started to explode in popularity and shows no signs of slowing down. In this article, we’ll outline what video commerce is, why it’s advantageous to companies, and how to do it right.

What is Video Commerce?

To put it simply, video commerce is the act of selling products via video content.

If you’ve ever watched a webinar and made a purchase at the end of the presentation, or clicked the “Buy Now” button after watching an Instagram video, you’ve participated in video commerce, just like millions of other people have over the past few years.

Live video commerce, the act of selling products via live videos, has seen particular growth since the COVID-19 pandemic. Selling via livestreams is currently a multibillion dollar industry in China and experts expect it to grow to $25 billion in the US by 2023.

Video commerce may feel like a hot, new trend. But the truth is, it’s been around for decades, albeit in different formats. For example, QVC launched in 1986, showcasing a variety of different products on live TV and allowing viewers to purchase them with a simple phone call.

These days, video commerce mostly refers to online videos, but the basics are the same.

What Are the Advantages of Video Commerce?

So, what’s the point? Why are companies investing in video commerce? What benefits does it provide? Here are three key advantages of video commerce you should know about:

Better Engagement

Videos are naturally more engaging than plain text. As such, audiences are much more likely to watch video commerce content than read product pages. They can also convey information quicker, which is important given the shrinking attention spans of consumers.

Still images, while more engaging than text, can’t compete with videos either. This is because videos give consumers a more in-depth look at products they can’t handle themselves.

More Conversions

Video commerce also produces higher conversion rates.

Website visitors are 64-85% more likely to buy a product online after watching a video. Moreover, a whopping 96% of people rely on product videos when making online purchases. Why is this? Because videos help consumers understand product features and benefits.

Stronger Branding

Lastly, video commerce allows for stronger branding.

Because viewers can see company representatives handle and use products while watching a video, they learn to trust the company selling to them. Consumer trust often leads to greater retention and loyalty. Human connection is a powerful thing!

Brands built on consumer trust and retention are almost always more successful than organizations that haven’t built strong loyalty with their tribes.

How to Use Video Commerce For Your Company

Video commerce is obviously beneficial. But how should your brand actually go about using it? Follow this four-step process and you’ll be well on your way to success.

1. Understand Your Viewers

Who are you trying to reach with your video commerce efforts? This is essential information you need to uncover before you do anything else! Why? Because your viewers and their preferences will determine the kind of video content you create.

We’ll talk more about creating video content in a later section of this article. For now, just know that you can’t create high-performing content without knowledge of your viewers.

So take the time to research your audience and craft detailed buyer personas that include demographic information like gender, age, and geographical location, as well as psychographic details like goals, fears, and daily challenges.

An in-depth understanding of your ideal customers is critical to the success of any marketing endeavour. Don’t skip this part when creating your video commerce strategy!

2. Invest in the Right Tools

Do you understand your viewers? Great, now you can think about the tools you’ll need to power your video commerce strategy. There are plenty of options available to you. You could, for example, use social media sites like YouTube and Instagram.

The main benefit of using these sites is the incredible reach. You have access to billions of potential customers on social networks. The downside is that you have less control. At the end of the day, you’ll always have to play by Instagram and YouTube’s rules.

Here’s another option: use a webinar and online events platform like ClickMeeting.

Our software will allow you to connect with thousands of people at once; share a variety of content with them, from informational workshops to product demonstrations; and sell your products and services with our seamless PayPal integration.

With ClickMeeting, you’ll also be able to customize the look of your online presentations, engage your audience with polls and surveys and in-app chat features, and save recordings of your videos for future use—all things you can’t do with the social media option.

The best part is, ClickMeeting can be used for free for 30 days, no credit card required.

The other option is to use both ClickMeeting and sites like Instagram and YouTube. For example, you can host live videos with ClickMeeting and use our social streaming feature to broadcast your presentations on Facebook or YouTube at the same time.

Then, you can take the recorded footage and post it to your social media profiles to create additional video commerce assets. It really is a win-win scenario!

3. Share Top-Level Content

At this point, you should know who you’re trying to reach with your video commerce efforts and the tool(s) you’ll use to engage them. Now it’s time to create amazing content.

Just because you host a webinar or post a live video on Instagram that allows viewers to purchase products doesn’t mean they will. You need to create top-level content that grabs their attention, holds their interest, and convinces them to whip out their credit cards.

Here are a few video creation tips to help you create better content:

  • Encourage Engagement: The best video commerce campaigns feature audience participation. This is easy to do when hosting a live video—simply ask your viewers questions via polls, surveys, and chat boxes. But it can also be done with pre-recorded content. Take a minute at the beginning of your shoppable video to let your audience know that they can purchase products from you and how they should do so.
  • Offer Incredible Value: If you want your audience to watch your videos, they have to be good. So think about the value you offer viewers. Do you give really in-depth product reviews? Do you share a lot of social proof? Are your videos super funny and/or entertaining? Think about why someone would want to watch your content; then make sure your video commerce strategy delivers these things.
  • Keep Things Simple: The last thing you want to do is overwhelm your audience. Overwhelmed consumers don’t buy things. So try not to overload viewers with information on a dozen different products in every video. Focus your efforts on one to three products at a time if at all possible. You’ll have more success that way.
  • Feel Free to Experiment: Lastly, don’t be afraid to get creative and try something new. For example, you could take a storytelling approach in your videos to boost engagement. Or invite other people to join you on camera. The options are limitless. You just need to decide what will work for you and your brand and give it a go.

4. Analyze Your Results

The final step is to take a look at your metrics and adjust your strategy accordingly. But this begs the question, what metrics should you track and measure? Here are a few suggestions:

  • Total Views: How many people watch your video commerce content? More importantly, how long do each of them watch? This is critical data.
  • Engagements: How often do viewers interact with your video? Potential interactions include responses to polls and surveys, using the chat-box, leaving comments, etc.
  • Click-Throughs: The goal of your video commerce strategy is to make sales. Since viewers have to click to purchase, click-throughs are an important metric. Track the percentage of viewers who click on the links in your videos.
  • Conversions: Of the people who click on a link, how many make purchases? This is where the rubber meets the road. Clicks, as important as they are, don’t mean much if they don’t result in sales. Always track your conversion rate.

So what do you do once you have the information above? You use it to improve your videos!

For example, if a series of poll questions resulted in a significant increase in engagements, use a similar poll in your next video. If viewers click your links, but don’t make a purchase, investigate why so that you can remedy the situation and make more sales.

3 Video Commerce Best Practices For More Success

The four-step process above will help you use video commerce for your company. Here are three best practices to ensure your efforts bear fruit like they’re supposed to:

1. Be Authentic

Nobody likes insincerity. When creating video commerce content, be your authentic self and talk about your products and services in a very real way. You’ll connect with more people and build relationships of trust with them that will benefit you down the road.

Now, that doesn’t mean you can’t showcase your offerings in the best light possible. But don’t exaggerate and/or lie about them either. Doing so is a recipe for disaster.

2. Be Consistent

Consistency is also important—consistency in your posting schedule, your delivery, the way you engage with your audience, etc. This has two benefits:

  • Your Viewers Will Learn What to Expect: Your videos don’t need to be exactly the same, but they should have a similar feel. This will teach your audience what to expect from you and help them learn to trust your brand on a deeper level.
  • You’ll Become Better at Video Commerce: Consistency will also help you improve your on-camera skills quicker. To become good at anything, you have to practice. So put out video commerce content on a regular basis.

To be clear, consistency and experimentation (mentioned in the “Share Top-Level Content” section) aren’t contradictory. You can try new things without losing your unique vibe.

3. Be Selfless

It ALWAYS pays to keep your viewers in mind. If they aren’t into the video commerce content you’re producing, change things up. Give your audience what they want.

That’s what we mean by “be selfless.” If you only think about yourself when you shoot videos—the content you want to create, the benefits you’ll receive by posting videos, etc.—your efforts won’t be successful. So put your audience first.

Wrapping Up

Video commerce is the future. By jumping on the bandwagon now, you’ll be able to ride the first wave of success before the tactic becomes more commonplace.

But you have to develop a proper strategy for video commerce to benefit your company. After reading this article, you know how to! Simply follow the four steps above and understand your viewers, invest in the right tools, share top-level content, and analyze your results.

Speaking of the right tools, don’t forget about ClickMeeting. Our solution is the ultimate video commerce platform and will help you engage viewers and sell more products. Sign up for your free 30-day trial of ClickMeeting today to test the software out for yourself.

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