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The future of video is nigh: Can shoppable video bring brands closer to their audiences?

The growth of video consumption is staggering. Digital video viewership worldwide has been increasing steadily since 2013and it’s expected to constitute more than 80% of all internet traffic by 2020. While this means great things for lovers of cat videos it also means exciting things for brands and their customers.

Taking notice of the growing trend, brands see how video can help them tell stories and ultimately create deeper connections with their audience. As a result, more and more brands are incorporating the medium into their marketing strategy.

Which seems to be a pretty smart move as, after just a small taste of video content from brands, the stats are showing that 85% want to see more video from brands in 2018.

To keep up with this demand there is increased pressure on brands to produce engaging, innovative, and valuable content. Audiences now live in the age of assistance, where many things are just a voice command away. Customer expectations are on the rise and in order to get their buy-in, simple, static marketing messages will just not do.

Brands need to start thinking about how they can go the extra mile for their audience – enter shoppable video. The supposed next step in online shopping, this latest content trend is working to create a seamless progression from inspiration to purchase.

What is Shoppable video?

It pretty much does what it says on the tin, i.e. it’s video content featuring products or services with embedded links, that allows viewers to purchase those products instantly, without leaving the video.

It’s a huge opportunity for brands as it enables them to replicate, for the customer, the experience of visiting their website, without ever having to leave their social platform.

Ultimately, shoppable video reduces the friction between marketing and purchase. It creates a seamless path to purchase, by allowing viewers to interact with video while adding items to their cart. Shoppable video fully integrates products into the storytelling process, without taking away the consumer’s content experience.

Image source: WIREWAX Image source: WIREWAX

The future is now

Although shoppable video may sound like the future, forward-thinking brands are already adopting this form of content and weaving it into their marketing strategy.

A successful early adopter of shoppable video is the luxury high street label, Ted Baker. Before they launched their Christmas campaign in 2015, they turned to WIREWAX for help to drive sales from their website.

WIREWAX introduced them to shoppable video and the results were spectacular. Within the first week of the campaign, on average, users spent one minute interacting with the video, and, in consequence, sent $75,000 worth of sales directly to their site. Overall, this led to 4 times more interaction and engagement.

Content with benefits

The goal of any marketing material is to create desire and drive action. With shoppable video, brands can create the immediate desire to purchase, and then satisfy that desire with a "shop-as-you-watch" experience. Shoppable content also brings many other benefits for online retailers such as:

Simplifying buying funnel

When content becomes shoppable it removes the numerous steps to purchase, making the entire process carefree for the customer. Their requirement is to click on the item, add it to a shopping cart and continue engaging with your content.

Increasing consumer engagement

Shoppers constantly seek out informative and engaging video content, and those who watch it in pre-purchase stages are 1.81 times more likely to make a purchase than non-viewers. Also, 9% of marketers across the globe agree that videos have the best ROI.

Improved conversion rates

On average, shoppable content can increase the click-through rate by 16%. As mentioned above, early adopters have experienced increased sales from using the medium. Ted Baker reported that shoppers were 3 times more likely to buy with shoppable video integrated into their communications.

This is only the beginning

Shoppable video is not just for e-commerce either. Already it can be seen slowly creeping into other areas of video-marketing too. As the technology continues to evolve, new possibilities for marketers arise, and with the rise of personalisation and AI, there are hopes of bringing this "shop-as-you-watch" experience to TV shows and live coverage.

Content will continue to become increasingly personalised. From the delivery to the actual products included in the video, AI will help advertisers to deliver content that appeals directly to their viewer’s desires.  

The future is bright for video, and the next step in video marketing is here. It has been quite a while since the e-commerce experience has had such a change, and it looks like shoppable video will be the first step towards something totally new.

So the only question now is – when will you add shoppable video to your marketing strategy?  

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