The landscape of the retail industry has changed dramatically over the years and whilst many still find the appeal of shopping in-store, the online domain is where many choose to spend their money nowadays.
For many retail businesses that already have a presence online, live video shopping has become an area of shopping online that many customers turn their attention to. At least 74% of millennials find video content helpful when it comes to comparison shopping.
As modern-day individuals, our lives are dominated heavily by the internet and technology in general. We’re also big on visual content and it’s likely why platforms like YouTube, Instagram, Twitch and Tiktok have done so well for companies globally.
So how can you boost your retail sales with live video shopping? In this article, we’ll explain what live video shopping is and how it can help contribute to financial success for your business this year.
What is live video shopping?
So what is live video shopping? Live video shopping is the opportunity for products or services to be demonstrated and essentially advertised live to an online audience. It gives the audience the chance to see the product or service in action as well as interacting with the live video itself. Also referred to as live streaming, it’s a great way for promoters to interact with both existing customers and potential customers.
As it’s live, the customer can see the product or service in all it’s perfection and flaws, so there’s more trust created through this medium. Customers are able to make a more informed decision on whether or not they want to buy the product. Live video shopping offers a lot more guidance and entertainment when it comes to an online shopping experience.
With millennials being the largest group of consumers for live content, around 63% of people aged 18-34 are watching live-streaming content regularly.
Offer demonstrations or how-to’s for the product or service
With live video shopping, there’s more you can do to showcase the product or service on offer. As opposed to just imagery and its limitations, you’ve got the ability to demo the product or provide a how-to session.
By seeing the product in operation for its intended use, it’s going to help sway their decision on whether they choose to purchase it or not. Whether that’s a piece of software, a garment or even a kitchen utensil, live video streaming can help show the product in the best way.
These demonstrations or how-to’s can also be given to many viewers at once or they can be personalised one-to-one’s too. Both can give the customer the ability to discuss the product with the seller in more detail. They may want to see other features that haven’t been already mentioned in order to get a full understanding that they might not have gotten elsewhere.
This live video shopping could be done in-house using an existing member of staff or perhaps you could work with influencers to do the same thing. Influencer marketing certainly has its perks, particularly with those that already do regular live streaming.
Hold regular live events and shows
Live streaming can be very handy for when you want to host certain events and shows that may be launching a new product or range. It’s a great way to help boost your marketing efforts when it comes to the promotion of products that you’ve been working on or want to re-launch to the market.
For retail, as it’s very much customer-centric, you want to provide an experience that others aren’t necessarily taking advantage of. Many small businesses can utilize this medium in order to push sales and brand awareness. Here are some useful suggestions on what to do via live video.
- Seasonal sales
There are certain industries, particularly in fashion and beauty where seasonal sales can be productive in pushing through more purchases online. For example, having the host of the live show off the particular garments available for sale, the sizes available and perhaps even trying on the clothes themselves.
These can often have a call to action of purchasing in-app or by going onto the brand’s website.
- Limited product launches
There are product launches that you might decide are a limited deal and therefore a live streamed event can help promote this limited time offer for anyone who watches. The ‘limited edition’ or ‘limited time offer’ is one that will often entice viewers to make a quicker decision on whether or not to buy the product because there’s a time limit or very few available.
Having a limited product can be appealing to those who are already very loyal to your brand.
- Giveaways and competitions
Another great way of boosting retail sales is being seen to host giveaways and competitions. These don’t just have to be in the form of still grid posts on Instagram but you could host them through live streaming.
As part of the live giveaway, you might want to feature other products for sale and so you get more advertising and exposure for the rest of your brand. There might be collaborations you want to do with other companies through live streaming.
Provide exclusives through live streaming
Just like limited editions, online exclusives are something that are often used when it comes to retail and offering something different than what’s available in-store. With consumers spending on average between 83-92 minutes on consuming digital video, there’s plenty of exclusives that you can feature through live streaming that will be engaged with.
Exclusives could be products only available online rather than in-store where applicable. It could be products that are only available through live-streaming events rather than what you sell generally online or through other platforms.
The more creative you can get with offering more unique customer experiences, the better. Hopefully, it enables the customer to get closer to spending their money than clicking elsewhere and spending their money with your competitors.
Use the right platforms
Livestream found that 67% of viewers say video quality is one of the most important factors when watching a live stream. With that being said, picking the right platform is essential. There are many platforms in existence that you may be already using like Instagram and Tiktok, which are both currently being utilized for online shopping.
Live video features for both these platforms are great because they don’t require you to pay anything in order to host and all you’ll need is the device you use for the platform whether it’s your company mobile, desktop or plugged into your camera equipment.
There are plenty of other places where you can offer live video shopping. From YouTube, Twitch, Linkedin Live to Restream, there’s no excuse to not try this medium of marketing and advertising.
Consider where your audience is most likely to be and also think about the followers and engagement you have on each platform. It might be a better use of your time to focus on one platform itself than multiple.
The benefits of live video shopping
Live video shopping has many benefits and if you’ve been considering this as a marketing strategy, then it’s the right place to try for your retail business. Some of the benefits to live video shopping include the following.
Offers another revenue stream
Providing your business with multiple revenue streams is going to help bring more in the way of financial security going forward. For some, a single stream of revenue isn’t enough and so many businesses will find the benefit of looking for other ways to make money. Live video shopping can offer that, regardless of the industry.
What was initially utilized for fashion and beauty brands, has now expanded into other industries. Especially with big corporations like Amazon taking up the opportunity of live video shopping in recent years.
Builds a closer relationship with your customers
Live video shopping can be a more personable and intimate experience for your customers than other forms of engagement and interaction with the brand. Whether it’s one-on-one live streams or one to many, there is a closer relationship that forms between brand and customer. That trust and relationship that’s built is one that can provide repeated custom and loyalty for years to come.
With regular live streaming events, you can build up a community vibe for your business and a schedule that users of live streaming and video shopping will want to be a part of. Just like any growth in social media platforms and online presence, a lot of effort is needed on the brand’s part to build that engagement over time.
Live video shopping can certainly help a lot to contribute to your retail sales as well as improving brand awareness across the internet. If you’ve not tried live streaming or video shopping yet, then it’s worth trying it out this year. Including it within your marketing strategy as a brand is likely going to lead to more growth and sales in general.
About the Author
Natalie Redman is a Freelance writer for many clients across multiple industries. Natalie has two years of copywriting experience. Natalie has a wide range of experience copywriting for web pages for businesses across many industries. She’s also an owner of two blog websites and a Youtube content creator. Email – [email protected]