There has never been a better time to boost consumer engagement with video marketing. In fact, a recent report stated that video consumption has increased by 120% during COVID-19, highlighting the importance for businesses to stay ahead of the latest trends and create a strong video marketing strategy. Today, more and more companies are buying into the revolution, with 92% of organisations stating that video is an important part of their marketing strategy, helping to increase traffic to their website and boost sales.

A recent survey conducted by HubSpot also reported that videos are set to gain more than 82% of all consumer traffic by 2022, which is almost 15 times higher than it was in 2017. With this in mind, it’s time for companies to bring e-commerce and content together in a seamless and engaging way.

The increase in video engagement during lockdown has created exciting opportunities for brands to connect with consumers through well-marketed content. Primed for the online shopper, consumers can purchase an ad’s featured products instantly through a pop-up in the shoppable video, rather than leaving the content to complete a transaction. Ultimately, marketers that create the most seamless experience will be able to stay ahead of the competition and drive results in the long term.

The future of e-commerce is shoppable video

2020 was a year of change – a change in direction, priorities and opportunities. As the pandemic caused havoc worldwide, time that would have once been spent at restaurants or on holiday was replaced with sitting on the sofa and tuning into videos for entertainment. And as time has moved on, video consumption isn’t likely to lose momentum any time soon.

Today’s consumers have come to expect a user-friendly experience, so those that have created the best content will inevitably stay ahead of the competition and capitalise on the rise of online video.

According to Mconnectmedia “a minute of video is worth 1.8 million words”, with customers seen to respond better to things that they can both hear and see. Videos have created an 85% better brand value and an 80% increase in e-commerce sales which not only helps to diversify brands against their competitors but takes video to the next level.

Implementing shoppable videos into an e-commerce strategy

Videos have proven time and time again that they should be an essential part of every commerce strategy. Their ability to interact with customers offers a level of connection that is unrivalled by other mediums, and when used with shoppable ads can drive ROI and engagement. Not only do shoppable ads allow brands to offer a better connection with consumers, but they also create opportunities to drive valuable returns. Once viewers are locked into a video, they are positioned to engage with a brand and make purchases through an interactive ad, which they might not have done if they had to leave the video to complete the transaction.

Shoppable ads simplify the long sales journey and provide clickable content for consumers which not only streamlines the purchasing journey but also improves efficiency, which will likely lead to customers returning and buying again. In addition to this, ads drive engagement to other areas on the brand’s website which increases web traffic and builds brand awareness.

But many brands are yet to make the most of shoppable ads. By ignoring the evolution of commerce, companies are missing out on meaningful interactions and substantial audience reach, meaning they can no longer afford to ignore the new era of commerce we find ourselves in.

Social media developments

While video marketing is not a new concept, new tools and platforms that come off the back of online marketing trends and drive video consumption are being created continuously. Shoppable videos are now available in several places, with Instagram and YouTube voted two of the best and two of the most downloaded apps for 2020.

Towards the end of last year, Instagram made one of the biggest updates since it launched back in 2010. In changing its layout, one thing became very clear, that shopping is now a priority, with 130 million Instagram users now clicking on shopping posts every month.

YouTube is also expanding its integrated purchasing tools so that branded products can be sold within the platform. Last autumn, the channel announced that it had started asking its content creators to tag and track products in their videos in line with its future e-commerce plans. These plans have now progressed, with YouTube announcing at the start of 2021 that integrated shopping will expand across the platform later this year.

YouTube’s expansion comes just months after the platform launched shoppable ads, which allows brands to convert video ads into storefronts. The company has also been a valuable platform for brands looking to experiment with livestream shopping, with QVC recently launching its first livestream shopping channel. Last year, YouTube also began testing a Shopify integration that allows creators to list up to 12 items on a digital carousel below their videos.

A marketing tool for the future

Back in 2019, research showed that customers were exposed to around 5,000 adverts a day. As this will have inevitably increased, it’s even more important for brands to drive meaningful and interactive engagements and stand out from the crowd. This is supported by a Facebook report which found that shoppable video ads drive more interaction and traffic than any other forms of content.

Brands need to take the time to understand their target customers and use insights to tailor shoppable ads and make recommendations based on what their audience has viewed before. Personalised content not only encourages consumers to engage with an advert but also influences their purchasing decision and will likely see them shop there again.

With videos established as the most effective way to engage with a consumer, it is the logical next step to make those videos shoppable. Creating a personable and powerful platform that drives real ROI and reaches a larger audience has led to shoppable moments quickly becoming one of the most successful marketing tools in the next era of e-commerce. And it’s up to brands to keep up and take the leap into the future.