Beyond Awareness: Video’s Growing Role in Ecommerce Engagement and Conversion

Beyond Awareness: Video’s Growing Role in E-commerce Engagement and Conversion

Build a superior on-site video experience and reap the rewards as an e-retailer. In the second of a three-part series, Mark Blair, VP of EMEA at Brightcove explains how the right type of video content can sustain shoppers’ interest, increase engagement and turn browsers into buyers.

In the first article in this series we discussed how brands can use video to build awareness amongst their target audiences, but having succeeded in that, what’s the next step? Once you’ve pulled potential shoppers into your website to get to know your brand better, how do you keep their interest so they’ll move on to the consideration stage?

It is here that video’s interactive nature really comes into its own – offering a powerful way to engage, educate and entertain viewers, and ultimately ensuring a higher chance of converting their initial interest into a purchase.

Sustain shoppers’ interest with curated, snackable content
In simple terms, the longer you can keep a potential ‘evaluator’ focused on your brand, the better your chance of securing a sale.

A great way of doing this is linking your marketing campaigns through to a video gallery or portal where you can immerse the viewer in your brand’s message through an engaging video experience. Make use of content such as look-books, style guides and how-to demonstrations to show your products in action, and if possible walk viewers through how they are designed or made – a brilliant way to convey their value. To really maximise time-on-site, you could also consider grouping your content into easy-to-binge categories or creating curated playlists. Add a search function and employ contextual calls-to-action for a truly superior experience.

While it is also important to make use of the huge growth in social video viewing (our research shows that consumers watch an average of six hours of video on social media every week), the brand experience on such sites is much harder to control. With an owned portal, you decide not only the look and feel of your video site and player, but what additional content viewers will see – or be distracted by. In fact, studies show that consumers are twice as likely to purchase goods when videos are searched and viewed on an integrated e-commerce website versus on a branded YouTube channel.

Create content series to showcase your product
Time-on-site aside, videos are the perfect way to provide consumers with comprehensive information about your products and services. Indeed, research shows that 69% of consumers prefer video over text if both are on a product page, and that branded video content wins over sales copy on the page every time because human brains are hardwired to prefer visual stimuli.

In a time-sensitive, distracted world, video also allows you to impart a substantial amount of product information in a relatively short burst (the average time watched per video is 2.7 minutes) – and with little effort required on the part of the consumer. A bite-sized tip series will work well for this reason, however there is equal value in creating longer-form tutorial content for high-cost purchases.

You can also show off your products in a real-life environment via a live video event. Live-streamed product launches, celebrity sponsorships or charitable events can encourage consumers to spend more time with your brand. And they don’t necessarily need to be hosted by you – consider inviting customers to live stream your event on social media, not only helping you to build excitement around your brand in real-time but turning them into brand advocates at the same time.

Turn browsers into buyers at the point of purchase
One of the biggest reasons to use video, of course, is that it can help you convert shoppers into buyers – establishing familiarity and trust with the brand that stands behind the product.

According to Comscore, 64% of consumers are more likely to buy a product online after watching a video. Video shows comprehensively what a product looks like and how it works, but it also illustrates how the product aligns with the prospective buyer’s lifestyle—or the one they aspire to. But how do you capitalise on this affinity and willingness to secure the sale? By asking for it.

Consumers are twice as likely to buy products after watching a video that’s integrated into the purchasing process, and three times as likely to convert if the video has relevant calls to action (CTA). Therefore, to turn product evaluators into product adopters you need to add seamless and convincing CTAs to your enhanced shopping experience. If you want to take CTAs one step further, consider using shoppable videos that allow the purchase to take place right in the video module.

When creating video, think about content strategy as well as the creative asset and where it will be displayed. Develop video content that can be used with or without interactivity, create video playlists to control the audience experience and consider live events or content series to sustain customer engagement.

Stay tuned for part three of series to find out how to push video’s use beyond a single sale by building a loyal customer base, and how to measure the success of your efforts across a multi-device, omnichannel customer journey.

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