Content marketing is changing. As the practice becomes increasingly commonplace, consumers are looking for more interactive and engaging content from their favourite brands. Increasingly short attention spans mean getting noticed and building a long-lasting relationship can no longer be done with simple advertising and time-consuming content. According to a report by DemandGen, 91% of buyers now prefer interactive, visual content that can be accessed on demand.

Expectations are moving to flashy and quick presentations of products through rich content, such as videos. But consumers don’t just want to passively observe a video, they want to be able to interact with it. They want that buying process to be seamless and this is why shoppable videos are building momentum.

What are shoppable videos?

Shoppable videos do what they say on the tin – they are videos featuring products and use embedded links to enable viewers to click and purchase those products instantly without leaving the video. They enable brands to replicate the experience of visiting their website without the consumer having to leave the social platform they’re enjoying.

In the past, videos featuring branded products could only use linked text in the description box or popups to direct viewers to where they could purchase the items. At which point, the consumer had to click away from the site they were viewing the video on and navigate to a separate purchasing site that required them to go through a lengthy purchase process. Not exactly the most user-friendly consumer path to purchase! The key idea behind shoppable videos is to satisfy the immediate purchasing desire that content creates in the heart of the readers – something traditional content formats aren’t capable of doing. Shoppable videos fully integrate stories into the shopping process and products into the storytelling process.

Ultimately, shoppable videos remove the friction between marketing and purchasing. They remove numerous steps to purchase and instead allow users to interact with a video and add items to their cart as they watch. They create a totally seamless purchasing process that doesn’t interrupt or detract from the consumer’s content experience and enjoyment.

What are the benefits of shoppable videos?

There are several benefits associated with using shoppable videos to market products, some of the top being:

  1. Simplified buying funnel: Content becomes instantly shoppable. I.e. if the buying funnel is simplified, the ‘shopping queue’ simply ceases to exist. All the consumer needs to do is click, add the product to their shopping cart, and keep watching the video.
  2. Increased consumer engagement: 9% of the marketers across the world say that videos have the best ROI, and shoppers who view a video in the pre-purchase stages are 1.81 times more likely to make a purchase than non-viewers.
  3. Improved conversion rates: Big brands like Ted Baker, Charlotte Tilbury, Rituals, Hugo Boss, CoverGirl, and the BBC are using shoppable videos in clever ways to increase engagement and conversion rates and decrease shopping cart abandonment rates.
  4. Invaluable performance insights: Most platforms providing shoppable videos also gather vital real-time performance data. This data allows brands to figure out what elements of their campaign are performing best — content, creative, channel etc. But most importantly, this data can be utilised to find more potential customers and engage them with more personalized offers to obtain the best results.

Creating shoppable videos

However, creating successful shoppable videos isn’t just about repurposing existing video and making it interactive. Nor is it all about big budgets and creating all-singing, all-dancing spectacles. Good strategy and strong concepts are key when taking advantage of shoppable video.

Not all video views are made equal,” says Rachel Tipograph, founder and CEO of MikMak. “A brand’s ability to convert customers from viewing to checkout has everything to do with a brand reaching qualified viewers with the right creative.”

Setting up video ads with shopping capabilities combines both eCommerce and brand. A brand story must be told in the video and backed up by the embedded links that perform the function of getting people to the product purchase page. One element does not have to be sacrificed for the other.

Here are 6 best practices for making interactive shoppable videos:

  1. Let the audience know they can interact — include a slate at the beginning of the video stating ‘this video is interactive’, use voiceover/narration, or have a presenter talk directly to your audience.
  2. Have a shoppable link within the first few shots — if the audience knows a video is interactive they’ll want to interact, so let them do so in the first few seconds.
  3. Let shots run a little longer — where you want viewers to interact let shots run a little longer. Three seconds or more should do it.
  4. Focus on a few items — don’t overcrowd a shot. Focus on 2-3 items to avoid overloading the audience with too many options.
  5. Get the best interaction rates — the best interaction rates come from objects that are in full frame, not abstracted or too close up.
  6. Be creative — feel free to try new ways of calling your audience to interact and engage.

Do shoppable videos work?

Pepperidge Farm stated its video content engagement, add to cart rates and checkout were 8 times above the average CPG engagement benchmark of 1.4% when they introduced shoppable videos to their marketing strategy. Under Armour saw a 15% decrease in drop rates and were able to increase product consideration by 18%. Marks & Spencer’s enjoyed 15.4k video views, 6.5k product clicks and a clickthrough rate of 11.4%. Dr. Brandt Skincare reported a 500% lift in direct sales conversions in June 2017 after beta-testing third party social shoppable video since April 2017.


Consumers are looking for more interactive and engaging content from their favourite brands. Brands are looking for ways to reduce the friction between marketing and purchasing. Shoppable videos can achieve both.

It helps to forge an emotional link between the customer and a brand’s products, which helps to increase consumer engagement. And, most importantly, it shortens the consumer decision making and path to purchase process, which helps increase conversions. So, when will you make shoppable videos the star of your marketing strategy?

Want to learn more about the benefits of shoppable videos? Get in touch with our team today.