Updated: Sep 7, 2021
Online shopping made up 21.3% of total retail sales for 2020. Amazon counted for nearly a third of all online sales in the US. With a 44% increase over the year, 2020 saw the highest annual growth in US e-commerce in at least two decades. Perhaps an unsurprising figure considering the world was told to “stay at home”. Nevertheless, the pressure is on for brands to optimise online shopping experiences for their customers.
Offline meets online in livestream shopping experiences.
Through live shopping, brands can connect with customers to sell products in real-time. Viewers can watch a live stream and purchase the items shown in the clickable side-bar, a call to action encourages viewers to complete a purchase without leaving the stream. Using this “see now, buy now” mentality, some shows saw their sales reach $1 million in just ten minutes.
For merchants, platforms like Bambuser and Smartzer make it easy to broadcast a live shop. Through the Bambuser app, brands upload URLs of the products that they plan to showcase in the live stream then “go live” with their content to potential customers. Smartzer allows brands to build a shoppable carousel of products by importing directly from a product catalogue or manually. Merchants can then connect the platform they wish to stream on to Smartzer using the RTMP ID and a Stream Key to go live.
Live, Camera, Action
Using Amazon’s livestream gaming platform “Twitch” Burberry took their Spring/Summer 2021 show online, live from London Fashion Week.
The stream received 42,000 concurrent views and offered multiple perspectives from celebrities like Bella Hadid and Erykah Badu using “squad stream mode”. Viewers could simultaneously watch and discuss the show in real time in a communal viewing experience. Unless you are Kim Kardashian, it can be pretty hard to secure a front row seat at a Burberry fashion show. Through live stream, this can be possible for anyone and with in-person audience’s discouraged, live stream offers an immersive, digital alternative in unprecedented times.
Clarins unveils its first virtual shop to connect with customers at home.
Through several interactive online features, Clarins has reimagined beauty e-commerce by partnering with Vee24. Through a virtual and explorable online boutique, viewers can explore the store for information. The skin workshop teaches visitors everything there is to know about Clarins application techniques and a virtual try-on feature allows customers to test makeup using camera filters. Using VeeStudio and VeeSchedular, Clarins is bringing the in-store shopping experience online. Customers can book face-to-face, highly personalised live consultations with beauty coaches and view live streams with guest influencers. As a result, all the benefits of in-person shopping are replicated online.
Brown Thomas has partnered with Smartzer to deliver shoppable beauty masterclasses.
Like Burberry and Clarins, Brown Thomas has reimagined the online shopping experience for customers with department store doors closed. Using Smartzer’s platform, Brown Thomas created a fully customised shoppable video. Fully integrated into the Demandware API, the player allowed for up-to-date product information to be instantly pulled into the Smartzer editor and player. When viewing the live shop Customers could click items in the video and add them to the basket without leaving or pausing the video. Through a variety of beauty tutorials customers can click, learn and buy in a matter of seconds.
Each of these brands prove that interactive video technology can help businesses to sustain customer connections in unprecedented times.