eCommerce shoppable video

Day after day the video format of content grows more and more powerful by being easily consumable, engaging and even somewhat addicting. According to the Cisco Study, by 2020 over 75% of global mobile data traffic is expected to be video content. Latest social media trends show that video obsession goes way beyond entertainment area: it gives room for education, business opportunities, connections and personal growth with all the informative videos and tutorials covering practically any topic and question you can think of. Videos contribute to learning experience and improve interaction skills. One of every four shoppers say they've used YouTube to search even while in a store to find video reviews related to a product they considered purchasing (Google Consumer Survey). Vloggers’ authority and audience is gradually reaching the unprecedented scale. Some of them have higher engagement rates and their subscribers / followers number getting way ahead of popular magazines. You can check it yourself: Bethany Mota (age 21) has over 10,310,482 subscribers vs Vogue (!!!) with around 850,015 subscribers.

People prefer watching videos over reading, because it’s easier, takes less time and efforts. Besides, visual perception is known to be more powerful, since around 80% of people rely on visual memory and just 30% are better at remembering what they have read. Furthermore, our brain understands and soaks up visual and emotionally triggering information easier and faster. As people say: “a picture is worth a thousand words”.

But how can we use video fad to increase web sales? And… what is a “shoppable” video?

Traditionally, video content is used as traffic or image tool to improve brand awareness and it was quite hard to estimate how much it influences sales. But from year to year video is becoming one of the best conversion tools. Ecommerce tech solutions can be integrated directly in video content, enabling viewers to order goods right from the video page or save seen outfits in their wishlist.

Merchants are wising up to the fact that today’s online customers are part of a new rich-media-driven world where a regular person gets slightly overwhelmed by multiple brand touchpoints before making an actual purchase. That’s why, last year 87% of fashion brands posted video content but only 16% of brands published shoppable videos. Mastering this new format of video advertising provides a good chance for newbies in this field to engage customers.

Shoppable video has various implementations and it depends on the channel where you’re going to publish it. Currently the most perspective platforms of video distribution are Youtube, Snapchat, Facebook and Instagram.


Snapchat is going to create an eCommerce platform allowing users to buy directly from the app and it’s not the first attempt of Snapchat to conquer the eCommerce field. Earlier in 2014 it announced Snapcash as a fast and easy way for Snapchatters to exchange money with the Chat feature by linking their debit card in the app.

On April 29, Cosmopolitan’s Discover channel presented us the first “shoppable” ads with Lancôme and Target featuring the first promoted products that can be purchased directly through the channel, simply by swiping down to go to the mobile shopping page. Yes, spending money gets easier and easier.

Cosmopolitan reached its audience via interactive advertising through the channel content, but this time the 10-second ad allowed them to swipe up for more information, or swipe down for an immediate purchase. According to the site’s latest announced metrics, Snapchat numbers more than 100 million daily active users, with 60% of them creating content on a daily basis, more than 8796 photos are shared every second and 7 billion video views every day!

60% of Snapchat’s worldwide audience is aged between 13 to 24 and 38% of the audience being aged between 25 to 54. It may seem like a niche channel but it looks more convincingly if consider its 54% engagement rate. Over 60% of americans between the ages of 13 and 38 are on Snapchat and it’s popularity is ceaselessly increasing. During the Fall 2016 survey, it was found out that Snapchat became a top social network for 35% of U.S. teens.

Statistic: Most popular social networks of teenagers in the United States from Fall 2012 to Fall 2016 | Statista
Find more statistics at Statista

It’s very likely that Snapchat will transform eCommerce in the forthcoming years, so keep up with a pace!


Facebook is reportedly working on 'shoppable' video ads too. The social media giant continues to grow as the dominant social commerce platform. It accounts for 50% of total social referrals and 64% of total social revenue.

100 million hours of video are watched on Facebook daily.

Now Facebook members are able to buy products right via shop pages or on brand’s web store where they get by following the link under the ads in their news feed. Messenger app also has a shopping assistant feature that helps users to buy products and track orders online.

But let’s think of the other way of purchase goods. Have you ever seen those Nike’s ads? They impress, teach, motivate and you give yourself a promise to start running the next morning. But you definitely need that adorable pair running shoes from the commercial video to make your plan true, otherwise, it just won’t be as good, right? There is an issue though: you don't know that model name, so you can waste a lot of time attempting to find your treasure in the store. But what would you say if you could just tap the video on the scene with these magic shoes and see product details, available colors and sizes and approximate delivery time. And you can order them right now or switch to retailers web store to compare with other models. Hell yes!! And you know what? It’s going to be available really soon!

Facebook shoppable video ads feature is in development now and release date wasn’t announced yet, but after it is implemented merchants will get one more sophisticated interactive format to drive sales or conversations on social media. It’s hopeful for online retailers because it allows to reach holiday shoppers who spend more time on mobile and available them to shop in-app.


Shoppable tags on photos are available for Instagram users from November 1, 2016.

You may wonder how shoppable tags on Instagram photos work and how much it costs to use them?

Let us clarify that for you. Merchants tag products on their commercial photos. These tags are invisible until user taps “Tap to view products” opening in-app pop-up with product details and a “Shop Now” button. Some users are not used to buying products impulsively though and they might need some time to think this purchase over or wait until they need this product. Instagram’s bright-brained analytics thought this through as well: they added a “Save” button. This feature will bookmark posts you picked and allow to access them later.

And what about pricing?

Instagram won’t take a cut of purchases, and instead plans to monetize the product by later allowing brands to pay to show their shoppable photos to people who don’t follow them, says Instagram’s VP of monetization James Quarles.

Their next planned step is related to expanding shoppable tags on video materials.

As tags are hidden they don’t ruin the beauty of content. Also, it solves the problem of non-live link in organic post, you don’t need to redirect visitors to bio page to “check the store link”.

Shoppable content on Instagram should match user behaviour, since 60% of insta users learn about goods and services from their feed. More and more customers use social media for getting fresh ideas and inspiration but the way from inspiration to making a purchase online used to be full of gaps when people simply switched to external stimulus or other content and purchasing process gets interrupted and potential customer does not get converted. Practically everyone has been in a similar situation: you find an awesome bag in your instafeed, yes, this is exactly what you want, but to buy this product you need to enter the brand’s Instagram page, find the store link, open store URL, enter bag model details (if you know them) into a search field (if it’s implemented on the store and works correctly).

But while working your way through to your dream bag, you may receive a notification about urgent work email, message from your boyfriend/girlfriend, call from your mum, etc and you just switch your attention to the activity of a higher priority. It’s highly likely that within 10 minutes you’ll forget the brand name or even the fact that this bag existed.

However, shoppable ads can fix this, so now customers can seamlessly continue their product discovery, directly entering the product page without any interruptions.

For now, only 20 brands are able to test this beta function, so it just an early beginning and it may require some time to become native for users but in any case keep an eye on this social eCommerce opportunity.


While others are still planning to implement shoppable videos or make baby steps in this direction, Youtube keeps its position of an undisputed leader in video content world.

Early adopters admitted 40% increase of product-related video views during the last year.

But how to create shoppable video on Youtube?

  • You can run card-based annotation system offered to all advertisers on YouTube via Google Adwords - TrueView for shopping campaign. It allows to create interactive cards using existing Merchant Center that appear if you tap an icon in the upper-right corner of the video player.
  • Another way to approach shoppable video is by using special platforms for shoppable video creation.

Shoppable video platforms:

  • Shopmotion
  • Wideo
  • Pindeo (Beta)

Or you can embed Shoppable Video on Your Website.

It can be a video uploaded to your YouTube channel or you can embed a video player like Smartzer which adds clickable hotspots to your videos.

DW Sports Puma Fleece Pack

Good example of implementing interactive video on Magento store is video by Burberry Show on website.

If you saw any interesting stuff for you while watching the show you may tap this thing directly and get product details and order it.

Another interesting using of interactive video was implemented by Marks & Spencer. They make a shoppable video with Lizzy Hadfield who opens a mystery box from the M&S team.

Smartzer platform provides not only the video player, but also it allows their clients to analyze engagement, product and user behaviour data via personal Analytics Dashboard.

Thanks to shoppable video you can avoid annoying product offering for customers, it’s now up to them what product details they want to learn more and what they prefer to hide, makes commercial more native and customizable.

You may create shoppable video in-house or use special platform but you may have no doubts that it will empower your digital marketing strategy.