eCommerce Insiders

How to Start Using Video in eCommerce

More and more online retailers will start using video to engage their visitors in the months to come.

The trend is definitely visible. Companies like Home Depot or AutoZone already include video in their overall content marketing plan.

I have to admit that personally I was quite skeptical about using video in ecommerce at first. I admit that I failed to see how it can offer enormous opportunities for online retailers. However, I recently jumped on the bandwagon and I have to say that in spite of my efforts being very amateurish, I love it.

Why I Love Experimenting with Video to Promote My Store

  • It’s Fun To Do

I love writing but I have to say that sometimes creating only this particular content type can be quite boring. Not to mention that you can only reach a part of your audience with it, leaving the rest out of your content marketing efforts.

Making videos is fun. You can let yourself loose and experiment. Sure, you might not always get it right but that’s part and parcel of the learning curve, isn’t it?

  • It’s Engaging

These days your audience wants to be engaged and entertained. The aim for your content strategy should not be only to educate. You are there to also provide some form of fun for your audience and video seems like an ideal medium for that.

  • It Makes It Easier To Show Your Real Face

Words can be polished over and over until they are perfect. I know, I usually edit and rewrite my posts a number of times before I hit publish. Yet some forms of videos, especially those taken live with Vine or Instagram for instance can really help you show your real face.

  • You Can Push A Boundaries A Bit Further

Depending on your industry and sense of humour, you can push the boundaries of the video. Sure, you can’t record something that would irritate your audience but you surely can make them think.

Why Video Is Useful for Ecommerce

  • It’s Highly Engaging

As mentioned already, video is highly engaging with the users. And engagement is something you badly need when you create content to promote your store.

  • It Helps to Show the Product in Use

It doesn’t matter how many words you write about your product, nothing will beat video in showing it to the customer.

  • It Helps To Attract New Traffic

You can reach new audiences with video through channels like YouTube, Instagram, Vimeo but also social media like Twitter and Facebook as videos can be highly viral.

  • It Can Help With Conversions

Some video types, like how to guides (we will talk about them later in this post) can help you with increasing conversions.

  • It Can Increases Customer Loyalty

Lastly, videos can also help to increase customer loyalty, mainly through aforementioned presenting a face to the person behind the store.

Video Types for Ecommerce

  • How To Guides

How to guides are by far the most popular video type. Such videos present a particular aspect of using a product or something related to the product and educate the audience about it.

  • User Testimonials

If you are looking to create video content to aid you with store conversions, then video testimonials are probably your best choice.

  • Product Overview or Presentation

Another well converting video type. Product overviews allow you to show the product, give your customers a real feeling of how it is to use but also to own the product. And it is the latter that is the most important aspect of this video.

A sense of ownership is what often motivates people to buy. Yet, it is hard to offer it to online visitors who simply can’t physically try the product or hold it in their hands. You can replicate some of this feeling though with the use of imagery and most importantly, a video.

How To Get Started (On A Very Tight Budget)

One of the things that pushes many online retailers away from using video to promote their stores is the production cost. Watching those professional videos immediately makes you think how much they must have cost.

But, the fact that those big boys are producing high budget, professional videos doesn’t mean that you have to. I certainly don’t have a budget to hire a production company to create videos for me.

Instead, I experiment with using Vine to create my videos.

Vine is a service from Twitter allowing you to record short, up to 5 seconds long clips using your mobile phone or tablet. It’s dead easy to use and by its nature, no one expects professional videos created with it.

You can use Vine to:

  • Share company news
  • Invent funny uses for products
  • Record funny sales promos
  • Show products in use
  • Offer a quick how to tip (this could even become a regular series)
  • Show your company behind the scenes
  • Announce contests

Of course, a 5 seconds short clip might not always be good enough, and certainly you should try to create other video types. However, applications like Vine can offer a great platform for starting out in using video to promote your store.

Conclusion

Video is still relatively new promotional medium in Ecommerce. In spite of that, I believe that more and more online retailers, and that includes small shops too, will start using it in their overall marketing mix.

Your turn

How about you? Are you using video to promote your store? If so, what are your experiences with it?

Pawel Grabowski

Pawel Grabowski is a copywriter and content marketer and the founder of UserMagnet.io, the content marketing agency helping SaaS companies grow the user base and generate quality leads with targeted content strategies.

Find out more about Pawel at smashingcopy.com and connect with him on Linkedin.

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