Online shoppers are increasingly crazy for video content, and adding eCommerce product videos is a relatively straightforward way of radically boosting engagement and conversions on your site. If this isn’t an option you’ve considered for your site yet, now is an excellent time to start investigating – we’re on the cusp of video turning from an eCommerce addition to an absolute necessity.
It’s only a few short years since incorporating video was the preserve of blockbuster brands, but these days, it’s an option that’s within reach of even the smallest eCommerce operations. It’s also one of the most effective ways of boosting overall conversions on your site.
In this installment of our eCommerce optimization series, we’ll cover the basics of quickly adding video to your site without breaking the bank, including options for affordable outsourcing. Let’s start with a quick reminder of why video is so important for eCommerce.
Why Video Matters
The statistics on video are becoming increasingly hard for shop owners to ignore. Let’s pull out just a few of the headline figures recently gathered by the folks over at BigCommerce:
- Sites with video on product pages saw average order value rise by up to 68%.
- 96% of shoppers find videos helpful in making purchasing decisions.
- 73% of American adults are more likely to purchase after seeing video content that explains a product or service.
There’s also no shortage of case studies from major retailers across the web showing the positive impact video has on conversions and profits. If you haven’t already started considering how best to leverage video on your own eCommerce site, now is the time to get started.
Speaking of getting started, let’s move on to the most important first step!
Step #1: Choose Your Video Strategy
Putting together video content is inevitably going to require an investment of both time and money, so it’s worth your while working out an overall strategy before committing to action.
An excellent starting point is distinguishing between the different types of video content that you can aim for. With a nod towards Visual Website Optimizer’s roundup, here’s a quick list of four options to consider at the outset:
- Product demos. These are the bread and butter of eCommerce video content and surprisingly easy to put together. You’ll find a great breakdown of how to do so from Ben Simon over at YouTube.
- How-to videos. Shoppers are hungry for information on how to best use products, and feeding that need locks in their attention. Check out VideoCommerce’s list of how-to examples for inspiration.
- Comparison videos. If your products clearly shine in relation to the competition, why not highlight those areas where you’re ahead in a video? It’s a powerful way of closing the sale right there, on the page.
- Reviews and testimonials. Video reviews and testimonials boost authority, engagement, and conversion, and are an excellent source of user-generated content to boot. It’s win-win all around!
Step #2: Decide How to Make Your Video
There are two basic options here: do it yourself, or call in the pros. If you’re going with the former, Kissmetrics’ breakdown of how to make promo videos for under $100 hits most of the elements you’ll need to take care of, including scripting, voice-overs, video editing, and publishing. In terms of equipment, you can get a surprisingly long way with an iPhone and straightforward editing software such as iMovie or Camtasia.
If all of that sounds a little too daunting, there is no shortage of firms out there who can help you make it happen for a fee. Sites such as Treepodia give you stripped down options you can implement yourself, and Videoly is an interesting way of incorporating third-party content. Services such as Videopixie can help put you in touch with freelancers if you’re looking to go a little more high-end.
Bear in mind that you’re not looking to create an Academy Award winner here. Start small with a couple of videos and gauge their effect before committing to big budgets.
Step #3: Use Best Practices
As we’ve indicated above, the type of videos you can produce for eCommerce are various, but there are some simple best practices you should incorporate across the board to give them the best possible chance of success:
- Encourage viewing: Don’t just stick the videos on the page, actively encourage viewing with specific on-page calls to action.
- Make your videos prominent: There’s no point in burying your video content at the bottom of a page – lead with it.
- Keep things short: Stick to under two minutes, and aim for 30 seconds if at all possible.
- Fine-tune your video thumbnail: First impressions count here – so make the most of yours.
- Make once, use often: Videos don’t just drive sales on product pages, you can also incorporate them throughout your wider social media efforts and on dedicated landing pages.
There’s never been a better time to start incorporating video content on your eCommerce site. Step through the four areas we’ve covered and you’ll soon see conversions rise across the board:
- Check the stats: If you’re not already convinced, check out the results major eCommerce players are already getting from product videos.
- Work out your strategy: Pick one of the four content types we introduced to trial your initial efforts.
- Assign responsibility: Tackle the issue of whether you’re going in-house or with external services.
- Use best practices: Give your content the best chance of grabbing viewers by presenting it cleanly and keeping it short.
We’d love to hear your thoughts on eCommerce video content. Have you already taken the plunge, or are there specific techniques you’d like to see us explore further? Get in touch via the comments section below and let us know!