Nearly every retail brand in existence has its own content platform and online presence, where they post attractive pictures, informative write-ups, and videos about their products. They teach people how to use different products and bring them value through content, gaining trust and converting their audience into loyal customers. Not only that, over 25% of consumers between the ages of 16 and 64 begin their hunt for products on social media, thus making content not just a benefit, but essential for gaining more customers.
Of course, as powerful as content is, it's not the perfect marketing tool. It's difficult to instantly connect a story to a product through traditional content marketing. In other words, traditional content doesn't deliver a direct, instant sale -- unless people can directly shop from it. This is where the new trend of shoppable content shows its immense value.
But what is shoppable content? How exactly does it benefit brands? And how can you get started with it? We discuss all this and more in this article.
Shoppable content is any online content (like videos, images, articles, and so on) that allows customers to directly buy the product by either adding it to a cart or going to a product page where they can purchase the product immediately. This means that there are just one or two clicks between seeing the product on social media or an online video and actually purchasing it. So, by providing a direct link from content to cart, brands can drive more traffic and higher conversions. The biggest difference between traditional and shoppable content is that shoppable content contains product tags. Since it offers a convenient way for customers to shop for products, it can be a powerful business strategy.
Here are some of the types of shoppable content that can be leveraged to drive sales and convert your audience into customers.
Video already accounts for over 69% of all consumer internet traffic, which indicates that video is a powerful storytelling tool that online marketers are harnessing across industries. In fact, 84% of consumers report that they have been convinced to buy a product or a service after watching a branded video. If traditional videos have such a phenomenal effect, it is easy to see why interactive, shoppable videos have the potential to do even better. Shoppable videos let consumers click on products in the video to get more details or buy the product. This simplifies the product research process and creates a seamless journey for customers from inspiration to purchase. Many video platforms, including YouTube, have already enabled the shoppable video feature, and you can access it by creating a merchant's account for your chosen platform and checking available options.
Social media channels provide an ideal platform for shoppable content, since customers already look for products on such platforms. Cart abandonment was previously on the rise because customers would need to be redirected from the platform to an e-commerce website, where they had to take additional steps to complete a purchase. Now, with shoppable content on popular platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest, consumers don't have to leave the platform at all. Thus, shoppable posts on these channels bring the store to the customer rather than dragging the customer to the store.
Shoppable Instagram posts contain images of products along with a shopping bag icon or a tag. Tapping on a product here opens a window with additional information like prices and product descriptions, and options to purchase the product or visit the website. This technology is especially popular among clothing brands because they can show different products on the same image. Businesses can also create shoppable posts on Pinterest. A shoppable pin can be identified by the "buy it" button. It also has pricing information, a link to the product page, and a small section with products if the pin has more than one.
Well-written articles and blog posts can provide a lot of value to customers by giving useful tips and advice to solve specific problems they might be facing. To make a blog post or article in a digital magazine shoppable, a button is assigned to every product image (and even gif) to "buy now". This allows the reader to add the product to the cart directly without interrupting the reading experience. This integrates the two processes of shopping and engaging with content, with neither disturbing the other's flow, and it allows people who fall in love with any product displayed in the article to buy it there and then.
Shoppable content is transforming the e-commerce space. Customers are now beginning to expect a convenient and uninterrupted shopping experience that allows them to move seamlessly from inspiration to purchase, and this is what shoppable content provides. Here are some of the reasons shoppable content is becoming popular.
With traditional content marketing, the path from the viewing of a product to the final purchase is long and involves several steps. Shoppable content reduces the number of steps to just one or two, making the shopping experience more seamless, convenient, and instant. This minimizes the risk of losing consumers due to a long or complicated buying process.
As shoppable content gives consumers the option to buy a product instantly through content, it increases the chances of conversion. It also allows users to easily engage with content, get information, and add the products they like to a cart instantly, without interrupting their social media browsing. This streamlined approach thus reduces the time taken between thinking of buying a product and acting on that impulse, making customers more likely to take advantage of your products and services.
People on social media are often looking for things to buy, many of them acting on advertisements they see on social media platforms. Shoppable social media posts thus help you take advantage of this purchase readiness as they give your customers the opportunity to find and purchase the products they're looking for. Moreover, if customers find products they want through your shoppable posts often, they may check out your page first before looking elsewhere for what they need, thus gaining you a loyal following of consumers who enjoy your specific offerings.
Data drives many digital marketing decisions. The more concrete, actionable data you have, the better marketing choices you can make. While traditional content plays a big role in building and engaging communities online, it might not provide any direct measure of conversion. Shoppable content provides a reliable source of information regarding your target audience and their purchasing decisions. For example, you can see which customers click through on which of your shoppable social media posts and make purchases. This gives you an idea of which products are most popular and which narratives are most effective at converting your audiences. This data can then be used to make even better posts and create more targeted campaigns.
To get started with shoppable content, you need to first decide what type of content will best reach your audience. Social media is always a good place to start, especially if your products look attractive. You can get started with a business profile on your social media platform of choice and check out official guides provided by the channel for all the information you need. You can then enable shoppable content and start posting with the product tags.
This can seem a little difficult if you're new to the concept of shoppable content. If you don't have dedicated members on your team to work on such content, you can hire people or outsource the work to freelancers. Fiverr's shoppable content freelancers can help you with everything from guidance on how to enable and optimize shoppable content to actually setting up your Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest shops for you. Check out the "Shoppable Content" section on Fiverr to find the ideal freelancer to suit your needs.