Online commerce is still anchored in online website stores hosted on platforms like Shopify or individually (WooCommerce, Magento, Prestashop.) However, e-commerce has moved toward new sales channels – mainly social media – to sustain and boost growth. Two e-commerce trends are here to stay: live shopping and shoppable ads are making this shift easy.

According to eMarketer, the overall online sales will reach $6.17 trillion by 2023, with eCommerce websites taking up 22.3% of total retail sales. This year, worldwide eCommerce sales will exceed $5 trillion for the first time, accounting for more than a fifth of overall retail sales. Moreover, despite slowing growth, total spending will surge past $7 trillion by 2025.

Shoppable Ads for Mobile-First Advertising

PCs, MacBooks, and laptops are as widely present, likely more than ever before. Still, one technological innovation trumps them all in terms of time spent using it: the mobile phone. So if your e-commerce store, advertisement or product isn’t designed to be showcased on mobile, it will inevitably lose to the competition.

When thinking about the “mobile-first” approach, consider at least these three factors:

  • First, your product page, website or display ad must load fast.
  • Overall user experience, especially the product showcases & information, must be designed for smaller screens.
  • Your checkout process needs to be fast, smooth and without long registration forms that are difficult to fill in on a mobile device.

Shoppable ads, often in the shape of animated HTML5 banners enable a smooth purchasing experience. Since the shoppable ad format is mobile-friendly by its nature, it’s only up to business owners to experience the benefits of frictionless, in-advertisement checkout. For example, the Shopala Shopping Ads checkout process looks like this:

First-time users sign up with Shopala to provide payment details and addresses. Once signed up, users can check out anywhere they see the Shopala checkout symbol. Shopala then enables its customers to shop on Facebook, Pinterest, TikTok, Instagram, and Twitter.

Live Shopping and Shoppable Ads for e-commerce on mobile devices.

What Are Shoppable Livestreams?

Shoppable live streams, much like shoppable ads can sell everything: Clothes, shoes, accessories, cosmetics, electronics, cars, art, and everything you can imagine. The Whatnot app is a perfect illustration, offering everything from comics and apparel to –  whatnot. The app is dedicated to live shopping. 

Verified sellers can go on air, hosting video auctions for their products. So some shoppers know what they’re buying. Other shoppers decide it’s time for a “mystery box”. Sellers combine “Mystery packs” with the crowd-pleasing “card break” method. For instance, buyers shop for pieces of an unopened (and often itself unique) pack of Pokémon or fun and games cards and have the contents revealed live.

The airings last about an hour. Experienced e-commerce live streamers have a schedule much like on TV — what to advertise at which time of the day. Customers typically get discount prices during live stream shopping, alongside coupons and vouchers. If you remember, this is what Millennials want precisely.

Who Are Typical Live Shopping Customers?

Millennials make up more than 45 per cent of the consumer base, which is growing at a 6 per cent CAGR. About 60 per cent of millennials shop online. And they spend an average of $1,500 each year on electronics, clothing, and travel. In addition, they use multiple e-payment methods and are motivated by discounts, cashback, rewards, and convenience.

Additionally, the pandemic has also helped educate the older generations about the potential of e-commerce, increasing awareness and creating a new customer segment. Shoppable ads, i.e., typically animated HTML5 banners with instant checkout and 4-5 payment methods available, have all the simplicity and convenience.

How To Start A Shoppable Livestream

Digital sales through shoppable livestreams will increase this year, as we’ve seen from the statistics.

Before You Start Live Shopping Stream:

  • Promote your show with social media posts
  • Offer discounts and plan surprises
  • Let the audience know the value they’ll get
  • Get used to being in front of the camera – if you will be the host.
  • You can also drive traffic and generate brand awareness using influencers.
  • Whoever hosts your livestream should be a product or brand expert. You don’t want people to ask questions your livestream shopping host cannot answer.
  • Schedule your livestream at a reasonable time – for you, and consider when the shoppers will be available to watch.

Where To Set Up A Live Shopping Stream?

The most established platforms for live shopping streaming are: 

  • Shopify has Instagram integration.
  • Facebook Live
  • Instagram Live
  • TikTok
  • Youtube Live
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Amazon Live (still not fully in use)

The foundation of your livestreaming “script” can be any element of the customer journey. Product education, pre-sales info, or post-sales support all come in handy. Since people always look for answers, you can format your stream as a Q&A session – or include one block of Q&A at some point in your livestream. Ultimately, relying on the livestream shoppable events such as product launches, new arrivals, or flash sales should be marked red on your calendar.

The A-list Influencer Hosts Can Make or Break a Shoppable Livestream

You might feel uncomfortable in front of the camera. That’s understandable, especially if you have to livestream for an hour never have done that before. So naturally, you consider reaching out to influencers who can host your live shopping streams. 

But, while there is a benefit of having a recognisable influencer as a host, you also need to consider that social media is oversaturated with influencers of all kinds. If you decide to go down the influencer-host path, look for an influencer with widespread appeal and an active, real-people following. Some A-list celebrities will provide the most ROI, but your brand becomes possibly tied to any scandal related to that celebrity. So choosing a “micro-celebrity” with a smaller but dedicated following might be better.

What Makes a Successful Live Shopping Stream

Shoppable livestreams are a relatively young form of online shopping, which, as the name implies, combines two components: live streaming and simultaneous sales of goods or services on the Internet. Even further, the audience can ask host questions, see product demonstrations, and get an instant reply. 

Successful shoppable live streamers produce:

  • High-Quality livestreams, from a technical perspective.
  • During the streams, add to cart and instant checkout must work flawlessly, as they do in Shoppable Ads.
  • Publishing shoppable recordings of past streams to drive sales post-live, made possible by the SaaS platform Infinite.

Recorded livestreams are an opportunity you shouldn’t miss. Repurpose your livestream content across other channels. For example, suppose you edit your live shopping stream into YouTube videos with competitive search terms included. In that case, you’ll continue getting sales while ranking higher in the search.

Above all, focus on what makes live shopping so unique: maintain a positive and friendly tone with your potential customers. Try answering all questions, but don’t hesitate to block obvious trolling attempts. Finally, have fun with all the products you’ll be showcasing. It’ll make them more attractive to others.