Have you ever bought anything online? Scrolling through an eCommerce website, adding items to your cart and checking out is very convenient, but gets dreary once in a while. Well, now it’s time to take online shopping to a whole new level with live shopping.
In recent years, live shopping has been a trending phenomenon emerging from China where 35% of all e-commerce in China is through live selling, according to Mothership. As a new form of retailtainment, live shopping means shoppers can view items in real time, interact with the sellers and build a strong sense of loyalty to the business among other benefits.
Welcome to this two-part series on live shopping, where you’ll learn all you need to know to kickstart livestreaming for your business. First, what is live shopping and how do you benefit from it?
What is Live Shopping?
Live shopping is the new type of eCommerce where sellers can showcase their products and sell to a live online audience through entertainment, inclusivity and socialising. Rather than scrolling through an eCommerce website, adding items into a shopping cart and checking out, customers can now interact with the sellers directly in an exciting, engaging way.
But how can you as a business benefit from live shopping?
The Benefits of Live Shopping
1. Increase Brand Awareness
Retailers and ecommerce businesses can use popular platforms – Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, Twitter and Twitch among others – to quickly gain attention and viewers. Considering a large percentage of younger shoppers are more likely to watch online livestreams rather than see your
Moreover, video content has higher engagement rates than most – just take a look at TikTok and the popularity of Instagram reels for proof. People are more likely to share videos with friends and family. Hence, nowadays creating video content is a great digital marketing tactic. This works in conjunction with word-of-mouth marketing.
If done well, live shopping (or livestreaming, in general) can increase brand awareness, exposing your business and products to hundreds or thousands of potential customers.
2. Improve Brand Engagement
One of the largest differences between typical eCommerce and live shopping is engagement. The business and the audience can now directly interact with each other online. And that changes how eCommerce works.
Remember, the most successful live sellers understand that the audience isn’t there to buy the product. They are there to enjoy the live shopping experience and most importantly, the engagement. When you understand that, you can better structure your live shopping sessions to push towards engagement and retarget those potential buyers into purchasing.
3. Encourage Impulse Buying
Live shopping tends to be engaging, exciting, but urgent. The psychology of live shopping makes viewers feel like they are a part of something, they are connected with a community. When they see others purchasing something or a person they look up to selling it, they may purchase things they might never have otherwise.
In addition to that, some ways to persuade viewers to buy quicker may be to provide discounts that work for a very short amount of time, possibly only the duration of the livestream. If the audience feels like they are getting a good deal and that waiting may mean losing it forever, they may be more willing to make impulse purchases. Here, you are utilising the fear of missing out (FOMO) as a sales tactic.
4. Showcase Underperforming Products
Do you have any products that are just sitting in your storage, never leaving your inventory? This is the perfect place to showcase any poorly performing products or items that might just get missed in your physical store or website. Who knows, you might have some hidden gems!
Think about why these products aren’t doing as well. Is it too expensive, is it complicated to use, is it hard to find in-store or on your website? Is it appealing to your customers?
When you’re showing off your products, spin some story or marketing angle that could make the product more appealing to an audience who could click off much more easily than they could buy something. Live shopping could bring some new life into these products.
Now that the basics are out of the way and you know what live shopping is and how you can benefit from it as a business owner, you’re almost ready to get started! Read Part 2 where we’ll go through how to host a successful livestream!
• Written by Adrija Chakravarti