Live Shopping: The Next Evolution of Online Sales
Online streaming is more important than ever in our fast-paced and technology-driven world. Marketplaces like Amazon and eBay dominate the eCommerce space. Many businesses are looking for creative new ways to reach new customers. For companies that host live shopping events to sell their products, the results speak for themselves.
Alongside the streaming revolution, live shopping events have become a popular way for companies and influencers to sell. Video content is more popular with consumers than ever, and live shopping events in the U.S. are projected to reach $25 billion by 2023. Now, 80% of online shoppers prefer watching videos instead of reading descriptions or looking at pictures. 84% say that watching a brand’s video convinced them to buy a product or service.
Livestreaming is a proven success, and many streamers in China are already reaping the rewards. In October 2021, Chinese streamers Li Jiaqi and Viya sold over $3.4 billion worth of products in a single 12-hour livestream. Despite issues with their streaming and eCommerce platforms, they accumulated almost 10% of the earnings for the massive Chinese “Single’s Day”event. That story is just one part of the monumental occasion, which saw sales reaching $115 billion that day.
Big Names in Live Shopping
Live shopping isn’t a new concept. Television networks like the Home Shopping Network and QVC pioneered live sales with excellent results. Now that this business model is moving into the online space, many of America’s biggest retailers are entering the streaming market.
Popular pet store Petco has been a pioneer in live shopping. Last year, the massive retail chain hosted multiple online events between April’s “The Perfect Fit” and July’s “Petco Field Day.” Each stream featured several celebrity guests. The first event reaped sales that doubled the overhead cost of holding the event. Petco used its unique branding and association with pets to create buzz around the streams and provide an angle for success.
Television has also found ways to innovate the live shopping experience. A new TV show called “America’s Big Deal” brings a unique twist to reality TV and live shopping alike. The show features entrepreneurs pitching their products to host Joy Mangano, similar to “Shark Tank” and “Dragon’s Den.” The difference is that it provides prompts throughout the show, allowing viewers to purchase the presented products. This unique format gives viewers a chance to be a judge and endorse the products with their own money.
Planning Your Live Shopping Event
Scheduling and hosting a live shopping event can be a big undertaking, so planning is essential. Factor in the cost of hosting livestream events when planning your 2022 budget. Check out the “Benefits of Including Livestream Events In Your 2022 Budget” episode of The Live eCommerce Podcast for more information.
Sellers commonly use social media to engage customers and get them interested in products and events. Brands use platforms like Facebook and TikTok to market themselves to a broader audience. Engaging users on social media helps spread the word about a product and drives interested customers to your website to learn more.
eStreamly can help you get the “best of both worlds” by broadcasting on your social media channels and main website. While digital content conversion rates tend to be lower, live streaming directly through your website produces conversion rates over 20%. eStreamly can help you market yourself through social media and reap the rewards of better sales through your site.
Helpful Advice for a Successful Event
Running a live shopping event can be an excellent way for a business to engage directly with interested customers and appeal to more casual viewers who may buy. We at eStreamly have generated great tips for live shopping events. Here are a few things to consider.
- Ensure your equipment is adequately charged, and your phones and devices are turned on silent – or better yet, airplane mode!
- Make your streaming environment appealing with interesting and decorated backgrounds, proper lighting (preferably warm lights), and a little music to accentuate the atmosphere of the stream.
- Start speaking right away and stay relaxed throughout your stream. Viewers will feel more welcome if the host is calm and enjoying the broadcast.
There are many factors to consider before starting a live shopping event, and eStreamly is here to help! Our Livestreaming Success Checklist gives business owners a curated list of things to consider and steps to follow for a successful, profitable live shopping event.
Questions to Ask Before Hosting a Live Shopping Event
What Kind of Camera Should I Use?
While many laptops come with built-in webcams, external webcams generally have higher-quality components. It’s important to prioritize image quality. There are hundreds of different options to select from, so choosing the right webcam can be difficult. Keep factors like resolution and frame rate in mind while balancing a camera’s benefits against its price point.
Which Kind of Microphone is Best?
Like webcams, external microphones provide superior audio quality and help stabilize the sound of a streamer’s voice. Mics like the Blue Yeti and Elgato Wave: 3 are just a few that offer streamers top-of-the-line recording. When shopping, look into statistics like frequency response, polar pattern, and connection methods. Pop filters can also help prevent unwanted popping from the airflow in a room.
What Other Equipment Should I Look Into?
A good webcam and microphone are the foundation of crafting a successful livestream. There is plenty of other equipment streamers can use to maximize the background environment and create a welcoming atmosphere for viewers. Ring lights can provide stable lighting for a streaming set-up. A strong (preferably wired) internet connection helps ensure a stream runs smoothly without video lag or glitches.
How to Market Your Event
Proper marketing can make or break a livestream. It is vital for anyone interested in live shopping events to make their broadcasts appealing. Encourage viewers to engage by sharing or leaving reviews. Greet audience members by name. Giveaways and special limited-time discounts can also entice customers into joining a live stream.
Marketing makes a big difference in the success or failure of an event. Newsletters are one of the most effective ways of letting interested customers know about an upcoming event. Timing is also an integral part of promoting an event to potential viewers. Schedule your streams to align with your primary audience – typically in the 7-10 pm range.
Promoting an event across multiple platforms can bring in wider audiences. eStreamly can help by hosting your event both on social media platforms and your own website. We provide a platform to promote your business, along with helpful tools to make your live shopping event a success.