Are You Ready to Tap the Power of Etail Video?
Top online retail brands are adding video to their storefront sites at a furious rate, and in a 2010 study, eMarketer found the reason why so many are jumping on the video bandwagon. According to eMarketer analyst Jeffrey Grau, retailers have found that videos boost sales and conversion rates while also reducing shopping cart abandonment and product returns.
It’s not enough just to add video to your site, however. Retailers have to optimize video for better user engagement and a stronger financial return on investment. Here are five tips for maximizing the value of your etail video and increasing product sales on your e-commerce site.
1. Use Your Metadata
Video is only a useful marketing tool if it reaches the right audience. But how do you increase viewership to make your etail videos more effective?
Don’t underestimate the power of your metadata. Search engines depend on keywords. Tag every video clip on your site with relevant keyword metadata so that web crawlers will pick up your content and include it in search engine results. Keyword tags are also useful for shoppers once they’ve started browsing your products. For example, if you sell hedge clippers and pruning shears, then metadata can help you associate related video clips on “lawn care” with the right SKUs. You can even organize automated playlists by topic, and cross-reference or recommend additional products by building links through secondary keywords. A tag for “pruning” might also point the way toward gardening gloves on sale.
2. Brand Everything
The best etail videos are ones that have a presence beyond your website. But once your content gets shared, you also lose control over how it’s presented. Brand all of your videos with the logo, look and feel of your site. Free video platforms like YouTube don’t allow much in the way of customization, but many premium platforms now offer publishers an opportunity to choose from video player templates, or better yet, access platform APIs to create a look that is unique to your business.
3. Automate Mobile Distribution: HTML5, Apps, and More
The wide variety of mobile operating systems, streaming protocols, and connected devices on the market make it exceedingly difficult to publish video on your retail site or app so that it’s accessible to consumers across the entire mobile platform spectrum.
Find a partner who can automate the mobile distribution process. There are services that provide automatic video transcoding and the intelligent device detection capabilities required to ensure every mobile consumer gets the best video playback experience possible. Look to online video platform and content delivery network companies for available service offerings. The right partner can make your video automatically accessible across iPad browsers, BlackBerry phones, Android apps, and more.
4. Accelerate Delivery
Performance is everything. If your video starts, stops, and stutters on playback, shoppers will move on to something else. According to a study by Tubemogul, more than 81 percent of all online video viewers click away if they encounter a clip rebuffering. Bad performance not only negates the investment you’ve made in your video; it also leaves a bad impression with online shoppers.
Improve video streaming performance with web acceleration. Web acceleration services speed content delivery so that consumers can access even large video files quickly and seamlessly. This is a no-brainer for any video you publish, and most online video platforms either include or partner with companies to offer acceleration services.
5. Measure the Right Stuff
Measuring the impact of video is different from measuring consumer response to other types of online material. Video offers different ways for audiences to engage with and share your content, and your measurement systems should reflect those differences. Solution: Use video-specific metrics to evaluate how the etail videos on your site are performing. For example, in addition to measuring how many users click play on a video, you should also record factors like how long viewers spend with a clip, what portions of a clip are most popular, whether users share a link or embed the video on another site, and how consumers rate or respond to a video in comments and through social networking platforms. Tracking these factors against purchasing behavior should provide key insight into how effective your videos are, and how they can be further optimized for higher conversion rates.