Video Essentials

The Top 5 E-commerce Video Mistakes

If you’re trying to sell products online with video, knowing what not to do is just as important as knowing what to do. Read this to learn from other people’s misfortunes—and to pull in as many shoppers as you can.

To get expert advise, we spoke with Justin Foster, the co-founder and vice president of market development for Liveclicker, based in San Jose, California. Liveclicker helps companies maximize their revenue from e-commerce video.

Here are Foster’s top five don’ts:

1. Don’t think that e-commerce video and viral video are the same thing.
E-commerce videos that work are about products. They don’t have to be exciting or emotional, they just have to convey the information that customers are looking for.

2. Don’t overproduce.
Lots of retailers and brands think they need to hire an expensive agency and create Hollywood-quality video to sell products, says Foster. But the most successful e-commerce videos strike a balance between quality and cost.

3. Don’t go long.
Viewers have short attention spans and the best e-commerce videos are short, around a minute or less. These are the ones that have the best click-through and conversion rates, says Foster. Some products will have more features and need more explanation, so it’s okay to go long when you need to.

4. Don’t hide the videos on your site.
Some companies and brands look at videos as just another merchandising tool, says Foster, not understanding that they perform best when displayed prominently. Videos hidden behind a text link have only a .5 to 2 percent click-through rate. Those with a thumbnail link have a 6 to 14 percent click-through rate. Those embedded right on the page, however, have a 25 to 45 percent click-through rate. Producing video costs the same no matter how you place it, so get the most out of it.

5. Don’t isolate your videos on your shopping channel.
Do more with your videos, once you have them. E-mail them to customers and embed them on social networks. Make sure they’re optimized for search so that the search engines can find you. Leverage that content and get it in front of as many people as possible.


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