YouTube is testing “Products in this video”, a new feature that seeks to bring the world of online video and e-commerce sales even closer together. Clearly, YouTube is already at the forefront of the MOFU and TOFU stages of the conversion funnel, so how does it use the power of online video to drive online sales directly on the platform? “Products in this video” pursues this goal – let’s see what it’s all about.
How will “Products in this video” work?
YouTube’s official Features and Experiments page describes “Products in this video” as a “test that will show the audience which products are mentioned in the video with the help of new visual elements (they appear above and below the video). For example, in a video highlighting the ‘Top 10 Smartphones in 2020’, the audience will be able to see a shopping icon with information and links to the specific models mentioned in the video”.
At the moment, this test is being conducted in the United States for a limited time to see how the audience reacts. Although it seems obvious that it will be available on both mobile and desktop, this is something that YouTube has not yet confirmed. Another pending issue is whether YouTubers or brands will be able to choose the links to be shown or whether the selection will be made automatically. Even though 9to5Google comments that everything points to the fact that YouTube’s artificial intelligence will have a lot to do in the process.
“Products in this video” contributes to other YouTube initiatives that opt for e-commerce to expand the monetization options available to creators. For example, in 2018 it launched the YouTube merchandising program in alliance with the custom product store Teespring. Also, another feature available to brands and YouTubers is the use of YouTube Cards, which allow users to insert links and bring direct traffic to any online store.
“Products in this video” reinforces the sales-focused marketing video
According to a Google/Ipsos study conducted in the United States, 90% of users discover new products on YouTube and, when researching a product, 80% of consumers alternate searching on Google and the online video platform. Also, another Google study indicates that, in Spanish-speaking markets, 40% of users end up buying the items they have learned about through YouTube videos.
With this data, it is undeniable that YouTube occupies a place of great importance in the stages prior to purchase, but it is not new that video marketing is increasingly approaching e-commerce and works as an effective digital showcase capable of boosting online sales directly.
From a performance point of view, the YouTube TrueView for Action ad format should be emphasized. With this type of campaign, the aim is to obtain a reaction from the user, whether it is a direct visit to the e-commerce or filling in a form. Therefore, the use of CTA highlights is crucial, as well as a careful selection of audiences to identify not only the affinity of their interests with the brand or product (Custom Affinity) but also their purchase intentions (Custom Intent).
YouTube and the power of social commerce
With “Products in this video”, YouTube continues to explore the possibilities of the platform as an immediate sales engine. This fits perfectly with the activity of users who come to this social network looking for unboxing, tutorials, demonstrations and product reviews. The new functionality will shorten their buyer’s journey by channelling interest in products directly towards e-commerce.
The long list of YouTube experiments shows that the online video giant is constantly innovating to enrich the experience of users and brands on its platform. In the study we analyzed today, the functionality “Products in this video” joins the expected YouTube Shorts and the beta tool YouTube Video Builder.