4 Best Practices for Mobile Video Success
Video is no longer a "nice to have" feature in e-commerce. Its ability to engage shoppers and increase conversion rates and revenues make it a necessary tool in any retail marketer's arsenal.
The positive effect of video has been validated in a Liveclicker study of the video programs of some of the largest retailers in the U.S. In that, we found that the average order value (AOV) for customers that watch video on a product page was at least 50 percent higher than a site's overall AOV for more than half of the retailers surveyed. Furthermore, retailers with video on most of their product pages had a 68 percent higher AOV than retailers that had video on just a few of their product pages.
In addition, the majority of respondents reported an increase in conversion rate when video was added to product pages, with slightly more than a third reporting extreme increases over the site average. Retailers with video on most of their product pages had a 79 percent higher conversion rate than those with video on just a few of their product pages.
Clearly, video can have a significant impact on e-commerce. The study also found that mobile is growing in importance with regard to video plays. Mobile devices made up about 19 percent of e-commerce video plays in 2013, and analysis showed that smartphones and tablets accounted for more than 25 percent of total video plays during last year's second quarter (the survey's research period). Analysis also determined that in some retail categories (e.g., personal care and jewelry) mobile video plays were even higher, with the majority of video plays in personal care happening via mobile device.
Given the rising influence of video on e-commerce, particularly with the increasing use of mobile devices, retailers need to take mobile into account when it comes to their video programs. Following are best practices retailers can adopt to help drive success with mobile video:
1. Don't take a "one size fits all" approach. With the growing number of smartphones and tablets used by consumers of all ages to access the Internet — and the fact that Americans are spending more time looking at their mobile devices than at a television — make sure that videos are ready for the small screen. Meet consumers where they are, and optimize that experience. Being an omnichannel retailer is about recognizing where the consumer wants to interact and adapting the experience to them, not cramming one experience into every channel in the same way.
2. Offer and highlight videos on mobile sites. Many organizations make the mistake of stripping their mobile product pages down to just image and text descriptions. Video works just as effectively when consumed on a mobile device. Make sure your mobile site draws a lot of attention to your videos. Just as an "Add to Cart" button should be the easiest thing to find on a mobile page, so too should your video play buttons.
3. Don't forget about mobile apps. The same advice applies to video in mobile apps. An effective e-commerce strategy engages consumers where they are. Not showing video within your app limits its e-commerce effectiveness and costs you sales.
4. Address the differences between tablets and smartphones. Keep in mind that people interact with tablets and smartphones in different ways. A tablet can act much more like a desktop or laptop computer. You can use a HTML5 player with full functionality in a tablet experience. In a smartphone environment, the screen is smaller, and consumers almost always use the native player by default. When mobile video uses a mobile device's native player, the functionality is often stripped out, leaving only your content to speak for itself. Knowing this, make sure your content is engaging to your customer and can stand on its own.
Mobile needs specific focus and attention to ensure retailers’ video programs are as effective as they can be. By taking these recommendations into account, brands will best position themselves for a cohesive, highly impactful, revenue-generating video initiative.
Ben Kopetti is the director of video commerce strategy at Liveclicker, a provider of video commerce solutions.