Is live stream shopping here to stay? Spoiler alert: Absolutely

With experiential all the rage in retail, live stream shopping events and experiences are the next logical step. 

The live stream video shopping market was worth £3.35 billion in 2018. Add the Covid-19 pandemic and the trend has accelerated, Retail Gazette explains, with more retailers using live streaming to reach those stuck at home during lockdown and appeal to a wider audience.

The question now is whether these live streamed events will continue to grow in popularity or slowly be phased out. 

During lockdown, live streaming was a great way to keep customers engaged and offer an alternative to bricks-and-mortar stores. Today, with restrictions eased, retailers are looking at more hybrid models of working. If retailers are to stay ahead of the curve, innovative ways of engaging with audiences (such as live streaming) are sure to stay on the priority list – even with physical stores reopened. 

The key will be building on top of traditional channels – from online video appointments to live shopping and online catwalk shows.

According to Michael Levitz, chief business officer at Reaktor: “Live shopping is the next evolution of what it means to truly connect with a consumer.” 

Levitz explained that customers keep coming back – and not just for research or purchasing. These events are hyper-personalised, creating stronger bonds between the audience and brands, products and personalities. From Gucci Live which offers one-to-one shopping experiences, to Telfar.TV which gives viewers exclusive access to limited edition items obtained via QR codes, brands are incorporating live streaming into their offering. 

One of the reasons live streaming is proving to be so popular is because it brings a human touch to ecommerce. As Levitz adds: “It’s also a great way for retailers to tap into the influencer marketing sphere if they haven’t done so already. 

“It’s a huge trend worldwide and becoming a staple part of how to best connect with consumers.” 

So, for retailers looking to get involved, how do experiences translate into sales? The answer lies in the links. They do all the hard work – increasing awareness, promoting related items and encouraging purchases. 

Live streaming has huge potential largely because it offers so much to so many people. It’s entertaining – fitting into our virtual, gamified world. It’s educational – showcasing products and answering consumers’ questions. It creates a sense of community – giving a social aspect that might be lacking from other ecommerce channels. And it also creates a sense of urgency – the excitement created by a product launch, exclusive deal or real-time content is hard to match. 

At Delta, we help retailers and brands better connect with their customers. Find out how we can help you create a relationship-building digital strategy today: hello@thedeltagroup.co.uk.

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