Watching Videos on YouTube is the New Online Window Shopping
Holiday shopping is about to enter some uncharted territory, so online marketers start prepping your content for the holiday season with videos on Youtube.
According to Google, the majority of consumers begin shopping for the holiday season in July, so this means that ecommerce websites, video content producers and internet marketers should also get started earlier in the year so they are fully prepared for Halloween, Christmas, Boxing Day, Festivus, Kwanzaa, Hanukkah and New Year’s.
However, for those who enjoy doing last minute marketing the same way that many shoppers like to wait until the last minute, research has shown that the holiday shopping season is about to enter some uncharted territory.
YouTube Never Goes to Sleep
Unlike your local shopping center, YouTube is primed and ready to go 24 hours a day. Recent data has shown that between the months of July and September, over a third of shopping related searches occur on Google between the hours of 10 o’clock at night until 4 o’clock in the morning. This means that the shopping does not end just because brick and mortar stores close their doors.
Digital trends have also greatly affected the way consumers shop. When 2000 people were surveyed before the holiday season began in 2015, they indicated that they started shopping earlier, and they also used online videos to help with research. In essence, instead of asking for help and advice from retail staff, their smartphones are now their personal assistants.
Black Friday Lasts an Entire Month
As people have started shopping earlier, retailers have started stretching their Black Friday promotions to last the entire month of November. This has shifted the focus from one day to 4 weeks.
Shoppers are also indicating that they are using various sources before they make shopping decisions, and one of these sources is video. Retailers have paid attention to this as well, and have started to hire commercial video production companies to create professional videos for them to view. The time between October and November has proven to be the most crucial time for retailers to stand out from the crowd and reach consumers with offers, tutorials and other types of video content.
Online Shopping Equals Window Shopping?
Consumers go online for different types of inspiration depending on what is currently going on in their lives. They are not just using the Internet to look for certain products. They are also watching to see what their influencers and friends are buying and recommending. Thus, websites like Pinterest and YouTube have become display windows for the new generation. Also, a new generation of fashionistas is influencing their fans’ shopping decisions.
A large part of the holiday researching process is the unboxing and product review videos on YouTube. ‘Haul’ videos are also popular. This type of video is similar to a few friends sitting around showing each other what they have just purchased from their favorite store. In fact, these videos generally spike during important shopping events and holidays.
Another thing to note is that shoppers are not only using YouTube for their research. They are also watching these videos while they are out shopping in the stores. Multiple surveys have shown that an average of 25% of shoppers say they use YouTube to look for a video related to the product they are shopping for.
Smartphones are the New Personal Assistants
Gone are the days when the major draw of using a smartphone was that you could watch a movie or take a picture. These days, the devices have become huge enablers for consumers during the holiday shopping season. It was not that long ago that consumers would need assistance when going to an offline or online store.
Consumers are now entering stores armed with information because their phones are acting as their assistants. They prefer to use their smartphone to get an answer to a question instead of asking a sales associate.
Once retailers begin to understand consumers’ behavior while they are in the store, the retailers will be able to meet these same consumers online with all of the information they are looking for. Out of these shoppers, over 45 percent make a purchase in-store even if they used their smartphone in the purchasing decision.
If you are an online retailer, you may be glad you did not prepare for any holidays last year. Why? You may be more aware now of how digital trends can influence your customers’ spending decisions than you were last year. This is the justification many marketers use to continue last minute marketing just like their customers wait until the last minute to shop.