October 2, 2008, 12:00 AM

Shopping, video combine in new Shopflick online marketplace

Designers on Shopflick’s video and e-commerce platform use video to present products and the stories behind them.

Online video shopping marketplace Shopflick.com has opened with more than 160 stores ranging from boutiques to dedicated shops for emerging designers. For each one, Shopflick shows videos featuring interviews with designers and store owners in which they display and discuss their products and what inspired them. Shoppers can purchase the items featured in the videos on Shopclick.com.

While it builds up its presence online, Shopflick is waiving what will be a fixed monthly fee to store owners on its platform through the end of the year and possibly longer, according to co-founder and chief operating officer Patrick Yee. Shopflick currently gets a commission on sales off its platform as well as affiliate fees if it refers a shopper to the designer’s or store owner’s own web site.

Shopflick promotes itself, its store owners and their designers beyond its own web site with functionality that allows shoppers to share with a friend and embed the videos on social networking sites such as MySpace, and by letting store owners put the videos up on their own web sites. One way it’s driving traffic to Shopflick.com is by reaching out to bloggers-offering video and content on the shoe boutiques and designers on its platform to fashion bloggers, for example.

“We have a great opportunity to go viral because we get all this video uploaded to our sites,” explains Yee. Video content on the site also includes Shopflick TV, a collection of edited store and designer videos as well as event coverage and other news in fashion, beauty, art and music. The site also features a community in which shoppers can create a profile and share their favorite Shopflick stores and products.

According to Yee, video’s power to sell products online has been largely limited to big sellers in the past. Shopflick puts video within the reach of smaller online sellers in part with on-site instruction on how to create effective videos for its store owners who are do-it-yourselfers. Shopflick also offers a program called Filmmakers Marketplace, in which it contracts with local videographers to create the videos, paying them $150 to $250 or more per delivered video, depending on the filmmaker’s experience and credentials. Currently, Shopflick is passing that cost on to storeowners on its platform with no mark-up, Yee says.

“Shopflick is the marriage of online shopping and video, where users experience the stories, creativity and depth that are largely absent from today’s e-commerce,” says David Grant, Shopflick co-founder and CEO. “We are connecting shoppers directly to a growing community of quality, independent sellers and their unique items, with online video and social features that give a much deeper sense of the products and the passionate people behind them.”

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