June 2, 2014, 12:06 PM

IRCE Hot Topic: Rich Media/Video

Nearly half the retailers in Internet Retailer's Top 1000 feature video on their sites.

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Executives from a handful of them are leading sessions at this year's IRCE that should help retailers considering a video strategy or who want to know what a successful one looks like understand what it takes to successfully integrate videos into their sites.

For instance, Sukhinder Singh Cassidy, chairman and founder of specialty e-retailer Joyus.com, will deliver a featured address entitled "How the Video Experience is Transforming the Way People Shop." Joyus.com uses video as its primary means of merchandising; every brand or collection page has product video.

When a consumer arrives on Joyus.com a video immediately starts, an auto-play option that's not common on e-retail sites. The retailer also offers several "shows" that focus on a specific type of product such as health and fitness products, apparel or cosmetics. The shows are hosted by experts or professionals and are a cross between an infomercial and a product review. Her address will cover how e-retailers can use video at different points in the shopping cycle, such as during product discovery and at the point of conversion, Cassidy says. Using video as its primary means of selling has boosted the retailer's conversion rate and basket size.

Then there's Warren Sager, co-founder and chief operations officer of Internet Retail Connection, which runs Knife Depot and 15 other e-retail sites, who will speak during the pre-conference Video Workshop in a session entitled "Using Video to Keep and Attract Shoppers—and Create Sales."

Sager says video helped triple conversions versus a control group that did not see video on Knife-Depot.com. Sager will detail his company's approach to using video as both a conversion driver and a branding tool. This includes featuring a video on the home page to introduce the company and to help establish an emotional connection with the customer, Sager says.

Another video session I'll be sure to attend is "The Mobile Revolution Embraces Video," led by ShopSavvy.com CEO John Boyd.

Boyd says he'll highlight how adding a video feed to ShopSavvy's mobile site and app contributed to a 30% increase in the amount of time ShopSavvy users spend with the shopping tool. Sager will also tell attendees how e-retailers can use video viewing data to personalize shopping.

Introducing video helped ShopSavvy transition from a tool to help customers decide where to purchase to a tool that helps them decide what and where to buy, he says. He also plans to detail how ShopSavvy.com tags videos to source related content for each page and how this sort of personalization is the future of product search.

Before arriving at Internet Retailer this winter, Madeline C. André produced numerous online videos for Smithsonian.com and Loyola University Chicago's online breaking news site. This will be her first IRCE.

Highlighted Sessions
Using Video to Keep and Attract Shoppers— and Create Sales Tuesday, June 10, 8:45-9:15 a.m.
The Mobile Revolution Embraces Video Tuesday, June 10, 11:00-11:45 a.m.
How the Video Experience is Transforming the Way People Shop Thursday, June 12, 9:00-9:30 a.m.


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