Firework isn't the only company looking to do this. Earlier this year, David’s Bridal used Bambuser, a platform that hosts shoppable livestreams and lets brands make prerecorded content; Walmart started using Talkshoplive in 2021, which lets the retail behemoth host shoppable content through Talkshoplive’s embeddable video player directly on Walmart.com; and Nordstrom started hosting its own native livestreamed shopping events during the pandemic. Shoppable videos give customers a unique experience outside of a physical store and can give customers more in-depth product information.
Retailers such as The Fresh Market and Grande Cosmetics have also seen an uptick in sales from shoppable video, though they admittedly were skeptical of trying at first.
Although Grocery e-commerce exploded in the pandemic, The Fresh Market, an upscale grocery store chain, tested Firework as it looked for ways to resonate with customers and expand reach and engagement.
“We were headed into the holidays and it needed a proof of concept—would shoppable videos deliver for us?” said Kevin Miller, chief marketing officer, The Fresh Market. The results exceeded the grocer's expectation, and since then The Fresh Market has seen its Firework videos lead to a 97% higher conversion rate than the rest of its site, as well as a 47% increase in click-through rates on emails that contain a Firework video.
When going to The Fresh Market website, shoppers see a Firework video in the lower right corner of the homepage. One video explains that customers can visit stores to have select pieces of salmon cut by the butcher, while another teases a $25 weeknight chicken taco meal that serves four or catered meals for a tailgating party. Each has a “Shop Now” button that directs users to a detailed event page, customizable shoppable grocery lists or the ability to place an order for curbside pickup.
Grande Cosmetics started looking into shopping platforms two years ago with the goal of boosting e-commerce sales. “I really wasn’t confident at the time that it would be something to try because it was so new,” said Lisa Dominish, chief digital officer of Grande Cosmetics.
Since the beauty company implemented Firework last year, website conversion rates are up 40% and average order value is up 5% for customers who engage with the videos. The brand has done three 10-minute live shopping events focusing on their bestselling lash serum.
Dominish said the platform’s price point and ease of use have been a plus. According to Yang, plans start at $500 per month, but enterprise plans can vary depending on how much help brands are looking for—be it fully managed video production, roughly scripting a video or just using the video player.
Grande Cosmetics had been in discussions with TikTok to do shoppable video on the platform, but ultimately it found it was too much of a lift. “It was self-serve, and we would have needed the Shopify integration with TikTok,” Dominish wrote in an email. “The interface isn’t as intuitive and informative as Firework. We have support with Firework to include product integration and they also report back to us on effectiveness so it’s a win-win.”
TikTok declined to comment for this story.
Olaplex also found that while it liked seeing user-generated content on TikTok, it didn’t love that certain videos showed wrong use of their products. They wanted to make sure their website was a source of verified information.
“Of course there isn’t just one avenue to reach customers, but not all content is created equal,” said Olaplex’s Wong. “TikTok is more about quick clips, but on our website customers will watch a minutes-long tutorial, and they can trust the information because it’s from us directly.”
All three are looking forward to using short videos for the holiday season.
“It's an essential part of our holiday strategy,” said Dominish. “We’re looking to promote our travel sets.”