YouTube already absorbs billions of hours of attention from the world. Today, the video giant also wants to capture a bigger share of consumers’ online purchases.
Seeking to grease the wheels of e-commerce, the platform is introducing new tools to the Shopping tab of YouTube Studio so that creators can more easily manage how their products are branded and appear on their channel. Additionally, all creators eligible for YouTube’s Merchandise Program can now access live shopping features, such as the ability to tag products on a live stream directly from the live control room panel.
And YouTube has also signed a partnership with Shopify, an e-commerce service provider, to allow creators and merchants to showcase their products on their YouTube channels and content. Creators can now link their Shopify store to their YouTube channel in just a few steps, according to David Katz, vice president of shopping products at YouTube.
Additionally, starting next week, YouTube will introduce a new shopping destination in the Explore tab that will feature “relevant” shoppable content from creator channels in three countries: the United States, Brazil, and Australia. India. This will roll out to other countries later this year.
Creators “spend a lot of time building a business and growing their products, so we want to make it even easier for them to connect and manage their stores on YouTube and bring their products directly to their audience,” Katz wrote in a post. blog post announcing the Shopify pact and new shopping features for creators.
By linking a Shopify store to their YouTube channel, creators will be able to take advantage of Shopify’s real-time inventory syncing capability, designed to eliminate the risk of a product going out of stock. US-based creators can enable onsite checkout through Shopify so viewers can make purchases without leaving YouTube. Shopify’s pricing plans start at $29/month for a basic eCommerce plan. The company also charges online credit card processing fees, which start at 2.9% plus 30 cents per transaction.
“We believe creators are the next generation of merchants, and YouTube has long been a leader in nurturing this new cohort of entrepreneurs,” Kaz Nejatian, vice president of product at Shopify, said in a statement.
YouTube expanded access to shopping features to even more creators and focused on improving the ability to sell products in live streams. In 2022, YouTube made live events — including Coachella, YouTube’s second annual beauty festival, and Brazil’s massive Paulistão football tournament — “completely buyable for viewers,” according to Katz.
About 89% of viewers agree that YouTube creators provide recommendations for products and services they trust, according to research commissioned by YouTube and conducted in August 2021 by Publicis Groupe and specialist research firm Talk Shoppe.
To be eligible for YouTube shopping features, the user must meet certain minimum requirements. These include: the channel must be approved for monetization; if the channel is a music channel, it must be an officially certified artist channel; if it is not a music channel, it must have more than 10,000 subscribers; and the channel’s audience must not have a “significant number” of videos designated as made for children.
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