Shoppable Video & Flipping the Funnel

What is Shoppable Video?

Shoppable Video means video that is effectively click and convert within the native experience of that video. Contrary to say, an Ad on Meta, where the customer may see a video and be directed to the brand’s website, Shoppable Video collapses the funnel into the same application.

A customer will see the product in a video, know what the product is, and be able to seamlessly by it within the same ‘experience.’

There are dozens and dozens of possible ‘shoppable apps‘ or platforms that one could choose to try depending on the use case, target audience, and desired scale (SMB vs. Enterprise).

With all the hype around TikTok Shop, many brands will be analyzing whether or not it makes sense to position themselves there.

But first some perspective.

While social commerce is itself an exciting market to analyze, the actual amount of commerce occurring on these social-media sites pales in comparison to e-commerce.

How much of ‘total retail e-commerce sales’ does social commerce take in the United States?


Right now, sales from ‘social commerce‘ represent only about 5% of total retail e-commerce sales in the US.

Yes, the global market is going to continue to rapidly expand up towards the $Trillions, but the US market is currently the market that is ripe for innovation at a macro level, and for brand creativity at a micro level.

How can brands dip their toes into social commerce outside of TikTok Shop?

The concept of ‘flipping the funnel‘ comes among the key learnings out of the Chinese market from Firework. The basics of the concept are illustrated below.

The reference to ‘Live Commerce’ could be one of the following three scenarios:

  • Live Shopping stream – led by an Influencer or Host in real-time, selling products on behalf of the brand to a live audience. These would typically have a duration of 15 mins to several hours
  • Live Shopping replay – that same stream that was live, is now viewable in replays across any video channel. Similar to the concept of watching sports replays, this could either be the entire stream or selected clips
  • Shoppable Video ‘Shorts’ – whether from a live stream, or a UGC (User Generated Content) clip, a shoppable video short would enable the customer to click and purchase the good in the same sequence

See some specific examples in the ‘Live Shopping, Video Commerce & More‘ post.

In any one of the following scenarios, there is obvious argument that the audience(s) – and therefore the action – happen on social media sites such as TikTok, Instagram, Facebook, etc.

Yet, simultaneously, the “Customer Affinity” (loyalty, likelihood to repeat purchase, etc.) is low on social media. The traffic is there, but the conversion and rate of repeat purchases is typically not.

Furthermore, a lot of the goods that move exponentially on these sites are lower priced, and a lot of consumers come for discounts.

The Social Media Funnel for Live Commerce

These concepts of ‘Customer Affinity’ are discussed at length in Business Model Analytics, and are paramount to the long-term success of almost any retail or e-commerce business model.

By flipping the funnel, and placing these video assets on the brand’s website, the opposite would be expected to occur and we would expect to see a high Customer Affinity.

The Brand’s Website Funnel in Live Commerce

In some ways, it is counterintuitive to what we would expect to happen in the market.

What are potential ‘Live Commerce’ conversion rates in the US market?

Yet there are several live examples in the American market with leading consumer and luxury brands are doing just that. They are putting their premium ‘live’ video content on their own website and driving traffic to there.

This type of traffic in a Live Shopping stream will typically convert at 3X the rates of e-commerce (or 9%), but can go as high as 10X e-commerce conversion rates up to 30%.

If live video content is executed correctly, consumers love it!