Last year a report from Bloomberg indicated that Google was in the early stages of transforming YouTube into a shopping site. This would enable consumers to directly purchase items they see in product review videos, unboxing videos, tutorials, and so on. YouTube is already a shopping destination of sorts, as 55% of consumers use videos to make purchase decisions. However, when consumers decide to purchase a product after watching a video, they have to go to another site to place the order.
The company shared that it’s working on a new way to shop on the streaming platform. It’s asking some of its creators to add “certain products” to their videos. Viewers will then be able to see a list of these featured products via a link in the video. The experiment is only visible to people in the US on Android, iOS, and desktops.
[January 14, 2021] Testing a new way to shop on YouTube: We’re testing a new way for people to easily discover and purchase products featured in YouTube videos. Creators in this pilot can add certain products to their videos. Viewers can then see a list of featured products by clicking the shopping bag icon on the bottom left corner of the video. From there, viewers can explore each product’s page to see more information, related videos, and purchase options for that product. We are currently piloting this feature with a limited number of creators. It is visible to users in the US on iOS, Android, and desktop.